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Cunliffe stands strong for fair pay and your work rights

Written By: - Date published: 6:29 am, October 10th, 2013 - 139 comments
Categories: jobs, minimum wage, wages, workers' rights - Tags:

David Cunliffe showed that he wasn’t just pandering for votes in the leadership race by reaffirming and strengthening his commitment to work rights at the CTU conference yesterday. When David is PM the minimum wage will rise to $15 an hour, the public service will set an example by paying the living wage, and the Nats’ attacks on rights will be reversed – no more Fire at Will, no more youth rates.

Higher wages and more secure pay helps to fight poverty, lifts household savings, gives people dignity, increases demand in the economy creating jobs, and fuels improvements in productivity. If we want those things, we need higher wages to drive them. Undermining wages, which is National’s core agenda, undermines all those things in return for short-term gains for the rich.

Meanwhile, the middle-aged rich men of the Right can only whine that young people, women, and minorities don’t deserve decent pay. David Farrar sneers that young people starting in public service don’t deserve $18.40 an hour. Tau Henare spits on the Pasifika women who clean his toilets. John ‘corporate handout’ Key says that we can’t afford to pay people fairly. We’ve tried the neoliberal way for 25 years and its brought us only low wages, rising poverty, and a massive exodus to Australia.

Those losers’ day has passed. It’s time for a true red Labour that delivers a fair deal for working Kiwis, and David Cunliffe is offering it.

139 comments on “Cunliffe stands strong for fair pay and your work rights”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    Yep. Cunliffe is on to a winner. This is a true red Labour Party that I can recognise, not a light blue one. I would also suggest strengthening the role of unions and worker councils in the NZ economy, as well as implementing a policy of full employment.

    In other words, the minimum wage not only has to be a living wage, it also has to be a true minimum wage, meaning that anyone willing and capable of working, can get work. No more wasting people on the scrap heap of unemployment.

    • Chooky 1.1

      +100…work especially for all who want it ….and especially youth being able to get work and training…there should be no school leavers unemployed or youth left on the scrap heap without jobs and/or training.

    • poem 1.2

      +1 Colonial Viper.

  2. vto 2

    New Zealand as a country is more than amply rich enough to pay everyone an income to live on. Our GDP is something like $US30,000 per person per year.

    The problem is the redistribution of the country’s wealth. The existing redistribution needs changing to spread it around more fairly, instead of leaving some with less than it costs to live after working a full and decent day, and leaving others to earn absolute mountains of gold and pay no tax on it whatsoever (capital driven farmers and property owners, I’m looking straight at you – pay your way, bludgers).

    The system of distribution of the nations wealth must be changed.

    • Crunchtime 2.1

      +1 vto.

      In the last US Presidential election I remember much howling that Obama wanting to “redistribute the wealth” (from rich to poor) was “Socialism!” or even “Communisim!”

      The trouble is that wealth redistribution has been happening steadily for years in the other direction, from hard low-paid workers to ever-richer bosses and investors. It continues to go in that direction under Obama. It slowed considerably or nearly halted in NZ when Helen Clarke’s Labour govt was in power. As we all know it’s continued sliding away from the poor towards the rich under Key’s National Govt, as it always does under a National Govt (or has done since Muldoon).

      It’s time for the redistribution to go the other way. It’s not socialism (well – not just socialism), it’s fairness. It’s nationwide wellbeing, morale and health. It’s preventing Democracy from being undermined.

  3. Ad 3

    Odd that the Greens are on the attack on this one, wanting it for all workers and saying public servants getting it will make the rest of the underpaid envious.

    Presumably the Greens are hearing a sucking sound coming from their polling. Good on them for their high standards, but I’d kind of expected the criticism to come from other parties and organisations first.

    Hate to see the Greens marginalised to permanent adolescence perpetually complaining that they want more and their friends have already got one so they have just got to have one, now!

    • karol 3.1

      That’s a very cynical analysis, ad. i’m a Green voter and see Cunliffe’s stance as a win-win for Labour and the Greens. We still don’t know whether Cunliffe will reform social security. the Greens and Mana are there to keep Labour left.

      • poem 3.1.1

        Yes, agree with that, Karol.

        • Bill Drees 3.1.1.1

          David Cunliffe’s duty is to the people of NZ via the Labour Party. It is his role to attract the voters to supporting Labour values.

          That is what he is doing in a single minded mannner, successfully.

          Cunliffe has no obligation to leave a space for Greens: that would be second guessing what the public wants and he has no right to do that.

          • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1.1

            Cunliffe has no obligation to leave a space for Greens: that would be second guessing what the public wants and he has no right to do that.

            That may be so from a tactical viewpoint (although still arguable); but from a longer term strategic and MMP viewpoint it is absolutely necessary for the Left to have multiple voices, institutions and parties which represent a wider movement.

            As a real life example, just look at the predicament that National is in now that all its natural support parties are screwed.

    • bad12 3.2

      Don’t take this as an attack on David Cunliffe, but, i see Meteria Turei’s point to be a fair analysis of what Cunliffe and Labour have so far said about ‘the living wage’,

      Those working directly for the Parliament, Parliamentary Services, or ‘the Government’ will get ‘the living wage’ from a Labour lead Government,

      The Parliaments cleaners tho, employed by contractor Spotless will not, your claim that it is adolescent of the Green Party to point this out and the related comment leaves you looking well, for want of a better term, adolescent…

      • finbar 3.2.1

        Bad 12.He has said, that they will give preference to those who contract services to the Government,who will pay the living wage.

        • bad12 3.2.1.1

          Fair point finbar, but when talking of immediacy the Government can only raise the hourly rate of those it ‘directly’ employs,

          Contractors to the Government will i assume come under scrutiny as to the pay levels of their employees at the time such contracts are set for renewal, i do not know for instance how long the Spotless Services contract for cleaning at the Parliament is due to run for…

    • tinfoilhat 3.3

      Nothing odd at all.

      The Green position is pretty obvious and ethical.

      My position is still that if there is to be any real change in NZ it will be led by the Greens and Mana, all we’ll get from Labour is more of the same that we’ve had for the last 30 years.

  4. Fiddlesticks 4

    The “mass exodus” to Australia is interesting given :
    - Australia has youth rates
    - Australia has a lower union coverage
    - Unfair dismissal can’t be claimed in the first 6 to 12mths of employment depending on size of employer (as I understand it)
    - Supposedly a higher (or similar) rate of precarious employment
    - NZers are unable to access welfare support.

    Yet for all of that Australia has higher wages and NZers supposedly flock there to take advantage of those rates, although the tide appears to be turning. Hmmm.

    • Rogue Trooper 4.1

      Hmmm, indeed.

    • George D 4.2

      Australian wages are considerably higher, in real and nominal terms.

      I know that I enjoyed earning $33.50 AUD (~$40NZD) as a university tutor, with holiday pay and a 0% tax bracket up to $15,000, while my NZ friends doing exactly the same were on $16.50 and paying 10% on the first $14,000 and 17.5% thereafter.

    • Crunchtime 4.3

      This article you are commenting on is about a Living Wage.

      Australia has a minimum wage that is about as high as the Living Wage proposed by Cunliffe.

      The other stuff you mentioned is important for sure, but the higher minimum wage in Australia is exactly the action that Cunliffe is indending to take when (not if) he becomes Prime Minister of the next government.

  5. chris73 5

    “When David is PM the minimum wage will rise to $15 an hour, the public service will set an example by paying the living wage, and the Nats’ attacks on rights will be reversed – no more Fire at Will, no more youth rates.”

    - He might do some, for example most working for the public service are probably on over “the living wage” (which sounds better than a figure plucked out of thin air I guess) already so that won’t take much but for the rest of his promises hes already made his excuse:

    “Subject to the provisions of fiscal responsibility”

    Whats the betting this line will get trotted out quite a bit IF Cunliffe wins power

    • lprent 5.1

      The costs aren’t particularly high. In fact they are so low, you’d have to ask why National hasn’t already done them.

      • Wayne 5.1.1

        And don’t be surprised if the Nats do this next year. By this I mean the minimum wage being $15.

        • tinfoilhat 5.1.1.1

          Yes the usual election year lolly scramble.

        • bad12 5.1.1.2

          Slippery the PM would rather suck upon the nether regions of a dead rat than raise the minimum wage by more than 25 cents an hour,

          It of course would be a great move for the low paid to have National raise the minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour next year, that would simply provoke the Labour/Green Government to raise it to 16 dollars an hour in 2015,

          Sounds good to me…

        • lprent 5.1.1.3

          Yeah it is an obvious political move for National to do it blaming it on Labour. Besides which, the income imbalances inside the economy are an obvious thing for both major parties to address especially when it looks like we are finally going to get some growth. Otherwise neither will like the downstream political effects.

          • finbar 5.1.1.3.1

            It has started already.This morning they had the rat Prebble,on the radio this morning rubbishing the raising of the minimum wage to $15 hour, not mentioning the living wage of $18.He like all of the right was hammering the same old line, that productivity produces wage rises, forgetting to mention the latest world figuers that we are among if not the most, productive work force within the O.E.C.D.with longer productive working hours than most.And still we the producers, are still on the bones of our arses.

            The Nats,the employers association and their mates are all going to be crying foul crying that it will lead to higher unemployment,businesses going bankrupt and all sorts of horrors.All bullshit of course,just means that they will not be banking as much profit as they are used too.

      • Ed 5.1.2

        Subject to the provisions of fiscal responsibility is at this stage quite a reasonable provision. For the core public sector, changes can be made very quickly. As lprent points out the costs for the core public sector aren’t particularly high (National’s “always looking for an opportunity for private profit” attitude has increased ‘contracting out’), but there are some flow on effects to some employees above the minimum wage. Changing terms for contractors is not as simple, as there needs to be care that additional costs claimed do not simply result in higher profits and lower than expected impact on wages, but clearly that would need urgent political and operational attention.

        Fiscal responsibility is needed – particularly as the scale of National’s plundering for it’s corporate ‘friends’ appears to be picking up in pace – the Sky deal is abhorrent, there is also a deal for Chorus (I’m not sure where that is at), and the fire-sale of Meridian is now under way – who knows the extent to which National will increase borrowing to give crony handouts and other corporate ‘assistance’ between now and the election?

        There are legitimate discussions about the scale and order in which necessary reversal of National’s poor decisions should take place; what is clear is that _when_ (not if) we have a Labour/Green government significant change will happen for the better

  6. ak 6

    Simply marvellous, chaps, keep it up. The grisly ghost of Sir Rogering Douglas and his filthy self-serving toadies on the back foot for the first time in thirty years. But they won’t like it up em old boy – forge ahead because they’ll use every sneaky, slimy ruse at their massive disposal to hamstring you. Keep the troops close: and arise,Sir John Campbell.

  7. Wayne 7

    If David Cunliffe wants to reverse every single thing the Nats have done since 2008, Labour will cop the same thing when they loose power. There will simply be no incentive to govern for the centre, (except if the main support party has come from the centre).

    Which is not the traditional way of doing politics in NZ. Typically parties work out what the previous govt did that was broadly acceptable, and then keep those things, or only mildly modify them. For instance since 2008, the Nats accepted the bulk of the ERA of 2000, did not seek to privatise ACC, or abolish Health Boards. And Labour did the same in 1999.

    But why would the Nats do this for the future, why not just reintroduce ECA, since it all gets reversed anyway when the cycle turns. At least the Nats supporters would get the benefit of the ECA, while they are in power.

    Of course partisans will say that nothing the previous govt did is acceptable, but the caucus is normally more considered than party activists.

    I appreciate that so far David Cunliffe has only taken this approach in employment law, but if he also does this in education, RMA, mining, welfare, etc then the Nats will make their own conclusions for the next cycle when they are in power.

    At least he won’t reverse TPP if it becomes law next year!

    Of course this is all dependent on the support party being more to the left or to the right of the major party, but such an approach tends to galvanize the left or the right, since they know they will get major gains.

    The big downside for the nation is that it will lead to more extreme politics, as we now see in the US. Each side of politics governs solely for their own supporters, and accepts when they loose, it all gets rolled back. And of course the whole tone of politics becomes more nasty.

    • vto 7.1

      Jeez Wayne, it’s “lose” not “loose”.

      As for complete overhauls each and every electoral cycle, are you seriously trying to suggest that the proposed changes to the RMA are somehow middle of the road?

      You come across as a pretty average punter on most subjects you post on, yet here you are part of the government making very serious decisions about peoples lives and the country itself.

      Sheesh. No wonder we end up with less than average decisions (from most all governments). It is time the power was taken away from you lot and given back to the people.

      Vote Them Out I say.

      • Wayne 7.1.1

        Fair point about spelling, never my strong point.

        The RMA is a good illustration. There are clearly things that the Nats have done or will do to the RMA that Labour would wish to reverse. But that is quite different to reversing the entirety of all the changes to the RMA since 2008.

        To Miravox, yes it is possible that the centre could shift left, but equally it might just lead to a US situation.

        It really depends where the main support party sits. Certainly for the moment there is not a strong party to the right of National, but there has been, before ACT blew up. And if Labour swings sharply left, you could expect to see the revival of a right wing party.

        The whole debate sets up an interesting contest for 2014. Labour swinging left may open ground for NZF. And a left Labour/Green package will incentivise NZF to go with the Nats.

        • vto 7.1.1.1

          “The RMA is a good illustration. There are clearly things that the Nats have done or will do to the RMA that Labour would wish to reverse. But that is quite different to reversing the entirety of all the changes to the RMA since 2008.”

          That is a mash-up designed to distort the point. And the point is that the guts of the RMA is being gutted and amended to a heavily partisan position, which is the point you raised initially, namely that centre-ish bipartisan changes are effectively ok but heavily partisan changes are not. The proposed RMA changes are heavily partisan.

          You blame others for doing what you do yourself and that is called hypocrisy.

        • bad12 7.1.1.2

          100 days Wayne, all of it, the youth rates, the 90 day fire at will provisions, all of it gone 100 days after the 2014 election,

          Take a deep one Wayne and enjoy the ride, i am sure you will find lots of reasons after November 2014 to squeal about the sky falling in…

          • Wayne 7.1.1.2.1

            In that case wait for 2020.

            • bad12 7.1.1.2.1.1

              Wayne, don’t you mean wait until 2023 where there will be a slim chance of the next National Government,

              The problem is, and i see it from here, is where will National find a coalition partner even then,

              The far right burned all it’s political capital in the guise of ACT which National then mounted a successful hostile corporate raid upon,

              NZFirst with Winston Peters long gone into retirement will be just a memory so National will have no friends,

              100 days Wayne, after November 2014, all of it, the sum total of National’s anti-worker Legislation will be gone, up in smoke where it belongs…

            • vto 7.1.1.2.1.2

              Wait for 2020? I think you are missing a change swinging through the populace, evidenced throughout mankind. There is a push back to the “left” or rather, a swing away from the policies of the right. This is a long term pendulum swing.

              It is evidence by, for example, the three term Clark government and by the pending two term Key government. Recently that would have been the other way around, but not now. The norm is becoming governments of the leftish. Think about it.

              National wont be around in its existing or recent past form in 2020, it will bend and mould to the change moving through…. best get on board Wayne lest you get left behind.

        • McFlock 7.1.1.3

          NZ would shift to the left in the same way it shifted to the right after lab4/ACT1.

          And we couldn’t have a US impasse-situation in NZ, because the government would lose confidence and we’d have a snap election.

          The real question is (should labour win in 2014) how badly national do in 2017. We might well end up seeing an act-style party on 10%, but if national plummet to the low twenties or teens than they’ll need more friends than that to recover for 2020. Anyone they can break bread with would demand some significant moves to the left to even get a cup of tea.

          • Matthew Whitehead 7.1.1.3.1

            There’s also the possibility they’ll have to square the circle of a centrist party on their left flank and the completely wingnut conservative party on their right flank.

            God I look forward to seeing these suckers in opposition, if we get a strong show from the next left-wing government, it’s going to be priceless.

        • Anne 7.1.1.4

          And if Labour swings sharply left, you could expect to see the revival of a right wing party.

          You mean ACT? Can’t see that going very far given their past performances. The only time they were worth taking seriously was in their first term in parliament when they actually had a few decent MPs. Not surprisingly they soon deserted the ship!

    • miravox 7.2

      ” There will simply be no incentive to govern for the centre, “

      The centre will shift left*, just as it shifted to the right with the neo-liberal turn in the ’80s.

      *economic beliefs, that is. I think politic positioning is a little more complex these days.

    • bad12 7.3

      Wayne, its so good to see you also along with a number of other ‘wing-nuts’ addressing the fact that the next Government of New Zealand will be a Labour/Green one,

      Your current elongated babble tho gives off the reek of fear,panic and loathing, take a deep breath Wayne i would like to tell you that your worst fears are not about to be realized, but as i hope they will be and there’s a 50/50 chance of the Labour/Green Government after 2014 election being the ‘devil beast incarnate Slippery your PM describes, i cannot, from around the laughter at you, do so…

      • Wayne 7.3.1

        You should look at my comment on NZF.

        In my view this is potentially shaping up as a Nat/NZF and a Lab/Green fight in 2014. It won’t of course be quite as transparent as that, since NZF won’t commit to the Nats in the way the Greens have with Labour.

        But the more left Labour goes, the easier it will be for voters to work this out. And in that case I reckon it will be a Nat/NZF Govt in 2014, (which will inevitably lose in 2017).

        In fact it is the sort of deal that Helen did in 2005. So history may repeat itself, just as 2011 mirrored 2002 to some extent.

        • bad12 7.3.1.1

          Lolz Wayne, to be blunt, the left have left NZFirst, bolting back to support a David Cunliffe lead resurgent Labour Party,

          Befor you tie your tongue in knots over the prospect of a National/NZFirst coalition you have to consider the liklihood of NZFirst not even being in the next Parliament, right now i put the odds of them not being there after election 2014 at 60/40,

          National on the Slide, Slippery the PM losing a large chunk of His popularity, National with only 39% of the vote at 2014, anyone saying that during the first term, 2008-2011, would have been laughed outta the room, now such a result for National is a distinct possibility, in such a case an act of God would be needed for National to get a third term,

          Suck it up Wayne, all the indicators say your riding the loser in the next race…

          • Wayne 7.3.1.1.1

            Well, as you say, it probably all rests on whether NZF gets into Parliament. And in my view the more left Labour goes the stronger Winston will be.

            Even in 2008, after his Owen Glenn debacle, he still got over 4%. Given that he tends to do well during elections, the fact that he is now polling around 4% would indicate he is good for 6% or so at the election.

            Incidentally as soon as NZF got re-elected on 2011, I thought they would be the obvious coalition party for National.

            • lprent 7.3.1.1.1.1

              I thought they would be the obvious coalition party for National.

              They would be in theory because many of their pollies lean that way and so do many of the policies. But in practice their supporters are not because they run extensively on this concept of “fairness” – mostly to themselves. But also more generally to family members and friends. While they’re mostly “a plague on all their houses” style voters, their supporters and even their members really really don’t like National’s general policy directions. That is because in a large degree over recent decades those tend to wind up as being about advantaging crony companies and investors and the trickle down is dominated more by rhetoric than reality.

              It makes NZF internally highly unstable when they coalesce with National because their politicians then have to spend much of their time trying to placate supporters. They have much less of a problem when they coalesce with Labour because while they get a lot of grumbling, they can argue the “keeping them honest” meme much more easily from the right of Labour. They also have more allies inside the Labour caucus/party because the populist/morality right-wing there find a lot of common ground with them (think Josie Pagani and our member for westland for instance).

              Winston appears to be quite aware of this issue..

            • bad12 7.3.1.1.1.2

              Nope it all depends wee Wayne on ‘the trend’, if the current one, trend that is, continues for National,(down), and Slippery the Prime Minister,(also down),then i expect National at the 2014 election is probably a large Opposition with 41-39% of the vote,

              Given that a goodly handful of National supporters are likely to decamp that party to try and bolster NZFirst it wouldn’t matter either way should NZFirst be in or out of the next Parliament…

            • Matthew Whitehead 7.3.1.1.1.3

              You’d think after National’s last disasterous attempt at a coalition with NZF that John Key’s up-front ruling out of them was actually a good idea, to be honest. If you’re pinning your hopes on that, you’re really desperate.

          • lprent 7.3.1.1.2

            ..you have to consider the liklihood of NZFirst not even being in the next Parliament, right now i put the odds of them not being there after election 2014 at 60/40,

            You’d be wrong. After the 2008 election I said that they’d be back despite National’s silly smear campaign.

            NZFirst’s voters actually vote – in every election. They don’t trust any of the main parties, which is why National eventually stopped trying to entice them and tried to destroy the party instead. Labour would probably like them, but unfortunately the type of people who vote NZF tend to be notable for their long memories and ability to hold grudges. Finally it is a replenishing constituency. People start hitting ~50 and really getting to distrust politicians.

            The natural constituency for a NZF type party is easily large enough to routinely be in the 6-7% range at election time. We’ve had those voters in the NZ political scene since at least the 70′s. They used to be masked by the FPP.

            • Rogue Trooper 7.3.1.1.2.1

              people start hitting there teens and really getting to distrust politicians.

              • David H

                Hell my sons 2 and a bit, and he will know not to trust the shysters in Blue, before he’s 5.

            • Lanthanide 7.3.1.1.2.2

              I don’t agree. I think their 2011 result was buoyed by the teacup tapes and by left voters knowing that NZFirst was the only chance of Labour forming a government (which they nearly managed). Just go back to the 2011 election posts and see how many commentators here said they were holding their nose and voting for NZFirst over Labour or Greens.

              Without either of those factors in the 2014 vote, I think a vote somewhere between 5-6% is more likely for NZFirst, and they could even slip under 5% all together if they don’t have a good campaign.

            • bad12 7.3.1.1.2.3

              ”You’d be wrong”, that will only be a statement of fact either way after the 2014 election, i also think that NZFirst has a more ‘broad’ constituency in terms of the ‘type’ of people who vote for that particular party than you give credit to…

    • geoff 7.4

      The big downside for the nation is that it will lead to more extreme politics, as we now see in the US. Each side of politics governs solely for their own supporters, and accepts when they loose, it all gets rolled back. And of course the whole tone of politics becomes more nasty.

      Wayne you say this like it has all occurred in a vacuum, as though history doesn’t exist.

      Politics is going to get nasty when inequality is at record highs, when the very very very rich hold all the wealth and then refuse to change the system when it is clearly shown to be faulty (GFC).

      But you don’t want to talk about that do you. Just like John Key never wants to talk about mass-surveillance from the USA. Too inconvenient for wealthy old white men who have spent their lives obsequiously climbing the ladder.

      • Draco T Bastard 7.4.1

        +1

        No person of the political-right seems to be able to admit that their policies are what are causing the problems.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.5

      Which just tells us that representative democracy is failing and that we need to go to participatory democracy. Have it so that the policies are the will of the people rather than the MPs who seem to do more for the corporations than the people.

  8. Tracey 8

    A lolly scramble in election year wayne?

    I think they wld seriously under estimate how cynical this would be seen by the electorate.

    • tinfoilhat 8.1

      Sadly I think that a large part of the electorate don’t care what is or isn’t cynical anymore, they just expect everything to be cynical and just vote according to their own back pocket, otherwise we’d see more green representation and sensible policies.

  9. Tracey 9

    Bad12

    id like to see cunliffe reiterate his suggestion during the leadership race to favour govt contractors paying a living wage. It is a back door subsidy but one that I for one support.

    • bad12 9.1

      Oh i am sure that in a future Governed by a Labour/Green Government any ‘contractor’ who does not pay the ‘living wage’ to their employees will not be awarded any Government contracts,

      As a suggestion to both Labour and the Green Party’s i would like to see when the expressions of interest in any Government contracts are called for an express provision that ‘living wage’ employers will be in the front of the line to pick up Government contracts,(with a BROAD hint that those who have been ‘living wage’ employers the longest have the best chances at the best contracts)…

      • Lanthanide 9.1.1

        “Oh i am sure that in a future Governed by a Labour/Green Government any ‘contractor’ who does not pay the ‘living wage’ to their employees will not be awarded any Government contracts,”

        Thus making the government contracts more expensive, thus this policy costing the government money.

        The only reason they’re doing this “living wage for government employees” shtick is because it’s a piddling $30m.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.1

          Thus making the government contracts more expensive, thus this policy costing the government money.

          That’s actually good as it means that the government will have to bring the services in house thus saving money and getting better services.

          • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.1.1

            Plus since when is spending money on workers considered bad?

            Yes it’s a “cost” to the government, but that cost is known as “income” to local communities.

        • bad12 9.1.1.2

          Which is where David Cunlifffe’s ‘being fiscally prudent’ comes in, i would like nothing better than to hear David Cunliffe chart a course to where the minimum wage is morphed into the ‘living wage’,

          i also realize that National will hand to an incoming Labour/Green Government not a set of ‘books’ that are ‘balanced’,

          Instead a magicians piece of trickery, an illusion of balanced books, propped up like a house of cards on the over-borrowing by National in years 2011-12 which National plan on touting to a financially illiterate populace as balanced books heading for the 2014 election…

        • bad12 9.1.1.3

          Yes, the reason i would like to see all Government contracts become part of the public record, Spotless services are being paid how much to clean the 180 toilets every week when they grind out of 2 workers the sum total of labour required while paying them a few cents above the minimum wage,

          What are Spotless paid for this work by the Government, 5 grand a week???, Ten maybe, we will never know just how fair the workload and the pay rates are for those employed to clean those toilets unless the contracts become part of the public record…

  10. mickysavage 10

    Nooo …

    Radio NZ is interviewing Richard Prebble and Bryce Edwards to comment on Cunliffe’s speech. Prebble’s qualification is that he is a former Labour MP. His transformation into an ultra right sell out must have escaped RNZ’s researchers.

    Bryce Edwards is correct in saying that Cunliffe is not trying to target the centre but mobilise the base. He also says that Labour is now “not looking so boring” which is a bit of an understatement.

    Prebble says that you become Government “when you tell unpalatable truths”. Funny, I don’t remember Prebble and Douglas saying they were going to smash up the state before they were elected. He is also pulling figures out of his arse in attempting to denigrate the Living Wage. As usual he is concentrating solely on the costs and not seeing the potential economic and social benefits of improving people’s lives.

    Edwards thinks the speech could be a game changer. Well said.

    • Tim 10.1

      @ Mickey. These days, such is the nature of RNZ during weekdays. Broke but still able to afford certain presenters their degree of comfort; inoffensive; bland; increasingly mainstream all delivered with the best in elocution.

    • vto 10.2

      “He is also pulling figures out of his arse in attempting to denigrate the Living Wage. As usual he is concentrating solely on the costs and not seeing the potential economic and social benefits of improving people’s lives.”

      How can there be any cost to the country? The money stays within the borders. In fact it would stay even more within the borders, being paid to low paid hard workers who spend all within the community.

      There is no net cost.

    • Lanthanide 10.3

      Prebble was electioneering in his answer, I think, by saying the real cost of the policy is probably $300m if we’re lucky and $1b if we’re unlucky. That’s the type of crap that John Key says, not what a political commentator should be saying.

      • Steve Wrathall 10.3.1

        Please explain why someone on $18 already won’t then demand $25. And the person on $25 won’t then demand $35. And with all this extra money around, and increased costs of labour why won’t prices go up? Why not just print extra zeros on the currency? Makes as much sense.

        • vto 10.3.1.1

          I’m sure it does make sense when you think along the lines you just outlined. Problem is, those lines are just silly.

          • King Kong 10.3.1.1.1

            Not silly at all.

            I am the apprentice on $14 an hour, the labourer gets $18 an hour, the carpenter gets $30 an hour and the foreman gets $40 an hour.

            there is a differential in these pay rates for a very good reason. Tinker with the one at the bottom and you have to tinker with the lot.

            • wtl 10.3.1.1.1.1

              All this talk about effects of on other people’s wages or the cost of labour is just a distraction.

              The bottom line is that all workers should be paid a wage that allows them to provide themselves and their families with the basic necessities of life. That is what the living wage is and I believe most New Zealanders would see that as simple common sense.

              • richard

                +1 wtl

                That is the argument for a living wage. Something the RWNJ “intellectual heavyweights” choose to deliberately overlook.

              • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                +1 wtl

                The other thing that is not being appreciated by the naysayers to the living wage is that people on the minimum wage are getting supplemented by the government and charity organisations to make ends meet.

                When employers start paying wages that allows employees to meet their costs, the less will be spent keeping people afloat and this money can go into creating prosperity. In this way the entire country becomes more prosperous, rather than indulging in this poverty mentality of chasing the lowest common denominator all the time.

                Really, it needs to be a requirement that wages cover living costs. It defeats one of the main points of working when this is not the case.

            • Steve Wrathall 10.3.1.1.1.2

              But that’s the real world, not the magical fantasy world in which Labour policies are dreamed up.

              • King Kong

                The real world, where arbitrarily raising wages across the board creates inflation.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  When the majority of people can’t be paid enough to live on for fear of inflation just proves that the monetary system doesn’t actually work.

                  Of course, I worked that one out a while ago which is why I think we need to go to a democratic economy with the purpose of supplying all the people of NZ with what they need and want within sustainable limits and get away from the unsustainable drive of profit.

                  • King Kong

                    You do realise that what you are suggesting has been tried in quite a few places before and has always ended in abject failure.

                    Of course your plan will work with the addition of some magic socialist fairy dust which all the others forgot.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Ahhh BS mate. You’re just scared of real policies for the real economy, especially since it’s been so long since we’ve seen anything substantial like that from National.

                    • King Kong

                      What I am scared of is people who are so obviously deranged being so close to the levers of power.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      It’s not deranged to have a focus on the real economy instead of the financial economy; it’s sensible.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      You do realise that what you are suggesting has been tried in quite a few places before and has always ended in abject failure.

                      [citation needed]

                      Really, can’t think of any economy that existed within ecological limits while also providing their people with what they needed collapsing. All the evidence points to societies collapsing because they followed capitalist policies:- Ancient Rome, Ancient Greece, Ancient Sumer, modern Greece, etc, etc.

                    • Crunchtime

                      Actually, it’s in practice in Australia and has been for a number of years. Their minimum wage is $15-$18 per hour depending on the state. Very successfully – their wages are better than ours, their economy is stronger than ours.

                • Colonial Viper

                  The real world, where arbitrarily raising wages across the board creates inflation.

                  You correct for that by reducing the money in circulation by increasing taxation and increasing savings.

                  • King Kong

                    But isn’t one man’s savings another man’s borrowed capital or are we pulling the levers on that now as well.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      you were concerned about inflation, and I’m simply saying that there are mechanisms to reduce the levels of hot money flowing into the economy if that is found to be necessary later on.

                      Anyhows, our economy has massive slack in it at the moment in terms of under utilised people and productive capacity, so any inflationary worries are a very long way off.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Considering that the banks create money when they make a “loan” – no.

              • geoff

                Well you go demand a big pay rise now and see how you go, Steve.

                The real world indeed, piss off ya ignorant thicko.

              • wtl

                In the real world, people on the minimum wage in New Zealand are not paid enough to afford the basic necessities of life for them and their families. A living wage is simply correcting this real world problem.

                • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                  Yes, and in the real world an employer wouldn’t take on staff when they can’t afford to pay them sufficiently; in the real world they wouldn’t depend on the government to make up the shortfall.

                  Is it appropriate that the government subsidise the real-world costs of employers? Or do employers need to get real and start paying wages that people can live on?

            • Crunchtime 10.3.1.1.1.3

              “Not silly at all.

              I am the apprentice on $14 an hour, the labourer gets $18 an hour, the carpenter gets $30 an hour and the foreman gets $40 an hour.

              there is a differential in these pay rates for a very good reason. Tinker with the one at the bottom and you have to tinker with the lot.”

              This is an EXCELLENT argument for raising the minimum wage by 20%, thank you.

              You’ve just illustrated beautifully the cause and effect relationship between

              - Australia’s minimum wage (20% higher than ours)

              and

              - Australia’s average worker’s pay (20% higher than ours)

              In other words, for us all to have higher wages comparative to Australia, we MUST raise the minimum wage forthwith.

              Thank you King Kong. You are a scholar and a gentleman. Not nearly the great hairy ape that was shot to death at the top of the Empire State building of your namesake.

              I wish to shake your hand.

              :)

        • Colonial Viper 10.3.1.2

          Please explain why someone on $18 already won’t then demand $25. And the person on $25 won’t then demand $35.

          Please explain why a CEO on $450,000 won’t demand a pay increase to $550,000.

          Oh they do that already, and get it. LOL

        • McFlock 10.3.1.3

          Two reasons:

          The first is the lag caused by elasticity. If the cleaner’s rate goes up to $18, your chain of demands doesn’t happen immediately, or even universally. For example, I take whatever rise they want to give me, because conditions are excellent, the work is rewarding and my remuneration is already sufficient for my needs. Your chain of demands depends on greed caused by status anxiety – it exists, but not everybody is a grasping tory.

          The second is that lower-wage people spend almost immediately. For most businesses, this means more income, either directly or indirectly. The increased volume of transactions creates a buffer that allows businesses to absorb costs while maintaining profits.

          Does all this equate to zero effect? Probably not. But the dampening effects mean that increases to a living wage are exceptionally unlikely to create hyperinflation and Mad Max collapse.

          • Rogue Trooper 10.3.1.3.1

            status anxiety . Cool :-D

          • Bob 10.3.1.3.2

            “The second is that lower-wage people spend almost immediately”, yip, then they will come back cap in hand asking for more money because that worked for them last time. That is what the left don’t take into consideration when looking at these issues, human nature.
            If you had a child that packed a tantrum every time you didn’t give them what they wanted, would you just start giving them whatever they wanted, or would you reward good behaviour and set them on the right track?
            Something HAS to be done, because it is blatantly obvious that living standards are dropping at the bottom end of the scale, if nothing is done we start heading down the South Africa track of gated communities.
            Why don’t we scrap WFF and instead introduce a tax free threshold set at 2/3 of the minimum wage, then link the minimum wage to the CPI? This way you still need to take personal responsibilty for your family, having additional children doesn’t equal ‘more money from the government’ (it does happen, only in isolated cases, but these isolated cases are still bringing children into the world that they can’t afford just because they can see $$$, remove this unintended incentive to have children and we would have less children being deliberately brought into poverty, also situations like a very well paid friend of mine whose wife wants a third child just so she doesn’t feel pressured to go back to work, and they would ‘start recieving WFF so they will have more money’ (her words) this is a tax drain to someone that doesn’t need it), and the lowest paid would stop falling further behind the curve in terms of income.

            • McFlock 10.3.1.3.2.1

              Oh, I’m sorry, your tory paternalism got in the way of reading what I actually wrote.

              The working poor spend almost immediately because they do not have enough to save or stick in the bank. They live hand to mouth.

              Rich people can save, stick it in the bank, build up a buffer for a rainy day. This is good for banks, not so much for local businesses.

              The same reason that the GST rise hit poor people disproportionately.

              PS, and your friend’s wife is an indictment of the education system for not being able to do the math properly and generally being an idiot.

              • Colonial Viper

                Seems like Bob’s main problem is that he chooses losers for friends. He really should take some personal responsibility and hang out with a better class of person.

                • Bob

                  You might be right there CV, she is one of my few left wing friends……surprise, surprise. I should have know better.

        • Lanthanide 10.3.1.4

          So they ‘demand’ it. Boss says no. What happens next?

          Don’t forget, the people we’re talking about are in the public sector, and they know the Labour government campaigned on this particular point. They’ll see it for exactly what it is – a small amount of extra money being paid to a small number of people on the bottom of the heap. The people on the next rung up are not likely to “demand” more money, and even if they did, it’s not likely to ripple up very far at all.

          Now a wider minimum wage change across the whole economy, if we were saying going from $12 to $15, yes, I’d expect wider ripples. But the now prospective $14 – > $15 when Labour gets in power probably won’t make too many ripples at all. If it was $14 -> $18.40 for the minimum wage then I would expect larger ripples again.

    • Rogue Trooper 10.4

      :-D

    • Anne 10.5

      His transformation into an ultra right sell out must have escaped RNZ’s researchers.

      Of course. Most of the current crop of media types were still in nappies in the 1980s. They probably haven’t caught up with the fact Prebble was a Labour MP for about 20 years before he was booted out of his Auck. Central seat in 1993.

      • Anne 10.5.1

        In the 1993 elections, Sandra Lee successfully contested the Auckland Central electorate as an Alliance candidate, defeating the incumbent Richard Prebble.

        from Wikipedia.

        That was probably the start of his pathological hatred of the Labour Party and the Left in general…

  11. Steve Bradley 11

    In response to David Cunliffe’s message from Labour to the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions biennial Conference, basically, “Hang on, help is on its way”, Steven Joyce said for the TV camera, “You can’t raise wages by fiat”.

    Steven Joyce? Have you ever seen him close up in the flesh? He actually looks a lot seedier and cheesier that the vast majority of the hard-working used car salesmen camped alongside Great North Road, New Lynn.

    Let’s look at how this government has stood by while wages haven’t risen by any other means.

    John Key made a personal promise to the electors that National would work to ensure that NZ wages rose to narrow the gap with Australian wages. That hasn’t happened. National has overseen a very weak economy with high levels of unemployment and short hours and there is no indication that the ‘invisible hand’ will lift market wages any time soon.

    Bill English’s tax cuts benefited most the top tiers of capitalists and some high earners but the increase in GST reduced effective aggregate demand by sucking out the working class dollar. This has made costs higher for workers but also reduced their appetite for goods and service supplied in neighbourhoods – hair dressers, wet-fish sellers, dairies, have all been just surviving for several years now. Great swathes of retail and commerce just get by praying for their creditors to pay on time.

    Critical unionised sectors of the essential industrial base of New Zealand have been allowed to close, or are skating on the edge with a succession of mass redundancies. That hasn’t encouraged highly skilled workers to try to extract more value from multi-national profit streams.

    National has overseen critical weakening of labour legislation. Not just the 90-day day fire at will provisions, youth rates, and removal of continuity for vulnerable workers, combined with a hardening of attitude toward workplace accident assistance and benefit supports; but in addition, removal of the right to strike in favour of a multi-employer agreement on wages and conditions for whole industries. So National has made it harder for workers to negotiate wage increases.

    So just how is Steve Joyce proposing to help workers increase their wages: perhaps by subsidising their emigration to somewhere else across the sea?

    Of course you can increase wages by fiat; just as you can underwrite banks by fiat.

    Fiat is government power. The Crown-in-Parliament can raise taxes, including excise, can issue credit, can build houses and rent them to citizens, can support earthquake victims, can employ health professionals, and can make war and peace, just for now, this side of the TPPA.

    That’s why we have a government: – to do stuff, which helps our fellow countrymen and women survive and thrive.

    Don’t let Steven Joyce and the rest of them use the ‘big lie technique’ to worm their way back into office in 2014. Labour, and all other popular social organisations striving to help people, need to say now that good labour law will help all workers — in a union or not. And will help all those small proprietors in the industries serving worker’s needs. We need to say it now; we need to say it loud; and we need to keep on saying it to Election Day and beyond – good wages and full employment are good for everybody. We know it’s true so make it a mantra.

    • bad12 11.1

      Well said, totally agree with you…

    • Colonial Viper 11.2

      Joyce is acting the fool. notice that his own pay was increased “by fiat” via the Remuneration Authority within the last 12 months.

    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill) 11.3

      +1 Yes, very well said Steve Bradley.

      I hope those out there with a voice will follow your advice and send out the message of your last paragraph loud and clear. It needs to be heard ad infinitum, so the ‘big lie technique’ gets no hold.

    • Rogue Trooper 11.4

      I thought the by fiat utterance was very problematic (weak) ;)

    • Draco T Bastard 11.5

      John Key made a personal promise to the electors that National would work to ensure that NZ wages rose to narrow the gap with Australian wages.

      He speaks with forked tongue. At the same time that he was saying that National would raise wages he was making promises to the business community to lower wages. It is, of course, the latter promise that he kept.

    • Saarbo 11.6

      Perfect Steve!

    • xtasy 11.7

      Who cares what “Steven Joyless Goebbels” has to say, most of what he says is the usual propaganda spin and undermining, discrediting attacks, not delivering any facts, and not delivering any convincing results for his own government and himself.

      What he hates is, that a new government led by Labour, supported by Greens, and perhaps another party, will bring in fairer wages, fairer conditions for workers, better treatment of students, that will invest in the future and HUMAN capital, and that will at the same time have better ideas about running an economy, that does not simply rely on more of the same old drivel ideology of selling rights to corporates, to gamble, to deal out cards and chips in casinos, to drill for oil in high risk deep sea areas, to mine in environmentally sensitive areas, to put even more cows on the same paddocks, to have them piss into water, rivers, lakes and pollute, so the stupid taxpayer has to pay for cleaning all that up.

      “Joyless Goebbels” wants more tourists coming on airplanes to sell them more Chinese made souvenirs, wants more immigration to “grow” an otherwise stagnant economy lacking ideas and incentives, and wants to rely on a more dumbed down workforce to work endlessly more hours for next to nothing, to prop up failed economic plans that have led to the ruin of many other countries in the whole world.

      NO ideas, no plan, no money, no standards, no values, just sell, sell and sell, and let others ruin the place, so that he and the few “selected” can do well and buy their retirement homes overseas.

      Fuck that for this country, I am sure even the least educated here know better and throw this crap crowd out next year.

  12. He stands for the unions and not the people, and have moved the labour party further to
    the left.

  13. newsense 14

    Bryce Edwards becoming a little less reliable than in the past: talking point bingo number one:

    1) It’s an evocative and highly symbolic declaration that speaks strongly to the core base of unionists and radicals

    IE those annoyed with Shearer’s leadership and supporting Cunliffe are radicals and unionists. An attempt to portray actual real Labour values being spoken by a Labour candidate for PM as somehow (which Dann mentioned in a vid blog) a sign of a take over by some shadowy rump of a radical left party. Or to put it another way- the core base of Labour is not a bunch of hard working lower class families, but a bunch of feral radicals.

    Ehh…

  14. finbar 15

    I can recall back in the Bolger days of Government,when they where promising to reform the Welfare State,and promising to reduce welfare to benefit bludgers and they did, they savaged welfare entitlements, and cut most benefit entitlements.They bolted in, especially with the provincial vote.Within six months of their savage welfare cuts, the provincial shop owners in my town who!s large amount of profits, came from welfare bludger!s, for like then, and now, my town has very high unemployment, were all cribbing that they could not survive.Now the welfare cuts that the Government brought in, and that they, the business owners, gladly voted for, took out of circulation $54 million per year.

    Is not capitalism just swings and roundabout!s.Most based on short term profit and greed without concern of its long term effect.

  15. Sable 16

    Sorry to sound negative but lets not forget that Labour and National are both responsible for the mess we are in. I have little faith in the two older parties and from what I have seen that cynicism is well founded.

    I’l believe Mr Cunliffe when and if he gets into office and actually implements policies that reverse some of the damage done in the last 30 or so years.

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      Labour is here to get the job done for the people of this nation.

      And to be clear, the job is not “reversing the damage done in the last 30 years” because unless someone has access to a genie in a lamp, neither NZ, nor the world, nor the voters, are interested (or able) to walk backwards in time.

  16. Tracey 17

    last night wayne said ftas were good for nz because they bring prosperity. on that basis he supports tppa. however he hasnt defined prosperity or explained why since our first with singapore through to today, many employers stick to the minimumwage in times of hardship and so called prosperity.

    dont rail about if we give them 18 they will want 25, like “they” are naughty children rather than people contributing to tge so xalked prosperity as much, collectively as any ceo with their bonuses and pay rises outstripping their workers.

    the work force is an asset, part of productivity and integral to profitability. just why some folk find th
    at unpalatable i dont know.

  17. xtasy 18

    Good on for David Cunliffe to stand up for principles when addressing the CTU! No wonder though, that the MSM slander and subversive attack is gearing momentum now, with John Armstrong and Claire Travett detecting supposed “double speak” so to say in what David said, and claiming he said one thing in his speech, and spoke more reservedly to “media”. Bryce Edwards jumped on the bandwagon with his political roundup commentary, and of course Matthew “Hooter Brains” had to attack Cunliffe with his subversive comments also.

    What these “short circuited”, manipulated, and in part spiteful “brains” of the MSM and lobbyists for the government do NOT get is, that the new direction by Labour is not something that they have become accustomed to under nearly three decades of neo-liberal, laissez-faire style capitalist, market knows all and does best kind of economics.

    Even David Shearer heralded the new direction, although he was not convincing, and was just hopeless to get a message across, but the fact is, that Labour, even I have to admit, will steer away from the shit that was done for too long, and will apply “hands on” policies.

    There will not just be “redistribution” as the MSM love to claim and criticise, no there will be a new political direction, a new direction in more managed economics, more balanced social policies, more interventionist housing policy and a new deal kind of economic development approach, that will with partly foreign and local investment, with also local finacial stimulus and so forth, see to more value added production, more science and development, more sustainable energy generation and use, and certainly a more active LOCAL and INTERNAL economy.

    Even the US has much more activity within, than it trades in exports and imports, and an over-dependence on exports may be dared to be reduced by a new Labour led government, that is my “suspicion”.

    We are heading into totally NEW territory, not just this “right” and “left”, “top to bottom” or “bottom to top” redistribution approach, no, I grant Cunliffe to have the brains, skill and determination to lead New Zealand onto totally new territory, and to bring about changes that not even the most fanciful right-wing nutters would dare to dream.

    Dare to live, dare to risk, dare to win, and dare a new direction, that is what is happening, not the more old same and same. Thank you!

  18. RedLogix 19

    The fundamental problem with all FTA’s is that effectively they combine the two domestic economies of both countries into one bigger one.

    All very well, but unless both countries have the same employment, environmental, investment and fiscal policies this always results in the domestic economy of one partner to the FTA being placed at a structural disadvantage to the other.

    There is no nett benefit to the two economies combined, merely the short-term ebb flow of advantage from one place to the other. Looked at from this perspective FTA’s are almost indistinguishable from Empire.

    • xtasy 19.1

      RedLogix: Welcome back, even if just temporarily!

      Yes, you are absolutely right, that is why New Zealand must work closely together with other more progressive countries and economies, to enforce wider, global working and environmental standards, that apply to all.

      This FTA business is just too hollow BS and only works to some people’s advantage, as it leaves too many under the bridge and without securities, so to say.

      Workers must have basic minimum wages internationally, same as standards and conditions, and the same applies to the environment (this can be set on a rate based on individual national income levels and the likes). If that cannot be achieved, nothing will be solved, we only will have certain middle and upper classes in “privileged” countries end up exploiting more poor and disadvantaged in other places.

      Sadly this is happening already on a very wide scale, as the many products we consume here are mostly made by cheap labour overseas, and they can only dream of a 40 hour week.

      Fair trade rather than fictitious “free trade”, that is the very basic bottom line, and that is not even going as far as asking for social and other equal levels, which Marx and others once demanded.

  19. George D 20

    Will a Cunliffe government put the 40 hour (ideally 36 hour) working week into law as a basic work right, enshrined in law and inalienable from any worker, no matter their unionisation, employment status, or workplace?

    If the answer is yes, I agree with the author of this post.

  20. Bruce 21

    While I am happy with Cunliffe supporting $15 an hour, this is an outdated figure. $15 has been a headline for at least the last 5 years surely.

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    A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A forgotten naval victory in which even Nature played a part...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Labour’s manufacturing plan
    David Cunliffe has launched Labour's policy to get more manufacturing jobs back in New Zealand: Labour leader David Cunliffe launched the policy to an Auckland business audience this morning, adding the depreciation and procurement policies to the known suite of...
    Polity | 17-04
  • Easter PT shutdown
    It’s Easter weekend and that invariably means the rail network is shut down for works. Auckland Transport advises the rail network will be closed for Easter and there are changes to timetables for buses and ferries during the holiday break....
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • Another perspective on the postgraduate allowance cuts
    I have already shared two stories from psychology students about how the postgraduate allowance cuts have affected them. These stories demonstrate the widespread impact the changes are having. Here is yet another story I have received, this one giving the...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • Against secret "justice" in NZ
    Last year, in response to a series of court cases challenging its control orders or claiming compensation for human rights abuses by its intelligence services, the UK passed the Justice and Security Act 2013. The Act introduces a "Closed Material...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Massey chancellor sets up company in opposition to university
    Massey Chancellor Chris Kelly will chair the board of a company that intends to be New Zealand’s largest private training provider (PTE)...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Gibbs, Hayek, Canterbury and the free market for degrees
    The New Zealand Herald notes that philanthropist Alan Gibbs is about to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Canterbury today. One of the many institutions Alan Gibbs has donated his money to...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Record Store Day
    As readers will know, I have long embraced the internet music revolution. The ability to discover and download new things pretty much as they're being made has reinvented and refreshed my lifelong relationship with popular music. But I still really...
    Public Address | 16-04
  • Great Sorkin Parody
    Aaron Sorkin (SportsNight, The West Wing, The Newsroom) makes a very particular style of TV. Some good parts to that, some really silly parts. Amy Schumer' Comedy Central parody of Sorkin is pitch-prefect and hilarious. Enjoy: Inside Amy SchumerGet More:...
    Polity | 16-04
  • Photographic proof
    Deborah asked for a picture of my bicycle, after I wrote about it, and there is now one in existence which even includes me riding it along Mt Albert Rd, thanks to a dear friend who drove past me and...
    The Hand Mirror | 16-04
  • Our future lies in science
    This is not a column on global warming, climate change or whether humans are or aren’t having an impact....
    Pundit | 16-04
  • Gordon Campbell on drone strikes and Judith Collins‘ last stand
    Reportedly, US drone operators refer to their kills as “bug splat” – mainly because when the carnage is viewed on their screens thousands of kilometres away at home, it looks like an insect strike on a windscreen. The name has...
    Gordon Campbell | 16-04
  • Revealed: Steven Joyce’s select committee submission
    Dear Education Select Committee, Well, there are less than two weeks for people to get their submissions in to you on my proposals to remove staff and students from university and wānanga councils. You...
    TEU | 16-04
  • World News Brief, Thursday April 17
    Top of the AgendaTensions Rise in Ukraine’s East Ahead of Talks...
    Pundit | 16-04
  • Northern Europe looks to end fixed-term agreements for academics
    Long strings of fixed term employment agreements are not just a problem here in New Zealand but Sweden too, according to Education International. But the Swedish Association of University Teachers (SULF) has a plan to solve this. It is turning...
    TEU | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Date of Release: Thursday, April 17, 2014Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today.The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company, Christchurch Yarns, go into...
    First Union Media | 16-04
  • Collins: More contemptible lying
    Yesterday, Judith Collins treated New Zealand's media and people as if we were all complete fools. Here is what she said (via this morning's Herald): Ms Collins said she was unaware Oravida was having any problems getting its products into...
    Polity | 16-04
  • The Downside of Park and Ride
    Flicking back through older Atlantic Cities posts led to one from last year about Park and Ride catching my eye. It’s a fairly well reasoned cautionary tale which highlights the pitfalls and potential perverse outcomes from something that would appear...
    Transport Blog | 16-04
  • Heartland logic: More people have heard of Fidel Castro than Michael Mann, ...
    This is a guest post from Narahani.   Or is happening and is good for you, or has stopped happening, or is caused by CO2 but only a little, or is about to reverse due to lots of yet-to-be-discovered negative...
    Skeptical Science | 16-04
  • Submission
    Below is my draft submission on the Environmental Reporting Bill. I'm primarily interested in the freedom of information issues; I expect other groups to be focused on the reporting itself. I support the aims of the Environmental Reporting Bill of...
    No Right Turn | 16-04
  • Government’s ‘rock star economy’ throws hospital staff ou...
    The Public Service Association says administrative staff at hospitals around the country are missing out on Bill English’s ‘rock star...
    PSA | 16-04
  • Lip service: it’s all climate action ever gets from Key & Co
    As expected, the New Zealand government’s response to the IPCC’s Working Group 3 report on mitigating climate change pays lip service to the science, while maintaining that NZ is doing all that can be expected. Climate change minister Tim Groser’s...
    Hot Topic | 16-04
  • Progress of FCV “slave ships” Bill is good news – but much work remai...
    The Maritime Union of New Zealand says the progress of the “slave ships” Bill in the New Zealand Parliament is good news – but much work remains to be done....
    MUNZ | 16-04
  • Judith Collins’ reputation dependent on Slater’s scandals
    Judith Collins' reputation as the possible next leader of the National party is in shreds. Her reputation as a minister of the crown in the Key owned National party caucus is in tatters. A resignation is the only honorable thing...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon | 16-04
  • Photo of the Day: Red III
    Learning Your Stripes, 2013, Regan Gentry, Papatoetoe. Commissioned by Auckland Council aer  ...
    Transport Blog | 16-04
  • The cost of tax cheats
    How much do corporate tax cheats cost? In the US, over US$180 billion a year:US taxpayers would need to pay an average of $1,259 more a year to make up the federal and state taxes lost to corporations and individuals...
    No Right Turn | 16-04
  • Cats cavorting through capital – Morgan
    The capital’s cats are cavorting through Wellington properties at a rate of 49 million trespasses a year, according to a new study by anti-cat campaigner Gareth Morgan. Island Bay and the rest of the Southern Ward turned out to be...
    Gareth’s World | 16-04
  • “Stick to your knitting”…Gratuitous insult from Minister Groser to NZ...
    Climate Minister Groser continues to insult the New Zealand people – this time through our leading scientists. On Monday the IPCC released Working Group III’s section of its 5th Assessment Report.  Building on Group I (science) and II (impact), this...
    frogblog | 16-04
  • Needlessly shitty
    Parliament has been rejecting select committee submissions for not being written in English or Maori:The Health Select Committee is rejecting 60 submissions against plain packaging legislation because they were made in neither English nor Maori. [...] Committee chairman, National MP...
    No Right Turn | 16-04
  • 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 grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.  ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Tribute for Maungaharuru- Tangitu settlement
    Labour Member of Parliament for Ikaroa-Rāwhiti, Meka Whaitiri paid tribute to Maungaharuru-Tangitu today as their Treaty of Waitangi settlement became law. “The Bill acknowledges Treaty breaches that left Maungaharuru-Tangitu virtually landless. Today we were reminded of the history, mamae, loss...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Neglected rural and regional roads will cost more lives
    The government must take urgent action to prevent more accidents to truck drivers and other road users of increased logging trucks on neglected roads, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Transport spokesperson. “The dangers to drivers and other road users in the...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Judith Collins’ refusal to answer a disgrace
    If John Key is holding his Ministers to any standards at all, he must make Judith Collins answer questions about the senior Chinese official she met during her taxpayer-funded visit to China last October, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. “Judith...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Ryall needs to heed hospital workforce issues
    The public health workforce, the same one Tony Ryall argues is making a lot of progress is facing increased pressure and staff burnout through his continued shuffling of the deckchairs, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Mr Ryall uses all...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Key ducks but can’t avoid High Court slap
    The High Court’s slap in the face to John Key and his Government over Chorus has left it with no option but to accept the Commerce Commission’s lawful process in deciding the price of copper, says Labour’s associate ICT spokesperson...
    Labour | 09-04
  • First home buyers shut out as LVRs bite
    The bad news continues for young Kiwis as the latest Core Logic report shows the proportion of first home buyers has declined since LVR lending restrictions came into force, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. Twenty two centres across the...
    Labour | 09-04
  • MANA – and, or, or not – DOTCOM
    Both MANA and the Internet Party share goals in common with other parties, like getting rid of National and reining in the GCSB. There are also differences, as there are with other parties as well. MANA accepted a request to...
    Mana | 09-04
  • 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: 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...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • A case study of racism by Police at Auckland Airport
    A couple of days ago I returned from Samoa after attending a family matter and some contract work. Spending a few days in the warmth of our homeland was welcome relief from the cold weather starting to make its presence...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • An acute shortage of emergency youth housing
    The housing crisis is effecting everyone in Christchurch but some are more vulnerable than others. Recently I attended a workshop on emergency youth housing hosted by the 298 Youth Health Centre, who I worked for from 2001-2003. Over fifty people...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The Oceans Issue
    The ‘Earth’ is 71% water but our oceans are the last frontier. The oceans are huge, relatively unexplored, full of weird and wonderful diversity. In New Zealand we’re never far from the sea, and our identity, our landscapes, our communities,...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Fear of South Auckland
    Fear of South Auckland...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • TV News Geography
    TV News Geography...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The best bit about gay sex
    The best bit about gay sex...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • On not voting 1
    On not voting 1...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
    Labour takes manufacturing seriously Manufacturing workers and employers will all benefit from economic policies announced today by the Labour Party leader, David Cunliffe. The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union has welcomed the announcement...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
    “Today’s announcement of Labour’s manufacturing policy is very welcome,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg. “Just as many other developed countries are realising, having a strong manufacturing sector pays off in good jobs, retaining...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
    New Zealand Police are hoping to reduce the number of victims from alcohol related crime by asking the public to say ‘Yeah, Nah’ more often this holiday weekend....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Dunne Speaks
    Dunne Speaks 17 April 2014 There have been a number of harrowing cases presented this week about the impact of psychoactive substances on vulnerable young people. At one level, the tales are deeply disturbing. It is awful to see anyone...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Research announcement welcomed
    A leading Māori researcher has welcomed the announcement of the 2014 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    At Last: A Manufacturing Policy FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company,...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
    "Campaigners for a New Zealand Head of State are still feeling positive after ten days of royal events" says NZ Republic Chair, Savage. "Our polling before the visit showed increased support for a kiwi head of state. We have a...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
    Winston Peters has apparently convinced David Cunliffe that when foreigners buy New Zealand property they make New Zealanders worse off. Mr Cunliffe has announced his intention to adopt Winston Peters’ policy of banning foreigners from buying...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Prime Minister John Key’s rejection of fat and sugar taxes ahead of this year's election. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Union, says:...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
    The Law Commission has released A New Crown Civil Proceedings Act for New Zealand , its Issues Paper on reforming the Crown Proceedings Act 1950. The Issues Paper proposes a new statute to replace the Crown Proceedings Act 1950....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
    Maritime Union says focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for New Zealand workers...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
    With Easter and Anzac Day giving us two successive long weekends this year there will be a lot of happy families preparing for trips....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Students Welcome Engagement with StudyLink
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) has welcomed the improved performance from StudyLink in 2014. There is no doubt that getting their loans and allowances processed on time makes it easier for students to concentrate on being...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised
    Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised Imagine if you could not access vital news and information. What would you do?...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Public lose interest in this council, 2016 to be a watershed
    The second term Auckland Council is proving to be an interesting one and very different to the inaugural 2010 – 2013 Governing Body. We are currently going through a budget round to lock in where council’s $3b expenditure is directed...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour and National join forces in new Maori confiscations
    Chris McKenzie, former-treaty negotiator and Te Tai Hauauru Maori party candidate, says that the Minister of Primary Industries’ plans to remove temporary exemptions for vessel operators derived from settlement negotiations is akin to confiscation...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • The FCV Bill – Flagging 30 years of failures?
    Paying seafarers at least a minimum wage under the Minimum Wage Act 1983 has applied to the New Zealand fishing industry for more than 30 years. It was, and is, a basic protection which had two universals – it was...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014
    Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014 Kiwis across the country are getting together over a cuppa to make a difference in the lives of people living in poverty in the developing world. They’re getting involved in Oxfam’s Morning Tea, a fun and...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • 1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know How
    1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know Where to Go...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award
    Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third - The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational (a corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership) that has the most negative impact in each or all of the following categories: economic dominance...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • ACC’s Strategy to stop compensation using ACC 167 Form
    On Radio NZ national’s morning report on 15 April 2014, ACC’s spokesperson Sid Miller denied the non-compliance was just a way for ACC to refuse people....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Workers support plain packaging of tobacco
    The CTU have today presented to the health select committee in support of plain packaging of tobacco. “Any steps that can be taken to lower smoking rates will result in New Zealand workers and their families having healthier and better...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Christchurch Housing Accord a Joke
    Christchurch Housing Accord a Joke Hugh Pavletich Performance Urban Planning Christchurch New Zealand 16 April 2014 The Housing Accord entered in to today between the Government and the Christchurch City Council, can only be described as a joke. Christchurch...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Infographic : World Giving Index 2013
    Infographic from Charities Aid Foundation World Giving Index 2013 A Global View Of Giving Trends (click to see full size version)...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Tranter questions CEO’s assurances
    “There is a bizarre notion among bureaucrats, politicians and others that if they say something then it must be so - despite all evidence to the contrary” said David Tranter, Health spokesman for Democrats for Social Credit....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • UNICEF NZ Urges Progress on Plain Packaging of Tobacco
    In its oral submission to the Health Select Committee today, UNICEF NZ expressed its strong support for the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill as a measure that will help reduce the uptake of smoking, and urged parliament...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Whitebait partners look for solutions
    Waikato-Tainui, local marae, councils and agencies are working together to better manage whitebait fisheries at Port Waikato following the compilation of a new report....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • NZ’s biggest killer fails to receive the Roger
    The Smokefree Coalition is disappointed Imperial Tobacco did not win the Roger Award for Worst Trans-national Company operating in New Zealand, despite manufacturing products that kill 5000 New Zealanders every year....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Tukituki decision a win for water quality and farming
    The draft decision by the Board of Inquiry (BOI) on the Tukituki Catchment proposal represents a significant win for freshwater management and the urgency of a transition to environmentally sustainable agriculture in New Zealand, says Fish & Game NZ....
    Scoop politics | 15-04
  • ACC reflects on passing of great Kiwi
    Today is a very sad day for ACC, as news of the passing of Sir Owen Woodhouse has become public knowledge....
    Scoop politics | 15-04
  • Lincoln cleaners outsourced
    Lincoln University will outsource its staff to an as yet undecided cleaning company, but TEU organiser Cindy Doull says it’s not worth it, and what money the university might save is negligible....
    Scoop politics | 15-04
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