web analytics
The Standard

De-regulation, de-democratisation

Written By: - Date published: 11:52 am, February 9th, 2013 - 26 comments
Categories: democracy under attack, elections - Tags:

Is it just me or does the argument for a four year term of Parliament look a lot like the argument that’s presented for deregulation? I was thinking about this watching Mainzeal go under as its leaky building legacy caught up with it. It’s the same dropkicks who say that government needs to get out of the way of business to create jobs who are saying that the people need to get out of the way of government and let it govern with less ‘regulation’ in the form of elections.

Well, look what deregulation has got us: leaky homes, over-priced internet, casualised, low-wage employment, over-priced electricity, the world’s most high-profit banks (all foreign-owned), and even airports gouging us – to name but a few examples. That’s what the ‘get out of their way and let them get on it with’ argument has got us in the private sector.

Now, they want to apply the same logic to the public sphere. In fact, National has already been conducting an experiment in de-democratisation in Canterbury. Regional council replaced by a dictatorship with further elections on hold because National fears it won’t get the result it wants. Gerry Brownlee overstepping his already incredibly wide powers again and again under CERA and, what’s arguably worse, doing things that are entirely within his power but are having devastating effects on the lives of Christchurch residents.

We know what happens when we ‘let them get on with it’, especially when ‘they’ are politicians, is usually pretty shit. That’s why we have regulation for the private sector and democratic oversight for the public sphere.

You would have to be hopelessly naive to believe that reducing the number of elections by a quarter wouldn’t result in a less democratic government. That’s what the Right wants, of course. But some on the Left seem have this almost sweet-if-it-weren’t-so-stupid faith that the government just wants less democratic control of what it does so that it can do more good things for us. You would have thought that the experience of CERA would have been lesson enough for them.

26 comments on “De-regulation, de-democratisation”

  1. Ed 1

    Well said. The actions of this government make a mockery of Farrar’s “ATTACK ON DEMOCRACY” taunts during the last term of the Clarke Labour-led government. I agree with Shearer who said that three years is too long when you are in opposition – and I don’t see much evidence of support from the left for a longer parliamentary term. A throwaway attempt at distraction from economic bungling can be revealing about the underlying thoughts of our Prime Minister – or perhaps he just hates the thought of the next election.

    • Beryl Streep 1.1

      >I don’t see much evidence of support from the left for a longer parliamentary term

      Labour, Greens and NZ First have all publicly stated that “the country would benefit from a four-year parliamentary term” and it should go to a public referendum. Maybe you should read, listen or watch the news now and then and become better informed.

  2. AmaKiwi 2

    + 1

    I have never met a leading NZ politician who is a democrat (i.e., the people should decide rather than their representatives).

    If you were an MP who spent years being virtually powerless, once you got into power you sure as hell wouldn’t want to share. “Those guys didn’t share with me, why should I share.” So our top politicians are all dictators in waiting; elitists rather than democrats.

    It’s a tragic state of affairs. It cannot change until power is shared either with constitutionally protected local bodies, binding referendums, or some other mechanism I haven’t yet discovered.

    • One Tāne Huna 2.1

      I’d like to see more robust rules around select committee hearings – with judicial oversight as the last resort.

      We need more evidence-based policy, and select committee hearings are the correct forum for this evidence to be heard, but too often they simply behave as a rubber stamp for the executive.

      • Macro 2.1.1

        Good idea! Having attended a few in the past, and submitted, the process is quite scary from a fairness and social justice point of view. Too often the bias and prejudice of the members is just too blatant for words, they are not there to listen or to deal in a rational manner with the issues presented to them at all. However we need to look at better performance of sub committees not only at National level but at regional and district council level as well! A recent example of such a committee here was just too appalling for words with members simply failing to understand even the most basic of facts, and then when speaking to the topic getting them wrong, and one saying “well I really don’t understand what its all about so I’m just going to vote for the status quo” or words to that effect. Is this how we want our communities and countries to be run?

    • swan 2.2

      “I have never met a leading NZ politician who is a democrat (i.e., the people should decide rather than their representatives).”

      Actually in a representative democracy, like we have at the central government level, it is the representatives who decide. That is the way it works.

  3. Tim 3

    Another things – just by the by – is the way politicians consistently undermine the judiciary.
    Why is it that we have Minsters making ‘executive’ type decisions on certain issues such as with immigration?
    If the laws they’d created were robust enough, they should not fear judicial decisions.
    Effectively we get politicians involving themsleves (in this example – i.e. immigration) in matters that should be left to judicial interpretation of laws.
    I seem to remember we’ve had teenagers drug and exported, Zowie’s and other incidents.
    Interesting too that we’re now going to bail out Australia YET again over their cruel and incompetent handling of asylum seekers.
    Does anybody else recall that little ‘training exercise’ on how to handle an influx of ‘boat people’?.
    I said (elsewhere – I think Tumeke cos its was the only left blog I’d discovered at the time), that we should not be surprised if we were soon to become the Manus Island of the Sth Pacific.
    John Key, as we already know, LOVES sucking up to the big people (in this case – as in “our big brothers”).
    The funny thing is….while I’m on the subject, Joooolyah is supposed to be from Labor Left ffs!
    She’s so far right it isn’t funny – but I get it now….the Labour old guard are probably aspiring to emulate her ‘success’. Certainly there’s a krizmetuk used-car salesman that’s doing his best to.

    Still, no worries. I’m inspired by this morning’s Kim Hill programme with Guy Standing – you know the one: from those dirty filthy lefties at RNZ.
    ——————————————

    …..Oh FFS sake – here we go!!! NOW we learn on RNZ 13:00 NEWS that 150 asylum seekers to be taken will form part of the 700ish we normally take.
    ….so Key has just sold off a little more of our sovereignty – bailing out OZ (a la Tampa), in order to keep sweet with the racists. AND – nothing in exchange (such as with the inequity that came about with Howard’s reforms of 2001).

    Does Key own any property on the GC does anyone know?

    ———————————————-

  4. the sprout 4

    I know Helen Clark was adamantly against a 4 year term, given nz’s unicameralism. Someone should get her on record on the matter.

  5. Ad 5

    Anyone remember the hue and cry the media especially the NZHerald made when Clark determined to do away with the Privy Council and establish our own Supreme Court?

    Yet when Key – and then Shearer – propose to significantly lengthen the only time we get to Performance Review the entire political order, the whole MSM says “we worship and adore you”.

    We are having a constitutional review at the moment. That’s the right place to propose this. Not live to camera after a brain explosion.

    And in Shearer’s case, for such a major constitutional shift, he should at least have consulted caucus, Labour policy council, maybe even his own membership.

    This attitude by Key and Shearer makes me think we should have direct democracy, in which there’s a clear set of annual indicators, and we get to say (by unique text) whether they are measuring up.

    Political Annual Performance Review.

    With full vote of confidence in the Board (elections) every three years.

    • Ed 5.1

      Shearers comment was if anything more supportive of a shortening of the term of parliament – he said three years _was_ too long to be in opposition, but _may_ be too short to get everything you want done in government. I took it that he was not taking the proposal at all seriously – that is far from supporting a change.

      The ‘brain explosion’ was news of thousands fewer in work, and Mainzeal closing with 400 internal jobs and thousands of subbies. You are correct that the constitutional review is the right place to raise such issues – unless you know you can suck media debate sideways by a distraction . . .

      • Macro 5.1.1

        Well he should think more carefully before he puts his mouth into gear.

        • Ed 5.1.1.1

          The problem was not with Shearer – the headline was all a sub-Editors work. But Key has had a success of sorts – the distraction has had a whole lo of blogs running around wasting time on a non-starter – far better for him than discussion about jobs or Mainzeal or poverty . . .

  6. They should give us the fixed term without trying to crony up their own job security. You’re a politician in one of the easiest countries to rush through laws in in the democratic world. You don’t need four year terms in government.

    • Exactly.

      Legislation does not have to go through an upper house or over some other ‘hurdle’. The legislative process, given that, is surely quite rapid compared to other parliamentary democracies?

  7. BLiP 7

    .

    Lets face it, if a political grouping in power is any good, it will get six years. That’s de facto, I suggest. Now, if there’s a really, really shit government, they won’t get past three years. If it does get past the three year hurdle and we’ve missed something, then we’re in trouble . . . oh, hang on!

  8. Bill 8

    Wouldn’t a point of lengthier terms be to afford a more consistent environment facillitating a deeper degree of capture of government by corporate/financial interests? A 30% increase in the time span allowed to corporate /financial interests to persuade the same government to pursue policies favourable to them, where that government doesn’t have to keep such an eye on electoral risks due to a longer election cycle; that’s a major and surely unwelcome shift.

    • fatty 8.1

      True…However, this appears to be a trimming of the weeds, rather than pulling them out from the root. It also appears to be a safeguard against Labour being average? Labour should get 8 years instead of 6 under the same system

  9. fatty 9

    I don’t think I understand this 3 year vs 4 year argument…or this post.
    How does this relate to CERA?
    How is the argument the same as deregulation?

    The argument for a 4 year term is that it should produce policies that look towards a longer term vision. What is the argument for a 3 year term?
    The CERA issue occurred in a 3 year term due to most parties giving Gerry authoritarian powers. National got voted back in after they became dictatorial arseholes.

  10. The argument for a 4 year term is that it should produce policies that look towards a longer term vision.

    I don’t follow this argument. It looks like a non-sequitur to me. Why would a longer term lead to policies/legislation “towards a longer term vision”? I don’t see the incentive towards long term vision in lengthening the term – in some respects, and for some individual politicians, it could well act in quite the reverse manner (you know, that law about a task expanding to fill the available time?).

    The fact that the electoral term is longer seems unrelated to the length of term of the ‘vision’, so far as I can see. They both have the word ‘long’ in them, I guess, but that doesn’t indicate anything relevant to the claim.

    Additionally, I know that ‘long-term thinking’ is always presented as a good thing, but that assumes that we get the ‘long-term vision’ right. It seems to me that having the scope for adjustments or even reversals on a regular basis is no more or less a ‘bad thing’ than irrevocably entrenching a ‘bad’ long term vision.

    Further, even if the claim were true, it strikes me as an unwise depoliticisation of the political – the claim that governance is primarily a technical matter and three year terms undermine our ability to do the technically ‘right’ thing. I’m very sceptical of that view.

    Also, Douglas’ ‘reforms’ were undoubtedly a ‘long term vision’ and they have pretty much achieved their purpose – and that was with three yearly elections (which shows that three year electoral cycles don’t prevent the enactment of ‘long term thinking’). (I know, Douglas claimed to have ‘unfinished business’ – given 8 years rather than 6, maybe he could have finished it?).

    It was, of course, a long term vision that was massively flawed, in my opinion.

    But, Bolger’s government, remember, was voted in on the expectation that there would be a halt to the Douglas reforms (remember the ‘decent society’?) – while that didn’t work to stop the reforms because of a 180 degree turnaround by National from its manifesto, the electorate in effect tried to reject/adjust the ‘long term vision’ within 6 years of it being implemented, rather than the 8 it would have taken under the proposed 4 year terms (It’s also possible to argue that they only let it run for 6 years because they believed Lange in the 1987 election campaign when he said they’d finished doing all the economic stuff and were going to return to Labour’s core concerns with welfare, education, etc.).

    • Puddleglum 10.1

      Sorry, I should have replied directly to fatty’s comment at 9.

    • fatty 10.2

      Additionally, I know that ‘long-term thinking’ is always presented as a good thing, but that assumes that we get the ‘long-term vision’ right.

      True, the last thing we want is a long term right wing vision to be implemented. But we seriously need some long term left policies.

      So, is 3 years preferred so that we can only vote them out quicker? If that is the case, is 2 years better, or is that too short? I’m not trying to be a smartass, its just there appears overwelming support for 3 years on here and I am yet to hear a good argument for it…is there even a good argument for 3 or 4? I don’t think one is better than the other…and I don’t know much about political science, I am hoping to be convinced.

      Someone has already stated that due to our unicameral system 4 years is too long and too much damage can be done in 4 years…but I thought MMP addressed this issue?

      • GregJ 10.2.1

        If you haven’t already then I strongly urge you to read (or re-read) Chapter 6 of the 1986 Report of the Royal Commission on the Electoral System – it really does sum up the arguments both for and against the four year term. Although it recommended a referendum on the issue it hedged that with some caution around the need for sufficient checks (and yes PR was viewed as a possible check).

        It is interesting that the unpopular Forbes coalition government extension of the Parliamentary Term for 1 year in the 1930s and both failed referendums on a 4 year term (1967 & 1996) were put forward by National (or proto-National) government – it does seem to be a particular recurring National theme.

        • fatty 10.2.1.1

          thanks GregJ, I’ll give it a read.

          • fatty 10.2.1.1.1

            Here is the link to the chapter that GregJ has suggested…its clear and concise, and also gives a brief history of our terms of government.

            Paragraph 6.9 is interesting. It states that in the UK the average length of governments have been 3 – 3.5 years, despite them having 5 year terms. The same is the case for many other countries who have 4 year terms. (this suggests that a change to a 4 year term will just mean more early elections, not a longer time in office)

            Paragraph 6.15 suggests there is evidence that policy is designed to coincide with election year, especially with economic policies…but the following paragraphs after that statement dispute this.

            The conclusion is also interesting. They tentatively suggest 4 years could be better if MMP was introduced (It was still FPP when the report was made). They also call for a more politically informed public (not sure anyone here would say that has occurred).

            The report is also quite firm that the decision should be done by referendum.
            I think I am still undecided…much more informed, but still not sure.
            Bryce Edwards has posted on his blog about the length of term, he is very against an increase. Not sure how many other people in the media will take the same position as Bryce Edwards and voice their opposition to having their mug on TV more often.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Norway moves first to dump coal investments
    The Green Party today called on the Government to secure cross-party support to sell its investments in coal mining companies.The Norwegian Parliament's finance committee agreed in a bipartisan motion yesterday to instruct the $1.2 trillion Government Pension Fund to sell… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    51 mins ago
  • Fonterra payout $13b black hole over 2 years
    Fonterra’s dramatic cut to its forecast farmgate payout over this season and next will lead to a $13 billion black hole over two years, and shows the need for a plan to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Labour calls for select ctte inquiry into Rural Broadband Initiative
    Labour is calling for an immediate inquiry into the flailing $300 million rural broadband initiative, before companies and consumers are forced to pick up the tab for the new $150 million broadband tax, says Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran. “Rural… ...
    2 hours ago
  • Public broadcasting takes big hit under National Government
    Public broadcasting funding has been cut by 25 per cent in real terms since the National Government took office in 2009, leading to the erosion of our once world-class news and current affairs culture, says Labour Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran. … ...
    3 hours ago
  • Hospital food plan hits another snag
    The Government has been left with egg on its face with Hawke’s Bay District Health Board today giving a plan to outsource hospital food services the thumbs down, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Doing away with local kitchens by… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Hospital food plan hits another sang
    The Government has been left with egg on its face with Hawke’s Bay District Health Board today giving a plan to outsource hospital food services the thumbs down, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Doing away with local kitchens by… ...
    18 hours ago
  • Wilkinson appointment wrong in principle
    The appointment of former Conservation Minister Hon Kate Wilkinson as an Environment Commissioner is wrong in principle, says Labour’s Shadow Attorney-General David Parker. “The doctrine of separation of powers requires judicial processes to remain separate and independent from the legislature… ...
    19 hours ago
  • McCully doesn’t deny bribe in Saudi sheep scandal
    “In Parliament today I asked Murray McCully directly: Why is he the first Minister in history to back a multi-million dollar facilitation arrangement which in other jurisdictions is called a bribe? says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson David Parker.… ...
    19 hours ago
  • National must back our future doctors
    National must support our future doctors and agree to the calls from the Medical Students’ Association and the Young Nats to lift the arbitrary 7 year cap on student loans for medical and dental students, Labour’s Tertiary Education Spokesperson David… ...
    19 hours ago
  • Taxpayer the loser after Government folds
    Steven Joyce today admitted the main exhibition hall at the New Zealand International Convention Centre is 19 per cent smaller than what was described at the time other bidders were edged out of the process, Labour’s Economic Development spokesperson David… ...
    20 hours ago
  • Govt’s lack of ambition for women
    Yesterday, the Government put out a media release entitled “Number of women leaders continues to grow”. It was to inform us that the percentage of women on state-appointed boards has increased to 41.7%, up from 41.1% in 2013. Well, woo-hoo… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    22 hours ago
  • Auditor-General exposes Key’s scapegoating of Council
    The National Government's blaming of Auckland Council for the city’s housing crisis has been exposed as scapegoating in the Office of the Auditor-General’s latest report, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Auditor-General says Auckland Council’s part in fixing the… ...
    24 hours ago
  • Reform – not money – needed for meat sector
    The National Government continues to throw good money after bad at the meat industry instead of addressing the fundamental problem of its dysfunctional structure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The latest Primary Growth Partnership grant to the venison… ...
    24 hours ago
  • Government cuts corners on school bus funding
    The safety of children – not cost cutting – should be the main objective behind the Government’s funding of school buses, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Buried in the detail of this year’s Budget are $19 million of funding… ...
    24 hours ago
  • Women the losers under National’s cuts
    National’s poor performance in appointing women to state sector boards is set to get worse with funding cuts to the nomination service provided by the Ministry for Women, Labour’s Woman’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “Minister for Women Louise Upston… ...
    24 hours ago
  • Help sought by agencies now asked to help
    The organisation Social Development Minister Anne Tolley has tasked with setting up an emergency hotline for stranded Relationships Aotearoa clients has just lost a bid for a government contract to launch a new national helpline, Labour’s Acting Social Development spokesperson… ...
    1 day ago
  • Wellington got loud again on climate
    On Monday night, in Wellington, I attended the last of the Government’s climate target consultation meetings. It was quite well attended with maybe 150 people, not bad for a second meeting with very little notice and, as far as I… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 day ago
  • Final nail in coffin for Solid Energy workers
    Today’s confirmation of job losses at Solid Energy’s Stockton and Spring Creek mines shows the urgent need for new economic opportunities on the West Coast, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “Our economy can no longer rely on… ...
    2 days ago
  • Ramadi proves Iraq deployment high risk, low benefit
    The fall of Ramadi and the collapse of the Iraqi Army proves Labour was right to be concerned about the deployment of our troops to Iraq, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says. “The fall of Ramadi brings IS fighters within… ...
    2 days ago
  • English admits new taxes on the cards
    Eight months after pledging “no new taxes” at the election Bill English today admitted he would bring in more sneaky taxes along the lines of the border tax, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Not only did National bring in… ...
    2 days ago
  • What the Dickens is going on at SDHB?
    Problems at the financially-strapped Southern District Health Board appear to stretch to its HR department with information obtained by Labour showing it still records staff leave entitlements using manual book-keeping methods. “The Board’s draft 10-year plan document forecasts a cumulative… ...
    2 days ago
  • Teachers turn backs on new professional body
      The fact that just 56 per cent of nominations for the Education Council came from registered teachers shows the profession has turned its back on Hekia Parata’s new professional body, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Answers to written… ...
    2 days ago
  • No spade work done on big building plan
      Only a quarter of the 500 hectares of Crown land the Government wants to use for new homes is understood to be suitable for building on, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “This was National’s bold new idea to… ...
    2 days ago
  • National: Seven KiwiSaver cuts in seven years
    National’s campaign of KiwiSaver cuts has reached seven in seven years as it dismantles KiwiSaver block by block, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “KiwiSaver is critical to establishing a savings culture in New Zealand but National has taken a jenga-style… ...
    2 days ago
  • Tolley’s actions contradict reassurances
    Social Development Minister Anne Tolley has serious questions to answer following the forced closure of Relationships Aotearoa just days after her reassurances she was looking at ways to keep the service operating, Labour’s Acting Social Development spokesperson Annette King says.… ...
    2 days ago
  • SkyCity downsize another broken promise
    The downsized SkyCity Convention Centre does not deliver on the promised iconic world-class centre and shows the true extent of Steven Joyce’s incompetence, Labour Leader Andrew Little said today. “New Zealanders were promised an iconic world-class convention centre that would… ...
    2 days ago
  • Te Arawa partnership model a step closer
    Councils around New Zealand have an opportunity to improve their consultation with Iwi Māori by following Rotorua District Council’s Te Arawa Partnership Model, Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “The Rotorua District Council will today decide whether to adopt… ...
    2 days ago
  • Labour mourns Dame Dorothy Fraser
    Labour Leader Andrew Little said the party is today mourning the loss of the youngest person to join the Labour Party, Dame Dorothy Fraser, who went on to be a stalwart of the Dunedin community and tireless worker for others.… ...
    3 days ago
  • The ultimate scapegoat: PM blames fruit fly for new tax
    The Prime Minister has found the ultimate scapegoat for breaking his promise not to introduce a new tax – the Queensland fruit fly, Labour’s Biosecurity spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “John Key’s first policy upon taking office and assigning himself the… ...
    3 days ago
  • How many victims missing out on protection?
    Hundreds of domestic abuse victims could be missing out on getting protection orders because they are unable to get legal aid, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“In the last two years some 351 people who applied for legal aid for… ...
    5 days ago
  • Government kicks hardworking whanau
    A major incentive to help young Kiwis and people on low incomes to start saving has been kicked out from under them with the National-led Government ramming through short-sighted legislation under Urgency today, Labour’s Maori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says.… ...
    5 days ago
  • Speculator tax political stunt gone wrong
    Bill English’s admission he doesn’t know whether National’s new speculator tax will have any effect shows last weekend’s announcement by the Prime Minister was a desperate political stunt, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “This Government is so desperate to… ...
    5 days ago
  • The value of parenting
    This week, as part of the Budget, the government introduced a bill to address child poverty. This bill will require parents receiving income support to look for part-time work once their youngest child is three years of age rather than… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    5 days ago
  • Another new tax, another broken promise
    National has unveiled yet another new tax in this budget – a rural broadband levy that will almost certainly result in an immediate price hike for internet and telephone connections across New Zealand, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said “The… ...
    6 days ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    6 days ago
  • Labour MPs join youth to take part in 40 hour famine
    A team of Labour MPs took part in the 2015 World Vision 40 hour famine and we were told by World Vision and the young people, that it was the first time MPs had joined them and how appreciative they… ...
    6 days ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    6 days ago
  • Budget puts the squeeze on police
    The Government has cut funding to the New Zealand police force in the latest Budget, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The reduction is a whopping $15.3 million that could put front line officers at risk. ...
    6 days ago
  • Crucial social services take another hit
    The Government looks set to slash half a million dollars of funding for critical social services, including Women’s Refuge and Barnados, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni “Taking $500,000 from organisations aimed at improving the lives of vulnerable families… ...
    6 days ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    6 days ago
  • Budget silent on small business
    The Government has completely ignored one of the most important sectors of the economy – small and medium-sized enterprises – in Budget 2015, Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. "A stunning 41 per cent of jobs were created by… ...
    6 days ago
  • Thank you John, it’s been bloody marvellous
    The departure of John Campbell is a blow to current affairs investigative journalism, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Campbell Live stood out in its field. Its axing comes as local broadcasting in New Zealand remains in a state of… ...
    6 days ago
  • KiwiSaver cut shows no long-term plan
    National’s cutting of the KiwiSaver kickstart is incredibly short-term thinking, typical of a Budget that is woefully short on ideas to generate wealth and opportunity, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand’s savings rate is far too low. KiwiSaver… ...
    6 days ago
  • National hits the panic button for its 7th Budget
    National has hit the panic button for its 7th Budget in a desperate attempt to look like they’re taking action to reduce our shameful child poverty rates, but they are giving with one hand and taking with the other, Opposition… ...
    7 days ago
  • Panic and back-flips can’t hide twin deficits
    National’s token measures to fight fires they have left burning for seven long years can’t hide a Budget that is long on broken promises, short on vision and fails to reach surplus, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “After being… ...
    7 days ago
  • Auckland land measure seven years too late
    National are so desperate to look like they are doing something about the Auckland housing crisis they have dusted off Labour’s 2008 inventory of government land available for housing and re-announced it, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Despite National… ...
    1 week ago
  • Access to gender reassignment surgery essential
    I was frankly disgusted to hear the Minister for Health say that funding gender reassignment surgeries is a “nutty idea”. A recent study found that in New Zealand 1% of young people identified themselves as transgender, and 3% were unsure… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    1 week ago
  • Global milk prices now lowest in 6 years
    The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices… ...
    1 week ago
  • Big risks as CYF checks stopped
    Revelations that Child, Youth and Family is no longer assisting home-based early childhood educators by vetting potential employees should set alarm bells ringing, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Doing away with an extra mechanism for checking potential new employees… ...
    1 week ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    1 week ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere