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Down among the women: limits of ‘growth’

Written By: - Date published: 11:22 am, January 14th, 2014 - 97 comments
Categories: capitalism, democratic participation, Economy, employment, equality, patriarchy, political alternatives, sustainability, unemployment, vision - Tags:

The dominant measure used by economists and governments to measure economic well-being, GDP, fails to account for the huge amount of unpaid work on which societies depend.  It is a model based on giving a high value to competition, ignoring human diversity, and fails to account for the ways people contribute to the economy and social well-being through cooperative activities.

capitaism depends on domestic labour

Internationally women do the majority of the informal, unpaid, or underpaid caring work that are essential to keep society functioning. A gender-blind approach to the economy, society and politics will most often result in failing to understand the significant role of cooperative and caring activities in a sustainable society. Focusing on all the ways men, women, children and others contribute positively to society can lead to an alternative way of living: one based on positive life-sustaining values; a way that is not blind to differences between people.

This was highlighted in an excellent article that joe90 linked to under the post, ‘Obama’s TPPA bid to over-ride democracy':  Dr. Vandana Shiva: The Connection Between Global Economic Policy and Violence Against Women.

Dr Shiva begins by stating that, “violence against women is as old as patriarchy”, indicating that it predates capitalism.  However, in her article Dr Shiva focuses on the way violence against women in India has intensified since the rise of neoliberalism there:

And while we intensify our struggle for justice for women, we need to also ask why rape cases have increased 240 percent since 1990s when the new economic policies were introduced. We need to examine the roots of the growing violence against women.

She goes on to argue that the “new economic model” is one based on various kinds of violence.  This begins with the alienating, dysfunctional, and life-destroying violence brought about by the GDP model; a model which ignores vast areas of women’s activities:

The transformation of value into disvalue, labour into non-labour, knowledge into non-knowledge, is achieved by the most powerful number that rules our lives, the patriarchal construct of GDP, Gross Domestic Product, which commentators have started to call the Gross Domestic Problem.

Shiva goes on to explain the problems of the GDP model:

… all women who produce for their families, children, community and society are treated as “non-productive” and “economically” inactive. When economies are confined to the market place, economic self-sufficiency is perceived as economic deficiency.

This ignores two areas vital to the survival of the eco-system and of humans within it:

They are the areas of nature’s economy and sustenance economy. In nature’s economy and sustenance economy, economic value is a measure of how the earth’s life and human life are protected. Its currency is life giving processes, not cash or the market price.

Others working in the area of feminist economics in other countries have come to similar conclusions about the destructive impact of the GDP measure. Some have put forward an alternative model based on human capabailities, which measures what people can do:

This approach emphasizes processes as well as outcomes, and draws attention to cultural, social and material dynamics of well-being.

Elsa Duhagon argues that the 2008 economic crisis shows that an understanding of the impact of gender inequalities on society and the economy is crucial:

To the current economic conception, growth equals economic development and the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is the most used indicator to measure the “wealth” generated. However, feminist economics has shown that over 50% of all human work is unpaid and therefore is not recorded in GDP.

If this invisible work were considered we would see that nearly 2/3 of wealth is created by women.

Consequently, a new economic model is required that includes ” activities that are essential for the existence of the family and community“:

These include maintaining a household, voluntary work, child rearing, caring for the elderly and a large part of food production and crop maintenance. Since these activities are carried out in the context of the family, without any exchange of money, they are considered “noneconomic activities” …

Duhagon goes on to argue that gender blind responses to the 2008 GFC were not helpful.  An ILO report shows that the crisis caused a major and long term drop in wages. Most of the mainstream attention given to raising employment levels fails to account for the way women have been impacted by the crisis:  women

accept lower wages, work all day, they do more unpaid hours or they enter the informal economy. [...] government spending cuts will always tend to cause an increase in unpaid work.

I would also add that in response to an economic/employment crisis, women do more part time, precarious and udnerpaid work. And before any recovery in the measured economy or employment levels gain traction, there is a lot of social destruction that damages lives.

Any alternative model that aims for a sustainable, inclusive, cooperative and life-affirming society needs to attend to gender and other differences between people, as well as focusing on our collective aims and processes.

 

 

 

97 comments on “Down among the women: limits of ‘growth’”

  1. great post, karol. i guess the only thing i have issue with is the fact that we must resort only to economic arguments (in this case the value of unpaid work) to give value to policy issues that come under the area of diversity. sometimes the arguments have nothing to do with economics, but with basic human rights. we need to be able to talk about those rights outside of the economic sphere as well as within it.

    still, unpaid work & the lack of recognition of the value of what is traditionally “women’s” work is something that really does need to change. and you’ve laid out the case really well.

    • karol 1.1

      Agreed, stargazer, and something I have in mind for a future post – not just in relation to gender. The central focus on economics within mainstream politics, is part of a long patriarchal tradition. To me, other things come first – like the wider culture and values underpinning economic and other social arrangements.

      There is too much in there to attend to in just one post.

      And, thank you.

  2. TightyRighty 2

    So let me get this straight, we are supposed to be gender blind in all things except when women who voluntarily don’t work want more money?

    • karol 2.1

      TR, where to start? Have you read the post fully? Comprehension problem?

      Where did I say we need to be gender blind to most things?

      Where did I say women who do unpaid work voluntarily choose to do that and not to work in the paid part of the economy?

      You seem to have missed the whole point about the way paid and unaid work are valued, and have imposed some of the same old economic values onto your response.

      • TightyRighty 2.1.1

        You seem to think that it’s everyone else’s problem when individuals make personal choices. With the exception of care givers for sick family members, it strikes me as awfully naive that you think people can’t factor in the financial impact of their choices. this is a common refrain from you, society needs to pick up the tab for choices made by the individual, often made with only their immediate self interest in mind.

        You haven’t explicitly said in this post that we need to be gender blind in most things, but i remember your ire, if i can’t be arsed finding it, about some aresholes suggestion that women should be paid less as they take more sick day’s and eventually get pregnant and bugger off. hardly a gender blind provocation, or reaction.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.1

          Yes, I agree.

          When right-wingers make the choice to vote in incompetent governments who destroy the value of work and wages, and put thousands on the dole queue, they should take responsibility for their cretinous behaviour.

          What’s your excuse?

        • karol 2.1.1.2

          What a confusion of ideas, TR.

          It’s your spin that it’s about individual choices. You don’t want to contemplate a different kind of society. Individual’s are frequently given limtied choices within the currrent system. Women are most often left with care of children and others – either they leave those kids and others to suffer, or they care for their needs. Increasingly women (and some others) are pressured to both do such caring, and take up pid work – often to the detiriment of their caring activities…. some choice!

          But I guess you are following the Thatcher line that society does not exist – just individuals. To such society-deniers, everyone can freely make unrestricted choices.

          The point about women being paid less because they get pregnant etc….. has nothing to do with being gender blind – just the opposite. Of course some women get pregnant, and it requires particular attention. As does the need for parents to take care of their children – hence the whole paid parental leave solution, which laregly impacts on women.

          • TightyRighty 2.1.1.2.1

            the sum of individuals choices creates societal choice Karol. Only an idiot, hoplessly outclassed on the intellectual front would start throwing labels around like “-denier” when an alternative, more proven system that conflicts with the OP’s desired world view is presented. good work.

            so because a woman chooses to have kids, the woman can’t work? do kids need to be looked after by a parent to become functioning members of society later in life?

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.2.1.1

              Let’s destroy this neo-liberal nightmare, where the only value attached to people is as workers. Let’s break its adherents and drive them from the Treasury (benches and department). These filth shouldn’t be allowed to breed, let alone govern.

              • TightyRighty

                social engineering through forced contraception. how bigoted and authoritarian of you. Nice to see this kind of thing is allowed to be spouted by those who walk the approved line. those on the right generally ask individuals to think of their own circumstance before bringing offspring into the world, as it’s those circumstances that the child will be raised in. good ole rabid lefty OAK just wants to enforce his views on the world any old way.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  Oh, did you not recognise the use of mainstream right-wing rhetoric as sarcasm? Sorry, I must make allowances.

                  The irony is that since (unlike unemployment) right-wing beliefs are genetic – being mostly related to low IQ – the policy would actually work.

                  • TightyRighty

                    right wing beliefs are genetic? you really are living in a fantasy world aren’t you?

                    So many offspring of the middle class do a little “i’m a lefty” rebellion thing against mum and dad. Then they realise how stupid, self-righteous and sanctimonious the whole thing is and quite rightly start thinking properly and vote national. only the moron’s and inter-generational poor vote left after about 28.

                    So your being sarcastic when you say that i’m filth and shouldn’t be allowed to breed let alone govern? so really, I’m valuable, should breed (when I choose to and can afford it of course) and know how to govern? Thanks, but i don’t need the approval of some anonymous commentator to afraid to stand beside their original anonymous comment.

                  • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                    Yes, they’re genetic inasmuch as stupidity is. Hodson and Busseri 2011.

                    • TightyRighty

                      and yet national voters are more succesful than labour voters. they donate more to charity, raise more too. They employ more people and export more goods. The biggest business name i can think of supporting labour is Steven Tindall. Hardly the knowledge led, locally sourcing, high wage paying paragon of business. do correct me if i’m wrong and there is a bigger name.

                    • karol

                      TR @ 4.18pm – continuing to ignore the contribution to society of unpaid and underpaid work – and making a circular argument. TR starts with an assumption about what counts as “success”, then proceeds to show that National voters are better at achieving such “success”.

                    • Paul

                      TR, wealthy people vote National out of self interest.
                      It’s pretty simple. They’re not successful because they vote National.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      “…proceeds to assert that…” FIFY

            • Huginn 2.1.1.2.1.2

              the sum of individuals choices creates societal choice

              Societal, or collective choice =/= the sum of the individuals’ choices within that collective.

              Utility, or preference functions don’t aggregate to anything useful; no-one in economics has shown that that they do, and they’ve tried, they’ve really, really tried.
              Only an idiot, hoplessly outclassed on the intellectual front, eg. someone who hasn’t understood what The Prisoners Dilemma is about, would say such a stupid thing.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.3

          Take just one element of “the confusion of ideas”, that “society needs to pick up the tab for choices made by the individual, often made with only their immediate self interest in mind.”

          Yes, society does. When you vote for a personal income tax cut and a raise in GST, for example, vote are taking money from the poorest and putting it into your own pocket. Society picks up the tab for your greed and selfishness.

          I further note that your rhetoric implies that you believe we can have full employment, but the policies you promote require there to be a level of unemployment. Society picks up the tab for your policies, as well as the tab for the depression that your political lies and hypocrisy induce in others.

          What’s your excuse?

          • TightyRighty 2.1.1.3.1

            that i pay far more than my “fair” share of tax still, let alone under the old system. GST impacts higher earners more btw. just because poor people spend a higher proportion of their income, they don’t contribute a larger amount of gst. fwiw.

            my rhetoric implies nothing about employments, it’s purely the financial outcome of choices made. the economy is booming thanks to the votes of myself and people like me. far sighted, optimistic individuals, who see the best way forward for the country is a strong export led economy. I need no excuse for being right about who the best party to govern is. What’s your excuse for not opening up your eyes to reality? in fact, how about a fucking thank you OAK for helping to make this country the best in the world right now?

            • McFlock 2.1.1.3.1.1

              Anyone who thinks capitalism is a merit-based system need look no farther than your comment.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1.1.3.1.2

              If “personal choices” cause unemployment, it implies that their is enough paid employment for everyone, which is only prevented by choice. Not the only chasm between your opinion and reality.

              The economy isn’t booming. Unemployment is double what it was seven years ago. Wages have stagnated, thanks again to your useless incompetent government, and the rate of infectious disease admissions continues to climb, while the causes are known and all you can do is deny them.

              Now, if you’ve finished your self-serving little masturbation session I need to throw up.

              • TightyRighty

                what a bitter little person you are. you failed at the system? must be the systems fault then. Better give me a vasectomy to prevent the system propagating.

                Don’t forget to brush after. It’ll smell like mint bullshit as opposed to your normal garden variety.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  Ah, but you you have any substantive rebuttal to the facts I just drew your attention to? No? Didn’t think so.

                  Personal responsibility means it’s always someone else’s fault, so far as you’re concerned, but when someone calls you on it, or runs some of your hate-speech back at you, you get all offended and bleaty.

                  Well guess what, Jobslayer, if we do things your way, you’ll win. We’re not doing things your way.

                  • TightyRighty

                    Personal responsibility means it’s someone else’s fault? Where did i say that? Hate speech? i’m not the one calling for enforced contraception.

                    I’ll give you unemployment is almost twice 2007, the last year of our consumer debt driven boom. Unemployment is a lagging indicator. it’ll be interesting to see what the level is come march. Plenty of jobs in chch and auckland too. Though a few more years in school learning math and english will be of benefit to a lot of applicants.

                    If we do things my way, you will all win. winning for everyone. if we do things your way, we’ll all be equally as poor. that’s your definition of winning though isn’t it? many aspirational. much quality of life. so equal.

                    • karol

                      It”s not just about the total number of jobs – it’s also about how much they pay – since the GFC there was a general drop in wages internationally, and recovery wasn’t expected any time soon.

                      It’s also about how secure the jobs are, and whether they are part or full time.

                      Further, it’s about where the jobs are. When the response to a financial crisis results in cuts to public spending, more of the necessary work in society is unpaid (with women doing a lot of that work) and/or underpaid.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      You said that when you implied that unemployment is a consequence of poor choices, when in fact it is a consequence of the economic policies you voted for (no party having promoted or achieved full employment this is self-evident).

                      I think I’ll go with the Left thanks, on the grounds that they consistently achieve higher per-capita GDP and the lowest unemployment rate NZ has ever seen while simultaneously managing to treat citizens as though they have human rights.

                      No, Tighty, sarcasm is sarcasm. Feeding right wing lines back at right wingers is just my way of giving you a taste of your own medicine. Perhaps you’ve never remarked, for example, that beneficiaries shouldn’t have children, but I doubt it.

                    • TightyRighty

                      If you can’t afford children you shouldn’t have them. Doesn’t only apply to beneficiaries. The left get to enjoy the hard work and long lasting legacy right wing governments leave for them. The right always have to come in and clean up the infants mess after a labour left / government. but pick away. we’ve got enough support thanks.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Yeah, revisionist history might give you a warm feeling, but everyone else can see the stain spreading.

                      The National Party runs up debt. The Labour Party pays it off while delivering higher GDP and employment rates, meaning even the wealthy do better under Labour-led governments. Facts, Tighty. That stain must be getting uncomfortable now it’s cooling down.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      If we do things my way, you will all win. winning for everyone.

                      We’ve been doing things your way for thirty years and what we’ve seen is:
                      1.) Increased poverty
                      2.) A decrease in braod manufacturing
                      3.) An increase in pollution especially in rivers
                      4.) A few people making out like the bandits that they are

                      No, if we do things your way only the sociopaths win.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Like the fucking SS handing out loaves of bread to starving Jews in the Ghetto, encouraging them to board the train.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      “If you can’t afford children you shouldn’t have them”.

                      This is the hate speech I’m talking about, Tighty. People’s financial circumstances can change rapidly and there is effectively no guarantee of income. What you are implying – that being able to afford children today means you will always be able to afford them tomorrow – means there is no such thing as risk; an odd position for a capitalist to take.

                      So, since the dogma is false, what purpose does it serve, Tighty, other than to imply that poor people shouldn’t breed? Hate speech. Own it, and lift your game.

                    • McFlock

                      OK, TR, Let’s take your example of beneficiaries who callously procreate, knowing that they will never in the next 18 years have the financial ability to feed and clothe that child adequately.

                      What is your solution to that “problem”?
                      Would you have the state ensure they have enough money to raise the child?
                      Would you leave the child to become a criminal simply to survive?
                      Would you force an abortion?
                      Would you remove the child from the family at birth?

                      If none of the above, what is your solution?

                    • Huginn

                      If you can’t afford children you shouldn’t have them.

                      That’s a terrible idea! No-one would have any children until they were well into the most productive years of their careers. And by then lots of them are too old and tired to manage career and children, so they drop out – or cut back, precisely at the time they could be working longer hours for more money. You’re stupid idea has high worth income earners dropping out and paying less tax.

                      Here’s a better idea. Let’s encourage teenagers to have little babies and support them with good quality childcare and a little bit of money while they dawdle through tertiary education, apprenticeships or whatever. They don’t make much money at that age so they won’t be missed from the tax base.

                      They’ll be over the kids by the time they’re in their 40’s and making money.

                      Anyone who can actually afford to have kids should be at work generating a tax liability

                    • Lloyd

                      Since “rich” people have a far greater ecological footprint on the world and require much greater amounts of resources than “poor” people, it is logical to let the poor breed and the rich to not have children. Save the planet.

                • aerobubble

                  …must be the systems fault…

                  Like government were ever perfect, or perfectly imperfect.

                  Black and white, neo-liberal nonsense.

                  Just so we don’t talk about current goovernment policies, the pro-statists make out that they hate government, yet use pro-government arguments of perfection.

                  Oh, and personal-responsibility, no libertarian would use the term for obvious reasons, that they would hate the government using such a measure. Oops.

                  Nobody that has ever voted ACT is a rational libertarian.

                  • Paul

                    Libertarians. Rational?

                    • aerobubble

                      social libertarians? we all love liberty. That’s the problem, the right steal off with the libertarian values and then some people think libertarianism is bad.

                      The constitution of the US guarantees libertarian amongst other values. There is no seclusion or separation, except those who fall for the framing.

                      I mean a socialist is a communist who accepts libertarianism surely?

        • Ennui 2.1.1.4

          You seem to think that it’s everyone else’s problem when individuals make personal choices. I have some sympathy for this viewpoint, but it needs to be tempered by the fact that decisions are not made in a vacuum, and there are lots of factors and influences involved.

          With regard to society picking up the tab, society as a collection of the individuals has its own needs. Needs have costs, costs have bills. Perhaps you might regard “individual choices” as being made within a collective framework (i.e for the greater good society might have decided to fund child, not the parent who chose to have a child, or to stay home and nurture the child).

        • Tracey 2.1.1.5

          you mean like these employees chose for their company to nreeglect safety resulting in their deaths costing a mere 150k to the latest company…

          “Forestry companies must abide by the Approved Code of Practice for Forest Harvesting, Ms de Rooy said.

          “If Complete Logging Ltd had applied it, the chances are Mr Epapara would be here today. Instead, a family and a community grieves over a preventable death.”

          The forestry industry had an appalling year in 2013 with 10 men workplace deaths, she said.”

    • QoT 2.2

      No, you’re supposed to acknowledge a basic reality: you and our economy would be pretty fucked if women stopped having children and raising them for free.

    • Chooky 2.3

      @TR women work all the time!…….people like you dont regard it as work though!

      ….who looks after babies and children, does the housework, does the cooking, gets the groceries and keeps the garden, looks after the elderly and the disabled and sick?….keeps the wheels of the household on track?…..this is WORK!

      ….around the world women should be paid for this work….and also men who choose to do it….because otherwise we have no society

      …..It is perhaps the most important work!….and many women and men choose to do in preference to high paying jobs because it is ESSENTIAL work!

      It is time it is recognised by society, factored in by male economists and democratic governments!

  3. captain hook 3

    Karol these people are just morons and I would say dont waste your time on them but the rest of the world needs to hear the right arguments so keep up the good work.

  4. Ennui 4

    K, I have listened to a lot of Vandana Shiva on mp3, and read plenty of her works. Fantastic reference, the woman is a true colossus.

    • Molly 4.1

      Yes, Vandana Shiva is well worth looking up and researching. I first came across her while watching The Corporation many years ago, when she was interviewed about the rush to patent living organisms, and indigenous plant uses.

      Since that time, have always made the effort to read her interviews and watch her on documentaries.

      Will be taking my daughter along to see her if she ever comes to NZ.

  5. I expect the complaint that economists only measure economic activity isn’t likely to get a lot of traction.

    • karol 5.1

      The compaint is that mainstream economists ignore some of the most significant areas of economic activity, and don’t measure that.

      • Ennui 5.1.1

        I think that the complaint with economists is that they can only measure transactions between individuals and entities that are transacted in coins……if it does not have a set margin they are all at sea. Social transactions make economists feel woozy (maybe they suspect that social transactions are what coin transactions are designed to facilitate…dangerous concept).

      • Psycho Milt 5.1.2

        They ignore a lot of significant ‘productive’ activity, yes – but the accusation that they ignore a lot of ‘economic’ activity is in want of substantiation. In a system that uses money, the ‘economy’ is about what the money is doing, not about who’s doing some work. Criticising economists for only looking at money-based activity is like criticising veterinarians for only looking at animal health.

        • McFlock 5.1.2.1

          Nice line, but it’s more like criticising a vet for never considering what an animal is eating, where it is housed, and other aspects of its environment when determining the animal’s condition.

          Economists just stick a thermometer up the arse of the country and assume that that’s all the information they need to know.

        • karol 5.1.2.2

          Economic activity is about management of, or organisation of, resources, including human resources – it’s only the banksters in a capitalist/market economy who want it to be about what the money is doing.

          • Psycho Milt 5.1.2.2.1

            Well, them and anyone who understands what the term ‘economics’ means. If you want a social science of who’s doing what that’s of some tangible or intangible use to society regardless of money or goods changing hands, feel free to create it – lasting fame awaits you if you’re successful. But it’s no use blaming economists for not doing this new social science that hasn’t been invented yet instead of economics.

            • McFlock 5.1.2.2.1.1

              meh: wikipedia:

              Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services.

              Seems to be pretty much what they told me at school, too.

              • karol

                Yep. And having studied and taught sociology I agree with McFlock. It’s the neoliberals who have narrowed the concept of economics to be something to do with finances and business, and cut out the part of it to do with social sciences – study of people’s uses of resources.

                Interesting that the wikip link shows “economics” has having begun with Marxist politcal economy.

                • McFlock

                  the thing is that if you restrict economics to the movement of money, what’s the point of it? An entire social study dedicated to the movement of bits of paper and their imaginary electronic substitutes? Seriously, who in their right mind would care?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Orthodox economics is actually more narrow than that and does not deal with the impact of money, debt or banks on the economy. Price and market behaviour is its specialty.

                    The disciplines of finance, banking and monetary theory does, in some very slight and glancing ways.

                    The whole thing almost seems designed to make the accumulation and wielding of real physical wealth and power invisible to the theory.

                    • karol

                      When I studied sociology, economics was always included as part of sociology, as it focused on human behaviour in society – Marx, one of the founding fathers of sociology – along with Weber and Durkheim.

                      Anyway, wikipedia takes a similar line: social sciences:

            • KJT 5.1.2.2.1.2

              That is exactly what economics was when it started. A study of social interactions around resource use and allocation.

              Social science.

              Only in recent times it has been narrowed to mathematical chicken entrial gazing.

              • Colonial Viper

                Well, neoclassical economics can be seen as the mathematisation of classical economics, which helped to progress economics as a “real” science (even though in reality it remains the “dismal” science).

    • stargazer 5.2

      missed the point? caring work is economic activity. a lot of volunteer work is economic activity. i sit voluntarily on the governing boards of a couple of NGO’s, don’t get paid but running those organisations has led to an increase in employment, in tangible work outputs & in societal outcomes. all of that is economic activity but my work (& the work of others on that board) is not picked up as economic activity.

      perhaps you could focus your attention on the fact that the definition of “economic activity” by some economists is somewhat deficient.

    • Macro 5.3

      “Too much and too long, we seem to have surrendered community excellence and community values in the mere accumulation of material things. Our gross national product … if we should judge America by that – counts air pollution and cigarette advertising, and ambulances to clear our highways of carnage. It counts special locks for our doors and the jails for those who break them. It counts the destruction of our redwoods and the loss of our natural wonder in chaotic sprawl. It counts napalm and the cost of a nuclear warhead, and armored cars for police who fight riots in our streets. It counts Whitman’s rifle and Speck’s knife, and the television programs which glorify violence in order to sell toys to our children.

      “Yet the gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages; the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our wit nor our courage; neither our wisdom nor our learning; neither our compassion nor our devotion to our country; it measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile. And it tells us everything about America except why we are proud that we are Americans.”

      Sen Robert F Kennedy March 1968
      http://www.socialprogressimperative.org/blog/posts/senator-robert-f-kennedy-on-the-shortcomings-of-gross-national-product
      80 years ago, economist Simon Kuznets introduced GDP to the world, alongside a clear warning against using it to define the wellbeing of people.

      • Psycho Milt 5.3.1

        Exactly. GDP isn’t a measure of what useful work’s being done or of a population’s well-being. If politicians are treating it as such, the problem is with them, not with GDP as a measure of economic activity or with the economists who measure it.

        • Draco T Bastard 5.3.1.1

          Except that you obviously have NFI WTF an economy is – just like the economists and politicians.

  6. tricledrown 6

    Tighty almiighty alwhitey.
    You have got the benefits of a free education you only paid 28% of your tertiary education.
    That hand up allowed you to get to where you are now ,you can Now help others do the same.
    Being a selfish prick doesn”t make you part of the community but a part of society that wants to deny oportunity to others .
    Civilization is about working together as a community.
    Your formula is about stopping communuties working together.
    Its reverting us back to the laws of the jungle where only the strongest and fitest are aloud to participate.
    You and John Key would be on the bottom of the pile Now if it weren’t for socialism.

    • TightyRighty 6.1

      Everyone is entitled to a free education system, everyone got the same helping hand. Am i advocating removing a free primary and secondary education system? absolutely not, i think it’s invaluable. i advocate choice within it though. it’s proven competition leads to better performance by suppliers. what you are pissed about is that i did better out of it than you. So you live in a low rent area, hanging out with low rent people, doing low rent things. You look at those more successful at life than you and hate them for that. Sad really.

      Me and Jk would be on the bottom of the pile if it weren’t for socialism? when has NZ ever been socialist?

      • McFlock 6.1.1

        Did you have to cement over the period c1932-1975? Or were you merely significantly overcharged for your free education?

        it’s proven competition leads to better performance by suppliers.
        McDonalds/KFC. Providing what the customer wants, against the public interest.

        • TightyRighty 6.1.1.1

          Pacific Edge Biotech, Xero, Diligent?

          Much better performers than Mcd’s/restaurant brands and providing jobs, export income and forging ahead for NZ’s knowledge economy. Strange how that only flourished under national after all labours emphasis on it

          1932-1975? socialist? hahahahaha. egalitarian, not socialist.

          • Paul 6.1.1.1.1

            You live in a fantasy world.

            • TightyRighty 6.1.1.1.1.1

              yes, your amazing argument and stunning insight have convinced me of that. I live in the real world. the one with income contraints, work to be done, budgets to be kept, choices to be made. where i can make money or lose my job. without moaning once about it. in fact loving it. Helps when you’ve got the right attitude and don’t blame everyone else for your misfortune of being a loser.

              • karol

                In your “real world” who looks after the children, the sick, the injured, the storm damaged? Who cooks th dinners, does the shopping an dhouse maintenance?

                And if you have a low paid job, work hard, but still have few savings, what happens when they lose that job because the government cuts services as the result of a global financial crisis, or when athe business goes bust due to bad or corrupt actions by the managers?

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  When that happens, Tighty will smugly remark that you shouldn’t have made bad choices.

                • Paul

                  Yes it would be interesting to see what zealous Randists do if misfortune strikes.
                  Do they lecture themselves or suddenly realise that they need assistance?

                  • Huginn

                    A heavy smoker who refused to believe that smoking was a cause of lung cancer, Ayn Rand liked to sneer at the anti-smoking lobby. Predictably enough, she underwent surgery for lung cancer in 1974 and died of heart failure in 1982.

                    Ayn Rand fiercely opposed all types of Social Security, including Medicare, but when she and her husband needed Medicare somehow she decided that this did not apply to them. Apparently she signed power of attorney and let someone else sign her up under the name of Ann O’Connor

                    Cribbed from:
                    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Ayn_Rand

                • Sabine Ford

                  in TR’s world, these would all die as they are only resource users. they generate no wealth.

                  cooking dinner? how quaint. And only lazy people loose jobs.

          • McFlock 6.1.1.1.2

            Your argument that the Oxford English Dictionary has got it wrong is a hint that you might be fucked in the head.

    • Lloyd 6.2

      Tricledown you are so right. Everyone should be asking John Key where he would be if it wasn’t for socialism and social welfare.
      I would suggest he would not have become a millionaire if he had had his childhood in the USA.

  7. Bill 7

    Okay. I’m confused. GDP measures ‘an aspect’ of the market economy. Correct me I’ve picked up the general gist of the post wrong – but what does taking wider factors into account or changing the measurement do in terms of what the market does? I can’t see it making one iota of difference seeing as how the market’s principle economic purpose is profit.

    Alternatively, if the suggestion is that a new economy is necessary, then why bother spending time on the deficiencies of gdp…which is and can only be an economic measurement within the context of a market economy?

    And so to this –

    Any alternative model that aims for a sustainable, inclusive, cooperative and life-affirming society needs to attend to gender and other differences between people, as well as focusing on our collective aims and processes.

    Can that be anything other than a democratic economy…ie, a wholly participatory economy operating in tandem with a necessarily democratic or participatory polity?

    ‘Sustainable’ and ‘life affirming’ might appear to demand attention to resource depletion and AGW. ‘Inclusive’, ‘cooperative’ and ‘collective aims and processes’ would have to attend to gender and all other oppressions (supply whatever list of ‘isms’) …otherwise it would be something other (less then) than ‘inclusive’, ‘cooperative’ and/or focused on ‘collective aims and processes’…ie, something other than democratic.

    • karol 7.1

      Good point, Bill. I think just changing the economy, without attending to changing the underlying system, would result in further problems.

      But I don’t equate economy with “market economy” (some of the sources I linked to may well ultimately imply/require that). The sources do show how flawed our current approach to the economy, is – and the measurement of it is central to the system. They ultimately show that decisions about management of the economy, are based on some underlying (usually not explicit) values, assumptions, concepts etc. And mainstream economics tends to do the opposite – assume that economic arrangements are the bedrock on which society/community is built. It seeems to start with the economic management, and expect that will magically make for a better society.

      And for me the “economy” is to do with management or organisation of resources. Any society or community will do that one way or another.

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.1

        Of course in truth, the current approach to the economy is not flawed; it is in fact working exceptionally well for the elite patriarchal 0.1% who make the key decisions.

        And for me the “economy” is to do with management or organisation of resources. Any society or community will do that one way or another.

        Yes, this is indeed a proper, more holistic definition of “the economy.” Unfortunately what we usually view as the “economy” nowadays, especially through the lens of the corporate MSM, is merely the metastatic financialised economy. It is that financialisation of people, of resources, and in fact of the entire ecosystem, which is leading our civilisation to disaster.

        However, corporations do not make strategic business decisions based on GDP or even on forecasts of GDP. Partly because they have far more detailed metrics, but also because they know that GDP is actually irrelevant (beyond it’s role in providing convenient political cover and distraction for desired policies of austerity, bailouts etc.)

        So I’ll reflect Bill’s sentiments using different words – will changing the use of the GDP measure (if such a thing can be accomplished after two decades of criticism) convince the power elite to relinquish their exalted position or to share their privilege with the wider population? Of course, it will not.

        What the Left needs to do is provide people with a vision of an alternative democratic socialist economy. One which does not pray head bowed at the altar of parasitic insanity and of Thanatos, and one which stops our world short of the environmental and resource cliff face we are accelerating towards.

      • Bill 7.1.2

        The sources do show how flawed our current approach to the economy, is – and the measurement of it is central to the system

        ‘Everybody’ knows that gdp is a narrowly focused measurement. But it’s only inadequate if we want to measure…how to say?…wider economic phenomena. And then, unless we are suggesting that the measurement predated the realisation of the economy and somehow determined (how?) its shape and character, then no model of measurement will make any difference whatsoever to the reality of what the economy is and how it operates…whether *those* oranges are measured by total number of individual pieces of fruit, weight, volume or anything else or any combination of anything/everything else, barring magic, the measurement can’t impact on the reality of whatever is there.

        The best I can see for adopting more comprehensive or wider ranging measurements is that it/they might lift the veil on some currently ‘hidden’ aspects and dynamics of our economy…offer a better description… and lead to demands for its total reconfiguration ie, a different way to manage and determine production and distribution. If that’s the hope, and if we then want an economy that doesn’t lock in various oppressions (I’ll assume we do) , then we have to bang our heads together and come up with democratic scenarios, no?

        And for me the “economy” is to do with management or organisation of resources. Any society or community will do that one way or another

        yup

        • karol 7.1.2.1

          I’m not sure that everybody knows of the narrowness of GDP measurements. Many people just hear it as a measure, and accept that it measures how well our economy is doing. Some have used it as a measure in the discussion above, without seemingly being aware of it’s limtiations.

          Bill: The best I can see for adopting more comprehensive or wider ranging measurements is that it/they might lift the veil on some currently ‘hidden’ aspects and dynamics of our economy…offer a better description… and lead to demands for its total reconfiguration,

          And I do think this is what the quoted feminist economic arguments about unpaid work do. Many people don’t think of their everyday, non-paid activities as making a positive contribution to the wider society – thus all the beneficiary bashing, and current pressure of single parents to be doing paid work.

          While I also think it’s really important to focus on alternatives, it’s also necesssary to keep highlighting the shortcomings of the focus on GDP. But, ultimately I’d prefer to move away from putting a monetary value on all human worthwhile activities. It’s soemthing that has intensified in the neoliberal period. The commodification of everything.

          There are some alternatives suggested in the links in my post – although, only flagged in a general way. I mentioned the capabilties approach which focuses as much on process as on goals. Wikipedia’s thumbnail sketch of it:

          Unlike traditional economic measures of success, focused on GDP, utility, income, assets or other monetary measures, the capabilities approach focuses on what individuals are able to do. This approach emphasizes processes as well as outcomes, and draws attention to cultural, social and material dynamics of well-being.

          More on it here:

          Initially Sen argued for five components in assessing capability:

          The importance of real freedoms in the assessment of a person’s advantage
          Individual differences in the ability to transform resources into valuable activities
          The multi-variate nature of activities giving rise to happiness
          A balance of materialistic and nonmaterialistic factors in evaluating human welfare
          Concern for the distribution of opportunities within society

          While this starts to move away from a goal oriented, short term, monetary valued approach, I don’t know that “well-being” (of individuals anyway) needs to keep being measured.

          But, before moving to an alternative system, there needs to be some agreement on the underlying values, and a shift in focus away from consumer capitalism.

          • QoT 7.1.2.1.1

            I’m not sure that everybody knows of the narrowness of GDP measurements.

            This. In exactly the same way that every night on the news we get told “the NZX 50 is up ten points!” and the 95% of us who have no clue what that means are meant to accept it as a Good Thing because Michael Wilson says so.

            • McFlock 7.1.2.1.1.1

              the really fucked one is the exchange rate – positive green arrow with a rise, negative red down arrow with a fall – regardless of whether that’s a good thing or bad thing for the economy.

          • Bill 7.1.2.1.2

            So whereas Dr Vandana Shiva calls for a new economy ( a non-patriarchal economy can only be something other than a market economy), the information linked to in your comment appears, on first reading at least, to be looking to inject other, more desirable measures into the context of a market economy. And that can’t work – it’s insane. Even if such other measures were introduced and promoted, the nature and focus of the market economy and its associated institutions would ensure they were rolled back.

            So, if my reading of the links you provided is right, Shiva calls for revolution and the ‘capability approach’ link has people calling for well meaning, but ultimately hopeless, reform.

            But, before moving to an alternative system, there needs to be some agreement on the underlying values, and a shift in focus away from consumer capitalism.

            I can’t for the life of me understand the penchant for dividing thought and action that’s implied there. The alternative is the shift – the shift is the alternative. Anything else is just pushing things out into the ‘never never’ and avoiding action at the cost of preserving current trajectories.

            But anyway, didn’t you already suggest, or at least signpost some reasonable and uncontentious values in your post? Surely it’s not so difficult to determine the values needed to underpin sustainability, inclusiveness, cooperation and achieving collective aims and purposes? And then, just as surely, it’s fairly easy to figure the necessary characteristics of a system that would, not only promote those underlying values, but act as a disincentive or barrier to a resurgence of the current crop of undesirable values that the market economy rewards?

            • karol 7.1.2.1.2.1

              Action and values should go together. But acting without undersanding the values incorporated within the actions could be counter productive.

              While the wrongness of the current system and its values may seem very obvious to you, it clearly isn’t to many – eg the example of the evening financial/market repots on the nightly news.

              And part of my post then went on the cover the wrongness of being “gender blind”. There’s been some people on TS posit such a gender blind approach to the economy. So I think it is useful to have an explanation of how gendered values are incorporated into the current mainstream approach to the economy – and ditto for other significant areas of socially-defined differences between people.

              • Bill

                I don’t think I have any issue with any of that. I guess I’m just wary of descriptive analysis being seen as ‘the be all and end all’ and that it then delays any taking of action. (The endless debates/discussions on AGW come to mind on that front, where winning the argument was seen as somehow doing something, while actually doing something was postponed on the premise that there were people who didn’t believe in AGW.)

                • karol

                  Understand. I’m hoping to do more posts following from this one. Rather than do one long complicated post, sometimes I try to put some of the background source material out there first.

        • Lloyd 7.1.2.2

          GDP measures the flow of oranges around society. It doesn’t measure the total number of oranges. If a single orange is passed around many times a day it has the same effect a single exchange of a bag of oranges.

          A society may be throwing all the oranges away or it may be growing and creating more oranges. The GDP result may well be the same, but the society that is creating more oranges will definitely have more oranges to play with tomorrow.

          If the total number of oranges available to the society is a measure of social success, the society which is growing the number of oranges will be better off than the society with the same GDP which is throwing them away.

          This overall number of oranges in a society doesn’t address the equity of distribution of oranges through the society…..

  8. RedBaronCV 8

    Well if Tighty righty isn’t going to have any kids who is he going to leave all the dosh too? Looks like we’ll all get it in the end.

  9. Macro 9

    Measuring GDP has its place in a developing economy – that was what it was developed for in the first place. But once an economy has reached a level where there is sufficient goods and services to meet the needs of the population it really becomes superfluous. The challenge then for the economy is to ensure an equitable distribution.
    To constantly chase increasing GDP when the needs of the population can already be adequately met is nonsensical and ultimately impossible, as well as endangering the survival of future generations, through the unjustifiable consumption of limited resources.

  10. tricledrown 10

    TA
    Those companies you mentioned.
    Xero hasn’t made a profit yet its just a ponzi scheme for Now it wad started in 2006 its growth is on the back of future predicted earnings it could fall over anytime.
    Pacific biotech startef from govt research at Auckland Uni socialism it hasn’t made aprofit either.
    Did you attend any of your lectures at your state funded Uni.
    I think you were one of those cheats and bought the answers online.

  11. tricledrown 11

    Tighty almighty .
    Diligent not very ru listed on NZ stock exchange 2007 labour govt.
    Another ponzi company hoping for future earnings with no guarantee .
    Profitability zero to .0•25%.
    Where did you get your ecocomics degree!
    You are an example of why so many men in this country are complete failures.
    Your reasoning is that inanimate objects are more important than
    Living beings.

  12. KJT 12

    GDP is hugely flawed measure.

    It has some value in comparing the comparative growth in the monetary economy over time or with other countries, but it excludes so much, as Karol says, that it is a deceptive measure.

    An economy depends on so much more than the proportion that can be measured by monetary flows.

    It doesn’t include the wealth implicit in being able to walk down the road to a clean beach, or the value in living amongst healthy, happy people, for example.

    It equally doesn’t include the value of a retired teacher giving free classes, a volunteer caregiver in the community, an unpaid sports coach or a student learning a trade.

    Paying someone to blow up Christchurch, and the resulting repairs, increases GDP, but has no effect on the real quality of life for anyone.
    Paid child carers increase GDP, but the same essential job undertaken by their mother does not.

    I like Bhutan’s “gross national happiness index”.

    Then there is the whole concept of continual economic growth. A logical impossibility in a world with finite resources.

  13. SPC 13

    This leads onto the UI issue.

    The role of the non working partner recognised in more than WFF tax credits

    Access to the dole in their own right because

    a seeking but yet to find work (by right as independent labour)
    b providing child care (same conditions as DPB)
    c non professional caring for others than their children
    d undertaking voluntary work

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    Transport Blog | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    frogblog | 23-10
  • National’s failed commodities export strategy exposed
    National's strategy to rely on commodities such as milk powder and logs has been exposed in the September trade figures released today, the Green Party said."National's strategy to hang all economic hope on exporting ever-increasing volumes of milk powder and...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Caution needed on calls to arm police
    There is no justification for routinely arming our police and doing so would change forever the way officers interact with their communities, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “As one of the few organisations distinguished by its unarmed status,...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Govt strains to get tea break law through
    The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“National desperately...
    Labour | 23-10
  • How low can you go? Mining the depths
    The company says there will be economic benefits, which the EEZ Act says the EPA must consider, but even these benefits are in doubt. The royalties while not set will be tiny, the profits will flow offshore, and whatever phosphate...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Fed Farmers defend GE Agriculture
    Federated Farmers, which represents a minority of farmers, appears to be captured by a pro-GE clique hell bent on increasing unsustainable technologies for the benefit of the herbicide and patent controlling seed companies. That there are better more sustainable farming...
    Greens | 23-10
  • Government loses the affordable housing race
    Nick Smith is dreaming if he thinks he can deliver affordable housing to Cantabrians on his current figures, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Minister’s announcement that the Government will build 237 new homes, most of which will...
    Labour | 23-10
  • Labour’s thoughts with Canadians
    Labour has offered its sympathies to the family and friends of the Canadian soldier who died in what appears to be a premeditated and unprovoked attack while standing at guard at the Ottawa National War Memorial. “Our thoughts are also...
    Labour | 23-10
  • What next for TVNZ? Outsourcing the news?
    Television New Zealand’s decision to outsource Māori and Pacific programming is a real blow to the notion that our state broadcaster is a public broadcaster, says Labour. “CEO Kevin Kenrick has said today that TVNZ has ‘a very long and...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Green Party expresses sympathy for Canadian shooting victims
    The Green Party expressed its solidarity with Canadians and the Canadian Parliament today, offering its sympathy for family and friends of the soldier killed in the attack. "Our thoughts are with all those caught up in the shooting in Canada...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Prime Minister must honour his promise
    It’s time for John Key to honour his promise to the Pike River families, says Labour MP Damien O’Connor.  “International mine experts have confirmed the view of WorkSafe New Zealand and many miners on the West Coast that it is...
    Labour | 22-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health about Katherine Rich’s c...
    KEVIN HAGUE to the Minister of Health : Is he satisfied that there is no conflict of interest in the head of the Food and Grocery Council, Katherine Rich, being a board member of the Health Promotion Agency; if so,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Kennedy Graham to the Prime Minister on the Deployment of New Zealand Speci...
    Dr KENNEDY GRAHAM to the Prime Minister: Does he stand by his statement that the risks to New Zealand from any commitment of military assistance to counter Islamic State militants in Iraq would be "no greater than I think the...
    Greens | 22-10
  • EPA finds Shell Oil illegally drilled two wells
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has concluded that Shell Todd Oil Services (STOS) broke the law by drilling two wells without a marine consent off the coast of Taranaki, the Green Party said today. The EPA conducted an inspection of...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    News that Aucklanders overtook Wellingtonians as the biggest train users is further evidence the Government needs to start work on the Auckland City Rail Link now, the Green Party said today.Auckland Transport said today that in the year to September,...
    Greens | 22-10
  • Tea breaks gone by lunch time
    Labour is calling for an eleventh hour reprieve to employment law changes which could see thousands of Kiwi workers not covered by collective agreements lose their smoko breaks, its spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.“How cynical that on the...
    Labour | 21-10
  • Metiria Turei to lead fight on feeding hungry children
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira.Mrs Turei, who leads the Green Party's work on child poverty, will pick up Mr...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Otago dairy farms fail basics
    I’m really privileged to take on the responsibility of the water portfolio. Eugenie Sage has done excellent work in this area in the last term of parliament and provided a great platform for further work. Last Parliament my bill to...
    Greens | 21-10
  • A mighty totara has fallen across the Tasman
    The New Zealand Labour Party expresses deep sadness at the death of former Australian prime minister Gough Whitlam, aged 98. “Today a great totara has fallen across the Tasman,” Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says....
    Labour | 21-10
  • Note to National: Must deliver on child poverty
    John Key and his Government will be held to its promise to make child poverty a priority, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “In its priority-setting speech today the Government stated child poverty would be a major focus for...
    Labour | 21-10
  • New Analysis show Government cut tertiary education funding
    New analysis done by the Green Party today shows the Government has made cuts to funding of tertiary education since 2008.Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that between 2009 and 2015 Government funding to Tertiary Institutions dropped by 4...
    Greens | 21-10
  • Students doing it tough as fees rise again
    The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Steven Joyce is shutting a generation...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Key misled New Zealand on Iraq deployment
      John Key was misleading New Zealanders prior to the election when he ruled out New Zealand special forces being deployed to Iraq, says Labour Defence Spokesperson Phil Goff.  “Post-election he has cynically disregarded that by saying that deployment of...
    Labour | 20-10
  • Swearing about swearing the oath
    Yesterday, I was swearing. Swearing the Parliamentary oath, that is. But, under my breath, I was also quietly swearing about the archaic, colonial form of that oath and its inappropriateness for today’s Aotearoa New Zealand. To be permitted to speak...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Kevin Hague speaks in the 2014 Address and Reply debate
    Thank you very much, Mr Deputy Speaker, and, like others, can I begin my contribution by congratulating you and the others in the Speaker's team: the Rt Hon David Carter, Lindsay Tisch, and the Hon Trevor Mallard. I also want...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Damning report on Ruataniwha dam numbers
    When I presented my submission to the Board of Inquiry on the Tukituki Catchment Proposal I compared the proposed 83 metre high Ruataniwha dam with the Clyde Dam and noted the risk of cost blowouts in the construction process.  The...
    Greens | 20-10
  • Church congratulated on child poverty stand
    The efforts by the bishops of the Anglican Church to ensure that the issue of child poverty is not forgotten is a call to all New Zealanders to take action, says Labour’s Interfaith-Dialogue Spokesperson, Su’a William Sio.   “I think...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review.  He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban (see further biographical details here). The Review Team...
    Labour | 19-10
  • Labour backs urban development plans
    Auckland Council’s plan to set up an urban development agency is to be applauded and central government should get behind it to make it a success, Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. Auckland Council CEO Stephen Town has indicated plans...
    Labour | 18-10
  • New Zealand can be rightly proud of seat on Security Council
    Gaining a seat on the United Nation’s Security Council shows the sort of standing that New Zealand has in the world and the quality of the long campaign that we ran over nearly a decade, says Foreign Affairs spokesperson David...
    Labour | 16-10
  • NZ has opportunity on UN Security Council
    New Zealand has an opportunity to make a major contribution to the strengthening of international law and institutional capacity through its upcoming two-year tenure on the United Nations Security Council, Green Party spokesperson on global affairs, Dr Kennedy Graham said...
    Greens | 16-10
  • MPI still dragging the chain over causes of food bug
    The Ministry of Primary Industries’ release of Environmental Science and Research’s initial reports regarding the sources of a nasty stomach bug will be little comfort to the 127 people affected by it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “This...
    Labour | 16-10
  • Treasury officials should try working without food
    The Green Party is challenging Treasury officials to work for a week without eating properly, in light of their advice to Government that a food in schools programme is not needed."Treasury's advice was that providing food for children in schools...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Councils need to better protect our drinking water
    Environment Canterbury (ECan) is proposing several variations to its regional land and water plan that will allow for increased nutrient and other pollution from irrigation and intensive agriculture on the Canterbury Plains. Commissioners are hearing submissions on Variation 1 to...
    Greens | 15-10
  • National needs to commit to making NZ workers safe
    The National Government must do more to help make New Zealand workplaces a safer place to work in, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Data released by Statistics New Zealand today showed that workers in the fishing and...
    Greens | 15-10
  • Key commits to deployment before consultation or analysis
    John Key’s offer to consult Opposition parties on whether to deploy New Zealand forces against ISIS looks increasingly like a PR exercise only, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson, Phil Goff. “The presence of New Zealand’s Chief of Defence Force at a...
    Labour | 15-10
  • National must end ideological opposition to raising income
    If John Key is serious about tackling child poverty he must approach it with an open mind, and overcome his ideological block to raising incomes as a solution, the Green Party said today.Papers released to Radio New Zealand today show...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Pentagon links climate change and terrorism
    Yesterday the Pentagon launched a plan to deal with a threat that “poses immediate risks to national security”; one that “will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation”. It wasn’t referring to Ebola or ISIS. It was...
    Greens | 14-10
  • Four Nominees for Labour’s Leadership
    As at 5pm today four valid nominations had been received for the position of Labour Leader, as follows: Andrew Little(nominated by Poto Williams and Iain Lees-Galloway) Nanaia Mahuta(nominated by Louisa Wall and Su’a William Sio) David Parker(nominated by Damien O’Connor...
    Labour | 14-10
  • Green Party calls for consultation over terrorism law changes
    The Green Party has today written to the Prime Minister asking him to engage in wider consultation prior to changing any laws as a result of the recently announced terrorism law reviews, said the Green Party today. In a letter...
    Greens | 14-10
  • MPI must name product and supermarket chain
    The Ministry of Primary Industries must name the product responsible for severe gastroenteritis affecting people around the country, and the supermarket chain distributing it, Labour’s Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “The Ministry seems to be more concerned about protecting...
    Labour | 13-10
  • John Key dishonest about reasons for wanting to change terrorism law
    John Key is misleading the public to push through terrorism law changes under urgency, the Green Party said today. On Sunday, John Key stated that it is not illegal for someone to fight overseas for a terrorist group, such as...
    Greens | 12-10
  • Law changes shaping up to be worse than first thought
    The Prime Minister needs to be up front about exactly what changes he is planning to make to the Employment Relations  Amendment Bill, Labour's spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says.Interviewed on Q&A yesterday John Key said he did not...
    Labour | 12-10
  • Rapists, not Tinder, the threat to women
    Blame for rape and sexual assault should only ever be laid at the door of the perpetrator, not dating services or the actions of women themselves, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “Tinder is not the problem and women...
    Labour | 09-10
  • Safer Journeys For People Who Cycle
    You have a rare opportunity to tell the people who are making the decisions on cycling how to make it better. The Cycling Safety Panel is seeking feedback on their draft recommendations for improving the safety of cycling in New...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Subsidising more pollution will undermine water clean-up plan at Te Waihora...
    In 2010, NIWA found Canterbury’s Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere had the worst nutrient status of 140 lakes around New Zealand that it measured. In 2011, the National Government committed to spending $15 million across the country through the Fresh Start for...
    Greens | 08-10
  • Adding value not herbicides
    The HT swedes, and other brassicas, might seem like a good idea to farmers struggling against weeds but like the GE road, is this the path we want our agriculture to be treading? The Federated Farmers President, Dr William Rolleston...
    Greens | 07-10
  • ‘Blame the Planner’ bizarre approach to child poverty
    The National Government is stooping to a bizarre new low in blaming "planning processes" for poverty and inequality, after spending six years doing nothing about either the housing market or child poverty, the Green Party said today. Finance Minister Bill...
    Greens | 07-10
  • Media Advisory
    MANA Leader, Hone Harawira will not be available to speak with media today regarding his release “Recount Just One Step To restoring Credibility”. He is however available for media comment tomorrow, Tuesday the 8th of October, all media arrangements are...
    Mana | 07-10
  • RECOUNT JUST ONE STEP TO RESTORING CREDIBILITY
    “I have applied for a judicial recount of the votes in the Tai Tokerau election because it is one step in trying to restore credibility to the electoral process in the north, and, I suspect, in all other Maori electorates...
    Mana | 07-10
  • MANA SEEKS TAI TOKERAU RECOUNT
    The MANA Movement is supporting Leader Hone Harawira’s application for a judicial re-count in the Te Tai Tokerau electorate for the 2014 general election. President Lisa McNab says there are a number of serious issues of concern regarding the ability...
    Mana | 07-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • More Latté Than Lager: Reflections on Grant Robertson’s Campaign Launch.
    BIKERS? SERIOUSLY! Had Grant Robertson’s campaign launch been organised by Phil Goff? Was this a pitch for the votes of what few Waitakere Men remain in the Labour Party? Was I even at the right place? Well, yes, I was....
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Pike River Families Group Press Release
    The Families can now but hope that Solid Energy will consider closely the response of the Families’ expert mining advisers, Bob Stevenson and Dave Creedy, and the independent legal advice by Hugh Rennie QC as to why re-entry to the...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    This weekend on The Nation… with dairy prices falling, China growing its agriculture sector, and the environmental costs piling up, we ask the Fonterra chief executive Theo Spierings if New Zealand is too dependent on milk powder and if we’ve...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • NZ Government Urged to Do More to Fight Ebola
    As Ebola continues to tear through West Africa, Save the Children NZ is urging the government to do more in the fight against the deadly virus....
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • Korero Mai Ki Ahau – Saturday 25 & Sunday 26 October 2014
    Broadcast on Waatea 603AM Saturday 12.00 - 12.30pm Sunday 12.00 - 12.30pm Both shows repeated 5.00pm – 6.00pm On Sunday...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • Putting whānau foremost in Family Dispute Resolution
    Dispute resolution company, FairWay Resolution, has developed a uniquely New Zealand approach to family dispute resolution (FDR) that is underpinned by the cultural needs and values of the parties to a family dispute. In support of its role as a...
    Scoop politics | 24-10
  • Anglican Family Care staff to rally industrial action rises
    Public Service Association (PSA) members working at Anglican Family Care (AFC) in Dunedin will hold two rallies in Dunedin next week as they seek a fair pay offer, following a week of low-key industrial action....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Flying Visit for Adventuring Kiwi Socialpreneur
    12 Months on, this former Alexandra barista is changing lives in Buenos Aires Slums with free lunches, music, art, drama and toothbrushes...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • March in Solidarity with Kurdistan Against ISIS Attacks
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan in light of the heinous genocidal attacks in Kobanê by ISIS. We will begin with silent demonstrations then commence marching. We will start from Britomart, Queen Street (outside Dick...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • No Problem for Henare & Jones, But “No Way” for Harawira
    “Just before the election I broke the story about the gutting of Maori Television’s News and Current Affairs department by MTS’ new CEO Paora Maxwell. I pointed out that Carol Hirschfeld and Julian Wilcox, two of the country’s most experienced...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Corruption: Positive developments for NZ but more to be done
    Global anti-corruption group Transparency International today released a report on OECD Anti-Bribery Convention enforcement and called for New Zealand to implement draft legislation to ratify the United Nations Convention against Corruption....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Government to Blame as Much as Council for Marryatt Payout
    The Taxpayers' Union is calling on the Government to fix the employment law regime that has forced Christchurch ratepayers to fork out $800,000 to former Council boss Tony Marryatt....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Unanimously Call for Commissioner to Arm Police Full Time
    In the wake of a series of recent armed offender incidents, delegates to the Police Association Annual Conference today called unanimously on the Commissioner to arm Police full time....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Bank gets behind NZ wildlife icon with sizable donation
    It will be easier than ever this summer for holiday-markers to dip into their pockets to support the yellow-eyed penguin....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • WorkSafe report raises concerns about asbestos
    The union representing construction workers in the Canterbury rebuild is surprised at WorkSafe’s conclusion that no action needs to be taken against EQC and Fletcher EQR over asbestos exposure in Canterbury homes. “This report was an opportunity...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Union accuses SkyCity CEO of misleading public
    Unite Union has accused SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison of misleading the public over the cut in hours for a staff member who raised the issue at the company's AGM....
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Last Hurrah on the Taxpayer
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Hone Harawira spent up $54,000 on the taxpayer in his last three months as an MP, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “It is absolutely disgraceful that an MP managed to rack...
    Scoop politics | 23-10
  • Press statement in relation to search of Nicky Hager’s home
    On 2 October 2014, Nicky Hager's home in Wellington was searched by police. Mr Hager asserted that documents kept at his house were protected by privilege, including because they contained information that might identify confidential sources....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • The Sam Simon arrives into Auckland for new campaign
    This morning Sea Shepherd ship, the Sam Simon, arrived into Auckland harbour after its journey from Melbourne. The ship and its 25 crew from around the globe have come to New Zealand to source supplies and prepare for the upcoming...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Low inflation – time for meaningful wage increases
    With inflation low, now is a good time for workers to negotiate for pay increases that outstrip price rises and deliver real increases in wages and salaries. “For too many people, real pay increases have been missing for several years...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Auckland Rates Rises Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland ratepayers will face an average of a 29 percent rates increase, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “These rate rises show that Len Brown's spending is out of control.”...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Protest at New Plymouth Oil and Gas Expo
    About 30 protesters from Climate Justice Taranaki, Frack-free Kapiti, Te Uru Pounamu Action Group, Oil Free Wellington, Frack-free Manawatu and the east coast protested yesterday outside New Plymouth's biennial Oil and Gas Expo at the TSB Stadium....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • FMA warns consumers about cold-calling investment offers
    The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is warning New Zealand consumers and investors to be wary of cold-calls asking them to buy shares or put their money into offshore firms....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Comprehensive plan needed to end child poverty
    Child Poverty Action Group says it is vital the newly re-elected National government takes a planned and comprehensive approach to reducing child poverty in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Metiria Gets Feed the Kids
    Yesterday the Speaker of the House advised that he had accepted my request to transfer my Feed the Kids (Education (Breakfast and Lunch Programmes in Schools) Amendment) Bill to Metiria Turei of the Green Party....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • DIA undercover investigation leads to jailing
    An undercover Internal Affairs investigation has led to a Hastings man being jailed for three and half years....
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
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