Written By: - Date published: 10:13 am, December 7th, 2013 - 247 comments
Just when you begin to think Labour are looking like a Government, one of the has-beens from the Rogernomics era, again! shows that they have NFI how to get elected and they are still clinging desperately to the Neo-liberal paradigm.
Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, December 5th, 2013 - 30 comments
The Government are lowering their lowest estimate for how much they’ll raise from asset sales. They’ve done a terrible job implementing a stupid policy - if you’re going to put your ideological blinkers on and do it, at least do it right. Now it must stop.
Written By: - Date published: 8:50 am, November 12th, 2013 - 38 comments
A recent Massey University study found that that those with a spinal cord injury who are covered by ACC are more likely to get back to work while those who don’t receive assistance start a downward spiral into poverty. Who would have thunk it?
Written By: - Date published: 10:43 am, May 24th, 2013 - 31 comments
Nick Smith has a long history of slippery dealings. He apologises but accepts no blame, then is resurrected: contempt of court, a defamation case, the Pullar-ACC “conflict of interest”, bad faith negotiations with Auckland Council, the Denniston Plateau deal. Yesterday on RNZ, Smith exposed the government’s agenda on mining conservation land.
Written By: - Date published: 10:41 am, March 27th, 2013 - 55 comments
Opposition MPs (e.g. Ardern & Mathers) and Sue Bradford highlight that the Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill destroys lives, furthers NAct’s elitist agenda, & is more propaganda than social security or job creation.
Written By: - Date published: 7:00 pm, February 20th, 2013 - 10 comments
An accidentally-mis-addressed email from ACC’s HR department reveals much-needed changes are going to be made to their sensitive claims unit.
Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, September 15th, 2012 - 41 comments
The government recently released a figure of $78 billion as the ‘lifetime cost’ of the benefit system. That number is the estimated answer to the question: ‘how much would we have to have put aside now to pay for the expected future cost of benefit payments to all current beneficiaries’. But the really question is: why would you want to know that?
Written By: - Date published: 11:37 am, August 3rd, 2012 - 27 comments
Anyone else taking a perverse pleasure in the Pullar-Collins-Boag-Judge affair? They’re all Tory villains. And they’re eating each other alive. Judge was handpicked to privatise ACC. Now, Collins is trying to stick the Boag email leak to him, Did he do it? Who knows. The other most likely option is Collins. So implicating Judge serves Collins’ purpose.
Written By: - Date published: 8:25 am, June 25th, 2012 - 54 comments
There is a sociopathic policy of the leadership at ACC, which sees staff financially incentivised to push long-term claimants off ACC leading to many of them going on the benefit rather than getting rehabilitation. Now, we have proof that this policy came right from the top. National ministers set arbitrary targets for the number of long-term claimants to be booted.
Written By: - Date published: 8:55 am, June 22nd, 2012 - 90 comments
Kevin Hague has discovered ACC managers are getting bonuses for kicking people off the scheme.
That’s not surprising – this government beats up on the weak almost as much as it sucks up to the powerful.
Written By: - Date published: 10:07 am, June 21st, 2012 - 20 comments
To paraphrase Mr Wilde, losing 1 board member looks unfortunate, but losing 4 & a CEO looks like a minister losing control of her portfolio. As much as the botox allows, Collins didn’t look happy when board member number 4 quit. But mama said never trust a tory. Expect the Nats to try to turn events to their advantage. Privatisation isn’t off the table.
Written By: - Date published: 3:56 pm, June 12th, 2012 - 39 comments
Announced this morning before Question Time in Parliament that John Judge will be replaced as Chair of ACC on a temporary basis by Paula Rebstock. Judge is going to chair the ANZNational Bank; Rebstock has been chairing the advisory body to WINZ. It will be interesting to see which bits of the culture get changed and if there is any benefit to ACC claimants.
Written By: - Date published: 7:06 am, April 30th, 2012 - 47 comments
Another secret taping, another political scandal. A recording of Pullar and Boag’s meeting with ACC by Pullar appears to show that Pullar did not “blackmail” ACC as alleged. This raises serious questions about how Pullar’s name got into the public arena. And why hasn’t Collins ordered ACC to correct its version of events since its had the transcript for weeks?
Written By: - Date published: 4:03 pm, March 31st, 2012 - 77 comments
The ever-growing list of letters, emails, and leaks in the National Party Civil War, that started off as an apparently apolitical privacy breach by ACC, is getting hard to follow. Here’s a summary of the various documents and their ramifications – so far.
Written By: - Date published: 7:22 pm, March 29th, 2012 - 153 comments
Close Up tonight led with the allegation, based on a leaked document, that John Key (and other prominent Nats) were listed as supporting a $14 million dollar insurance claim by Bronwyn Pullar.
Written By: - Date published: 10:28 am, March 29th, 2012 - 162 comments
You know that bookies sense when there is blood in the water and they’ll create contracts. I don’t gamble but the interesting contracts today in my mind are “Judith Collins to cease being a Minister before 1 June 2012″, “An ACC official ….to be found to have leaked Boag email”, “Beehive staffer to be found to have leaked Boag email”, etc. And a politician is definitely in trouble in NZ when they start talking about defamation
Written By: - Date published: 8:45 am, March 29th, 2012 - 96 comments
Why did Collins print a copy of the Boag email? Who else saw it or was informed of its contents? If she didn’t give the information to Lusk or Slater, how did it get to the Herald? If they weren’t involved, why did they run hard on the Pullar issue with an anti-Boag angle from Day 1? Does Collins want us to believe ACC leaked to the Herald? How long does Collins thinks she can hold out?
Written By: - Date published: 2:18 pm, March 28th, 2012 - 96 comments
ACC denies leaking Bronwyn Pullar’s name. It’s not credible that they would act so high risk and so politically. Boag and Pullar clearly didn’t leak it. So, that leaves Collins and her office. Collins denied leaking the email to the media … but leaves a fair bit of wiggle room, doesn’t it? The tipline is, as they say, running hot – and the name on everyone’s lips is Lusk. More soon.
Written By: - Date published: 8:23 am, March 28th, 2012 - 48 comments
Judith Collins has twice told the Prime Minister that she didn’t leak Bronwyn Pullar’s information. But who else could have? The internecine fighting within National is heating up with Michelle Boag saying “When you can’t send a communication to a Government minister without fearing that the privacy of that communication is going to be breached, that’s very, very dangerous.” This is going to end badly for someone.
Written By: - Date published: 8:53 am, March 26th, 2012 - 58 comments
It’s strange watching National’s factions fight it out in the media- the Herald on Sunday running the Collins/Slater faction stuff and the Dompost running material from Boag/Pullar. Both sides are scum. Pullar received (somehow) the largest leak in ACC and passed to the media. Collins has imitated her fellow ministers by leaking Pullar’s private details in revenge.
Written By: - Date published: 11:45 am, March 23rd, 2012 - 77 comments
Nick Smith’s handpicked chair of ACC, John Judge, denies that ACC leaked Bronwyn Pullar’s name to the media after she made public the biggest leak of private data in history from the organisation. So, who did? Given the government’s track-record – Bennett vs the solo mums, Brownlee publicising Dalziel’s redzone offer – I’m betting it was Judith Collins.
Written By: - Date published: 3:54 pm, March 22nd, 2012 - 4 comments
The demise of Nick Smith has been spectacular, but it is not an end to the ACC privacy story, and the story continues to develop by the hour.
Written By: - Date published: 8:29 pm, March 21st, 2012 - 83 comments
Why did Key express confidence in Smith after reading the 2nd letter that is the supposed reason for him going? Why did he really resign, what are they trying to distract us from? How did it happen that the woman who Smith resigned over also is the person who got the largest ACC leak in history? What deal did Smith get to stay in Parliament avoiding a risky by-election?
Written By: - Date published: 7:45 am, March 21st, 2012 - 218 comments
Even 1 year ago, there would be no doubt what would happen next. He would have sacked Smith without hesitation. Has Key lost those instincts already?
Updates: won’t comment now but will this afternoon. Needs time to make some backroom deals so that skeletons stay in closets? Smith was been summoned to Wellington. Press conference at 1.45. And He’s gone. They’re trying to downplay the reasons. What a disgrace. Full video of Key offloading Nick Smith
Written By: - Date published: 9:08 am, March 20th, 2012 - 88 comments
Nick Smith, while Minister for ACC wrote a letter in support of the claims of, um, close personal contact Bronwyn Pullar last year after Pullar threatened to embarrass him and ACC. He says, this was in his personal capacity, even though it was on
parliamentary ministerial letterhead. And what kind of coincidence is it that the largest accidental leak by ACC in history went to Pullar?
Written By: - Date published: 10:56 am, March 16th, 2012 - 16 comments
National has backed down from privatising ACC’s work account. To make it work, they were going to have to pump up ACC levies and make it pay a dividend to the Crown to make prices high enough for the private sector to compete. A sign of how weak the government is that they couldn’t push this through. Problem is, the same logic applies to asset sales.
Written By: - Date published: 12:04 pm, February 27th, 2012 - 35 comments
Government documents from last year reveal a plan to make ACC boost its levies and pay the government a dividend so that private insurers can compete. But that wasn’t enough. Now, the plan seems to be to exclude ACC from workplace injury insurance altogether. Private insurers just can’t offer cover as cheap as ACC can. So that Nats’ solution is to deny us access to ACC workplace cover.
Written By: - Date published: 10:48 am, February 18th, 2012 - 127 comments
Private sector competition brings market disciplines and efficiencies to bloated publicly-owned monopolies. That’s the mantra, eh? That’s the indisputable truth… right? So, how come the Nats are planning to make ACC raise its levies and pay a dividend – for the first time ever – so that private insurers can compete? And how does that benefit NZ?
Written By: - Date published: 11:50 am, July 26th, 2011 - 152 comments
Just after Irish has discussed how little it takes to jump from the violent language of the NZ Right to the violent actions of Anders Breivik (and an ‘expert’ had said it can’t happen here), we learn of a rightwinger who planned a van-bomb attack on ACC. The striking thing is that his online rants are unremarkable within the Right’s discourse.
Written By: - Date published: 11:52 am, July 12th, 2011 - 14 comments
After coming to office, National cried ‘crisis at ACC’ as an excuse for raising levies, cutting cover, and privatisation. Suddenly, the ‘crisis’ has disappeared and good ol’ National is cutting your ACC levies, back to where they were before National raised them. Now, just forget who put them up in the first place, and tick the blue box in November.
Written By: - Date published: 10:00 am, June 2nd, 2011 - 41 comments
National has announced plans to privatise ACC’s work account. Currently, they don’t have the numbers to get it through the House. ACT won’t vote for it because its not completely rabid and the Maori Party won’t vote for privatisation. So, this becomes another election issue: another bloody good reason to vote National out.