web analytics
The Standard

Epic fail

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, August 16th, 2011 - 64 comments
Categories: class war, national, unemployment, welfare - Tags:

Fran O’Sullivan before the Nat conference

John Key is primed to take an axe to welfare when he fronts his party faithful in Wellington tomorrow. As an election plank it will go down well with hardline National Party members, who believe beneficiaries should stand on their own feet. …

The latest labour force survey shows the unemployment rate is still flat-lining at 6.5 per cent of the workforce. … In New Zealand, youth nihilism has frequently turned inwards, as evidenced by the soaring suicide rate. But many members of Britain’s lost generation were at the forefront of the wave of riots that wreaked so much damage there this week.

If Key’s announcements do not contain measures to help the jobless young, they should be written off as an “epic fail”.

Fran O’Sullivan after the Nat conference? Watch this space…

Update: Nothing from Fran but the Herald editorial says – “there is also nothing in the Prime Minister’s announcement that creates jobs for young people … it is not enough for John Key to place the onus for job creation on a private sector that will respond confidently to Government policy”

64 comments on “Epic fail”

  1. Carol 1

    Key does have a plan (of sorts) privatise the welfare system, with bonuses for businesses that get jobless young people into work or education: i.e. he’s looking to provide a way for businesses to profiteer from the lack of sufficient productive jobs, and the misery of young people. Instead of lining the pockets of the few, why not put the money into developing the real production, real jobs, and training/education fore the benefit of the many? – cut out the middle-man.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/5449705/Bonuses-for-firms-that-cut-teen-jobless-figures

    Further privatisation of the welfare sector will be part of the Government’s plan to get beneficiaries into work.

    National will offer cash bonuses to private organisations that reduce the tally of about 13,500 young people aged under 18 who are not in work or education.

    Prime Minister John Key said the use of community groups and companies was likely to be extended to other areas of the welfare sector.

    PS: Anthony must have been updating his original post on this, as I was typing the above comment & link.

    • jackal 1.1

      Organizations like Destiny Church are going to love National’s commercialization of the poor and outsourcing services to “help” them. It opens up avenues to more public money. That’s what the motivation behind Hannah Tamaki’s takeover bid for the Maori League is.

      What National doesn’t understand is that outsourcing and maintaining a lack of a career path for these young people is far more costly, and not only in financial terms. The fundamental flaw is that any scheme still requires the creation of jobs, which National is not addressing in any way shape or form.

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10730987

      • joe90 1.1.1

        Expect more of this where, following the accusation of misconduct, the church went into damage control and closed ranks, shipped the alleged offenders out of the region, l**d in unison and accused complainant of lying.

    • Peter 1.2

      The plan is to give the Private Sector every opportunity to make money from the Public Sector by supplying goods and services or taking control of certain functions. Extra jobs are an after-thought.

  2. vidiot 2

    Bringing back “Youth Rates” should have an immediate impact on those figures.

    • Blighty 2.1

      evidence?

      If anything, ending youth rates encourages young people to work more, as the Herald notes:

      “work from the same source and by overseas researchers suggested the withdrawal of the rate actually resulted in 16- and 17-year-olds increasing their hours worked by 10 to 15 per cent. Indeed, youngsters had been encouraged to leave school earlier than usual in pursuit of the higher wages on offer.”

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10745387

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        If anything, ending youth rates encourages young people to work more, as the Herald notes:

        Imagine that. You increase the price of youth labour, and they want to supply more of it.

        Classic neoclassical price/supply curve.

        Why do the Righties doubt their own medicine??? :)

        • Lanthanide 2.1.1.1

          Which if you follow “lump of labour” logic actually means fewer jobs.

          We get 6 people working 15% longer hours at the expense of creating a 7th job that someone else could have filled.

          I also don’t think people leaving school early is something we should want to encourage (unless they were achieving nothing at school anyway).

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.1

            Nothing wrong with leaving school early just so long as they have the opportunity to go back to school/continue learning after they leave without having to lose everything they’ve worked for already.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.2

          Why do the Righties doubt their own medicine?

          You should know by now that the RWNJs only use statements/theories that seem to support their beliefs. They really don’t care if it’s true or not.

    • mik e 2.2

      Vidiot Spain has youth rates it has 65% youth unemployment .We can’t carry on having low wage workers and low wage jobs, even John Key disagrees with you .It will just shift the unemployment some where else,lower the amount of money going into the economy increasing overall unemployment.We need to look to countries that have low youth unemployment .Like Germany where youth are skilled trained from an earlier age and employer matched before leaving school .Also most European youth are required to stay in school till they are 18 skewing our terrible figures!

    • freedom 2.3

      vidiot, which figures will be affected ? the increasingly large numbers of unemployed or the ever growing profits of the business owners

  3. “there is also nothing in the Prime Minister’s announcement that creates jobs for young people”

    I think many people are expecting too much from one narrowly targeted policy. The announced policy targets early school leavers. The Green Paper on Vulnerable Children is targeting the youngest age group. So I think we will have to wait and see National’s whole range of policies rather than fuss over isolated bits.

    We know that the blanket benefit approach is very expensive, can result in many people getting benefits they don’t need (eg WFF), and creates a lot of general disgruntlement. Addressing specific problem areas makes sense if the targeting is done well, it’s impossible to “fix” everything but we need better results for the massive amount of money poured into social policies. If done well the people to benefit the most will be those that most need benefits.

    • felix 3.1

      What we know is that the answer to this particular problem is jobs.

      If the policy doesn’t address this, then it simply doesn’t address the problem.

      And if it doesn’t address the problem, why the fuck should anyone give it the time of day?

      • Pete George 3.1.1

        There are far more problems than jobs.

        Unless you have a way of creating an unlimited number of productive jobs that everyone wants to do and that require no education or experience.

        • felix 3.1.1.1

          1. I said “this particular problem”. Duh.

          2. We don’t need an unlimited number, just a number that matches the working-age pop. Duh.

          3. Experience comes from having a job, not the other way around. Duh.

          Where we agree is that a focus on education is needed. Don’t hold your breath though, apparently the more pressing 20 million dollar issue is that 1600 kids on the dole have too much beer money.

          Hence my earlier comment. Duh.

          • Canter 3.1.1.1.1

            If the answer to this problem is jobs, why is it when we had near full employment in 2007 before the recession hit New Zealand, did the numbers in this category not go down? Because the government was giving them a bit of money every week and then just abandoning them to look after themselves. 90% of these people will graduate to long term welfare. Simply saying “we need jobs!” isn’t the silver bullet, they need to learn the life skills to hold down a job.

            It’s a pity Labour didn’t pick up this policy, it would have helped win back some of the middle.

            • jackal 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Could you link to the data you’re basing your comment on please?

            • Pete George 3.1.1.1.1.2

              There’s no reason why Labour can’t support this policy.

              Except for political bloody mindedness, which seems to be the default position.

              • freedom

                that and it is a vehemently heavy handed authoritatrian approach to the situation which will further alienate and stigmatise kids who are not the ones causing the issue in the first place

              • felix

                Pete finds it inconceivable that Labour doesn’t support this policy because he thinks every party in parliament should just get behind the government and back them or keep out of the way and keep quiet.

                He insists that this line of thinking doesn’t lead directly to a one-party state, and we just have to take him at his word that he’s stupid enough not to realise that.

                • Deliberate misrepresentation – again. You won’t back up your lies because you can’t, and you know you’re likely to a free pass by moderation.

                  Re the one party state you seem obsessed with:

                  National aiming for just 48pc of November’s vote

                  National has also indicated that, should it be in a position to rule alone, it will still strike post-election deals with compatible minor parties and make them part of its governing arrangement.

                  Epic fail felix.

                  • Campbell Larsen

                    ‘make them part of it’s governing arrangement’
                    The part that comes up with racist radical neo lib nonsense (act) so that the Rats can cherry pick the bits they like and distance themselves from the rest and still claim to be moderate.
                    The part that has one of it’s flagship policies (the Maori parties Whanau Ora) highjacked and used to roll out the privitisation of social services.
                    An offer to partner up with the Rats is about as appealing as an offer of an STD

                  • felix

                    Who said anything about National’s position, Pete?

                    I was talking about your position. You’re not speaking for National, are you?

                    Are you backing away from your previously stated desire for all parties in parliament getting behind the govt or getting out of the way?

                    If so, that’s a start. Bet you’re not though.

                    • Are you backing away from your previously stated desire for all parties in parliament getting behind the govt or getting out of the way?

                      I’ve never stated that.

                      All parties are already actively involved in governance in parliament. And I’ve always supported opposition parties – and coalition parties and MPs of the main governing party – to hold ministers and government to account.

                      You’re either erroneously or deliberately confusing statements against too many negative political attacks and attempts at destabilising government, which is quite different.

                      I want all parties to be more positively involved in parliament – and when they do speak up against crap that really matter (as opposed to perpetual auto-opposition) they will be taken seriously and will be far more effective.

                    • felix

                      Here you go retard:

                      http://thestandard.org.nz/drug-peddlers/#comment-330885

                      It’s a thread you ran away from mid discussion (which never happens of course).

                    • Epic fail felix.

                      You seem more shitty that usual today, and resorting to name calling doesn’t make your bullshit look any less splat.

                    • felix

                      Stick your fingers in your ears all you like, it’s all there in black and white at the end of that link for all to see.

                      Your argument in that thread as it stands supports a one-party state.

                    • Epic fail felix. My last comment was:

                      If the voters see that opposition parties are dredging up endless trivial crap:
                      – they get the perception it is being done by a trivial crappy politicians
                      – important issues that really need opposing risk being lost in the noise

                      I was highlighting how ineffective Labour have been in opposition. Nothing to do with one party state, I argue the opposite – the more strong parties and independent MPs the better.

                  • AAMC

                    Nationals Fascist roots…

                    “Nor were all those involved in the creation of the National Party necessarily imbued with the parliamentary spirit of moderation and compromise. Many of those who attended the party’s foundation conference had been, like National’s second leader, Sid Holland, members of the proto-fascist New Zealand Legion.

                    Presumably even less familiar with the democratic process was a clutch of former senior army officers: Colonel H.G. Livingstone, Colonel James Hargest and Colonel S.C.P. Nichols. They, too, played a prominent role during the National Party’s formative stages.”

                    http://bowalleyroad.blogspot.com/2011/08/gangsters-ball.html

              • mik e

                PG keep up your pathetic spin its nearly as bad as Nationals Jobs record. Especially under bill english 1998 -99 100,000 more on the dole cue 2008 -11 100,000 more on dole cues – the ones going to Australia in record numbers.

                • freedom

                  i will say this for the various National Governments we have had, they are consistent at producing results, usually regressive socio-economic catastrophies, but they are results.

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1.1.3

              If the answer to this problem is jobs, why is it when we had near full employment in 2007 before the recession hit New Zealand, did the numbers in this category not go down?

              Because this category is in the most difficult individual circumstances out of the 58,000 currently unemployed under 20.

              They need individualised attention and support not the pressure of John Key’s Food Stamps.

              It’s a pity Labour didn’t pick up this policy, it would have helped win back some of the middle.

              That’s a laughable suggestion.

              I’m personally pushing the Labour party left.

              And the “middle” income earner in NZ earns $28,000 p.a. You got shit show of having them support this initiative as they know that its their kids and grandkids who are going to get slammed and that National is coming for them next with Food Stamps.

            • Ross 3.1.1.1.1.4

              We had near full mployment in 2007? Could you provide me with the stats to support this, ta.

              • Colonial Viper

                A slight exaggeration methinks. 3.0-3.5% unemployment.Still too high.

                Google is your friend.

          • Mark M 3.1.1.1.2

            Felix

            less of the duh
            you sound to much like homer simpson

        • Ross 3.1.1.2

          Pete,

          What would those problems be?

        • jackal 3.1.1.3

          Rubbish Pete George. Ensuring there are jobs has the same policy aspect as ensuring people are trained to fill them. National has cut funding for training in many areas and ensured the economy does not recover by implementing huge tax cuts for the wealthy. This has created more inequality and social ills as well as unemployment.

          It’s not about creating an unlimited amount of jobs, it’s about creating enough jobs so that the young can become employed, learn the benefits of working and budgeting instead of having the state pay. We should not be expected to pay for the policy failures of National.

          It’s unacceptable that National has ensured a certain amount of unemployment to keep wages low. That reasoning goes against their promise to close the wage gap with Australia.

          John Key thinks a low wage economy creates investment and therefore jobs. What a load of bullshit! A low wage economy and a lack of jobs creates social disintegration. Wake up to that fact, vote accordingly and perhaps your house wont get robbed in the future.

        • freedom 3.1.1.4

          yes pete,there are 13,500 problems just in the age group this little bit of policy that has been announced dutifully ignores

    • mik e 3.2

      WFF is a targeted benefit at low income working families, not universal. it was started by peter dunne and national 1997.Australia has a similar policy pushed by the Howard government but they pay families up $140,000.Targeted policies have a very poor track record as opposed to universal benefits which don’t create huge tax hikes .The reason these days why targeted benefits are more common is we just don’t have enough money .But we are quiet happy to subsidize the damage alcohol and tobacco does to our society while neglecting poverty a $10 billion loss to our economy as a result of these substances abuse.A user pays tax on both of these substances would give us more than enough to get rid of poverty for ever but the booze barons have got Key and co in their back pocket!We are subsidizing the problem every tax payer we could universlize WFF and cut out the poverty and the poverty trap .

    • FFS Pete, don’t you ever listen? The Green paper is a smoke screen to get Family First and Destiny on the payroll – there is copious international research evidence of what works and what doesn’t (e.g. boot camps don’t work – like they have found out) – but ideology driven drivel wins votes – another fact!

    • Deadly_NZ 3.4

      But they don’t vote so Key is on safe ground, well that’s what he thinks, But what about the other part of this insidious policy where they are going to change the privacy rules (they must be inconvenient (like the labour law)) and hunt down all the other teens who are not in a recognised school or training programme(done make me laugh) And then come and tell them how to live their lives with this nice little bit of plastic NO ciggies alcohol chippies coke etc etc just good wholesome food on the Bennet approved starvation list.

      • Pete George 3.4.1

        They are not saying “NO ciggies alcohol chippies coke etc etc ” – just saying what most of the state money should be spent on. There will be some discretionary spending money, and there’s always the option to earn some money if they want to choose for themselves.

  4. Blue 4

    Fran O’Sullivan is a National insider who gets all the scoops in advance. I was amused by her column when it came out, being such a radical departure from her usual fare (Fran suddenly caring about the impact of neoliberal policies on children?) and waited for the other shoe to drop.

    Predictably, it did. Fran said that the measures should focus on youth unemployment or they would be an ‘epic fail’, and then, surprise surprise, it was declared later that day that Key’s bene-bashing announcement was going to focus on youth.

    It was a nice set-up, and I expect Fran this week to declare Key’s announcement manna from heaven.

  5. Ross 5

    To be fair, full employment has been off the agenda of both major political parties for many years. What policies did Labour introduce in its 9 years of office that were designed to create jobs?

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      Labour understood how an economy works with both the private and public sector playing a role. Today, Labour would not be laying public sector workers off adding to unemployment queues even as the private sector is proving unwilling or unable to hire.

      Labour would not have been as callous as to cut training and apprenticeship programmes for youth even as youth unemployment soared close to 30%.

      National on the other hand…

      My personal view is that the true unemployment rate must be kept under 3% by whatever innovative means necessary, and the long term unemployment rate kept at less than 1.5%.

      In essence I agree with you that both parties have not had full employment policies for a long time, and that is because both parties have fallen for the neoliberal bullshit of a “natural rate of unemployment”.

  6. randal 6

    National cant deliver anything.
    their policy since taking ofice has been micro incrementalism and dithering.
    Basically they are the kiwi version of the tea party with all that implies about doing nothing in case it costs.
    That is unless someone of their cabal personally benefits.

    • mik e 6.1

      Randal they have made sure they and treasury get plenty of kickbacks from the major banks thats keeping a few people in the wellington barista business in jobs.

      • aerobubble 6.1.1

        Public and Private sectors. National believes in the private sector, and government should get
        out of the way, then it finds its ideology has problems, that government does need to have
        public sector policies and in rushes Key to the policy vacuum that has been right wing
        politics for the last thirty years. For thirty years cheap and cheaper high density energy (oil) has made it easy for governments to ignore public policy and let the private market provide
        solutions (since the public citizen body had lots to spend and everyone was paid too much or
        borrowed too much). That jig is up, the world has changed and the last to change, the
        first to change, boardrooms. The last to change the most conservative economic politicians.
        Key does not know what to do, so he just pulls nonsense out that appeals to those conservative
        voters who are too slow to change. we need change, we need a progessive not a regressive
        party in government.

    • KJT 6.2

      National does not have to do anything beyond get elected for another three years.

      Once they have taken anything which is not nailed down

      They will go collect their payoffs while we have to rebuild the country.

      So they can come back for another round of thieving in 9 years time.

      Every thing is succeeding well from their point of view. The theft of the wealth of yet another lot of ordinary people is proceeding nicely..

  7. jackal 7

    Here we see National’s policies in effect. It is clear that a low wage economy just causes impoverishment. Subsidizing that low wage economy with corporate welfare costs the taxpayer dearly. A low wage economy does not create jobs, it just maximizes profits. Much of that goes off shore as most companies employing low wages are owned by international corporates.

  8. Afewknowthetruth 8

    A point of grammar. It is not a good idea to put an adjective with a word which is normally used as a verb. Epic failure.

    NZ has endured the poltics of failure since the 1970s, when it became abundantly clear to anyone who was even slightly informed about energy and the environment that NZ was on a path to catastrophic failure via the squandering of resources.

    We have not quite hit the buffers at the end of the line yet but we are approaching them mighty fast, and no maintream political party is prepared to even discuss the fact that we are on a path to catastrophe. Instead, they continue to parrot the same old platitudes and fantasies that have been around for decades.

    These times are both interesting and scary.

      • Afewknowthetruth 8.1.1

        Thanks for that.

        Phrases to describe things come and go but fundamental truths remain.

        Incidentally, I looked the most recent Time magazine today. Unpalatable truths are leaking out all over the place now.

    • neoleftie 8.2

      um well thats not quite accurate – its accepted in my labour electorate by the high ranking MP that the end is nigh i.e peak oil, global warming but more pressing matters at the time where to get the most bang from the health ministry monies.
      Frankly those who accept the uncertainities and volatile nature of the coming dark period of the next fifty years are biding their time and waititng for the stars to align and shine on the NEXT WAY.

      • Afewknowthetruth 8.2.1

        Does that mean they are waiting for the die-off and hope that they won’t get lynched when the people they have been lying to for so long wake up and turn into an angry mob?

  9. randal 9

    yeah well ok. When its gone its all gone and it wont come back.
    We still riding on our credit but that wont last forever either.
    dont want to be a jeremiah about this but this world aint going to continue like this forever.

  10. Bored 10

    Point of order on epic failures Jokey Hen. Where is my f***kn cycleway? Is real world production too difficult after living in the casino Jokey?

  11. freedom 11

    some light relief ,
    still in the thread theme of Epic Fail and not in anyway condoning criminal behaviour,

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/5451704/Footprints-in-snow-lead-to-icecream-thieves

    apprentice? in what i wonder, blundering & pilfering

  12. Abhi 12

    Thanks God for “the Standard” and it’s critic of the center, and making people aware that there is an alternative ways to the the perceived crisis.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Singing the Budget Blues
    Despite our 'rock star' economy over the past three years it has not increased Government income to the level expected and the Government has not been able to deliver its promised surplus. If income doesn't change, but priorities shift, then the… ...
    7 hours ago
  • Submit on Mill Rd
    Julie-Anne Genter, the Transport spokesperson of the Green Party has put out the following press release on the Mill Rd project that we have written about here, and here: Take 5 minutes and make a submission on Mill Road Auckland Transport is… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    11 hours ago
  • Budget Blues
    Twenty five dollars a week can’t be bad, can it? For families on the breadline, it’s surely better than nothing and every little helps. And when the total spend is $790 million, that’s not peanuts, is it? – even if… ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    12 hours ago
  • Punakaiki Fund and Snowball Effect
    22 May 2015 Punakaiki Fund will soon be presenting an offer through the Snowball Effect platform. We are pleased to announce that we have selected Snowball Effect to present our fund raising offer to members of the public. Equity crowdfunding… ...
    Lance WiggsBy Lance Wiggs
    12 hours ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    12 hours ago
  • Game review: Republique
    Score: 6/10 Republique is an episodic stealth game set in a dystopian society. You play a hacker who is aiding the escape of Hope, a young woman trapped in this world. Though the games attempt to deal with heavy themes… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    frogblogBy Mojo Mathers
    12 hours ago
  • Labour MPs are taking it to the Government in the House over their destruct...
    ...
    13 hours ago
  • The price of rotten cops IV
    Remember the Nelson Red Devils case? Back in 2012, drugs and firearms charges against 28 alleged gang members were thrown out because police abused the court process by forging a search warrant and an arrest warrant to build the credibility… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    13 hours ago
  • Best and worst New Zealand flag designs
    Dan Taipua, Dave Bell and Lucy Zee review some of the designs submitted for the for the new New Zealand flag. Check out the full gallery of designs here. ...
    13 hours ago
  • World News Brief, Friday May 22
    PunditBy Daily Digest
    14 hours ago
  • A hard rain is a’gonna fall.
    Although I am loathe to prognosticate on fluid situations and current events, I have been thinking about how the conflict in Iraq has been going. Although I do not believe that the Islamic State (IS) is anywhere close to being… ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    14 hours ago
  • Got business out of town? Need a hire car?
    Whether you are heading of town for a conference or taking a break and need a hire car, your TEU Member Advantage program has you covered.  Use your member benefits to access either reduced car hire rates or excess on… ...
    14 hours ago
  • An abuse of the OIA
    In the wake of revelations that Prime Minister John Key had systematically and repeatedly bullied, sexually harassed and assaulted a cafe waitress, the New Zealand Herald published a piece exposing the victim. It seemed like retribution, and the involvement of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    15 hours ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    frogblogBy Eugenie Sage
    15 hours ago
  • Calling Peak Car?
    There’s often a lot of discussion around the future of transport – particularly in cities. We’ve talked many times before about how transport trends are changing, how we’re seeing people drive less and catch PT more, how changing preferences amongst younger people in… ...
    15 hours ago
  • Australia’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on...
    The prohibition against torture is one of the cast-iron features of international law. You're not allowed to torture people, and you're not allowed to return or extradite people to a country where there are substantial grounds to believe they will… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    15 hours ago
  • Fiji: Removing the opposition
    Last year, Nauru's government abused its parliamentary majority to suspend the opposition from Parliament on a spurious privilege motion. Its a disease which is spreading: last night, Fiji's "democratic" regime did the same, suspending an opposition MP for making a… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    16 hours ago
  • Budget 2015: Don’t worry about the surplus, worry about this… Whiteboar...
    Bill’s budget put a bit of extra change in the pocket of poor families, but that came at the cost of the promised surplus. But should you be worried about it? With government debt still only at 25%… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Gareth Morgan
    16 hours ago
  • The productivity trap – heads they win, tails we lose
    The article below was written in 2006, so some of the stats are a bit dated.  However the fundamental argument remains.  For instance, NZ productivity growth continues to be poor and NZ capitalists remain behind most of the OECD in… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    16 hours ago
  • Attention leftie campaigners: Watch Lynton Crosby
    This is a video of Lynton Crosby, of Crosby/Textor fame and infamy, talking about how he approaches campaigns. It is well worth an hour of any serious campaigner's time - whether they're of the left or the right. I've… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    16 hours ago
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Out there in the world
    Friday Music posts here don't generally have much to do with my day job helping make a media TV show, but next week's Media Take is an exception. We're putting together a New Zealand music month-themed programme and one of the… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Government announces plan to grow Auckland housing bubble
    The key initiative in yesterday’s budget is a plan to grow Auckland’s housing bubble. Auckland’s housing bubble is projected to take over from dairy farming as the fastest-growing sector of the New Zealand economy. Consider a typical Mangere housewife. For… ...
    Can of wormsBy Can of Worms, Opened
    17 hours ago
  • Paul F Tompkins: The undisputed king of podcasts
    When Paul F Tompkins got into comedy in the mid 1980s, the formats with which he’s achieved most renown and popularity didn’t actually exist. “None of them did!” he yells, laughing, into the phone during an interview about stage… ...
    18 hours ago
  • Budget 2015: What does it mean?
    ...
    18 hours ago
  • What next?
    It feels really, really surreal to nearly be done with my degree. And terrifying, mostly. Right now I have a single 2000 word essay remaining for Politics of Protest and then three exams mid-way through next month, and… that’s it.… ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    19 hours ago
  • Solo parents forced to work; but where are the quality jobs?
    The Government is increasing the expectations of paid work from solo parents without any thought as to where the jobs will be, the Council of Trade Unions said today. “There are already 100,000 part time workers who are wanting more secure… ...
    CTUBy andrew.chick
    20 hours ago
  • April-15 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    21 hours ago
  • April-14 Patronage
    Another month and another good patronage result from Auckland Transport – particularly for rail. Patronage in April is naturally down on the madness that is March due to the combination of a 30 day month, ANZAC day, Easter and School Holidays/Uni holidays.… ...
    21 hours ago
  • Children and steady-as-you-go – but how steady?
    There are three political dimensions to the budget’s star “children in hardship” item. One is John Key’s ownership. That fits his protestations of concern about disadvantaged children — though action has been slow coming. He made his pile in… ...
    Colin JamesBy Colin James
    23 hours ago
  • Thoughts on budget 2015
    There’s a Herald summary here. I’ve been saying for a while that ‘neoliberalism’ – ie a belief in the efficacy of free markets, the distortionary evil of taxes and benefits and the minimalisation of the state – is dead. There… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    23 hours ago
  • What if your MP was decided on the flip of a coin?
    The provincial election in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island finally came to an end a couple of days ago when its last MLA was declared elected following a judicial recount.(What - you didn't know that Prince Edward Island… ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Budget 2015
    From the outset, the slogan for yesterday’s Budget – “The Plan Is Working” – begged to be mocked. There’s actually a plan for the national economy? Who knew? And its been working for whom, exactly? Not for families in poverty,… ...
    1 day ago
  • Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific
    Speech – New Zealand Government I am delighted to have the opportunity to speak at this International Conference on the Future of Asia.22 May 2015 Building better connections between Asia and the Pacific (speech delivered to 2015 Nikkei Forum, Tokyo,… ...
    Its our futureBy ScoopBlogPush
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015: Media releases and tertiary education coverage
    We will update this page over the next few days with media releases and news stories on Budget 2015 and its effect on tertiary education and on employment. Radio NZ: Govt tightens education purse strings The Government is expecting fewer… ...
    1 day ago
  • Helping Our Heritage Come Alive – Mt Eden Rd
    This is an image from Mark Bishop. Here are the previous posts: Queen and Wellesley, Newton Rd, Kingsland These images were developed by merging together various historic black and white photographs (all from the “Sir George Grey Special Collection” –… ...
    1 day ago
  • Budget 2015 shows no plans for public sector wages
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says this budget does not address the wage rises needed across the public sector. ...
    1 day ago
  • Don’t expect to see chemical safety data sheets in restaurants
    I keep coming across this very naive form of chemophobic scare-mongering – the use of safety data sheets to frighten consumers about trace chemicals in their environment, food and drink. Here is an example anti-fluoridation propagandists continually use – safety data… ...
    1 day ago
  • World News Brief, Thursday May 21
    PunditBy Daily Digest
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: Mediaworks: The only horizon they see
    When it emerged last month that Campbell Live was facing the axe, I ventured that Mediaworks had become far more Julie Christie's company than it was John Campbell's. And I think that's the reality behind the news that Campbell Live… ...
    1 day ago
  • Andrew’s little Poem
    by Don Franks Twas the night before Budget When just for a change Andrew Little’s thought’s did more widely range Labour’s leader cast round in his mind for an angle On which a publicity moment might dangle Some little device… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • One good thing
    Today's budget is a dismal affair, as the government shuffles money around and announces new spending while conveniently forgetting to mention that its a sub-inflation rise and that health and education are going backwards - as they have every year… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Budget tougher for students – NZUSA and TEU media release
    Lowering the annual fee increases for students from 4 percent to 3 percent means universities, polytechnics and wānanga will have less money, say national student and staff unions NZUSA and TEU. Slightly slower fee rises are no good if the… ...
    2 days ago
  • Blah Budget: Lala-land forecasts on housing investment
    Some of the forecasts in the Budget beggar belief, and when they almost inevitably turn out wrong they spell disaster for New Zealand families. Here’s the clearest example. In the last year, investment in residential property ballooned by 16%. In… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago
  • Blah Budget: Cynical bribery on the horizon
    Bill English has said time and again that new spending initiatives of around $1 billion each year are the responsible thing to do, and are the new normal. And, in the next two years, he is as good as… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago
  • Blah Budget: Share of the economy going to workers continues to fall
    The BEFU documents today have unwelcome news for workers. Over the next four years, the share of the economy that ends up in the hands of workers through their wages will fall by around 1.3%. That 1.3% of GDP,… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago
  • Bill English’s Budget illustrates complexity in welfare system
    Budget 2015 has been touted as a package for the poor. And it certainly delivers them more money. However, it gives with one hand and takes away with the other, revealing the confusing and perverse nature of our welfare system.… ...
    Gareth’s WorldBy Geoff Simmons
    2 days ago
  • Blah Budget: Pathetic half-measure on housing
    Yesterday, Paddy Gower thought he had a big scoop. He had leaked Budget docs alluding to a big government-lead house-building programme in Auckland. Today, the pathetic truth is revealed. The Budget puts only $52.2m – as a one off –… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago
  • Blah Budget: Good idea on child poverty. Pity about the tinkering package.
    I can only speak personally, but I am genuinely pleased that the government is following through on its promise to focus on child poverty. New Zealand’s rates of child poverty are appalling, and anything that helps to bring them down… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago
  • Blah Budget: Why there won’t be a surplus next year, either.
    Having failed to reach surplus in this, his promised year, Bill English looks set to fail next year, too. Having been over-optimistic this year to the tune of almost $1.2b – comparing BEFU 2014 to BEFU 2015 - Treasury has… ...
    PolityBy Rob Salmond
    2 days ago

  • Another new tax, another broken promise
    National has unveiled yet another new tax in this budget – a rural broadband levy that will almost certainly result in an immediate price hike for internet and telephone connections across New Zealand, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran said “The… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Anniversary of Sri Lankan Tamil Massacre
    This is not going to be a happy story but if the Green Party of Aotearoa doesn’t want to know who else will? May 18th marks the anniversary of what is known as the ‘Mullivaikal massacre’ of Tamils in 2009 at… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    12 hours ago
  • Labour MPs join youth to take part in 40 hour famine
    A team of Labour MPs took part in the 2015 World Vision 40 hour famine and we were told by World Vision and the young people, that it was the first time MPs had joined them and how appreciative they… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Rodeo: ‘Family entertainment’ or animal abuse?
    Recently  TVNZ ran a story with confronting footage showing rodeo animals being punched, repeatedly shocked with electronic prods and having their tails violently twisted over their backs. It was clear that significant force was being used behind the scenes to make… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers MP
    12 hours ago
  • Budget puts the squeeze on police
    The Government has cut funding to the New Zealand police force in the latest Budget, says Labour’s Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis. “The reduction is a whopping $15.3 million that could put front line officers at risk. ...
    13 hours ago
  • Crucial social services take another hit
    The Government looks set to slash half a million dollars of funding for critical social services, including Women’s Refuge and Barnados, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni “Taking $500,000 from organisations aimed at improving the lives of vulnerable families… ...
    13 hours ago
  • Saying it Loud on Climate in Christchurch
    The Government’s Christchurch consultation meeting on New Zealand’s emission targets was inspiring – not for what was in the Ministry for the Environment’s (MFE’s) defeatist video about the obstacles to changing to a low carbon future, but for what the… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    15 hours ago
  • Budget silent on small business
    The Government has completely ignored one of the most important sectors of the economy – small and medium-sized enterprises – in Budget 2015, Labour’s Small Business spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. "A stunning 41 per cent of jobs were created by… ...
    15 hours ago
  • Thank you John, it’s been bloody marvellous
    The departure of John Campbell is a blow to current affairs investigative journalism, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Campbell Live stood out in its field. Its axing comes as local broadcasting in New Zealand remains in a state of… ...
    16 hours ago
  • KiwiSaver cut shows no long-term plan
    National’s cutting of the KiwiSaver kickstart is incredibly short-term thinking, typical of a Budget that is woefully short on ideas to generate wealth and opportunity, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand’s savings rate is far too low. KiwiSaver… ...
    18 hours ago
  • National hits the panic button for its 7th Budget
    National has hit the panic button for its 7th Budget in a desperate attempt to look like they’re taking action to reduce our shameful child poverty rates, but they are giving with one hand and taking with the other, Opposition… ...
    1 day ago
  • Panic and back-flips can’t hide twin deficits
    National’s token measures to fight fires they have left burning for seven long years can’t hide a Budget that is long on broken promises, short on vision and fails to reach surplus, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “After being… ...
    2 days ago
  • Auckland land measure seven years too late
    National are so desperate to look like they are doing something about the Auckland housing crisis they have dusted off Labour’s 2008 inventory of government land available for housing and re-announced it, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Despite National… ...
    2 days ago
  • Access to gender reassignment surgery essential
    I was frankly disgusted to hear the Minister for Health say that funding gender reassignment surgeries is a “nutty idea”. A recent study found that in New Zealand 1% of young people identified themselves as transgender, and 3% were unsure… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    3 days ago
  • Global milk prices now lowest in 6 years
    The latest fall in the global dairy price has brought it to the lowest level in six years and shows there must be meaningful action in tomorrow’s Budget to diversify the economy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “Dairy prices… ...
    3 days ago
  • Big risks as CYF checks stopped
    Revelations that Child, Youth and Family is no longer assisting home-based early childhood educators by vetting potential employees should set alarm bells ringing, Labour Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Doing away with an extra mechanism for checking potential new employees… ...
    3 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    3 days ago
  • Housing crisis about real people not numbers
    The Government’s continued failure to tackle the housing crisis is seeing thousands of vulnerable Kiwis being kept off social housing waiting lists, while others, who are on the list, are being forced to live in cars and garages, says Labour’s… ...
    3 days ago
  • State of origin
    Kiwis are increasingly concerned about the food they give their families. New Zealand consumers have the right to know where their food has come from, particularly when it involves animals, and should be able to expect our Government to label… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    3 days ago
  • Relationships Aotearoa
    It is disturbing that Relationships Aotearoa, a voluntary organisation set up in 1949 to help couples struggling with their relationships following the upheavals of World War II, may be forced to close, says Acting Spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community… ...
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • An economy that is just working for some is an economy that is not working
    The National Party presents itself as a great manager of the economy, but if the economy is only working for some we really need to question that assertion. Alongside the perpetually elusive surplus, the levels of risk in our economy are… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    4 days ago
  • House prices to a crack $1 million in 17 months
    The average Auckland home is on track to cost $1 million in 17 months’ time if nothing substantial is done to rein in soaring price rises, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Auckland’s house prices have skyrocketed 63 per cent… ...
    4 days ago
  • Vital support services can’t be left in lurch
    The National Government has big questions to answer about how a provider of services to thousands of vulnerable New Zealanders is set to fold, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. Relationships Aotearoa which provides support and counselling to families, individuals… ...
    4 days ago
  • Treasury and IRD on a capital gains tax
    Both the Treasury and IRD have been advising the National Government on the benefits of a capital gains tax. Documents released to the Green Party under an Official Information Act request show that John Key has been selective with the… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    5 days ago
  • Charity legislation needs review
    It is unacceptable that the big corporate based charities claim  millions in annual income tax exemptions, while small community based and operated non-profit organisations  struggle to gain official charity status, Labour’s acting spokesperson for the Voluntary and Community Sector Louisa… ...
    5 days ago
  • John’s panic-Key response to housing crisis
    John Key needs to tell New Zealanders what caused his sudden change of heart that led to the Government’s scrambled and last-minute housing measures, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “The Prime Minister’s sudden rush of blood to his head followed… ...
    5 days ago
  • Keep our Assets Christchurch Campaign: An update
    I recently presented my submission to keep Christchurch Council assets at the Christchurch City Council’s public hearings on its 10 year plan on 13 May. The hearings are live-streamed and recorded so you can watch them on www.ccc.govt.nz. The Council’s… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    5 days ago
  • John Key finally admits there’s a housing crisis
    John Key’s weak measures to rein in the astronomical profits property speculators are making are an admission – finally – that there is a housing crisis, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “But yet again National is tinkering with the housing… ...
    6 days ago
  • Government stifles voices in CYFs review
    The Government’s exclusion of the Māori Women’s Welfare League in a panel on the future of CYFs is a cynical ploy to stifle views, says Labour’s Māori Development Spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “It's unbelievable that a significant review on the future… ...
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the Otago Chamber of Commerce
    Thank you very much for the opportunity to be here today. It’s a pleasure as always to be back in the town that raised me. Growing up in St Kilda meant that there was one thing that was a big… ...
    1 week ago
  • Key can’t just be Prime Minister for Parnell
    John Key must show New Zealanders in next week’s Budget that he is more than the Prime Minister for Parnell, and is also the Prime Minister for Pine Hill, Putararu and Palmerston North, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. In… ...
    1 week ago
  • Stop the conversions
    This week, some Waikato locals took me and intrepid photographer Amanda Rogers on a tour of some  lakes and waterways in their region, and up to the massive dairy conversions in the upper catchment of the Waikato River. It… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • More regional jobs go in Corrections reshape
    News that 194 Corrections staff are to lose their jobs will have ramifications not only for them and their families but for the wider community, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Prison units at Waikeria, Tongariro and Rimutaka face closure… ...
    1 week ago
  • Government’s climate meetings off to a bumpy start
    On Wednesday, I attended a hui and an evening meeting that the Government had organised in Nelson as part of its climate change consultation tour, to support the Nelson community telling the Government to take meaningful action on climate change.… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    1 week ago
  • Taxpayers the only ones left feeling blue
    Ministry of Social Development bosses could have saved themselves thousands of dollars in consultants’ fees by providing staff with rose-tinted spectacles, Labour’s State Services spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. A report out today reveals the Ministry is spending over half a… ...
    1 week ago
  • Why are the regions still facing restrictions?
    Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford is questioning why the regions should continue to be saddled with LVR lending restrictions announced by the Reserve Bank today. “Labour has been calling for the regions to be exempted from LVRs for the best… ...
    1 week ago
  • The high costs of weak environmental regulation
    Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere is described on the Department of Conservation website as “Canterbury’s largest and New Zealand’s fifth largest [lake], and an internationally important wildlife area.” But the lake is also polluted by nutrients leaching from farms in the catchment.… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    1 week ago
  • Submissions to Wellington City Council on their Gambling Venues Policy
    Every three years Councils across the country are required to check that their gambling venue policies are still fit for purpose and they can choose to consult on their policy if they are thinking of making changes. Councils don’t have… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    1 week ago
  • Reserve Bank action shows Govt out of touch and out of ideas
    The Reserve Bank’s unprecedented measures today show it understands the serious risks of the overheating housing market – in complete contrast to John Key’s refusal to acknowledge the crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The Bank is right to… ...
    1 week ago
  • Send us your snaps: 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year we've hit a milestone. We're turning 25.To help celebrate a quarter of a century, please send us your photos from the last 25 years of the Green Party Aotearoa New Zealand! Note: Photos must be jpg, gif or… ...
    1 week ago
  • 25 Years of the Green Party
    This year the Green Party sends 25. To help us celebrate a quarter of a century please send us you photos of 25 years of the Green Party!Photos must be jpg,gif or png and smaller than 2MB. If you are… ...
    1 week ago
  • Bay growth plan too little too late
    Today’s Bay of Plenty growth study from MBIE is another example of Government spin - lots of talk but little action, says Labour’s Regional Development spokesperson David Cunliffe.  “This is a region that desperately needs to develop the downstream processing… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government bows to ACC pressure
     The Government has finally buckled to pressure from Labour and the New Zealand public in making a half billion dollar cut to ACC levies, but the full benefits are two years away,” says Opposition Leader Andrew Little.  “$500 million over… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • False figures cloud Auckland transport facts
    The Prime Minister should apologise and issue a correction after both he and Transport Minister Simon Bridges have been caught out misrepresenting facts on Auckland’s transport spending, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. "Both John Key and Simon Bridges have… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt books confirm National can’t post surplus
    The last publication of the Government’s books before the budget shows National will break its promise of seven years and two election campaigns and fail to get the books in order, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The Government is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • US state joins NZ with GE food labelling
    New Zealand has a similar law making the labelling of many GE foods compulsory, but the Government seems to let it slide.  Because the government has not monitored or enforced our GE food labelling laws since 2003, it seems the… ...
    GreensBy Steffan Browning MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour Pays Tribute to Erima Henare
    “E ua e te ua tata rahi ana, Ko te hua i te kamo taheke i runga raa. No reira e te rangatira Erima takoto mai I roto I te ringa o Ihowa o nga Mano e moe e.” ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour Pays Tribute to Erima Henare
    “E ua e te ua tata rahi ana, Ko te hua i te kamo taheke i runga raa. No reira e te rangatira Erima takoto mai I roto I te ringa o Ihowa o nga Mano e moe e.” ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour Pays Tribute to Erima Henare
    “E ua e te ua tata rahi ana, Ko te hua i te kamo taheke i runga raa. No reira e te rangatira Erima takoto mai I roto I te ringa o Ihowa o nga Mano e moe e.” ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere