web analytics
The Standard
Advertising

Govt case for Crafar sale seriously flawed

Written By: - Date published: 6:32 am, April 23rd, 2012 - 203 comments
Categories: farming, overseas investment - Tags:

Fran ‘sell it all’ O’Sullivan says the government’s case for selling Crafar farms “appears robust“. Well, she would say that. But, if you read it, you’ll see they’ve just done a half-arsed, perfunctory attempt to appear to abide by the law as defined by the Court while coming to the same decision on the same offer. It’ll be shot to pieces in Court.

The government didn’t even bother to work out if Pengxin would create more jobs than already exist or a new owner would create, but that Pengxin is likely to employ fewer people than a New Zealand buyer:

The Applicant and Landcorp estimate having 88 FTE positions on the farms (including casual labour). The receivers have not advised, and the Applicant understands that the receivers are not aware of, the number of persons currently engaged by the farm operators but it is not expected to exceed 88 FTEs. In any event, the Applicant acknowledges that the number of FTE positions is likely to be less than the industry average.

And, the OIO report that the minister accepted even admits that Pengxin’s purchase won’t generate more exports:

The Overseas Investment Office does not know whether or not the Investment will result in, or is likely to result in, increased export receipts for New Zealand exporters.

The Overseas Investment Office considers that without the Investment, an Alternative New Zealand Purchaser would likely increase production on the farms, due to the current run down state of the farms. Therefore, without the Investment, increased export receipts will likely still result.

Where the OIO does see real gains from Pengxin’s ownership it’s only because they’re employing Landcorp to run the farms and Landcorp has higher than average standards.

the Overseas Investment Office is satisfied that the efficiencies will likely be greater with the Investment than without. This is due to the efficiencies arising from managing the farms together with Landcorp’s existing farms and likely reduced farm input costs.
….
The Overseas Investment Office considers that the claimed increased productivity is largely a function of the MilkHub technology, capital investment, and the greater efficiencies identified above. The Overseas Investment Office considers that an Alternative New Zealand Purchaser will likely not use the MilkHub technology, as Landcorp claims it is used by less than 1% of the dairy industry.
….
the farms will be managed to Landcorp’s “Farmpride” standard, which the Overseas Investment Office
accepts an Alternative New Zealand Purchaser is unlikely to do

That shouldn’t be a ground for Pengxin to be allowed to buy the farms, of course. Landcorp’s expertise doesn’t arise from Pengxin’s investment and Landcorp has been a prospective domestic buyer for the farms.

There’s a claim that Pengxin will invest more than a fictive ‘Alternative New Zealand Buyer’ would but this a model designed by the OIO to meet its purposes – ie allowing it to approve Pengxin’s applications – so, of course they find that Pengxin compares favourably to their model. At any rate, Pengxin’s investment totals just $2m more than it did in the application that was rejected earlier this year. Margin of error stuff.

Then, the OIO bizarrely argues that Pengxin would be more likely to give rights to the farms for Maori and for trampers. This despite the fact that the New Zealand consortium trying to buy the farms includes the local iwi.

This actually points to the problem with the OIO using a fictive ‘Alternative New Zealand Buyer’ as comparator against the Pengxin offer. Sure, I can understand that you wouldn’t always be able to assess what a New Zealand buyer might do instead of a foreign buyer so you would invent a model New Zealand buyer but, in this particular case, there is just one real alternative New Zealand buyer. The OIO could have chosen to weigh the benefits of the Fay consortium against Pengxin. It should have, but it didn’t. Instead, it used a strawman designed to be worse than Pengxin’s offer.

Also, the OIO’s comparison of benefits between its strawman and Pengxin is limited to the benefits that Pengxin claims it will bring. But what about benefits that any NZ buyer would bring? What about a reduced current account deficit, strategic control over resources? These are real and identifiable benefits of local ownership that Pengxin’s offer should have been assessed against. But the Government failed to do so.

The Overseas Investment Act requires that foreign purchases bring with them “substantial and indentifiable benefits” that a New Zealand buyer would not bring. Pengxin either doesn’t provide as good benefits, may provide about the same benefits, or possibly provides more benefits but only thanks to Landcorp.

Fay’s consortium will shoot this to pieces if they take it to court. It is clear that the OIO set out to approve Pengxin’s application despite it being manifestly the same as the one that was rejected by the Court just two months ago. The OIO was determined to carry out the Nats’ agenda and approve the sale, so it created a process to deliver that outcome. It even made explicit reference to how this sale would meet the Nats’ ‘China Strategy’.

Can anyone tell me why the Nats have a China Strategy but no strategy to insure that the basic resources of our economy stay in New Zealand hands?

And, can anyone tell me why this is a good deal for New Zealand?

203 comments on “Govt case for Crafar sale seriously flawed”

  1. tc 1

    I hope fay does take this on and shoot it to pieces, fran is such a sellout shill with zero credibility as an intelligent objective granny content provider.

    Shonkeys mob are so hell bent on rewarding the backers and sucking up to the Chinese they’ve forgotten a few basics like keeping the boys club happy.

    Give Fay and the justice system a chance to eviscerate this sham for what it is, whilst sky city burns away alongside…..shoulda stuck to that cycle way led roar out of recession shysters.

    • Kotahi Tane Huna 1.1

      “I hope Fay does take this on…”

      Seconded. I often wonder how many ministerial decisions would pass through the high court unscathed. Who’d like to see Slippery in front of a panel of judges explaining how he advised himself?

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        Who’d like to see Slippery in front of a panel of judges explaining how he advised himself?

        I don’t think Key would be worried – after all, every judge has a different opinion and its just a matter of finding one whose opinion suits you.

      • insider 1.1.2

        Wow, leftists cheerleading for Michael Fay….Have you no shame at all?

        • McFlock 1.1.2.1

          “cheering”? Nope.
               
          But for me, it’s like watching two bullies fighting. I’m happy one of them is going to get a bloody nose, and I hope it’s the current top dog who’s going to reap what he sows. 

  2. You_Fool 2

    Listening to J. Key on Campbell Live on Friday night it appears that Key’s desire to back this is to not piss the Chinese off. He seemed to imply that if we don’t approve this sale then the big bad Chinese government will get upset with poor little NZ and stop being nice to us, won’t buy our stuff and get all grumpy and stuff.

    This does make some much more interesting questions on how independent this decision is,and also if any other government would make any different decision, given that if there is pressure from China to get into our dairy industry (something they would actually be interested in.)

    • ghostwhowalksnz 2.1

      The Chinese are highly offended if anybody ‘interferes in their internal affairs’. Or comments about about the way things are done in China. None of your business is the milder form of their reply

      Another case of a double standard.

      • You_Fool 2.1.1

        Ahh but that is their country,so their business. This is our country so they can put their nose in and if we don’t say fuck off then they will keep doing it… if we do then well they will point to their big army and ask again nicely… cause that is their internal policy… perfectly sane and positive….

  3. vto 3

    I’m going to repeat this again because it stands ………

    1. A few more New Zealanders just became tenants to foreign landlords.

    2. New Zealand’s capital base just shrunk again.

    Well done the Nats in power and Labour with essentially the same policies. Dumbarses.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      And thanks to the small minority of NZers who seem to be noticing that this is all going on right under our otherwise short term, consumerist, Playstation and SkyTV addled noses.

    • Two problems:

      1. The land was already foreign owned so to say ‘ few more New Zealanders just became tenants to foreign landlords” is incorrect, not to mention that all NZers were tenants to Allan Crafar and whom ever else owned the land. This is PRIVATE land, not public

      2. “New Zealand’s capital base just shrunk again.” Not really. When Allan Crafar owned the land all his money was going to the banks that loaned him the money so one could argue the cpaital baser remains the same.

      • vto 3.2.1

        The land was not already foreign owned. It was foreign-funded for its debt. Entirely different.

        Capital is not money, capital is assets and resources. The assets and resources of these farms are now owned by foreigners.

        • insider 3.2.1.1

          Westpac may not own it but they certainly control it – not sure there is a huge difference in impact. THis shows that that benefits of local ownership you champion may not be there if people are able to leverage so highly. The debt crisis in Europe is another demonstration that the people with the mortgage hold the real power.

          • Rob 3.2.1.1.1

            You are incorrect VTO. The net change in Govt ownership of NZ’s assets is zero. In reality there is a Govt upside in earnings in that Land Corp become’s the farmer and draws a revenue for its activities, which under the previous owenrship structure was all private, albeit mostly to pay for highly leveraged debt.

          • Draco T Bastard 3.2.1.1.2

            THis shows that that benefits of local ownership you champion may not be there if people are able to leverage so highly.

            Correct which is why the government should be printing money at 0% interest and loaning it out to NZers rather than forcing NZers to borrow from foreign lenders.

      • ghostwhowalksnz 3.2.2

        The Westpac Bank name isnt on the title, and anyway they would have had to go through the OIO to put it there.

        Own goal !

        • insider 3.2.2.1

          I wonder what would have happened if Westpac had decided to retain them to sell in a more ‘orderly’ fashion? How long could they hold them or would anyone have noticed in the OIO?

          • McFlock 3.2.2.1.1

            They’d have noticed, but they wouldn’t have cared. I’m not entirely sure that they remember the contents of their job description.

  4. KJT 4

    We did not worry about pissing off, the even more inclined to do the dirty on others to protect their economic interests, US Government in the past. Why be scared of the Chinese.

    However with our OI law as it is at present, there was never going to be a legal means of stopping the sale.

    I have my doubts if the Chinese will be worse than Fay in this case. In fact, they seem to be keen on being seen around the world as honest and fair dealers.

    The problem is that overseas buyers have bucketloads of free money which they are trying to spend before it becomes worthless.

    Unless overseas investment laws are changed foreign buyers are always going to be able to outbid Kiwis.

    Unless something changes we really will be tenants in their own country.

    • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 4.1

      So, if the government were to change the law so that Fay’s group had an advantage over foreigners, would that be “law for sale”?

      • felix 4.1.1

        Yeah it would.

        Parliament shouldn’t. as a rule, make law for any specific person or organisation. I’m sure there are extraordinary circumstances in which it could be arguably necessary for the good of the country as a whole, but as a general principle, no. And definitely not as a starting point to solving any problem.

        What they should be doing is passing law to advantage any NZ bidder over any foreign bidder.

        [edit: Sorry I got a bit off track. There’s nothing about your proposition that suggests law “for sale” but it would still be the wrong thing to do IMHO]

    • I am fairly sure that if a NZ interest can pay the same as an overseas interest then the OIO have to defer to the NZ buyer (but then again it is up to the private owners to accept the deal). The Fay bid was a terrible one and Fay stoked NZ’s jingoism for his own benefit. The man is a crook.

    • vto 4.3

      KJT, this racist Chinese dog-whistle of yours and Maurice Williamsons and John Keys is disgraceful and racist.

      It is nothing to do with the nationality of the foreign investor it is to do with people who domicile outside NZ being able to own the land inside NZ. Point to a piece of evidence that shows there has been opposition to this on the basis of race. You will need to makes sure you disentangle it from the high profile this sale has had from since way before it went on the market.

      Fuck John Key the other night on Campbell Live interrupting the show, with no reason, to insert his racist spin that it is due to the buyers being Chinese. He is racist for doing so.

      Foreign landlords are bad for anyone. It is better for all to own the land they live work and play on. The Chinese do it themselves ffs. Wake up

      • You_Fool 4.3.1

        ahh but if we decline the application because they are Chinese that isn’t the sort of message we want to be sending nor is the NAct the sort of government that will do that sort of thing.

        • vto 4.3.1.1

          You Fool, where has anyone said the application should have been declined because the applicant is the Chinese government? Nowhere. It is because they do not live in NZ, nothing more nothing less. Racist.

          • You_Fool 4.3.1.1.1

            Not wanting to be nasty, but did you listen to John Key on the Campbell Live interview that you refereed to in your comment? Maybe then you might see the true point of my comment… Because apparently that is all the opposition to the deal is about, all of us who say no to the deal are just racist small-minded folk who can’t see the big picture like Uncle John and we should just listen to him and let him make things better for us…

            • vto 4.3.1.1.1.1

              I did listen to John Key and I was disgusted. He is trying to make it about race when that has not been raised by any people or groups in opposition to the sales (someone please prove me wrong). He lies and is racist.

              Pitooeey in his general direction.

              • Anne

                … I was disgusted. He is trying to make it about race when that has not been raised by any people or groups in opposition to the sales (someone please prove me wrong). He lies and is racist.

                It’s not only Key of course. Joyce, McCully and co. are doing it too. The Nat. govt line… and the MSM wimps are not pulling them up on it. Nor for that matter is Labour. The Greens are a bit more vociferous but could do better. Both party’s leaders should hit straight back each time Key (in particular) makes the ‘racist’ claim. It’s so insulting to the many, many thousands of non-racist Kiwis who are opposed to the deal.

                Get off your chuffs Labour. Nice sounding words don’t work. A little bit of mongrel is required. That’s all the voters (bless their cotton socks) seem to understand.

                • Rob

                  Well VTO , Anne et al, the truth hurts. Your arguments do come across as very anti Chinese.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Rob: player of the racism distraction card.

                    Thanks for supporting the sell out of NZ assets to foreigners, worsening our balance of payments even more.

                    • Gosman

                      So in your mind is all foreign ownership bad as it all has a similar potential impact on the BOP?

                  • felix

                    “Your arguments do come across as very anti Chinese.”

                    Yes Rob, as long as you ignore the words.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Your arguments do come across as very anti Chinese.

                    Where?

                • Fortran

                  As Helen Clark would say “Get over it – Move on”.

                  • Anne

                    Yep Fortran, quite right. Key, Joyce, McCully, Williamson and their acolytes need to get over this ‘racist’ connotation.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 4.4

      Ask the Australians about the Chinese being fair and honest regarding bidding for iron ore supply .

      There was a story last week about an Indonesian owned farm here were they were developing sheeps milk for export.
      This is exactly the sort of foreign ownership we need. Doing something we dont do allready

  5. ‘The Chinese do it themselves ffs.” Yeah, no they don’t.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 5.1

      Tried buying land in China ?
      Try setting up a substantial wholly overseas owned business?

      • You can invest large sums of money into Chinese concerns and land but no one in China can “own” land which is why the comment “It is better for all to own the land they live work and play on. The Chinese do it themselves ffs.” is wrong because no can buy and the government can come along and cancel the lease on your land at anytime and use it for their own purpose. So using China as an example of where we should be is not a good thing.

        • vto 5.1.1.1

          Contrarian, the context was foreign ownership of land, not domestic ownership structures. You sound contrary to everything, including yourself.

          But nonetheless, how is having a foreign landlord an improvement? (note, this concerns land ownership, not the business side).

          And, how is having a smaller capital base better?

          • TheContrarian 5.1.1.1.1

            “Contrarian, the context was foreign ownership of land, not domestic ownership structures.” Excuse me but you were talking about what the Chinese do so I was responding that what the Chinese do is not necessarily a good thing.

            Secondly whether or not foreign land ownership is better is irrelevant. That fact remains this is a private land sale between private individuals/companies and there is no public element to it.

            • vto 5.1.1.1.1.1

              “Secondly whether or not foreign land ownership is better is irrelevant. That fact remains this is a private land sale between private individuals/companies and there is no public element to it.”

              The fact that you claim there is “no public element” in the ownership of land in NZ indicates a paucity of understanding that makes your points rather worthless. Got no time for schooling.

              • There is no public element. It is private land owned by private concerns. Please explain how you figure this is public land in any way, shape or form.

                • vto

                  Ok, one quick lesson… The ability for a private landowner in NZ to sell their property to a foreigner is governed solely by Parliamentary legislation. That is the ultimate public body put in place by the public to cater for the public’s needs and desires. The public controls the sale of land to foreigners.

                  • OK but you still haven’t shown how you figure this is public land in any way, shape or form. All you have done is explained how the law works and how the sale of the Crafar Farms is lawful using the rules as laid out by parliamentary legislation.

                    • Gosman

                      It is because the leftists in NZ share a similar, (wrong headed), idea about farmland that the leftists in Zimbabwe do – ‘The land is the economy, and the economy is the land’.

                      http://africaecon.org/index.php/exclusives/read_exclusive/1/2

                      In fact many leftists on here would probably be quite happy if all land was nationalised by the state as private property itself is inherently ‘evil’ in their warped view of the world.

                    • felix

                      “private property itself is inherently ‘evil’ in their warped view of the world.”

                      Crikey. Gotta link for that?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Gos, it’s you with the warped view of the world. Having it so that all the wealth accumulates into the hands of the psychopathic few while everyone else exists in poverty is most definitely warped.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Because land cannot be removed from the commons.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 5.1.1.2

          Wrong ! Most of the land ‘sold’ under labour was very large forestry blocks that were all ready in foreign ownership. Any changes in foreign owners still requires OIO approval. Even one large block was coming back into NZ hands with a smaller foreign ownership. Still required OIO approval

        • ghostwhowalksnz 5.1.1.3

          That is out of date , now you can fully own land.
          And what about owning a major business ?.
          Lion NZ had to have a Chinese partner for their local brewery, they eventually sold up as it wasnt a level playing field for business. And they were an existing brewery operator, Shanghai Pengxin is construction based.

        • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.4

          Sounds like a damn good thing to me. Private ownership of the land is bad for the nation.

          • TheContrarian 5.1.1.4.1

            So you’ll be opening up your house and property for everyone then?

            • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.4.1.1

              Why not, if everyone is required to do so equally.

              • So abolish private property?

                • Colonial Viper

                  De-emphasise the importance of private property by having plenty of public alternatives. Eg housing stock, businesses, banks.

                • freedom

                  MaryMary quite contrary, why not? You don’t own the planet, no-one does. It is all an arbitrary construction based on nothing more substantial than;
                  : I have a big rock. This rock can hurt you. You can choose to hurt me back or just stay here and give me some of your food. Has anything really changed?

            • Draco T Bastard 5.1.1.4.1.2

              Where’d you get that from? I specifically said the land.

      • Rob 5.1.2

        Yes and Yes Ghost, have you?

  6. (A different) Nick K 6

    This Article is interesting:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/6787292/People-are-getting-angry-John

    Is the analysis of the OIA true?

    “The report is careful to note that saying no to China would not cut across our obligations under the free trade agreement. Sensitive land is exempt from the FTA. Every case is decided on its merits and cannot be compared with any other. Above all, the law says it is a “privilege” to be allowed to buy it. In other words, the Chinese had no right to assume the Crafar farms were in the bag. ”

    If the Chinese want to inject some money into New Zealand’s farming and make a bit of coin from it I don’t mind in the current economic climate but I think that its important productive land remains in NZ hands, we don’t have to sell it just because there are overseas interests, not even the free trade agreement would force us to do that. As Hubbard points out China would get over it.

    Perhaps there was some racism or xenophobia behind this particular sale getting more attention than other sales to Russians, Swiss or Germans but in all cases its still against New Zealand’s interest. I’m horrified to find out how much productive farmland is in foreign ownership and I think there aren’t many countries in the world that would be stupid enough to sell off future food security in this way.

    • vto 6.1

      ” I’m horrified to find out how much productive farmland is in foreign ownership”

      Yes, about 7% of farm and other land.

      John Key and his Ministers are liars again for claiming that it is 1-2%. They include, for example, Fiordland National Park, in that figure. Deceptive, lying pricks. They should be prosecuted under the Fair Trading in Politics Act whereby misleading and deceptive conduct in politics is a crime punishable by time in the stocks. I spit on them.

      • “They should be prosecuted under the Fair Trading in Politics Act whereby misleading and deceptive conduct in politics is a crime punishable by time in the stocks.” That would mean every politician would be guilty. They ALL make misleading and deceptive statements.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1

          And?

          All that would mean is that we would get a better class of politician out of it.

      • DJ 6.1.2

        Your anger is slightly misdirected. It wasn’t the National govt that sold the balance of that land. It was the previous labour govt. Your anger should be at the govt in general.

        • ghostwhowalksnz 6.1.2.1

          Wrong ! Most of the land ‘sold’ under labour was very large forestry blocks that were all ready in foreign ownership. Any changes in foreign owners still requires OIO approval. Even one large block was coming back into NZ hands with a smaller foreign ownership. Still required OIO approval

          • DJ 6.1.2.1.1

            2 points.

            How and why are large (extremely in some case) forestry blocks less important to us than farm land?

            And secondly, as said on here regularly, where is the link to back up those facts of yours? Not the rules regarding the sales, but the link to exactly what was sold when.

            • ghostwhowalksnz 6.1.2.1.1.1

              You missed my point , they were all ready overseas owned and it was just a swap of new overseas owners.
              These were in the 100,000s Ha per block.
              AS for asking for facts , where is the evidence for your claim. Apart from re spouting nonsense from Farragoblog

      • Gosman 6.1.3

        That figure seems to be quite stabile considering it was around this figure back in 2004.

        http://articles.cnn.com/2004-09-16/world/newzealand.property_1_public-access-south-island-land-prices?_s=PM:WORLD

        So in almost eight years nothing much has changed in terms of the foreing ownership of NZ farmland.

      • insider 6.1.4

        AUstralia has about 8 to 11% of their land foreign owned. How’s their economy and sovereignty going?

        • Gosman 6.1.4.1

          Well quite obviously it has screwed their economy up and thousands of Australian’s are coming over here now according to the logic of the left.

        • (A different) Nick K 6.1.4.2

          The difference between 8% and 11% of Australia being foreign owned is 228,538km². New Zealand is 268,021 km² in total. Its a pretty vague claim to make.

          There are some differences that I can see, Australia’s population density is 2.8/km² New Zealand’s is 16.5/km² meaning, in simple terms, that land is a scarcer resource here and therefore more valuable.

          Food security is a key concern for me, in the future being able to feed ourselves and export food will be increasingly valuable. While I don’t know for sure I would assume that New Zealand’s foreign owned commercially viable land would be a higher percentage of food producing land that the foreign owned land in Australia.

          Australia is also having a debate on foreign land ownership so they are also concerned at about that 8% level.

          • insider 6.1.4.2.1

            The 8 to 11% was depending on the definition of foreign owned – majority ownership or just a stake. Note that level been stable for about 30 years so any debate is likely to be cyclical politics rather than concerns with that level of ownership.

            • Nick 6.1.4.2.1.1

              Where are these numbers from? I’d be interested to dig into them a bit further so I know what I’m talking about :)

  7. Hami Shearlie 7

    The thing that many people hadn’t realised is that the Chinese company will be entitled to Fonterra shares. Why aren’t our farmers up in arms about that? They’ll have to be very careful or they’ll lose control of Fonterra! There is a company who are very keen to “de-regulate” the milk industry. I have heard that Wyatt Creech and John Key are connected to this company. I think it’s called “Dairy Investment Fund”. Makes you wonder what’s coming next?

    • ianmac 7.1

      Fonterra Shares? Good point Hami.

    • Andrew Scobie 7.2

      Pretty sure they will only be able to own shares based on their milk solid production.

      Farmers were only able to buy 1 share per Kg of milk solids produced. This has been changed somewhat over the last few years so i’m not 100% sure what the regulations are currently. But i am sure that no-one can just buy up all the shares they want to.

    • Gosman 7.3

      When foreign ownership of land approaches 40 % then I think we can start to worry about that. Considering it has hardly moved in almost eight years this could take a fair number of years.

  8. wyndham 8

    ” I’m horrified to find out how much productive farmland is in foreign ownership”

    Then try this site for further shock / horror !

    http://canterbury.cyberplace.org.nz/community/CAFCA/

    • Gosman 8.1

      Wow!

      I notice that there is no indication of how much of the foreign owned productive farmland as a percentage of the total has changed over the past few years. They did do this for the NZ sharemarket though.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        http://canterbury.cyberplace.org.nz/community/CAFCA/keyfacts.html

        In 2005, the OIC approved the sale of 149,473 hectares of rural land to foreigners, of which about 100,000 hectares was from one foreign investor to another. Foreign owned land covers more than one million hectares or about 7% of our commercially productive land area.

        Obviously Gos is one of the illiterates that left school early as it’s obvious that he can’t bloody read.

        • Gosman 8.1.1.1

          Obviously you have problems with comprehension as I stated there was no indication about how the percentage has changed over time. That was just a snap shot as at 2005. Interestingly it is the same figure being bandied about now even though it is around seven years out of date. Epic fail there.

  9. Janice 9

    I heard someone from Federated Farmers the other day say that the total farming debt is 47 billion – foreign ownship by loans anybody? How much of this will go into receivership next year with Fonterra announcing a lower payout? A lot of farmers’ budgets are working on at least $6.20kgs of milk solids and will go broke with a payout of $6.00.

  10. Gosman 10

    That’s right. As the majority of banks in NZ are foreign owned any farm who has a mortgage with a bank controlled by an offshore parent that is worth more than 50% of the land value already is foreign owned. Come on people, step up that ‘Nationalise the banking industry!’ political meme. I enjoyed the good old days when Labour was Socialist and National was less Socialist.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      We were better off but capitalism always fails. Now, of course, we have parties that are More capitalist (NACT/UF/Labour/NZ1st) and others that are Less Capitalist (Mana/Greens) but none that support real economics.

  11. Ross 11

    Strange that Fay didn’t even bother to make an offer for the Crafar farms. It’s difficult to buy property when you don’t make an offer. No doubt that’s everyone’s fault but Fay’s.

  12. vto 12

    Still nobody has explained how having a foreign landlord is better.

    Nor has anybody explained how having a shrinking capital base is better.

    i wonder y

    • It isn’t a case of “a foreign landlord is better”. There were only 2 real offers: the chinese and Michael Fay. The Chinese met the asking price and offered a deal which was considered as lawful and beneficial. It hasn’t got anything to do with “a foreign landlord [being] better” because there were other credible NZ offers.

    • It isn’t a case of “a foreign landlord is better”. There were only 2 real offers: the chinese and Michael Fay. The Chinese met the asking price and offered a deal which was considered as lawful and beneficial. It hasn’t got anything to do with “a foreign landlord [being] better” because there were other credible NZ offers.

      • Ross 12.2.1

        Fay didn’t make an offer. You might like to ask him how he could expect to buy the farms without making an offer.

        • TheContrarian 12.2.1.1

          Michael Fay didn’t make an offer?

          “The receiver of the Crafar farms has turned down a $171.5 million offer to buy the 16 farms from a Michael Fay-led consortium, saying the price was “unacceptable.”

          http://tvnz.co.nz/business-news/michael-fay-led-offer-crafar-farms-rejected-4420824

          • Ross 12.2.1.1.1

            Try reading paragraph 6 of the judgement of Justice Miller, who conducted a judicial review of the OIO decision. You will see that Fay has not made a formal offer.

            http://media.nzherald.co.nz/webcontent/document/pdf/20127/crafar_decision.pdf

            • TheContrarian 12.2.1.1.1.1

              You quibble over the pedantry details but the fact is Fay offered an amount that was unacceptable to the receivers and was conditional. Whether it was formal or not is in fact irrelevant when he had already been told his offer would be too little.

              Not only that it also makes Michael Fay’s case even weaker if in fact he had never even put in the final offer

              • Colonial Viper

                The Chinese Government gets what the Chinese Government wants. And despite Fay’s resources, they don’t match what the Chinese can put together in cash.

                Of course, if we wish to run this country according to the wishes of the highest foreign bidder and the financial interests of the foreign banks, we’re fucked.

            • Carol 12.2.1.1.1.2

              Matthew Hooton said again on Nine-to-Noon today, that he has done some work for Fay’s bid, and expects the Fay consortium might challenge the latest decision.

              http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/20120423

              I’m not for either of the two bids/teams but I’m glad it’s drawing attention to NZ’s need to retain access to the country’s food supply and other significant resources.

              • Ross

                It doesn’t matter how much work Matthew Hooten does with Fay – it’s not going to happen unless a formal offer is made. And given that a rival offer has been made and accepted, that seems a longshot.

                I disagree with the rest of your comment. James Cameron bought farm land and there was little attention given to that. If he’d bought the Crafar farms, I suspect the same lack of attention.

                [lprent: It has been pointed out many times that there is a legal difference between a company buying strategic land, and that of a family buying it to become resident. This has evidently become a trolling line and it is boring me that people use the line without bothering to find out why it is invalid or even bothering to explain their argument.

                One week ban for dumbarse trolling. Read the policy. ]

                • Draco T Bastard

                  James Cameron bought farm land and there was little attention given to that.

                  Yes there was, specifically, the bit where he said he was moving to NZ permanently. Of course, I would have preferred it if he’d done that before being allowed to buy the land.

      • vto 12.2.2

        Sharpen up Contrarian, regarding ownership of land, how is having a foreign landlord better? This is exactly the question that New Zealand needs to consider.

        All you lot do is keep running for cover or attempting to distort the rather simple question.

        You know, you can admit to an answer that hadn’t occured to you before – it’s not the end of the world …

        • TheContrarian 12.2.2.1

          The foreign owners were the ONLY ones to meet the offer. The offer wasn’t accepted because foreign ownership is better, it was accepted because their offer was the best. Your question is a red herring in that I have never once said, nor do I remember anyone else saying, that foreign owners are better.

          Not only is a red herring it is also a strawman because the farms weren’t sold to China “because they are better than NZ owners” they were sold because the met the asking price.

          I think that answers your simple question

          • vto 12.2.2.1.1

            Sheesh contrarian you’ve done it again – does every tiny piece of minutae need spelling out? I am clearly not talking about solely the Crafar deal I am atlking about all land ownership in NZ, of which the Crafar sale is but one small high profile example.

            So, in that context, how is having a foreign landlord better?

            • TheContrarian 12.2.2.1.1.1

              What is the point of your question? No one is saying, least of all me, that foreign ownership is better. Maybe a few people have but that is their opinion and not mine.

              So what is the point of your question?

              • vto

                What is the point of my question? Evaluation of the foreign ownership of our land ffs, what else?

                But glad to see that you seem unable, like me and others, to recognise a beneficial position in having foreign landlords.

                And of course the follow-on question has to be – are foreign landlords in fact detrimental, given they are not beneficial? The answer to which would surely be, yes, they are detrimental (it aint gonna be equal).

                And if it transpires that foreign landlords are detrimental to NZ then why the fuck don’t we change the law so that it is beneficial? Eh?

                • So you introduce a topic that I hadn’t been mentioned (that people think foreign ownership is better), question why I hold that position, when I tell you “I never said I held that position” you jump to assuming I can’t answer something I had never proposed in the first place. That’s a pretty strange argument style.

                  And what would your proposed law change be? No one can sell any land to foreigners?

                  • vto

                    Contrarian, you have missed the point on each and every post – go back and check.

                    “So you introduce a topic that I hadn’t been mentioned (that people think foreign ownership is better), question why I hold that position, when I tell you “I never said I held that position” you jump to assuming I can’t answer something I had never proposed in the first place. That’s a pretty strange argument style.”

                    I raised the issue and you responded, not the other way around. Egg.

                    “And what would your proposed law change be? No one can sell any land to foreigners?”

                    Yes

                    • I didn’t miss the point, I never held that position so beholden upon me to answer it.

                      So your solution is no-one can sell land to foreigners? So, say this law had been passed before Allan Crafar went bust leaving the banks 200 Million in debt but they are unable to sell to China…what happens next?

                    • vto

                      Clearly land values would drop and there would some minor upheaval for a short period as those with debt adjust to lender’s new requirements. Similarly farms and other property around NZ would actually become far more affordable for all New Zealanders.

                      More New Zealanders could own their farms and homes. They would have less debt to pay back, should they need it. Far far far less of our daily toil would go to paying usury to foreign owned banks.

                      I like that. Banks would not.

                      Do you?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      So, say this law had been passed before Allan Crafar went bust leaving the banks 200 Million in debt but they are unable to sell to China…what happens next?

                      The banks lose the money that they loaned out and that is all. After all, they did take the risk, when they loaned the money out, that they weren’t going to get it back.

                    • insider

                      “Clearly land values would drop and there would some minor upheaval for a short period as those with debt adjust to lender’s new requirements.”

                      So you are suggesting that a whole lot of NZ farmers potentially go out of business to protect NZ farms from overseas ownership….?

                      “Similarly farms and other property around NZ would actually become far more affordable for all New Zealanders.”

                      Given that the Crafars are NZers and appear to have paid way too much for their properties so setting the market price, how does that work? Are you saying the value of properties has no relationship to the market price of their produce?

                    • vto

                      There would be upheaval, at times along the lines you suggest, yes. A law change could be phased in over a long period to allow a slower adjustment. Similar mechanisms could soften the blow. Bottom line though is that less of our daily toil would need to go into paying the land on which we produce goods or for the roof over our heads.

                      And regarding the price of produce and its relationship to the value of the land on which it is produced, yes there is little link, all esle being equal. Do you think that the buyer of a pound of butter in the UK cares about the value of a dairy farm in Southland when making that buy decision at Tescos?

                    • insider

                      The buyer of butter doesn’t care but the seller of land in NZ does. There is a direct correlation between price of produce and price of land. Land earning $100,000 a hectare is invariably worth more than land earning $50,000. And that is driven by the price of what they sell – compare the cost of vineyard land v sheep land

                      YOu are in lala land if you think limiting foreign ownership will make farms ‘more affordable’ when the price is primarily driven by earning power. OR are you planning on controlling how much they can earn too?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Given that the Crafars are NZers and appear to have paid way too much for their properties so setting the market price, how does that work?

                      Excessive ease in international lending.

                    • vto

                      insider, it is you in lala land. Of course land that produces more income will be valued more highly – duh. That is a relative measure – relative to each and every piece of land within the contained land available for purchase i.e. within New Zealand. So you have 4 million people able to buy NZ’s land and those 4 million people will bid the ones that make more income higher. That is right. (and your previous point did not concern that matter).

                      But follow this – at the moment NZ’s land has about 6 billion potential buyers. If the number of buyers reduces to 4 million and the amount of land available stays static, what do you think will happen? You see, it’s called supply and demand. Supply of land static but demand dropping from 6 billion to 4 million, or about 0.001% of the previous number of buyers.

                      You may want to apply that supply and demand rule to the Crafar farms. You could also apply it to the fancy pants pads around Queenstown and ask yourself what will happen when all the foreign buyers dry up.

                      If foreign ownership of NZ land is banned then the value of land in New Zealand will drop. We will all have less to pay, less to borrow, and less toil to pay the interest. Leaving more for the whanau and luncheon sausage (might be able to afford salami for a change)

                    • insider

                      It’s a nonsense verging on paranoia to say there are 6 billion potential buyers. They aren’t all turning up for the open homes nor interested in buying everything on the market. The reality is that most nz farmland is not being bought by foreigners. In fact it is being bought by fewer and fewer nzers as farms merge and farmer numbers reduce, yet the prices continue to go up confounding your theory.

                      I’d sugges t highly motivating 4m knowledgeable locals by restricting the market is far more likely to push up prices than having 6b disinterested ones.

                      Price will mainly rest on the production based value. It’s not relative to other land – land only suited to sheep will not change just because dairy prices have gone up, but it will change if sheep meat goes up or it can be converted to other uses. Yes you will get fashions like queenstown or deer farming, but you get that in most markets. And I suspect southland and canty wealth has far more long term influence on qtown prices than LA does.

                      Only if you restrict the price of produce and restrict the abilty to leverage will you restrict the value of the land. As long as people can borrow against future potential income they will continue to bid up productive land, no matter whether they are local or foreign. Crafar family actions is one piece of evidence of that.

                    • vto

                      Well insider, you and I have very differnet views on that. I stand by supply and demand as the base rule for determining prices, all else being equal.

                    • insider

                      In general I’d agree with you but we are using different measures of supply. It’s not number of buyers but availability of cash in my view that is the key supply issue that you should be concerned about if you want to control land prices. And in an international financial market that is not going to be affected by geographical limits on buyers.

            • insider 12.2.2.1.1.2

              How good were the Crafar’s as landlords and how well did they contribute to the economy and NZ’s reputation as farmers? I suspect not an awful lot.

              • Crafar was actively looking to sell all 16 farms himself to the Chinese before he went under.

                [lprent: Please read the policy because you obviously have some bad habits acquired from somewhere.

                a. I can’t see the point of this comment within the context of the post. It would have still required OIO approval just as the liquidators have.

                b. Stating something as a fact generally requires that you link to it to substantiate it unless it is widely known. In this case I’ve never seen anything that said that the Crafars were trying to sell the 16 farms. Everything I have seen indicates that he wants to have them back out of the hands of the liquidators.

                Please don’t dribble just because you can. Even babies can do that. ]

                • @Iprent –
                  A) I can’t see the point of this comment within the context of the post…

                  Question was: How good were the Crafar’s as landlords and how well did they contribute to the economy and NZ’s reputation as farmers?
                  They got fined over and over for environmental lapses and animal mistreatment and then tried to sell the farm off (relevant and in context).

                  B)Stating something as a fact generally requires that you link to it to substantiate it unless it is widely known. In this case I’ve never seen anything that said that the Crafars were trying to sell the 16 farms. Everything I have seen indicates that he wants to have them back out of the hands of the liquidators.

                  Allan Crafar on NZ investors:
                  “You’ll get vultures around wanting to buy up one or two of the good ones,” But he’s holding out for a bulk buyer, and is reportedly in talks with interested Chinese and Australian companies.
                  http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10596935

                  Apology?

                  [lprent: Reread your link, and factor in the word “hearsay” when looking at the word “reportedly”. By whom? The journo interviewing their keyboard?. You will note that just about everything else about Crafar’s actions and views were quotes.

                  The phrase “gullible fool” seems to apply to you. Don’t you know how to read articles? ]

                  • Excuse me, but do not talk to me like I am stupid. Gullible fool? Excuse me Iprent but:

                    “The website interest.co.nz says Allan Crafar has confirmed they are in talks to sell out to a Chinese company for more than $200 million.”
                    http://tvnz.co.nz/business-news/major-dairy-operation-bows-2980144

                    “Allan Crafar told interest.co.nz the family-owned Crafar Farms group had been in discussions with a Chinese firm, which he declined to identify.”
                    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10596189

                    “The joint-owner of New Zealand’s largest privately owned dairy farming operation has confirmed it is in talks to sell out to a Chinese company for over NZ$200 million.”
                    http://www.interest.co.nz/news/44156/chinese-firm-talks-buy-nzs-largest-dairy-farming-group-update-3

                    I think an apology is very much deserved here.

                    [lprent: You have now managed to do what you should have done the first time. Provided a valid link. Congratulations. It only required kicking your lazy arse twice to get you to do what you should have done in the first place.

                    If you want to quote something as fact – then link to a credible source. Otherwise you are likely to be challenged. If a moderator sees too much avoidance of substantion then you will start getting bans rather than warnings. It is a trait that starts flamewars, and we prefer to eliminate the idiots earlier rather than later.

                    I notice that you ignored the first point – that a sale offshore would have still required OIO approval. You didn’t connect that with either the post or with the comments you were replying to. that is the characteristic of either a diversion troll or a egotist trying to display how big their dick is. Neither contribute much to the debate.

                    We don’t have to warn. We do it as a voluntary activity to educate those unfamiliar with digital debate how to act online.

                    So yes. I do think that you show strong indications of being stupid. Raising dumb arguments with a moderator who can reduce their workload with a simple flip of a button is a pretty good indicator. Anyway you have been warned. Stop wasting my time. ]

                    • I provided a valid link the first time. You questioned it so I provided more.
                      I have never avoided substantiation and find it ironic that here you are berating me for not proving links yet lower down in the page you are berating me for asking others for links.

                      I didn’t respond to you comment about Crafar having to go to the OIO because I never suggested he wouldn’t have to. All I am trying to impress is that these farms were on the chopping block long before the public reaction started.

                      I am extremely familiar with online debate and am a moderator at other websites and wikis.

                      I never raised a dumb argument with you, you challenged me and I have substantiated. You have driven this, not I, and if you want to ban me then go right ahead but it just reflects poorly on you for I haven’t been rude, I haven’t used ad hom’s, I have remained consistent calm and factual.

                    • lprent []

                      All I am trying to impress is that these farms were on the chopping block long before the public reaction started.

                      I don’t think that anyone didn’t know that. But that was also not what you said.

                      As for the rest… Whatever boosts your ego will be amusing to some of the people here. Just don’t be surprised if you find that it gets deflated rather frequently around here. But you look better on the hypothetical than reality and that includes your skills on forum media.

                    • vto

                      Hey contrarian, in your opinion which is better for our islands here in the Pacific?

                      Being tenants to foreign landlords, or owning the land ourselves?

                      There is no trick to this …….

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      All I am trying to impress is that these farms were on the chopping block long before the public reaction started.

                      It wasn’t long before though, was it? It was the same bloody year that Crafarms went into receivership. It was probably that reporting that made people aware that NZ was being sold out to the highest bidder. The thing is is that, IMO, most people have always been against selling NZ to foreigners – it’s just taken this long for it to make headlines.

              • mike e

                outsider Well if Westpac had done due diligence on crafar those farms would have been kept as smaller lots of more productive dairy farms .
                These farms wouldn’t have ended up in Westpacs forced bankruptcy.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.2.3

        It isn’t a case of “a foreign landlord is better”.

        Yes it is. The decision made by the government should be about what is best for NZ and selling off the land is bad for NZ no matter what.

        • TheContrarian 12.2.3.1

          So the government now dictates private land sales? And what happens when no NZer’s can pony up with 200 Million? Wespac et al. still own the land.

          And where has anyone suggested foreign ownership is better?

          • vto 12.2.3.1.1

            “So the government now dictates private land sales?”.

            Yes it does, in many many ways, especially when it comes to foreign sales. You clearly don’t realise this and school’s out for the day.

            “And what happens when no NZer’s can pony up with 200 Million?”

            The lender dips out on a mortgagee or other sale.

            “Wespac et al. still own the land.”

            No they dont and never have.

            “And where has anyone suggested foreign ownership is better?”

            Try this government and the National, Act and Labour parties.

            • TheContrarian 12.2.3.1.1.1

              So, Crafar borrows 200 million, signs all the contracts, then defaults but the bank isn’t allowed to get its money back? That seems fair to you?

              • vto

                It is the law and it has been this way for a very very very long time. Go learn it.

              • Draco T Bastard

                The banks get whatever they can get from the sale price along with all the other creditors. That’s what receivership is supposed to sort out.

              • mike e

                The banks were corrupted by large sales bonuses to lend to a farmer who did his business on one calender and bits of paper the bank officer responsible should be in front of a judge for defrauding the bank like wise the bank should be their if their systems were lax,
                But because Westpac are so large they dictate our economic policy to suit themselves [Lobbying i,e. Gerry brownlee and other cabinet ministers]

          • Draco T Bastard 12.2.3.1.2

            And where has anyone suggested foreign ownership is better?

            You have by saying that the higher price paid by foreigners is all that’s required.

            • TheContrarian 12.2.3.1.2.1

              “You have by saying that the higher price paid by foreigners is all that’s required.”

              Jesus, what the hell? The receivers dictate who’s offer they’ll put forward to the OIO. THEY chose the Chinese offer because it meets the asking price. It has nothing to do with foreign owners being better – they were the ONLY ones who put forward a proper offer. NO ONE ELSE DID. So it was Chinese or nothing. There was no “they are better” because the only other offer was 30 mill below asking price. Are you saying if you sold your house would you consider dropping the $200,000 asking price by $30,000.

              “It is the law and it has been this way for a very very very long time. Go learn it.”

              The law says the receivers can sell it to whomever they like as long as the OIO is satisfied.

              • Draco T Bastard

                The point that you seem to miss is that selling our economy to foreigners, which is what selling the land is, is bad for NZ. It, quite literally, makes us poorer. You saying that they met the higher price is saying that that price was enough to make it better. You made a judgement call based upon the price whether you accept that or not.

                Are you saying if you sold your house would you consider dropping the $200,000 asking price by $30,000.

                If you have to sell then you take what’s offered. Crafar had to sell and the banks would have taken the loss. Is that not the free-market way?

                And, yes, I did note that you’ve jumped on the but no one else made an offer BS.

        • TheContrarian 12.2.3.2

          Good to see you advocating what amounts to theft:

          “The banks lose the money that they loaned out and that is all. After all, they did take the risk, when they loaned the money out, that they weren’t going to get it back.”

          So Crafar can take 200 million, squander the lot and get away with it. Then the NZ government acquires itself 200 million of prime real estate without paying a cent and basically says “fuck you, I’m taking this”.

          “After all, they did take the risk” yes they did take a risk but Crafar put up his land for security and you want the government to say “fuck you and your legal contract”.

          I don’t think that’ll work.

          • Draco T Bastard 12.2.3.2.1

            Then the NZ government acquires itself 200 million of prime real estate without paying a cent and basically says “fuck you, I’m taking this”.

            Didn’t say that did I? In fact, I said nothing about the government purchasing the land. Although the government did, through Landcorp, off quite a large sum.

            “After all, they did take the risk” yes they did take a risk but Crafar put up his land for security and you want the government to say “fuck you and your legal contract”.

            Nope, didn’t say that either. I just pointed out that the banks would take the loss that they signed up for when they took the risk of loaning out money. If the risk works they get all the money plus interest, if it doesn’t then they lose out – They don’t have guarantee to all the money back.

            • TheContrarian 12.2.3.2.1.1

              No they don’t have a guarantee to all the money back but they are legally entitled to seek it, which is what they have done. No one else made an offer that was higher than the one they took. All legal and above aboard.

              You haven’t offered any alternative. What do YOU think should have happened here?

              • Draco T Bastard

                The highest local bid should have been accepted which means that the banks would have lost some money. The foreign bid should have been thrown out as detrimental to the country.

                • Then what of the fallout? Banks would stop leading (or at least start lending with egregiously strict conditions) because there would no longer be security for a start.

                  And, like I have stated several times, that is like the government saying “Fuck you and your contract – you have to lose. Sorry”. Which means any contract and/or financial agreement between the bank and any other land owner becomes virtually worthless because the government is now deciding that some will no longer be honoured at its own whim.

                  • vto

                    Then what of the fallout? “Banks would stop leading (or at least start lending with egregiously strict conditions) because there would no longer be security for a start.”

                    What absolute twaddle. If foreigners were banned from owning land the land would not have nil value, idiot (sorry, rude I know, but …). It may slice up to 5% off the value or it may slice 50% opff the value. Maybe even more. Either way there is still value there and that ios what the banks would lend against. It is not nil.

                    “And, like I have stated several times, that is like the government saying “Fuck you and your contract – you have to lose. Sorry”. Which means any contract and/or financial agreement between the bank and any other land owner becomes virtually worthless because the government is now deciding that some will no longer be honoured at its own whim.”

                    Look contrarian, there are countless examples where rules and laws and regulations have been changed and that has affected the value of property and hence a lenders security. Lenders are well aware of this and have policies in place to foresee these and to deal with them. It would not be an overnight change – I think any reasonable person would understand that. Local government planning rules are one such example, and in fact it is so well anticipated that the Income Tax Act has provisions to cover this rule-changing.

                    Seriously, your understanding is lacking.

                    • Wow, condescending, rude and arrogant.
                      Again you have skipped right ahead and read over everything I have written in order to make your point which I can only assume caused a massive rush of blood to the head with an accompanying feeling of omnipotence and god like power.

                      If laws were changed pre/post this deal then your points may have a little more merit but if you read a little more careful it should be clear that I was discussing the changing of this while a legal contract is currently on the table and being discussed. To change the rule in the middle of the game is problematic in this case.

                    • vto

                      ” but if you read a little more careful it should be clear that I was discussing the changing of this while a legal contract is currently on the table and being discussed. To change the rule in the middle of the game is problematic in this case.”

                      Has it not occured to you that no matter when such law change takes place there will be deals like this affected mid-stream? Such a law change is always in the “middle of the game” for someone.

                      Or did that not occur to you?

                      edit: nobody has claimed the law should be changed just for this particular deal. That would be a nonsense. Perhaps the reason it was missed is because such a discussion is so far off the planet. It is about the policy and the law.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Then what of the fallout? Banks would stop leading (or at least start lending with egregiously strict conditions) because there would no longer be security for a start.

                    Oh noes, the banks will stop lending forcing people to be more conservative in their bids on land. Woe is meeeee

                    You really are a fuckwit. At no point have I said that the law should be changed in regards to the Crafar sale. The government can prevent the sale going through and should do because it brings nothing of worth to the country (Which is what the post highlights) and is, as a matter of fact, detrimental to NZ. That law’s been in place ever since we opened up the country to being sold off – it just hasn’t been used much if at all.

                    And, like I have stated several times, that is like the government saying “Fuck you and your contract – you have to lose. Sorry”. Which means any contract and/or financial agreement between the bank and any other land owner becomes virtually worthless because the government is now deciding that some will no longer be honoured at its own whim.

                    No it’s not. The government hasn’t changed the contract nor prevented the bank trying to recoup its loss. What you’re actually arguing for here is that the government ensure that the banks don’t lose even though they’re the ones that took the risk.

                    • If you have to resort calling people fuckwits your views are no longer worthy of consideration.

                      [lprent: It is a common but expressive description of one person’s opinion of another’s ideas. As I pointed out yesterday there are few rules here and those are enforced in by moderators (often in a vitriolic way). Provided there is a point attached to it, then the moderators will tend to ignore most in-context personal abuse provided there is a point attached and it doesn’t degenerate in generalities outside the political sphere.

                      As an observation, using such tactical evasions as faux outrage on blunt language to avoid answering others points will usually result in you getting more blunt language rather than less. You could wind up with very few people to talk/discuss anything with.

                      Have you read the policy yet? Consider that the meaning of a “robust debate” does not mean being polite.

                      And if you really really want genteel, then your best bet is over at Public Address. But it is somewhat more boring IMHO ]

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Calling you a fuckwit seems reasonable as you keep trying to tell me what I’ve said and purposefully misinterpreting what’s been asked of you. If you don’t like being called for your misrepresentation and distraction then you’ve got 2 options:

                      1.) Stop being a fuckwit
                      2.) Fuck off

                      I don’t care which.

  13. Fortran 13

    Len Brown is on talking about how he has been discussing the funding of his “expectations” in a “Public Private Partnership” way with the Chinese during his just returned visit.

    Am sure they would be happy to fund the NZ Conference Centre, which he was very happy with a year ago, and his underground Rail line. An a harbour tunnel ?

    • mike e 13.1

      These are green fields developments not existing businesses and as National are not interested in developing infrastructure other than gas guzzling motorways to his holiday home[berlusconi mussolini style]

  14. Replying to vto above (because I don’t see a reply button).
    You haven’t answered my question – when Crafar went bust leaving the banks with a 200 million debt what are they supposed to do if not sell the land to foreigners when no one in NZ can afford the price? II know what will happen, the banks will hang on to it and all the money will go to them to service the debt and they are under no obligation under the OIO rulings to make any concessions to NZ, unlike a foreign buyer does.

    I don’t think you have thought this through.

    [lprent: The reply button disappears when the depth of the replies reaches 10. That is to prevent the conversation reaching an unreadable one word per line as it keeps indenting. Either start a new thread or jump up to the level 9 comment and reply to that. ]

    • vto 14.1

      I have completely thought it through. Westpac does not own the land – it is a lender to the owner and holds a mortgage over the land as security. Westpac would see that land values have dropped and take whatever it could get under mortgagee or receiver sale. It would dip out. Tough biccies. They would not hold onto it as they don’t hold it now. They are not farmers and would not keep on keeping on in any sense. Experience with banks over many decades would show you this is the case.

      • TheContrarian 14.1.1

        So who held the title then? Crafar went belly-up, you say the banks never held the title. Who did?

        • vto 14.1.1.1

          How can you even start to argue this issue if you have no idea of even the basics of land tenure, ownership, banking mechanisms or law?

          You go answer your question. The answer can be found in pre-Laws101.

          • TheContrarian 14.1.1.1.1

            The face remains then, outside your elephant hurling, that you want the government to forcibly create a situation where Wesptpac has to lose money. Crafar can borrow but if he defaults, sorry Westpac you are shit out of luck because you ain’t getting it back. Have you thought about what the would do to the economy?

            Oh right, of course. you have thought it all out….sure you have

            • vto 14.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes I have thought about it and have been raising it with people for about the last 15 years. Have you?

              Westpac, as a grown up, understands the risks about lending into a foreign country where the rules can be changed. Happens all the time all over the world.

              One other thing for your young mind seeing as you are so very concerned about Westpac – where do you think Westpac got that 200million in the first place? Did they get it from somebody else or did they just conjure it up?

              • “understands the risks about lending into a foreign country where the rules can be changed.”

                Yeah, but changing the rules post-hoc leaving Westpac holding a bag with $200 million hole is generally not the done thing nor the expected thing.

                And where Westpac got it’s $200 mill is a completely different conversation. We can talk about fractional reserve banking another day.

                I’ll ignore your condescending remarks about what age I might be but safe to say I am old enough and educated enough to hold my own and your rude and belittling tone displays a lack of restraint on your part.

                Good luck with that.

                • vto

                  Yep I can be a bit rude at times – doesn’t always happen. But you haven’t held your own. You think a typical lender takes ownership of a property for just one very pertinent example of a lack of knowledge. For another, you think there is no public element to the sale of NZ land to foreigners. Major failures in base understanding required in this issue. So, yep, a bit rude. No apology. Out.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Yeah, but changing the rules post-hoc leaving Westpac holding a bag with $200 million hole is generally not the done thing nor the expected thing.

                  Wouldn’t have been a $200m hole but a $30m loss.

                  • So you are talking about selling it to Michael Fays consortium?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Forget Fay, Landcorp should own it on behalf of NZers.

                    • The problem here, “Contrarian”, is that you’re viewing the Crafar (and other land sales to offshore investors) through a very narrow perspective.

                      Of course it’s childishly easy to “score points” if you focus on just one factor to the exclusion of all else. But try assessing ALL the inter-related factors – that’s a much harder argument to maintain.

                      You’re missing several inter-related issues which will affect this country for decades to come, to wit,

                      * losing income from exports, especially as Earth’s population nears 9 billion, and demand for protein increases

                      * pushing up land prices out of reach of NZ citizens

                      * Chinese access to cheap funds which NZ purchasers do not have

                      * impact on Fonterra shares, and risk losing them into overseas ownership

                      * impact on our balance of payments

                      * risk to our branding as other nations’ practices affect us, especially in a negative way

                      Just a few more points to consider if you’re going to assess the whole issue of land sales to overseas investors and not just cherry-pick.

            • Rob 14.1.1.1.1.2

              Well, if VTO’s changes were to be put in place than the security value of the land to a lender would be nothing and therefore the lending risk would be huge, so they either rack up the return expected or they just dont lend at all leaving the sale open to people with 100% equity.

              Hmmmmm wonder how many NZ’ers have that sort of cash to through around on some dairy enterprises.

              • vto

                How on earth do you arrive at the conclusion that the value of the security would be nil?

            • mike e 14.1.1.1.1.3

              The incontenaryan
              Boo Hoo The Westpac bank were at fault just as much as crafar as they didn’t do due diligence.
              SCF springs to mind!

  15. I have held my own just fine. I was referring to the land: It is not publicly held, it is private land. I didn’t think the lender takes ownership in the traditional sense of the word either. But they certainly decide the direction.

    So while I have held my own I know you, possibly to make yourself feel better, will think otherwise through a willful misunderstanding of other peoples arguments not to mention few strawman and red herrings thrown in for good measure. but that doesn’t bother me. You lost when you resorted to rudeness.

  16. bad12 16

    Leaving aside this individual sale of the Crafar Farms for the moment I see as the ‘end-game’ reason for the purchase of these farms and the allowance by the new owners to allow ”Landcorp” to manage the farms as not being that of a ‘land-grab’ or even a ‘profit-milking’ by the Chinese buyers,

    I think that such a buy in to the New Zealand dairy industry is in effect the purchase of ‘intellectual knowledge’

    The Chinese buyers,if the sale finally goes ahead,will insert a number of ‘trainees’ into employment on the various ex-Crafar Farms simply to gain hands on experience and full knowledge of New Zealand dairy farming methods,

    In all reality,New Zealand farmers do it best(dairying), and, Landcorp at the leading edge of the industry in terms of research and development does it incrementally better than the average industry player,

    The Chinese will,once having gained the knowledge begin the transformation of the internal Chinese dairy industry from one of being peasant based to one of being of an industrial scale akin to but on a far greater scale than the present New Zealand giant Fonterra,

    I well remember the ‘gold-rush’ of English language schools here where 1000s of Chinese arrived to learn English,within those 1000s of arrivals were any number of those who had come not only to learn English as a language, but more importantly to the Chinese,to learn HOW to teach the English language,

    Having said all that, while not really having a problem with sharing knowledge with the Chinese on the most modern and best practice use of resources to dairy farm on an industrial scale, I do have a problem with the Crafar Farms sale in terms of the law,

    It is patently obvious that such a sale DOES NOT comply with at least 2 requirements of New Zealand law in that the proposed new owners will not bring with the sale any new employment of any significant amount and nor will the proposed new owners bring to the ex-Crafar farms any new technology or intellectual property that will significantly enhance the farms or the New Zealand dairy industry as a whole,

    It would seem that ANY court in ANY jurisdiction would have to if asked find that such a sale falls well out-side the legal constraints the law places upon such sales…

    • mike e 16.1

      remember how we were told selling Watties to a foreign owner would lead to huge exports of our fresh food no such thing has happened quite the reverse we are importing more fresh food than ever mainly from china

    • xtasy 16.2

      Read the Wall Street Journal of today: Mainland China is heavily investing in buying new dairy cow calves on the international market at present, clearly signalling that they are determined to establish their OWN local and national dairy industry, and making themselves independent from foreign suppliers like NZ, Europe or North America.

      By the way, does anybody realise, that NZ total dairy production is merely 2 per cent of global dairy production?

      NZ is only such a big player in dairy trade, meaning exports, because few countries sell so much on the global market, most focussing on catering for the local markets.

      NZers are dreaming if you think that dairy will ensure you an economic future forever. It is already a lost ground, and the only way NZ can develope and ensure a reasonable, sustainable living standard is by diversifying economic activity, production, invest heavily in R+D, new products, making itself more independent from energy imports and the likes.

      So where are National, Key idiot and even Labour standing on this base of facts?

      I see this country dropping fast on the international scale, unless some radical, serious re-orientation in economic development happens. Maybe joint ventures and investments in future tech may be the solution, it will not be more cows, more sheep, more dairy, more pollution, more cars, highways and stupid thinking like Neanderthal style National and ACT are offering. This is a bloody wake up call for NZ, take it to heart, please!

  17. bad12 17

    just as an afterthought, there seems to be some discussion that Westpac Bank and by association the Statutory receiver for the Crafar farms HAD to sell to the Chinese bidders as they were the highest bidders,

    That is just more of the totally bullshit ”there is not alternative” rubbish trotted out by the apologists who would ”hate to see New Zealanders as tenants in their own land” while proposing an implementing policies that will ensure that this will occur,

    There is in fact NO valid reason upon the planet that didn’t allow the Statutory Receivers to sell each of the 22 Crafar Farms individually and every reason to believe that sold individually the 22 farms may well have attracted more than what is now expected to be paid for them as a bloc…

  18. vto 18

    don’t like to be repetitive but ………………

    still nobody has explained how having foreign landlords is better

    and still nobody has explained how having a shrinking capital base is better

    Plenty of chipping in at the sides, plenty of diversion and avoidance of the questions, plenty of silliness, jst no explanations. Not even John Key has explained how these things are better – all he concentrates on is his racism against the Chinese and projecting it onto everybody else.

    This entire policy and legislation is #&^ing *7&%^%$. It is damaging to New Zealand. Where is the honesty?

    • “nobody has explained how having foreign landlords is better” It has been explained to you that no one is claiming they are better. If you want a different answer ask another question. Show me where someone has claimed that and I’ll ask the same thing.

      As to this comments (ran out of thread above):

      ” but if you read a little more careful it should be clear that I was discussing the changing of this while a legal contract is currently on the table and being discussed. To change the rule in the middle of the game is problematic in this case.”

      “Has it not occured to you that no matter when such law change takes place there will be deals like this affected mid-stream? Such a law change is always in the “middle of the game” for someone.

      Or did that not occur to you?”

      Yes it occurred to me which is why when fundamental changes like this are made changes like this are done generally there is some sort of cut of, or date when it takes effect, etc etc. Like you said “not overnight”. But this is discussing what we can do to stop sales in the future and has no bearing in the Crafar because laws like were not in place

      • vto 18.1.1

        No again contrarian.

        You say this … ““nobody has explained how having foreign landlords is better” It has been explained to you that no one is claiming they are better. If you want a different answer ask another question. Show me where someone has claimed that and I’ll ask the same thing.”

        John Key and all of his government claims that foreign ownership of New Zealand is better.

        So does Peter Dunne.

        And John Banks and his one-man band.

        And a whole bunch of commenters around here who are mysteriously absent. Maybe I am too rude and they can’t be bothered with me. You would think the supporters could try answering the question though. It is their policy and law – to which we are subjected.

  19. “John Key and all of his government claims that foreign ownership of New Zealand is better.”

    Got a cite for that?

    [lprent: I’d look at it. But you aren’t replying to anyone, it doesn’t appear to be in the post and I’m not hunting.. ]

    • vto 19.1

      Seriously?

      I admire your perserverance as much as you detest my rudeness at times, but I gonna pass.

      I might just wait until someone outlines the benefit of foreign landlords before burning up more of my 25,000 days on this clear-as-a-bell issue now.

    • RedLogix 19.2

      Got a cite for John Key arguing against ownership?

      Hint: How much googling do you think it would take to find it?

      • TheContrarian 19.2.1

        Hint: The formal rules of rational debate and logic determine that those who provide a positive claim (i.e. John Key and all of his government claims that foreign ownership of New Zealand is better) need to provide the evidence to support it.

        [lprent: We aren’t interested in formal rules. There is no such thing as ‘rational’ debate outside of some artifical constructs (algebraic proofs and the Karbala come to mind). The policy are merely guidelines for people to play risk games with the moderators. One of them concerns the risks of trying to define the rules here. Perhaps you should read it. ]

        • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 19.2.1.1

          He has a point RL.

          • Colonial Viper 19.2.1.1.1

            Oh god, Righties trying to explain the rules of logic and debate to the rest of us. Clue: why don’t you tutor the National MPs in the house first, they are in dire need of understanding “logic” and “debate”.

          • RedLogix 19.2.1.1.2

            There really are only three options:

            1. John Key believes that foreign ownership is better for New Zealand

            2. John Key believes that foreign ownership in NOT better for New Zealand.

            3. Neither of the above apply.

            Now given that the government he leads has defied both public opinion and a High Court ruling in order to push through this land sale….you might conclude he believes in Option 1.

            Alternately a few moments googling will find a statement from John Key stating something about “New Zealanders becoming tenants in their own land”.. which might suggest Option 2.

            Given the contradiction between what John Key is doing and what he said he believed in… maybe Option 3 applies. In other words they are selling this land for some other reason.

            Any suggestions?

            • TheContrarian 19.2.1.1.2.1

              Option 3 because there wasn’t a choice between foreign and NZ ownership. Only offer was put forward. And “In other words they are selling this land for some other reason.” doesn’t apply because they are not selling the land – someone else is. The just approve it, but again, there was no other offer to approve so option 3 is the only one

              • RedLogix

                And you have the gall to lecture me about logic.

                The fundamental choice here IS between local and foreign ownership. If you want to make that distinction go away… then everything you have posted on this thread has been an exercise in meaningless sophistry.

                • Yeah – but there was no local offer presented for the government to rule on.

                • insider

                  You are quite wrong. The choice was selling to a specific overseas party under the offer and OIO conditions or doing something else. That something else might be a revised offer, a retender or retaining the business and trading under the receiver’s control, or some other course of action.

                  Remember an alternative foreign offer was rejected earlier by the OIO. That did not lead to what you say is now the only alternative – a local sale. If that course didn’t happen before, why would you think it is the only option now?

              • Considering NZ makes only $10,000 per annum from the deal, I’m not sure why anyone would think selling to Shanghai Pengxin is such a good deal… http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2012/04/22/three-questions-to-key-williamson-coleman-et-al/

        • TheContrarian 19.2.1.2

          I am not trying to define any rules of the site but the rules of logic are fairly immutable and one of them is you can’t prove a negative and those the make a positive claim are incumbent to provide support. It is pretty simple, standard logic.

          • lprent 19.2.1.2.1

            Ah you are referring to stupid logic logic puzzles that are mostly done by half-arsed philosophy students working in artificially framed semantic boxes. Nice system for framing the debate for the simple minded. Less useful for any real-world applicability.

            You could do to read some algebra where negative proofs are rife, or do some library level code where half of the code is often proving that the negatives aren’t going to bite your arse, or deal with any politics. All of these have real world applications that depend just as much on negative proofs as they do on positives.

            To extend it further, most of the devices that your life and welfare depend upon depend almost entirely on negative feedback principles. The reason why they don’t depend on positive feedback is because it is the classic way to make a systems to go haywire. In my observation, exactly the same thing happens to any idiots who concentrate only on the positive.

            Quite simply you can prove any kind of crap if you ignore negatives that are contraindications to a theory. This is why science operates more on the concept of disproving theories as it does on proving them. But I guess that is probably a little too advanced for you to grasp.

            • TheContrarian 19.2.1.2.1.1

              “But I guess that is probably a little too advanced for you to grasp.” there is no excuse for rudeness. This has even less to do with proving a negative and more to do with those making the positive claim are the ones who need to establish the proof of it. This is standard debate rules, nothing to do with the rules of this site, algebra or real world applications. If someone says “Fire engines are mostly green” and someone asks for proof then you don’t turn around and say “prove me wrong”. If you make a statement you should be able to back it up when asked

              • RedLogix

                In this case there are two clear choices… selling the land to a foreign owner or NOT selling the land to a foreign owner.

                The simplest possible Boolean logic. And you just failed it.

    • Draco T Bastard 19.3

      Him and his government are the ones selling it off and they also promised a brighter future. Seems fairly clear that they mean that selling off NZ to foreigners is the way to that brighter future.

      • TheContrarian 19.3.1

        This was the ONLY offer presented. It wasn’t as if there was a choice between two offers.

        So what your saying is key should have not accepted this deal in favour of a non-existent deal which was never presented to him?

        • Draco T Bastard 19.3.1.1

          It was the only offer presented to the government to rule on. If the government rejected it then the receivers would have had to accept one of the other offers made which weren’t foreign bids such as the Landcorp bid.

          • Ben 19.3.1.1.1

            Credit to everyone who’s trying to make TheContrarian understand the basic principles at play here, but four letters come to mind:
            DFTT.

          • insider 19.3.1.1.2

            Not true. The receiver doesn’t have to accept any offer. They could retender it and accept another foreign offer that presumably would have to go through the OIO, or continue to operate it for the benefit of security holders, which could be interesting as they are foreign banks in the main.

  20. xtasy 20

    Come on, this is all a “win, win, win situation”, yes indeed it will turn into a “WINZ, WINZ, WINZ situation” for most NZers, for sure. Sell the assets, more farmland, sell it to companies and buyers getting Landcorp do the serf tasks to generate the profits. All else will “win, win, win”, or rather “WINZ, WINZ and WINZ”, becoming dependent on WINZ and government handouts, while real jobs go overseas, where slave wages keep economies going (against NZ and others)! Great stuff, John Key is a really smart operator, right? The future is now totally guaranteed!

  21. xtasy 21

    To take hold of the control of a country and its government, there are a number of options. One is to manipulate and conduct a takeover under perceived “democratic conditions”, which hardly anybody may notice. Take control of commerce, the (commercialised) media, key state media, core business, involve your cooperating mates and thus discretely take hold of the core echelons of power.

    There is otherwise a more ruthless and violent approach, wich took place in a country like Chile in 1973, arranged by the CIA and their Chilean military contacts. A good documentary is shown under the following link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&feature=endscreen&v=NHUqwep8UtI.

    Whatever, we have now in NZ a situation, where an very influential elite with high level economic contacts is taking hold of the whole NZ political, economic and social system, imposing law changes and policies that will ultimately disown the ordinary NZer and create a society of more division, exploitation and suppression, so far unknown in this otherwise free country.

    NZers must bloody well wake up and take a solid stand against what is going on. This country is being sold off to foreign interests, undermined and enslaved for generations to come. There is no alternative but to take most resolute measures now, and all possible must be done to stop the full scale corruption and sell out of NZ, that is for Maori, Pakeha and genuinely committed migrants to this country.

    History is at a cross roads in this country!

  22. From the bits and pieces I’ve managed to string together, from info from various sources (main credit goes to Adam Bennett from the NZ Herald), I’m thinking it may be time for a Royal Commission to enquire into the whole issue. Especially when it looks like what I think it looks like; http://fmacskasy.wordpress.com/2012/04/28/doing-the-business-with-john-key-heres-how-part-rua/

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Stuart’s 100 #59: Missing from the City Centre Series: Street Kiosks
    59: Missing from the City Centre Series: Street Kiosks What if there were flower sellers on Queen Street? Our city centre is really starting to burgeon with pedestrian activity and public life through the day and well into the evening,...
    Transport Blog
  • The Law Society on the spy bill
    At the moment the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee is hearing submissions on John Key's Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. One of the first submitters was the Law Society. So what did they think of it? It is a...
    No Right Turn
  • John Key’s TXTs and the Public Records Act
    Today in Question Time, in response to further questions about the Prime Minister's communications with sewerblogger Cameron Slater, Steven Joyce (on behalf of the PM) informed the House that Key deletes all his text messages, "in case his phone is...
    No Right Turn
  • No freedom of speech in Pakistan
    Veena Malik is a Pakistani actor. In May this year she played a role in a historical wedding scene based on the marriage of one of Muhammed's daughters. For this, she has been sentenced to 26 years in jail for...
    No Right Turn
  • John Key’s Immoral Governance
    I was in Wellington last weekend, alternating between spending time with my two student children and attending our Green Party executive meeting. Being with intellectually engaged and compassionate people was a useful foil to the depressing events that hit me...
    Local Bodies
  • FFS
    This is all getting really silly now. Alice in Wonderland stuff. The Prime Minister is ranting that he "absolutely [did] not" lie to reporters on Tuesday. He told reporters he had not been in communications with Cameron Slater about the...
    Polity
  • The Labour Party plot to kill Cameron Slater: the shocking evidence
    Cameron Slater has claimed that people within Labour have tried to kill him. Shortly after Slater made this astonishing claim, I received from an anonymous source a recording of a conversation between senior Labour Party members in which a plan...
    Imperator Fish
  • Getting it Wright on sea level rise
    Sea level rise of up to 40cm around New Zealand by the middle of this century is already locked in and will cause significant problems for coastal communities and infrastructure, according to a new report just released by Dr Jan...
    Hot Topic
  • The Kiwi Bach is a Sinking Ship and Taxpayers Should Not Pay to Bail You Ou...
    A new report from the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) Jan Wright released today highlights the perilous status of our national institution – the seaside bach or crib. The PCE’s report is a summary of the state of the...
    Gareth’s World
  • Climate change: Rising seas
    One of the primary consequences of climate change is sea-level rise due to thermal expansion and melting ice. What impact will this have on New Zealand? The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment is going to tell us:The Parliamentary Commissioner for...
    No Right Turn
  • Guest Post: Dear AT HOP
    This is a guest post by reader Frith Stalker Dear AT Hop I have used Auckland buses for 30 years I am very smart, very pedantic, very polite and very Rule Abiding I am your perfect customer. I always thank...
    Transport Blog
  • Staff deserve right to use te reo Māori
    Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 41 Student’s at most tertiary institutions have the right to use te reo Māori as provided for and protected in their institution’s policies and practices, but staff do not always have that same right. TEU’s...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Creationist ‘audits’ science museum
    Imagine you are 10 years old and your crazy aunt is taking you out for a treat. A crazy aunt can be fun. Problem is this aunt is also a creationist and she is taking you to the local natural history museum....
    Open Parachute
  • Government digs deeper into $10m fraud
    The government has uncovered nearly $10 million in misappropriated tertiary funding and is expanding its investigations into other institutions around the country. Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce told the New Zealand Herald the Tertiary Education Commission is planning 12 more...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Unleashing hell
    There's a great scene in the first season of the British political comedy The Thick Of It. The fictional PM's office is, in the parlance of our times, in the shit. And their response is to try and utterly confuse...
    Polity
  • 4 percent cut to per student funding
    Tuition funding per student has fallen $800 or 4 percent since 2008 according to data compiled by the Parliamentary Library. The Green Party’s new tertiary education spokesperson Gareth Hughes requested the information and shared it with TEU. It shows that...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • Otago cutbacks mooted to fund building
    Otago University is considering making significant cuts in 2016 to fund its $600 million building programme according to the Otago Daily Times. The university’s chief financial officer Sharon van Turnhout told the paper this could include job cuts. ”As staff...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • EBS Christmas Newsletter
    Welcome to our EBS Christmas newsletter, we hope that the end of the term is starting to wind down now and that you are looking forward to a long summer break! Our union bargaining power enables us to offer you...
    Tertiary Education Union
  • The problems of measuring water quality
    Professor Gary Jones from Canberra how is the keynote speaker at the 2014 NZ River Awards tonight. The following podcast is Gary speaking to Radio NZ’s Kathryn Ryan about the vexing questions of water quality and quantity.  ...
    Gareth’s World
  • Collins cleared; Slater lied
    On the same day as the Cheryl Gwynn report was released, we also got the release Justice Chisholm’s report into Judith Collins and the allegations that she undermined former-SFO head Adam Feeley. The report was ordered after the release of...
    Occasionally erudite
  • Gordon Campbell on government arrogance, Ferguson, and Police pursuits
    As anyone who’s ever encountered him around Parliament will verify, Chris Finlayson’s arrogance is matched only by his sense of self-esteem. On RNZ this morning though, he exceeded himself on both counts. Right now, National is ramming anti-terrorism measures through...
    Gordon Campbell
  • Hard News: The twilight state of the Psychoactive Substances Act
    Even as it was making its way to the statutes,
 New Zealand’s Psychoactive Substances Bill was the talk
 of the drug reform world. It was seen as a bold, visionary bid to deal with the proliferation of new drugs that...
    Public Address
  • John Key implodes over the Gwyn report
    The Cheryl Gwyn report into the release of SIS information relating to whether Phil Goff was or wasn’t briefed about the Israeli spy saga  was released on Tuesday. It makes for compelling reading as it investigates whether Goff lied, whether then-head...
    Occasionally erudite
  • NZSIS: Mandated abuse of power?
    By now you would have heard about the report on the NZSIS and its dealings with the OIA and the PM’s office. This report has been talked to death in the media so I won’t rehash the aspects that are already...
    On the Left
  • Neetflux: Key’s erasers
    ...
    On the Left
  • AT Beating Patronage Targets
    Auckland’s public transport patronage has been on a tear as of late and patronage is not only at its highest point in over 50 years but is currently up 7% on the same time last year. Included in that figure...
    Transport Blog
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #48A
    Air pollution costs Britain £10bn a year, report shows Britain left 'exposed' to more floods and heatwaves Central American civil society calls for protection of local agriculture Climate change is not just about science Climate change will slow China's progress...
    Skeptical Science
  • Sunday burnouts in Christchurch: electric motorsport comes to NZ
    New Zealand is going to get its first taste of electric motorsport this Sunday, when the Mike Pero Motorsport Park at Ruapuna near Christchurch is hosting EVolocity, an amazing line-up of electric racing machines and their creators — including the...
    Hot Topic
  • The very odd Slightly Left of Centre
    There’s a new voice in the blogosphere. Josh Forman, the author of SlightlyLeftofCentre: 27 years old, from the left, and on a mission to reclaim the centre left from the loopy extremists from the far left who have hijacked the...
    DimPost
  • Submission guide: Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    I've just completed my submission on John Key's Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. In the past I've posted my submissions, but that has tended to lead to a bunch of people copy-pasting them, which has in turn reduced their impact...
    No Right Turn
  • Submission guide: Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    I've just completed my submission on John Key's Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. In the past I've posted my submissions, but that has tended to lead to a bunch of people copy-pasting them, which has in turn reduced their impact...
    No Right Turn
  • Support bill changes to keep students safe
    26 November 2014    The government has the opportunity to prevent major teacher opposition to the proposed new teachers council by supporting changes to the Education Amendment Bill (2). PPTA president Angela Roberts said one of the biggest risks of the...
    PPTA
  • Neetflux: Dirty laundry
    ...
    On the Left
  • Neetflux: Dirty laundry
    ...
    On the Left
  • This takes the cake
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security is now threatening John Key's victim with prosecution:As the Inspector-General stated at the release of the report yesterday morning, she is examining what steps to take over the early disclosure of information from the...
    No Right Turn
  • This takes the cake
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security is now threatening John Key's victim with prosecution:As the Inspector-General stated at the release of the report yesterday morning, she is examining what steps to take over the early disclosure of information from the...
    No Right Turn
  • World News Brief, Wednesday November 26
    Top of the AgendaIran to Access $700 Million Monthly During Talks Extension...
    Pundit
  • “Cut the crap” – quick analysis
    Here's the video of Andrew Little's question in the House today. Some quick thoughts: I was really interested that National's strategy team has already decided it has to deploy Tim McIndoe to break up the flow of Andrew Little's questioning....
    Polity
  • A statement from John Key
    Apologise? What for? I’m not sorry for anything. I have done nothing wrong. It’s Phil Goff who should be apologising. It’s Phil Goff who should resign....
    Imperator Fish
  • Submit!
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee has called for submissions on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. Submissions can be made via the online form and are due by Thursday, 27 November 2014. Yes, that's right. An important bill...
    No Right Turn
  • Submit!
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade committee has called for submissions on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill. Submissions can be made via the online form and are due by Thursday, 27 November 2014. Yes, that's right. An important bill...
    No Right Turn
  • On the uncanny resemblance between John Key and Sergeant Schultz
    In the 30-odd years that Judy and I have been providing media advice and training to prime ministers, prostitutes and pretty well every profession in-between, our teaching mantra has remained the same: “Be straightforward, tell the truth, admit your mistakes”....
    Brian Edwards
  • Making their own terrorists
    Last year, two men murdered a British soldier in the middle of a London street. Now, the UK's Intelligence and Security Committee has found that MI6 may have directly contributed to one of the killers' radicalisation:The British government may have...
    No Right Turn
  • Making their own terrorists
    Last year, two men murdered a British soldier in the middle of a London street. Now, the UK's Intelligence and Security Committee has found that MI6 may have directly contributed to one of the killers' radicalisation:The British government may have...
    No Right Turn
  • Vodafone collaborates in mass-surveillance
    The latest analysis of the Snowden documents shows that Vodafone is actively collaborating with GCHQ's mass-surveillance programmes:One of the UK's largest communications firms had a leading role in creating the surveillance system exposed by Edward Snowden, it can be revealed....
    No Right Turn
  • Vodafone collaborates in mass-surveillance
    The latest analysis of the Snowden documents shows that Vodafone is actively collaborating with GCHQ's mass-surveillance programmes:One of the UK's largest communications firms had a leading role in creating the surveillance system exposed by Edward Snowden, it can be revealed....
    No Right Turn
  • 10 articles to read about Michael Brown and what’s happening in Ferguson
    Sometimes it’s difficult to get a real sense of events happening overseas from our own mainstream media in NZ – for obvious reasons they prioritise cover NZ issues. It’s also really difficult for a Pākehā like me to comment – both...
    On the Left
  • 10 articles to read about Michael Brown and what’s happening in Ferguson
    Sometimes it’s difficult to get a real sense of events happening overseas from our own mainstream media in NZ – for obvious reasons they prioritise cover NZ issues. It’s also really difficult for a Pākehā like me to comment – both...
    On the Left
  • Ports of Auckland Moving More Freight By Rail
    Ports of Auckland did a press release back in September that didn’t really get picked up on: Working with KiwiRail, Ports of Auckland has doubled the rail services between its Waitematā seaport and Wiri Intermodal Freight Hub. The increased service...
    Transport Blog
  • Momentum Builds for No Deforestation Palm Oil
    By now you know the problem: a rapidly expanding palm oil industry, eating up forests, draining carbon-rich peatlands, and sparking conflict with local people and workers.But if you had to guess at what is turning out to be a key...
    Greenpeace NZ blog
  • Private prisons poaching in state jails
    The Corrections Department-sanctioned poaching of public prison officers for the new private prison at Wiri has to stop, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “It is unacceptable that prison staff are being trained by Corrections and then being poached by...
    Labour
  • Climate report- a must read for all New Zealanders
    A strong scientific analysis of rising sea levels in New Zealand by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment makes climate change the number one issue for our city planners, says Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods.  “Dr Jan Wright’s report...
    Labour
  • Exports drop puts more pressure on surplus
    A 5 per cent fall in exports shows National’s reputation for economic management is taking a hit and even puts its golden surplus target at risk, say Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson and Exports Growth spokesperson David Parker. “Bill English’s...
    Labour
  • Fourth housing report confirms failure
    The Fourth Auckland Housing Accord monitoring report shows the Accord has failed to make a dent in the city's housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. "The report says consents for only 354 dwellings were approved in the special...
    Labour
  • Fourth housing report confirms failure
    The Fourth Auckland Housing Accord monitoring report shows the Accord has failed to make a dent in the city's housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. "The report says consents for only 354 dwellings were approved in the special...
    Labour
  • Ministers all over the place on Smith passport
     Ministers responsible for the Phillip Smith debacle are at  odds over the passport he used to escape, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “It  beggars belief that Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne says the passport issued to Smith, under his...
    Labour
  • Ministers all over the place on Smith passport
     Ministers responsible for the Phillip Smith debacle are at  odds over the passport he used to escape, says Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “It  beggars belief that Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne says the passport issued to Smith, under his...
    Labour
  • Green Party Co-leader Russel Norman’s speech – Rod Donald Memorial Lect...
    It's been nine years since Rod's tragic death. I'd like to start out by talking about what Rod achieved. Then I want to talk about the things that I think he might want us to achieve in his absence. We...
    Greens
  • Hard road ahead for thousands more Kiwi kids
    News that there will be 8000 more students in low decile schools next year reinforces the absolute failure of the National Government’s economic approach, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The gap between the haves and the have-nots is increasing....
    Labour
  • Hard road ahead for thousands more Kiwi kids
    News that there will be 8000 more students in low decile schools next year reinforces the absolute failure of the National Government’s economic approach, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “The gap between the haves and the have-nots is increasing....
    Labour
  • Free your voices
    Last week Victoria University of Wellington lecturer’s Dr. Sandra Grey and Dr. Charles Sedgwick released some figures from the 2013/14 update of the 2008/9 survey of the community and voluntary sector. Their research question was: ‘How is democracy – as...
    Greens
  • The facts of power price rises
    Everyone knows power prices are increasing and it feels like it is eating more and more of their weekly pay check. This morning I released census data showing this common feeling is in fact borne in the data. The data...
    Greens
  • Slavery was cheap too…Pay equity fight back to court
    Today the NZ Aged Care Association announced they will appeal the decisions of the Employment Court and Court of Appeal in favour of Kristine Bartlett, to the Supreme Court. They say they have no choice but to appeal because many...
    Greens
  • Why Pakeha are so offended by John Key’s idea of a peaceful settlement
    The statements by the Prime Minister on the Waitangi Tribunal ruling that Maori never ceded sovereignty in 1840 are enough to make any student of history choke. First was the denial that the ruling means anything significant. And then there...
    Greens
  • Restoration of the Christchurch Arts Centre well underway
    It was inspiring to be shown some of the major restoration and rebuilding work underway at the Christchurch Arts Centre recently. With 22 of 23 Arts Centre buildings damaged by the earthquakes, this is one of the largest heritage restoration...
    Greens
  • Key’s vile smear machine questions left unanswered
    The report into Judith Collins’ involvement in undermining the former Serious Fraud Office boss leaves major questions unanswered about the smear machine run out of John Key’s office, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “This report has deliberately narrow terms of...
    Labour
  • Key’s vile smear machine questions left unanswered
    The report into Judith Collins’ involvement in undermining the former Serious Fraud Office boss leaves major questions unanswered about the smear machine run out of John Key’s office, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “This report has deliberately narrow terms of...
    Labour
  • Govt must make up lost time on sexual violence law reform
    The Government must prioritise any recommendations from the Law Commission to improve criminal process for sexual violence cases after it stalled reform work for two years, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Labour is pleased Justice Minister Amy Adams has...
    Labour
  • Govt must make up lost time on sexual violence law reform
    The Government must prioritise any recommendations from the Law Commission to improve criminal process for sexual violence cases after it stalled reform work for two years, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Labour is pleased Justice Minister Amy Adams has...
    Labour
  • White Ribbon day should last all year
    White Ribbon Day is an opportunity for all men to stand up and affirm to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence towards women, says Labour’s Associate Justice Spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “Violence towards women is rampant across all sectors...
    Labour
  • White Ribbon day should last all year
    White Ribbon Day is an opportunity for all men to stand up and affirm to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence towards women, says Labour’s Associate Justice Spokesperson Kelvin Davis.  “Violence towards women is rampant across all sectors...
    Labour
  • Report confirms John Key abused power of PM’s Office
    Today's Inspector General of Intelligence and Security's (IGIS) report confirms that the Prime Minister's office engaged in a serious abuse of power, says the Green Party.The IGIS report looked at the release of an Official Information Act request to disgraced...
    Greens
  • IGIS report a damning indictment on former spy boss
    The report by Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security into the release of classified documents is a sad and damning indictment on former spy boss Warren Tucker, Labour’s MP for Mount Roskill and former leader Phil Goff says.  “This report upholds...
    Labour
  • IGIS report a damning indictment on former spy boss
    The report by Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security into the release of classified documents is a sad and damning indictment on former spy boss Warren Tucker, Labour’s MP for Mount Roskill and former leader Phil Goff says.  “This report upholds...
    Labour
  • South Auckland disadvantaged by new decile rankings
    New decile rankings have South Auckland schools at scores that show they are much more disadvantaged than the national average, says Labour’s Associate Auckland  Issues spokesperson Louisa Wall.  “As a measurement of disadvantage it is alarming that the average score...
    Labour
  • South Auckland disadvantaged by new decile rankings
    New decile rankings have South Auckland schools at scores that show they are much more disadvantaged than the national average, says Labour’s Associate Auckland  Issues spokesperson Louisa Wall.  “As a measurement of disadvantage it is alarming that the average score...
    Labour
  • Sexism, rape culture and power
    Our discourse around sexual violence is complicated. All too often perpetrators are described as ‘monsters’, so when someone you know tells you the lovely man that you really like sexually abused them it’s hard to believe, because they’re not a...
    Greens
  • Time for an economy that works for all New Zealanders
    New Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says the challenge for the National Government is to support an economy that delivers good, sustainable jobs paying decent wages. “It’s time the economy delivered for all New Zealanders, not just the fortunate few....
    Labour
  • Time for an economy that works for all New Zealanders
    New Labour Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says the challenge for the National Government is to support an economy that delivers good, sustainable jobs paying decent wages. “It’s time the economy delivered for all New Zealanders, not just the fortunate few....
    Labour
  • New faces, wise heads in bold Labour line up
    Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience....
    Labour
  • Plan for mega factory farm ruffles feathers
    Not long ago I wrote about the proposal to build a mega factory farm in the small township of Patumahoe that would confine over 300, 000 hens to colony cages. This week the resource consent hearing for the proposed factory...
    Greens
  • National opens door further to Chinese property speculators
    National has further opened the door to Chinese property speculators with the registration of a third Chinese bank here that will make it easier for Chinese investors to invest in New Zealand properties, the Green Party said today."As well, former...
    Greens
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    “Dead wood also contributes by providing nutrients to soils, supporting the agents of wood decay such as fungi and invertebrates and it is a key habitat for the regeneration of some trees.” Annual Report 2013/14, page 29. The National Government has...
    Greens
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour
  • Lab plan the beginning of slippery slope?
    It’s time for new Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to show his hand on plans to privatise lab services which doctors are warning could put patients’ lives at risk, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Clinicians have sent the Government some...
    Labour
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour
  • A-G called on to look into flagship ‘cost-saving’ programme
    New health Minister Jonathan Coleman has some serious questions to answer following a decision to wind up the Government’s flagship health savings provider HBL just a fortnight after giving it the green light to implement its plans, Labour’s Health spokesperson...
    Labour
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens
  • Prime Minister’s warped view of history
    Students who sat NCEA level 3 history exams last week might be very worried to hear the Prime Minister tell a Radio Station that New Zealand was one of the few countries that was settled peacefully by Europeans. Those students who wrote...
    Greens
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour
  • Climate of fear needs addressing
    It is hugely concerning that community and volunteer groups feel they are being gagged from speaking out against the Government, Labour’s Community and Voluntary Sector Spokesperson Louisa Wall says.  A Victoria University survey of 93 sector groups has found 50...
    Labour
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour
  • Mandatory code of conduct needed for supermarkets
    Labour has drafted legislation to establish a mandatory code of conduct for supermarkets to ensure New Zealand suppliers are not affected by anti-competitive behaviour. “Even though the Commerce Commission found no technical breaches of the law through some of Countdown’s...
    Labour
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens
  • National softening public up for 7th successive deficit
    Finance Minister Bill English is softening the public up for an announcement that National is going to fail in even its very limited goal of achieving a budget surplus, the Green Party said today."No finance minister in a generation has...
    Greens
  • National caught out on state house porkies
    Housing NZ’s annual report out today directly contradicts the Government’s claim that one-third of its houses are in the wrong place and are the wrong size, said Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The annual report states 96 per cent of...
    Labour
  • Tension inside the Blue Tent – questions that should be asked
    With Andrew Little on fire taking a straight shooting no crap approach to Key’s dead eyed duplicity, the tensions inside the Blue Tent of National are at risk of erupting again. When the TeamKey brand falters, National’s factions sharpen their knives....
    The Daily Blog
  • FiveAA Australia: Is NZ’s PM a Liar? + Kim Dotcom Says He’s Broke
    5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.In this week’s Across The Ditch bulletin on FiveAA.com.au Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey discuss how allegations of dirty politics continue to dog the Prime Minister John Key’s third term in government. Also, internet tycoon...
    The Daily Blog
  • Cam’s ‘Slightly Left of Centre’ sock puppet threatens Key in public
    What did Judith Collins say about payback? Looks like Slater has taken that lesson to heart as he uses his sock puppet over at Slightly Left of Centre to drop threats and hints that he has recorded conversations with Key that has...
    The Daily Blog
  • Justice System Changes Must Ensure No More Roastings In Court
    On Monday there was good news for rape survivors and this blog was supposed to be about the success of our advocacy, and it is about that success, but today’s events have brought into stark focus the real-world importance of...
    The Daily Blog
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Key Post Electio...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Key Post Election...
    The Daily Blog
  • Top 5 Texts from Cam to Key
    So Cam texted Key before the report came out despite Key claiming no contact? Top 5 Texts from Cam to Key 5 – I still have all the photos 4 – Yes my shapeshifting Lizard Master Overlord 3 – Max isn’t talking to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Hold on – did NZ just have a coup?
    Ummmmm. Wait a minute here. Just so that we all understand what’s been revealed. The Prime Minister’s Office used the Secret Intelligence Service to falsify classified information to smear the Leader of the Opposition via a far right hate blogger...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sue Bradford speaking tour
          With the generous support of the Hobgoblin Network and several other donors, I’m going to be speaking soon at four meetings around the country: ‘A major left wing think tank?  Is it time for a transformational left...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why Key must resign
    Remember when John Armstrong from the NZ Herald called for the resignation of David Cunliffe because Cunliffe couldn’t remember an 11 year old letter in reference to a $100 000 bottle of wine that never existed? Why isn’t the Herald now...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why the Judith Collins report is a whitewash
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins The report into Collins is a whitewash. The difference between an independent inquiry like the IGIS report that connected the PMs Office with using edited Secret Intelligence Service information to smear a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Seasons Greetings from Ferguson
    Seasons Greetings from Ferguson...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revealed by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased are the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased are the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased are the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2009. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog
  • Bill needs amending to better protect human rights
    The Human Rights Commission submission to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee this afternoon on the Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill makes specific recommendations relating to passport denial; increasing safeguards around visual...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ’s gender equality issues in international forum
    New Zealand faces similar gender equality issues and opportunities to those of its neighbouring countries, according to the latest international conference on women’s empowerment....
    Scoop politics
  • Countering human trafficking is an ongoing challenge for NZ
    At first glance, it is difficult to believe that human trafficking is an offence that is taking place in New Zealand. It is a harsh reminder that the rule of law sometimes does not reach far enough....
    Scoop politics
  • Government must allow further scrutiny of bill
    As the New Zealand government seeks to rush new through new anti-terror legislation, Amnesty International is raising grave concerns over the speed at which the Bill is being rushed through Parliament and is calling for an extension to the consultation...
    Scoop politics
  • Calling on anti-violence activists to step up
    Māori Party co-leaders believe every individual, whānau, hapū and iwi can help stop the high level of family violence that exists in our country....
    Scoop politics
  • More effective social services inquiry update Nov 2014
    The Productivity Commission’s More effective social services inquiry aims to shed light on how commissioning and contracting influence the quality and effectiveness of social services, and to suggest actions government agencies and others could take...
    Scoop politics
  • Keith Locke presentation on Countering Foreign Fighters Bill
    It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to members of Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee again, and remember my 12 years on your committee. However, I don’t wish my submission today to be taken as endorsement of...
    Scoop politics
  • Significant issues for NZ in sea level rise report
    Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) has recognised findings of Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment Dr Jan Wright’s report released today on the impact of rising seas as significant for coastal areas of New Zealand, aligning well with work the...
    Scoop politics
  • White Ribbon Campaign Shocked at Fatal Stabbing
    The White Ribbon Campaign extends its condolences to the family of a women fatally stabbed in Auckland's North Shore....
    Scoop politics
  • One Plan signing is “historic moment” for the environment
    The signing of the Horizon Regional Council’s One Plan after a decade of debate, legal action and controversy is being hailed by Fish & Game as a landmark in the battle to protect the nation’s water quality. Horizons councillors approved...
    Scoop politics
  • Look at the Road, Not the Speedo
    Responding to the Fairfax article that police will be issuing tickets over the summer to anyone driving 1km/h or more over the speed limit, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Worker immunity critical to safety in Meat Industry
    The Meat Workers Union has today urged the Select Committee hearing submissions on the Health & Safety Reform bill to strengthen provisions that protect the rights of workers to be involved and speak out, saying that it’s becoming increasingly...
    Scoop politics
  • PCE report brings home impacts of climate change
    Youth climate organisation Generation Zero has welcomed the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment's ' Changing Climate and Rising Seas ' report and says it demonstrates climate change will affect all of us....
    Scoop politics
  • Law Society urges reduction of terrorist fighter bill powers
    The New Zealand Law Society says powers proposed in the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill should be reduced to ensure they are strictly limited to countering the threats that have arisen....
    Scoop politics
  • Sea level rise won’t only affect infrastructure
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is asking the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (PCE) to widen the focus of her next report on climate change-driven sea level rise....
    Scoop politics
  • Changing climate and rising seas: Understanding the science
    During my seven years as Commissioner, I have consistently said that climate change is the biggest environmental issue we face. This investigation has provided an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of what is causing climate change and one of...
    Scoop politics
  • Council refuses to take part in farcical submissions process
    The New Zealand Council for Civil Liberties refuses to take part in the submissions process around the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill....
    Scoop politics
  • Laws of War to Be Debated at Wellington Event
    The political and human consequences of war and civil unrest are widely covered in themedia but International Humanitarian Law (IHL), the body of law which exists to protect all parties to armed conflict, rarely gets attention....
    Scoop politics
  • Forum Compact Development Partner Peer Review of New Zealand
    Following the completion of the first leg of the review of New Zealand’s development cooperation in the Pacific, the Forum Compact Review Team is now visiting Kiribati to assess the effectiveness of New Zealand’s assistance in the small island developing...
    Scoop politics
  • YWCA Auckland award for long-time women’s role model
    New Zealand’s first female Governor General and Mayor of Auckland has been granted a Lifetime Achievement Award by YWCA Auckland, for her services to the Auckland community and acting as a role model for Kiwi women nationwide....
    Scoop politics
  • Government Urged Not To Miss Cosmetics Win For Animals
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE is urging the Government not to let animals down and vote for an amendment to the Animal Welfare Bill. The amendment would ban cosmetics testing on animals forever. The Bill had it’s second reading in Parliament...
    Scoop politics
  • Police pursuit results in serious injury of innocent man
    A report released today by the Independent Police Conduct Authority has found Police failed to comply with policy during a pursuit in Auckland in 2013 which left an innocent man with serious injuries....
    Scoop politics
  • US Warning against GMO threat
    An international warning about the impact of GMOs has been released. It comes just as Parliament's Primary Production Committee is to hear the response of the Ministry of Primary Industries to the 1700 signature "Freeze on GMO" petition that...
    Scoop politics
  • Fish & Game wants more than lip service from agriculture
    Fish & Game wants to know how the government will ensure the agriculture sector protects the environment after the Primary Industries Minister warned primary sector leaders that environmental sustainability is no longer a “nice to have.”...
    Scoop politics
  • Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Thursday, 27 November 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Thursday, 27 November 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Ngā Aho Whakaari Questions TMP Handling of TVNZ Contract
    Television New Zealand (TVNZ) recently announced that internal production of its iconic Māori programmes ‘Waka Huia’ and ‘Marae Investigates’ would cease and that it would outsource the production of these programmes for the duration of...
    Scoop politics
  • Ngā Aho Whakaari Questions TMP Handling of TVNZ Contract
    Television New Zealand (TVNZ) recently announced that internal production of its iconic Māori programmes ‘Waka Huia’ and ‘Marae Investigates’ would cease and that it would outsource the production of these programmes for the duration of...
    Scoop politics
  • Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence And Security
    Statements from the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (x2) 1. In response to questions about particular contents of the report: Ms Gwyn said that - as she had said yesterday when releasing the report - the report, including the factual...
    Scoop politics
  • Office of the Inspector-General of Intelligence And Security
    Statements from the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security (x2) 1. In response to questions about particular contents of the report: Ms Gwyn said that - as she had said yesterday when releasing the report - the report, including the factual...
    Scoop politics
  • Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 13 February 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    Public submissions are being invited on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 13 February 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • SIS Scandal Leaves Key Unscathed
    Prime Minister John Key has been almost entirely unscathed by the SIS scandal, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. The probability Mr Key will remain leader of the National Party...
    Scoop politics
  • SIS Scandal Leaves Key Unscathed
    Prime Minister John Key has been almost entirely unscathed by the SIS scandal, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict. The probability Mr Key will remain leader of the National Party...
    Scoop politics
  • Lawyer jailed for fraud against loyal clients
    John David Milne (79) has been sentenced to eight years and one month of imprisonment today in the Christchurch District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecution....
    Scoop politics
  • Lawyer jailed for fraud against loyal clients
    John David Milne (79) has been sentenced to eight years and one month of imprisonment today in the Christchurch District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecution....
    Scoop politics
  • Lawyer jailed for fraud against loyal clients
    John David Milne (79) has been sentenced to eight years and one month of imprisonment today in the Christchurch District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecution....
    Scoop politics
  • MFaT CEO To Announce Resignation
    NZ's leading Political publication Trans Tasman can reveal Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade chief executive John Allen will announce his resignation on Monday. Allen, who was controversially recruited to head up the Ministry in 2009 after a stellar...
    Scoop politics
  • MFaT CEO To Announce Resignation
    NZ's leading Political publication Trans Tasman can reveal Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade chief executive John Allen will announce his resignation on Monday. Allen, who was controversially recruited to head up the Ministry in 2009 after a stellar...
    Scoop politics
  • MFaT CEO To Announce Resignation
    NZ's leading Political publication Trans Tasman can reveal Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade chief executive John Allen will announce his resignation on Monday. Allen, who was controversially recruited to head up the Ministry in 2009 after a stellar...
    Scoop politics
  • Rotorua White Ribbon Ride urges stand against violence
    Dave Donaldson will never forget the story of a woman who escaped her violent partner by going to jail. Some years ago while the Rotorua deputy mayor was still a police officer, he escorted a woman to Auckland to serve...
    Scoop politics
  • Rotorua White Ribbon Ride urges stand against violence
    Dave Donaldson will never forget the story of a woman who escaped her violent partner by going to jail. Some years ago while the Rotorua deputy mayor was still a police officer, he escorted a woman to Auckland to serve...
    Scoop politics
  • Rotorua White Ribbon Ride urges stand against violence
    Dave Donaldson will never forget the story of a woman who escaped her violent partner by going to jail. Some years ago while the Rotorua deputy mayor was still a police officer, he escorted a woman to Auckland to serve...
    Scoop politics
  • Air Line Pilots’ Association on proposed rules for Drones
    The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association is welcoming calls by the Civil Aviation Authority to have industry and the public have their say on proposed rules for unmanned aircraft operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Air Line Pilots’ Association on proposed rules for Drones
    The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association is welcoming calls by the Civil Aviation Authority to have industry and the public have their say on proposed rules for unmanned aircraft operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Air Line Pilots’ Association on proposed rules for Drones
    The New Zealand Air Line Pilots’ Association is welcoming calls by the Civil Aviation Authority to have industry and the public have their say on proposed rules for unmanned aircraft operations....
    Scoop politics
  • Family Violence Report on Gender Bias Welcomed
    Family First NZ is welcoming a report which says that blaming men for domestic violence is ‘gender bias’....
    Scoop politics
  • Family Violence Report on Gender Bias Welcomed
    Family First NZ is welcoming a report which says that blaming men for domestic violence is ‘gender bias’....
    Scoop politics
  • Family Violence Report on Gender Bias Welcomed
    Family First NZ is welcoming a report which says that blaming men for domestic violence is ‘gender bias’....
    Scoop politics
  • Terrorism bill fraught with risk for academics
    Academics studying terrorism, or other topics that the SIS considers not to be in the national interest, could be among those who lose civil rights if an ‘anti-terrorism’ bill becomes law....
    Scoop politics
Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere