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I Owe My Soul….to the Company Store

Written By: - Date published: 7:35 am, July 23rd, 2010 - 65 comments
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The words of this old song date back to the 1800’s when dominant and rapacious employers in small company towns would require their employees to purchase essentials from a ‘company store’. And because the employee was so badly paid, inevitably they would run up steep tab simply to keep their family fed and clothed. In the long run of course the debt was un-repayable, so the employees became essentially indentured slaves to the company, unable to leave town because of the debt they owed. It took a major law reform to stop this odious practice.

Worker/Business/Banks Share of GDP from Keen

The graph is taken from the concluding passages of a very recent Steven Keen paper. (I do recommend giving it a close read; don’t be put off by the math, the explanations are clear and instructive in their own right). In it Keen further extends his economic modeling of the business cycle with results that point to a startling political conclusion . that the banks are well on the way to making the whole world their own ‘company town’.

The remarkable aspect of this model is how well the general pattern of it corresponds to what we have seen over the last 60 odd years since WW2. In the early period the tension between workers and employers interests dominated the dynamics, expressed conventionally in the political battle between left and right. It’s a paradigm people are still very much wedded to, but one with a vital ommission.

Because from a ‘flow of money’ POV, the real economy has three actors, not two. The other party is of course the banks who play a special role in the economy as trusted bookkeepers, enabling ordinary real world transactions to proceed smoothly and efficiently based on the issue of credit. In the early part of the cycle the banks share of GDP, arising from this special function, is normally somewhat less than 10%. As a result the political significance of their role is underplayed and neglected. Flying under the radar as the business cycle matures, their appetite for risk grows and they successfully lobby for looser regulation in order to profit from higher levels of speculation with ever more complex products. As a result the banks begin to assume an undue portion of the economy; growing like a cancer beyond their essential function, until for example in 2005 a full 45% of all US corporate profit was made in the finance sector.

As this process develops something interesting happens the dramatic swings of the early part of the cycle in the labour/employment market begin to smooth out. As the Debt to GDP ratio exceeds 100%, then 200% (or even 300% as it did in the US) it becomes the dominant factor in the economic dynamics, overwhelming and dampening out the worker/employer cycles leading to the illusion, as trumped by many leading neo-liberals in the last decade, of a ‘Great Moderation’. Conventional neo-liberals kept telling us of a brave new world, in which they had mastered the business cycle, assuring us that stable growth could be sustained indefinitely without the damaging cycles of the past.

Which of course was wholly wrong. The ‘Moderation’ of the last 20 years was not a sign of success, but of failure, with the end game yet to be played out. The model points to the pattern of what is now happening, even in this country. Wages share of GDP has steadily declined over that period (from around 65% in the 1970’s to a miserable and falling 44% last year). Business profitability has held up until much later into the cycle, but even that too is predicted to plummet as finally the bankers eat the game, swallowing both workers and business owners share of GDP in one last orgy of compound interest, greed and hubris. Leaving us all in terminal debt to new masters of the universe, and no road out of town.

Ultimately of course the model has its limits:

This is only a model of the process by which a crisis develops; it does not contemplate what might happen in its aftermath to end it–such as bankruptcy and debt moratoria reducing the outstanding debt and allowing economic activity to commence again. The terminal collapse that follows from the runaway growth of debt in this model emphasises the point that Michael Hudson has made so often: “Debts that can’t be repaid, won’t be repaid”.

We have already seen some of this response, the US has just passed a raft of legislation intended to fence in the banking excesses of recent decades, but as MartyG outlines in a very complementary post this morning, unusual uncertainty pervades the global economy. Of course nothing in Keen’s argument above excludes Marty’s equally powerful contention that we also now bumping up against the limits of growth.

Wave after wave of demented avengers marched cheerfully out of obscurity and into the dream.

Updated: Johnny Cash with Sixteen Tons

65 comments on “I Owe My Soul….to the Company Store”

  1. Lew 1

    RL, you can’t give a post a title like this without including a link to the actual song.

    L

  2. Bored 2

    The French got it right with the parasite class in 1793, to the guillotine! ( In our case exile to the Auckland Islands might suffice).

    Or perhaps we adopt the wisdom of Solon (who cancelled all debts when the wealthy became too wealthy in Athens). No dead bankers, just a lot of angry useless ex bankers trying to grow tomatos.

    • Olwyn 2.1

      Solon also banned them from lending money against a poor man’s property, then seizing the property and selling the poor man into slavery. But he had an advantage that modern pollies lack – they were scared of the wrath of the gods. So he made them swear that they would keep his laws, and then went “sight-seeing” for 10 years so they couldn’t lobby him.

    • prism 2.2

      Hey there are innocent animals on the Auckland Islands trying to manage their simple lifestyles in difficult circumstances. Rather like us, only we aren’t completely innocent and we have a have a basic problem. That is our lack of focus on important issues like containing our desire for more of everything even if that comes at a cost to others.

      We can’t get rid of our problem people to the Auckland Islands – they’ll kill all the fur seals or something.

  3. Wow talk about an anthem for the Key years …

    • burt 3.1

      Given the govt suprluses and the increasing personal debt during the Clark years I think it is an anthem for the Labour-led Clark years socialist great leap backward.

      • Whiskey Tango Mike Foxtrot 3.1.1

        Do have any forward thinking shit to say Burt?
        You always repeat the same line, over and over.
        Is that to help you remember it, or believe it?

  4. joe90 4

    The composer, Merle Travis – “Sixteen Tons”

    • felix 4.1

      Thanks for that joe90.

      The other two versions posted here are so much pants, Lynn and Lew no soup for you.

      Actually Ernie Ford’s version is pretty cool but as someone on the youtube page said: “it seems a little incongruous, a song about back-breaking labour being sung by a guy who looks like he would be more at home sipping martinis while smooth talking Miss Sweden 1955.”

      And best we don’t even discuss Johnny Cash’s moustache era.

  5. Gosman 5

    Perhaps you could turn New Zealand into the South Pacific version of Zimbabwe where Zanu-PF’s 2000 election campaign was “The land is the economy and the economy is the land” and promptly found out that despite having all the land the economy promptly collapsed through lack of capital.

    • vto 5.1

      That is ridiculously simplistic Gosman. It collapsed due to many factors.

      • Gosman 5.1.1

        The Zimbabwe economy collapsed due to a lack of capital and a desire by the Zanu-PF regime to use the levers of state to perpetuate themselves in power by printing money when they weren’t generating enough wealth because they destoyed their most productive sector. Typical left wing economics in action.

        • Lew 5.1.1.1

          You’re an idiot. Zimbabwe collapsed because it was run by an extremist ultranationalist revolutionary dictator who presided over the expropriation of the entire wealth base of the country at gunpoint over a very short period of time. There’s nothing at all that’s “typical” about that, and evey time it’s been tried the outcome has been the same. This is why everyone sane, including the NZ left, has abandoned revolutionary socialism as political doctrine: because it doesn’t work.

          Get some perspective. You might wish you were actually in a great ideological battle against the evil empire, but modern democratic politics is about quibbling over the middle ground.

          L

          • Gosman 5.1.1.1.1

            Given the general view that seems to be expressed here that Capitalism has failed and needs to be replaced by something more radical (although what exactly is not really expanded on much) I wouldn’t say my views equating what went on in Zimabwe with leftist thinks is too far off the mark.

            • Lew 5.1.1.1.1.1

              And the absence of that ability to distinguish between manifestly dissimilar things is just part of what makes you a raving moonbat.

              Wake me when it’s the lefties, rather than the liberthoritarians, lobbying for “don’t tread on me” gun-ownership rights so they can overthrow governments as necessary.

              L

              • Gosman

                You haven’t explained in any coherent manner why they are dissimilar.

                I have highlighted why thinking along the lines of vto, that a general cancellation of debts and printing of money, is similar to how Zanu-PF destroyed the productive capital baseof the Zimbabwean economy.

                If you disagree with that then put forward your case rather than relying on ad hominim attacks to try and discredit my views.

                • Lew

                  The thing that’s dissimilar is that one crowd isn’t preventing the reform of their economic system with guns. If you want to reform monetary policy in NZ or the US, you go into politics. If you want to do so in Zimbabwe (as in the former USSR, Cambodia or China), you go into a hole in the ground.

                  If that’s not a clear enough distinction for you then I really truly despair.

                  L

                  • Gosman

                    The former MDC opposition is currently part of the government in Zimbabwe and controls the finance ministry and sets the policy in this area. The fact that you were seemingly unaware of this fact suggest you don’t understand the Zimbabwe situation very well.

                    • Lew

                      The fact that you think there’s any legitimacy to the MDC-Zanu arrangement (given that the MDC won the election fair and square despite it being rigged against them, and took a symbolic “unity” position with no actual authority as an alternative to having their heads staved in with iron bars) indicates that you might perhaps benefit from a little more research yourself.

                      But, my goodness, isn’t it perverse that you find tyourself in the position of defending a sham democracy as legitimate just so you can demonise their monetary policy, which results from the fact that their democracy is a sham.

                      L

                    • Gosman

                      Ummmmm…. the agreement was negotiated with the active encouragement of the SADC nations (under the guidance of South Africa) and all parties voluntarily agreed to it at the time and are still actively involved with it at this point in time. The MDC finance minister is setting the agenda in the finance area as evidence by the fact that the country no longer suffers from hyper-inflation. Do you disagree with the SADC position then?

                    • Lew

                      The SADC solution was marginally preferable to all Mugabe’s opponents having their heads staved in with iron bars (again) but no more. It does nothing to confer democratic legitimacy on the arrangement (as distinct from diplomatic, legal or pragmatic legitimacy). Given that my argument relies on the peoples’ will to end the Mugabe regime being respected, and the power-sharing arrangement didn’t bring that about in any way, there’s no plausible argument to be made on this basis. Notwithstanding the complete idiocy of trying to view monetary policy in isolation from the rest of the political economy, especially in a (post)-conflict state.

                      L

                    • Gosman

                      You are just attempting to muddy the argument by over complicating what is a very simple situation.

                      The fact of the matter is that the economic policy in Zimbabwe has been altered due to the results of a (flawed) election. The new finance minister is following standard right wing proscriptions (including balancing the books and looking at privatisations of state assets) for sorting out an economy destroyed by typically left wing policies run amock.

                    • Lew

                      The whole point is that it wasn’t caused by left-wing politics: it was caused by fucking authoritarianism which meant the system couldn’t be changed when it was found to be broken.

                      L

                    • Gosman

                      It has changed, I just told you it has.

                      The policies introduced by Zanu-PF are left wing in nature and are being sorted out by a finance minister introducing typically right wing economic policies in response.

                      Tendai Biti has recently proposed that they enable the 99 Year leases that were issued to all the new farmers to be able to be transferrable and therefore making them easier to be used as collateral for loans. Secure and transferable private title over property is a fundamental basis of the capitalist economy.

                    • Lew

                      … a fundamental basis of a capitalist economy, but not a “typically right-wing economic policy”, is it? Last I checked practically every economy in the western world, including those you’re deriding as being overrun by “Zimbabwe-like” leftism, has this feature, and nobody — not even the hardest-line leftists in any government — wants to do away with it.

                      Strewth. What’s the point?

                      L

                    • Gosman

                      If you support the Capitalist economy then you support private property rights. You can do this following either left wing or right wing policies. However I thought the problem here was that Capitalism has failed and needs to be replaced.

                      If all you want to do is tinker around the edges with Capitalism then all of the problems identified in the above article by Redlogix will continue to occur on an ongoing basis. Now I’m reasonably comfortable with that, are you?

                    • Lew

                      Ah, so that’s the problem: you don’t actually understand what it is that’s being discussed.

                      L

                • felix

                  Filling in for Tim today Gos?

                • Puddleglum

                  How about we all agree from now on not to draw simplistic conclusions from simplistic framing of issues that have been decades if not centuries in the making, eh?

                  Zimbabwe’s economic problems go back a long way.

                  In brief: White settlement; a series of deliberate legislated appropriations of the best agricultural land from blacks; ensuring through numerous measures the entrenchment of race and class domination by the white business elite; UDI which came with massive protectionist economic policies and collusion with South Africa to dominate the region economically; trade sanctions imposed on the Smith regime; increasing internal violence resulting in massive and prolonged civil war; independence in 1980; attempts by Zanu-PF at massive increases in education, public transport, health provision, limited redistribution of land, etc. without the economy to support it but in response to a perfectly understandable, incredibly impatient black population; a structural adjustment programme designed by the IMF which did the exact opposite of what it promised – increased unemployment massively, destroyed government services, increased the poverty rate from 40% to 63%; the continued utterly dishonourable behaviour of the British government not to honour its pledge to finance compensation for redistribution of the land leading, after an astounding demonstration of patience by Zanu-PF, to compulsory acquisition of white farmer land.

                  And that only takes us up to the end of the 1990s. Beneath the simplistic ‘big, bad, megalomaniac’ analysis of world politics what you’ll find if you look objectively is yet another implosion bomb planted by colonialism, hastened by duplicity, interference and – indeed – the astonishing economic naivety of ZANU-PF when they initially tried to redress the sickening wrongs of colonial and white rule overnight without providing the strong economic base required for such much-needed reforms to be supported – leading to debt, inflation and the reliance, in the 90s, on IMF economic rule.

                  Compare their early measures, post-independence with similar efforts by Chavez – but without oil revenues. In fact, done largely on the ‘wing and a prayer’ of commodity agriculture (who does that remind you of?).

                  Before anyone jumps up and down – no, I don’t support any government that rules through domestic terror. But I also can’t stand accounts of economic and political crises that read like ‘The Famous Five Deals to Another Nasty Lower Class Robber’.

                  • Gosman

                    LOL!!!!

                    And people wonder why people on the right think multi-lateral organisations like the UN are a joke.

                    You analysis is simplistic and plain incorrect on a numerous points, (not least the stuff about the IMF), but the main one being your view that the UK reneged on a deal to fund the land reform programme. In fact just prior to the problems kicking off in 1999 the UK funded a donor conference where all sides agreed a suitable strategy for dealing with land reform whereby the UK would provide a large amounts of funding. However this was conditional on the money not being expropriated by the corrupt Zanu-PF elite. Would you prefer to see aid money being stolen?

                  • Gosman

                    My sources? How about 20 years interest in Sub-saharan Africa, includimg being a member of the executive comittee of the Africa Information Centre, and over 10 years interest in Zimbabwean affairs.

                    You on the other hand seem to rely on a flawed report that seems to place a large amount of blame for the the problems of Zimbabwe, (pre2000 it has to be stated), on the failed ESAP plan that Zanu-PF failed to follow which was a condition of BOP support for the IMF in the early 1990’s.

                    If you actually knew anything about Zimbabwe beyond a cursory search via google you will know that the economy that Zanu-PF inherited in 1980 was the most advanced in Sub-saharan Africa outside South Africa. Even though it was subjected to sanctions from the international community when it was Rhodesia it had very little debt and a modern diversified economy.

                    While it faced a multitude of challenges the Zanu-PF regime squandered the opportunity by spending beyond their means on a variety of social programmes. Some of this was necessary and may have been beneficial in the long run but only if the productive side of the economy was not ignored. By the early 1990’s the Zimbabwe economy had made huge advancements in health and education for the majority but there was simply not enough jobs being created for them because the State run part of the economy was crowding out the private sector. Essentially they were the best educated underemploed people in Sub-saharan Africa.

                    The fact that parastatals were costing the fiscus a large percentage of the budget every year, (due to corruption and inefficiencies), meant that the Government had to request support from the IMF. As much as leftist would like it to be the IMF is not a charity organisation. It is a leander of last resort for countries who can’t get funding from commerical sources because they are deemed too risky. As such the IMF recommeded a number of austerity meassures such as removal of price controls and subsidies as well as privatisations of loss making parastatals..

                    The trouble is that Zanu-PF couldn’t let go of the patronage networks they had built up and so most of the policies recommended by the IMF were never implemented. This eventually lead to the situation in 1997 where the Independence War Veterens demanded money from the Governement which the Government couldn’t afford but still paid out. The Zimbabwean dollar prompltly collapsed and as a result a serious opposition party (MDC) was born.

                    Meanwhile the funding that the Zanu=PF regime received from donor nations to fund land reform were either left largely unspent or squandered on buying farms for the Zanu-PF Chefs. Even though the government had first right of refusal on all commercial farmland that came up for sale many properties weren’t bought even though the Government had the money .When a donor conference came to an agreement on an approach to take in the late 1990’s, (agreed by Zanu-PF), the Zaqnu-PF government continued on as before and therefore nothing changed until the 2000.

                    After a shock rejection of an attempt to change the constitution in 1999 Zanu-PF realised that it’s hold on power was seriously under threat. They therefore used the land issue and violence to win the 2000 parliamentary elections and continued to do so until 2008. However in the meantime their economic policies became increasinglt socialists in nature and as spending spiraled out of control they reverted to printing money to fund spending and therefore caused hyper-inflation.

                    If you have any issues or questions about this I am more than willing to expand on them and provide you with references.

                    • BLiP

                      My sources? How about 20 years interest in Sub-saharan Africa, includimg being a member of the executive comittee of the Africa Information Centre, and over 10 years interest in Zimbabwean affairs.

                      Assuming the executive committee of the AIS were like minded people, no wonder the place is fucked.

                    • Puddleglum

                      Gosman, if you had read the link thoroughly you would have seen that it actually echoes much of your analysis (as did my summary). E.g., that there were health, education and welfare improvements, that it was the understandable impatience of the black population and the war veterans that meant that reform went faster than the economic reality, that under the protectionist Smith regime policies of the UDI period the economy was strong, etc., etc.. So, I’m not sure why you criticise the source as you do.

                      Where we differ is that I put much more emphasis on the social and economic effects that white domination and colonial rule had on the pressures for reform, land redistribution, immediate alleviation of poverty, ill-health, poor education, etc.. The pre-independence economy may have been robust but the life for most blacks was oppressive. It may be inconvenient for the neo-liberal economist to acknowledge, but these sorts of enduring human conditions make the ‘orthodox’ economic prescription completetly unrealistic.

                      Also, you seem to think that the IMF programme would have been successful if only it was ‘fully implemented’. Well, SAPs have a pretty consistent pattern of effects throughout the world and, for the majority of the domestic populations, they have resulted – by design – in immediate and medium term decrements in social and economic wellbeing. I suppose the purist, echoing Douglas’ wailing in New Zealand, would blame ‘unfinished business’ for any adverse impacts of SAPs.

                    • Puddleglum

                      Hi Gosman, I should have added thanks for your offer over further elaboration and supply of references. I’m always happy to learn more. If there are particular sources you think worth reading please let me know.

                      I (confess that I) tried to find info about the African Information Centre on the internet (not having heard of it). There wasn’t much there that explained the function or history of what I assume is an NGO but it did have some basic statistical information about African states (sometimes a bit dated, as was the case for Zimbabwe). Is this the organisation you’re involved with or is there another with the same name? (I AM being genuine here – I want to ‘know’ far more than I want to ‘win’ – though I do also like to ‘win’ : )).

                    • Gosman

                      The Africa Information Center was a NZ based NGO set up in the late 1970’s, (I believe), as a counter weight to the pro-South African bias in the media. It’s main focus was involved with the Anti-Apartheid movement but it branched out into areas of ganeral African development, Once Apartheid ended the NZ governemtn withdrew funding and it closed up shop in the late 1990’s.

        • RedLogix 5.1.1.2

          In simple terms, printing money is exactly what banks do…for private profit. Haven’t seen you complain about how this has directly led to the massive ‘destructuion of the productive sector’ we have seen in the last two years. You know, how the global economy has had literally trillions of dollars of wealth ripped out of it with little sign of recovery in sight.

          What you are really objecting to is the socialising of the money creation process back into public sector control. Clearly this too has risks if politicised but this can be managed, as we do with the statutory independence of the RB. Printing money is in fact entirely necessary and essential as long as the quantity does not exceed the economy’s ability to absorb it.

          There is no reason at all why it is ok for private sector banks to create credit, and wrong for the public sector to do exactly the same. Except that one is politically accountable…. the other is not.

          • Gosman 5.1.1.2.1

            Banks don’t control the money supply, Governments do. All banks can create is credit, however this is restricted and controlled via the central bank regulations and has to be backed, and is linked to a banks capital base.

            Your thinking is the same as that which thinks that the Trillions of dollars of derivatives contracts traded around the world are actually ‘real’ money when it is just all theoretical. The ‘real’ money is what is used to buy and seel this theoretical value.

            • RedLogix 5.1.1.2.1.1

              Banks don’t control the money supply, Governments do. All banks can create is credit, however this is restricted and controlled via the central bank regulations and has to be backed, and is linked to a banks capital base.

              In Aus/NZ thats been more or less true, and one reason why our banking system has remained relatively stable…but globally… not so. What you are expressing is the conventional understanding of how money supply and credit is managed, the so-called ‘money multiplier’ effect. In reality that’s not how it has worked for some considerable time, in fact banks have more or less been at liberty to create the credit first, then later the RB’s have been nominally propping up cash reserves after the fact.

              The relatively unconstrained expansion of credit is the prime reason why Debt to GDP ratios peaked at almost 300% in the US and the flow on effect pumped them up to exceed 200% in Australia.

              • BLiP

                He’s probably never heard of the Federal Reserve or, if he has, doesn’t understand how it works.

  6. vto 6

    I don’t disagree redlogix. The banking system has a nasty stench to it at the moment and most all the public are holding their noses.

    States should simply cancel their debt. Or set up a giant printing press and simply print more notes and hand them back to their creditors. I mean, thats what the americans have been doing so why can’t everyone else?

    The financial system is a farce. Don’t trust it.

    • Gosman 6.1

      “States should simply cancel their debt. Or set up a giant printing press and simply print more notes and hand them back to their creditors.”

      and as if on cue vto highlights my point about how left wing economic thinking destroys the productive base of an economy.

      • vto 6.1.1

        It’s not left thinking, its clear and rational thinking.

        Interesting that you left my question unanswered… if the americans have been cranking up the money-printing presses then why can’t everyone else? Are the americans destroying their productive base?

        • Gosman 6.1.1.1

          Eventually, if they continue with the way they are going.

          How is what you are suggesting any different to what Zanu-PF did to the Zimbabwe economy (excepting the political violence that is)?

          • Lew 6.1.1.1.1

            The moment you have to say “excepting the political violence” you lose. Because the political violence is the whole of the problem.

            L

            • Gosman 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Ummmmmm…..no. The economic problems are not caused by the political violence. The political violence is just Zanu’s modus operandum from when they were first created. If your analysis was correct then the economic problems would have been around since 1980 when Robert Mugabe and Zanu first came to power in Zimbabwe.

              The economic problems have been caused by the left wing economic policy of debasing the currency caused by excessive expenditure AND the policy of land reform to the masses which destroyed the productive base.

              • Lew

                Gosman, you damned fool, the political violence means the broken system can’t be thrown out. That’s the problem. No such problem here, or in the US: when enough peopel are convinced it’s broken, let them elect a government who’ll do things differently. The problem with historical revolutionary socialism as implemented practically everywhere is not economic, it’s political. It’s not that there are no price signals, etc. per Mises. It’s that there’s no mechanism to fix the system, because monopoly power to put down a counterrevolution is invested in the ruling party. Fix the political dimension and the electorate will fix the economic dimension.

                Gah.

                L

          • vto 6.1.1.1.2

            I’m not saying it is any different. The results of the printing will be different though, depending on the state doing the printing. The USA prints money. Zimbabwe prints money. The results are poles apart.

            • Gosman 6.1.1.1.2.1

              Not really. If the US continues along the same path then the results will be pretty much identical.

              • Pascal's bookie

                That’s why their 10 year bonds will earn you less than 3 % at the moment. Everyone is obviously worried.

    • Pascal's bookie 6.2

      The financial system is a farce. Don’t trust it.

      Heh.

      We enacted these tax cuts, there was no job creation, debt exploded, and only the wealthiest of the wealthy profited. So tell me, Mr. Fiscal Conservative Kent Conrad, why should we not let the tax cuts for the rich expire?

      And if it is not evident to you by now, the best way to get our finances back in order is to systematically ignore anyone who calls himself a fiscal conservative. If I could find a bank run by dirty hippies I would put my money there, because I just don’t trust these people in pinstripes anymore.

      John Cole responding to some douche trotting out the typical right wing economics theme of the day/week/century.

      http://www.balloon-juice.com/2010/07/22/riddle-me-this-kent/

  7. prism 7

    Great post RL I get shocked by the Goldman Sachs top bloke getting $53 million then going up to $78 million a year because he’s soooo good. Meanwhile back in the boondocks the masses…

    These people at the top are insane. They have lost their mental reason and understanding of what life is about. They’re full of pride, only the best for them ‘because you’re worth it’. They can buy anything they want, including integrity!

    Emotion drives them. The figures and processes and academic theories can be quoted and listed and graphed and discussed but that measures the visible results of the lust drive. The theoretical recipes work – for them – they are sitting on a money machine and it keeps spewing out the readies if they keep manipulating the levers right. With higher payouts than any pokie machine or casino – why resist the addiction? How do we break through this virus of excessive desire, this addictive, exciting and rewarding (but only momentarily satisfying) dance of ambition and ultimately, destruction?

    • abc 7.1

      A few years ago I watched a TV programme that was periodically following a group of children over their childhood. One test that was done on these kids was designed to work out what values these kids had at the age of 7 years old. The results were fascinating. All the boys but one put being rich as their number one value. All the girls selected being healthy or kind. Even at that young age the boys number one value was making money.

      The problem underlying all of society’s problems is the acquistitiveness, and aggression, of the human male. The worst of the males are generally also the most successful ones- they are the ones who make it to the top of finance and politics. Unhindered by morals or feelings- all that matters is to win and they will do anything to win. They have also been successful breeders (women choose them to increase the survival prospects of their offspring) hence why we are overall so aggressive as a species

      I don’t think there is any solution to this problem of the human alpha male. You can organise the rules to suppress them for a while, but in the end they always end up in charge and then change the rules to suit themselves. It also seems to be hardwired into most of the rest of the population that strong leaders must be followed, so people stupidly follow them to the slaughter.

      Short of identifying, and then castrating , these overly aggressive males in childhood we are ultimately doomed. If women ruled the world it would be a much better place. But the only women who can make it to the top of this alpha male world are those who are more masculine than most males. Not much of an improvement on the status quo.

    • pollywog 7.2

      …dunno eh, but theres no use asking Paris. Bless her little cottonsocks :)

      “Our yacht is incredible! Has its own pool, hot tub, movie theatre, recording studio, spa/massage room, gym, arcade room, helicopter pad and the most beautiful bedrooms and decor. I’m in Heaven on the water. Definitely the biggest and best yacht everywhere we go. Loves it! Huge… Another beautiful day in paradise! What more could a girl ask for? (sic)

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/celebrities/3950557/Paris-Hilton-lashes-out-over-topless-snaps

      • Bored 7.2.1

        Polly, little cotton socks Paris asked….What more could a girl ask for?

        Maybe somebody who doesnt love her for her money or sell tapes of her having sex…..poor darling, my heart bleeds.

        Maybe Paris is the zeit geist in person.

        • pollywog 7.2.1.1

          She so is B!!!

          when Paris finally takes the stage and adds her weight to the critical mass of socially concious revolution, you’ll know the fat lady is singing…

          …thats if no one kidnaps, tortures and youtubes her final moments first :evil:

  8. joe90 9

    Win some lose some.

    The winner
    What Hari is suggesting therefore is akin to saying the outcome of the Grand National is influenced by the number of bets taken on any particular horse. The fact the winner might very well be the horse with the most bets is more down to being an educated guess by the punters, or even the result of the wisdom of crowds, than the clear rigging of the race.

    The loser
    But Ward has since watched his hoard melt away to the tune of £27m, after the price of the commodity fell by more than 4% in a day, from £2,433 per ton to £2,344.

  9. Ed 10

    References to the Banks may be better referred to as applying to the Financial sector – in many cases regulations that applied to banks were ‘walked around’ by ‘financial’ companies not subject to the same levels of regulation. In NZ we saw a number of “Finance Companies” go bust (but leaving owners nicely protected from losses in some cases caused by the greed of the owners). In addition many of the ‘trader’ or ‘intermediary’ type firms did very well by clipping the ticket out of transactions that often did little but shift money around within a larger system without adding real value to that system. Many individuals from that era were either lucky or cunning enough to get out before in many cases the pyramid collapsed.

    A good article though – and an excellent chart.

  10. burt 11

    This sounds like a post Chris Trotter would make just after Labour loose an election. The sad thing about this is that for some reason socialists seem to like living in this struggle because their one size fits all policies always seem to create these scenarios.

  11. Gail 12

    We are all collectively to blame for falling for this game and allowing the global elite to control the economies of every country through the banking system. Until people stop focusing on buying cheap regardless of the TRUE cost of that behavior these cycles will continue to be repeated.

    There IS a solution that every individual can implement:
    1) STOP buying from multi-national Corporations and big box stores
    2) STOP using credit (Neither a borrower nor a lender be is excellent advice)
    3) Support Small Local and Online Businesses whose cashflow supports local economies
    4) Be willing to pay a reasonable price for what you do buy so that all can benefit

    Big business has removed the profit from their suppliers making THEM indentured servants too and driving them to use child labor and treat their employees as prisoners. There is no end to their evil business practices and every person who buys from them shares the GUILT of what they are doing.

    Most people understand that if you buy stolen property that YOU are the demand that increases theft and eventually you will be the victim of thieves. The same concept applies here.

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    Labour | 02-10
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    One of the first jobs for the new Minister of Health must be to provide an honest and transparent report into surgery waiting times and exactly how many Kiwis are not having their health needs met, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette...
    Labour | 02-10
  • About Curwen Ares Rolinson
    Curwen Ares Rolinson – Curwen Ares Rolinson is a firebrand young nationalist presently engaged in acts of political resistance deep behind enemy lines amidst the leafy boughs of Epsom. He is affiliated with the New Zealand First Party; although his...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kelly Ellis
    Kelly Ellis.Kelly Ellis – As a child, Kelly Ellis didn’t so much fall into the cracks, but willfully wriggled her way into them. Ejected from Onslow College – a big job in the 70s – Kelly worked in car factories,...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • About Kate Davis
    Kate Davis.Kate Davis – Having completed her BA in English and Politics, Kate is now starting her MA. Kate works as a volunteer advocate at Auckland Action Against Poverty and previously worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective. Kate writes...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Parker does a Shearer – oh for a Labour Leader who can challenge msm fals...
    Sigh. It seems David Parker has done a Shearer… Like a cult and too red – Parker on LabourLabour leadership contender David Parker says Labour borders on feeling like “a cult” and must look at its branding – including its...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • A brief word on the hundreds of millions NZ is spending on the secret intel...
    The enormity of the mass surveillance state NZ Government’s have built carries a huge price tag… Kiwis pay $103m ‘membership fee’ for spyingThe $103 million taxpayer funding of New Zealand’s intelligence agencies is effectively a membership fee for joining the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Where. Is. Jason. Ede?
    Where. Is. Jason. Ede?...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Labour’s Din of Inequity
    Watching Labour’s leadership candidates on Q+A on Sunday, I noticed the ongoing use of terms like “opportunity” and “aspiration”, and “party of the workers”. What do these mean? We glean much from Labour, and from the media about Labour, but not...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • “Blue-Greenwash” fails the test when it comes to endangered dolphins
    National’s pre-election promises saw some wins for the environment – perhaps as the party sought to appease its “Blue-Green” voters and broaden its popular appeal. Some of the ecological gains were a long time in the making, overdue even– such...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • Reasons not to be cheerful, Part #272b
    Why don’t you get back into bed? The next few years — the rest of this century — are not going to be pretty. There is an obvious disconnect between any remaining political ambition to fix climate change and the...
    The Daily Blog | 21-10
  • OIA protocols and official advice ignored to hide Child Poverty
    It might not seem so now, but child poverty was a major election issue. What a pity we did not have the full debate. In that debate it would have been very helpful to have seen the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 20-10
  • Previewing the 4 candidates for Leader of the Labour Party
    The extraordinary outbursts by Shearer last week highlights just how toxic that Caucus is. Shearer was on every major media platform as the ABC attack dog tearing into Cunliffe in the hope of diminishing Cunliffe’s support of Little by tearing...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – the sudden explosion of ‘left’ blogs
    Time to Teach or more people will suffer from P.A.I.D. Political And Intellectual Dysmorphia.I was on the Twitter and a guy followed me so of course I did the polite thing and followed him back. He wrote a blog so...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Ego vs Eco
    Ego vs Eco...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • We can’t let the Roastbuster case slip away
    Those of us (like me) left with hope that the police would aggressively follow through on the large amount of evidence on offer to them (let’s not forget they forgot they even had some at one point) in the Roastbusters...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Food, shelter and medicine instead of bombs and bullets
    The on-going conflict across the Middle East – due in large part to the US-led invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq – has created another humanitarian crisis of biblical proportion. The essentials of life are desperately needed in Iraq and Syria...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • The politics of electorate accommodations
    National’s electorate accommodations with ACT and United Future were a big factor in it winning re-election. Interestingly, there is another electorate accommodation scenario whereby the centre-left could have come out on top, even with the same distribution of party votes....
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Why you should join the TPPA Action on 8 November
    On 8 November 2014, thousands of Kiwis will take part in the International Day of Action to protest the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). The rally cry for us is TPPA – Corporate Trap, Kiwis Fight Back. Why should you join...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • GUEST BLOG – Patrick O’Dea: no new coal mines
    Green Party and Mana Party policy is “NO NEW COAL MINES!” Auckland Coal Action is trying to put this policy into action on the ground. ACA after a hard fought two year campaign waged alongside local residents and Iwi, in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-10
  • Comparing Police action – Hager raid vs Roast Buster case
    This satire had the NZ Police contact TDB and threaten us with 6months in prison for using their logo.   The plight of Nicky Hager and the draconian Police actions against him has generated over  $53 000 in donations so...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Malala Yousafzai, White Saviour Complexes and Local Resistance
    Last week, Malala Yousafzai was the co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. Since her exposure to the worldwide spotlight, her spirit, wisdom and strength have touched the hearts of people everywhere. However, there have been cynics who have argued that...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • Jason Ede is back – but no media can interview him?
    Well, well, well. Jason Ede, the main figure connected to John Key’s office and the Dirty Politics black ops is back with a company with deep ties to the National Party. One thing you can say about the right –...
    The Daily Blog | 18-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Leadership Transitions In Other Parties: A ...
    As cannot have escaped anyone’s attention by now, the country is presently in the grips of an election and campaign that will help determine the fate of the nation for years to come. It’s gripping stuff – with clear divides...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • SkyCity worker says she faces losing her house
    SkyCity worker Carolyn Alpine told the company annual shareholder’s meeting today that she faced the prospect of losing her house because the company had cut her shifts from two a week to one without consultation. The solo mother, has worked...
    The Daily Blog | 17-10
  • Greg O’Connor’s latest push to arm cops & 5 reasons not to
    I was wondering at what point within a 3rd term of National that Police Cheerleader Greg O’Connor would start trying to demand cops be armed. O’Connor must have thought to himself, ‘if bloody Key can get us and the GCSB vast new...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • You can’t have crisis without ISIS
    So the new scary bogeyman ISIS might have chemical weapons that the US secretly found in Iraq, but America didn’t want to expose this find because the WMDs were actually built and made by the US and Europe, the two powers...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • NZ WINS UN SPIN THE BOTTLE! Privately sucking up to America for a decade me...
    Oh, we are loved! Little old NZ, the 53rd state of America after Israel and Australia, gets to sit at the adults table for the special dinner party that is the UN Security Council. How delightful, a decade of privately...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • MEDIA BLOG – Myles Thomas – A World Without Advertising
    Non-commercial broadcasting and media. It’s a solution for all manner of problems ailing our tender nation… voter engagement, unaccountable governance, apathy, stupefaction, public education, science in schools, arts appreciation, cultural cringe… But no-one could’ve guessed that non-commercial media might solve...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October
    March against war – 2pm Saturday 25th October...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • Whack a mole as US govt foreign policy
    Whack-A-Mole was a popular arcade game from my youth.  It consisted of a waist high cabinet with holes in the top. Plastic moles seemingly randomly pop out of these holes. The purpose of the game was to hit as many...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • In Paean of Debt
    This week is ‘Money Week’. It’s an opportunity to promote to the middle classes, and anyone else who will listen, the virtues of wise ‘investment’. The aims are to promote the mystical (and indeed mythical) virtues of saving for the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • The last 48 hours – Poverty denial, war denial and unapologetic abuse of ...
    The bewildering speed of events that simply end in Key shrugging and proclaiming he doesn’t really give a shit is coming think and fast as the Government suddenly appreciate the full spectrum dominance they now enjoy. Here is Radio NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – Mana 2.0 Rebooted
    Internationally the news is that Evo Morales of Bolivia won big with Left Wing policies But what are the chances that the Left will make a resurgence in this country? As the internecine struggles between the Left and the Right...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Blomfield IPCA letter – Has Dirty Politics leaked into the NZ Police ...
    It’s difficult to know what to make of the IPCA letter to Matthew Blomfield over Slater’s continued insistence that the hard drive taken from Matthew wasn’t stolen.  Slater has selectively cherry picked the Police referring back to his claim that Blomfeild perjured...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • ​Media release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union – Auckland move for K...
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is questioning a KiwiRail proposal to progressively relocate its Zero Harm personnel from Wellington to Auckland. “The purpose of the Zero Harm team is to drive KiwiRail’s performance in health and safety.  Rail is a...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Amnesty International – Friend request from an IS militant
    There’s always that one person, that one Facebook friend, usually a musician or event promoter, who, when you so foolishly accept their friend request, will completely inundate your news feed with copious event invitations and promotions. The person who, despite...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • NZ should follow the UK and recognize the Palestinian state
    Over the past two weeks, the United Kingdom and Sweden have made headlines through their decisions to recognize the state of Palestine. They are hardly the first nations to do so. Indeed, 134 countries have, in various ways, given formal...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • The Discordant Chimes of Freedom: Why Labour has yet to be forgiven.
    WHY DOES THE ELECTORATE routinely punish Labour and the Greens for their alleged “political correctness” but not National? It just doesn’t seem fair. Consider, for example, the Crimes (Substituted Section 59) Amendment Act 2007 – the so-called “anti-smacking legislation” –...
    The Daily Blog | 15-10
  • Hosking or Henry – Which right wing crypto fascist clown do you want to w...
    So Mediaworks are finally going to make some actual money from their eye watering contract with Paul Henry by launching a new multi-platform Breakfast show over TV, Radio and internet. This is great news for Campbell Live who have dodged...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Families need more money to reduce child poverty
    Prime Minister John Key is mistaken to rule out extending the In Work Tax Credit to all poor children (The Nation 11th Oct) and Child Poverty Action Group challenges government advisors to come up with a more cost effective way...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kelly Ellis – Don’t shit on my dream
    Once were dreamers. A large man, walks down the road and, even from 200 yards there’s light showing between his big arms and bigger body. It’s as if he’s put tennis balls under his arms. Two parking wardens walk out...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Labour and ‘special interests’
    The media narrative of Labour is that it is unpopular because it’s controlled by ‘special interests’. This ‘special interests’ garbage is code for gays, Maoris, wimin and unionists. We should show that argument the contempt it deserves. The next Labour...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Ru...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Tahi) . National’s housing development project: ‘Gateway’ to confusion . Perhaps nothing better illustrates National’s lack of a coherent housing programme than the ‘circus’ that is...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • Here’s what WINZ are patronisingly saying to people on welfare when they ...
    Yesterday, a case manager from WINZ called to tell me that I needed to “imagine what I would do if I did not have welfare”. I replied “Well, I guess if I couldn’t live at home, I would be homeless.”...
    The Daily Blog | 14-10
  • David Shearer’s ‘no feminist chicks’ mentality highlights all that is...
    Mr Nasty pays a visit Shearer’s extraordinary outburst last night on NZs favourite redneck TV, The Paul Henry Show, is a reminder of all that is wrong within the Labour Caucus right now… He said the current calls for a female or...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0
    Greenpeace 1 – Shell 0...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – A Tale Of Two Cities
    Sunday was surreal. I went for a drive and ended up in a different country. It wasn’t intentional but those days of too many literally intertextual references seldom are. There is no doubt that the Sunday drive this week had...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Key raises terror threat level to justify war in Iraq and now the SIS need ...
    Have we learned nothing from rushing into war? It’s embarrassing Key has raised our terror threat from ‘very low’ to ‘low’ so he can justify military action in Iraq. Watching him pimp for an American war is as sick as...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Socialism? in France; Austerity in Europe
    On Sunday I stumbled upon this recent New York Times column The Fall of France by Paul Krugman. Then I caught BBC’s Newsnight interview with France’s ‘Socialist’ Prime Minister Manuel Valls. Krugman notes that the Socialists came to power on an anti-austerity mandate, but completely squandered their opportunity...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • So Snowden and Greenwald were right – again – NZ Embassies spying for A...
    Well, well, well. What do we have here… NZ embassies involved in covert intelligence work for US – reportsNew Zealand’s embassies have been involved in covert intelligence gathering work on behalf of the United States, a fresh batch of classified...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – Why David Parker *isn’t* a credible choic...
    The one electoral contest this year that a Labour leader is sure to win heated up over the weekend with the late entry of Finance Spokesman (and interim caretaker leader) David Parker into Labour’s leadership race. I’d blogged late last...
    The Daily Blog | 13-10
  • Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of Balibo Five
    Media Information: Call on Minister McCully to pursue the case of journalist Gary Cunningham and the Balibo Five...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Australia and NZ actions on press freedoms alarming
    Global support for investigative journalism in Australia and New Zealand is a welcome response to law changes and a police raid, says the Pacific Freedom Forum...
    Scoop politics | 22-10
  • Call for release of French journalists in West Papua
    West Papua Action Auckland, the EPMU Print and Media Council and the NZ Media Freedom Network call on the Minister of Foreign Affairs to speak out in support of the two French TV journalists whose trial has just begun in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Court of Appeal: Dotcom v 20th Century Fox Film Corporation
    A The appeal is dismissed. B The 20 August 2014 order of the High Court dealing with confidentiality and the 29 August 2014 order of this Court dealing with confidentiality are set aside. C The confidentiality orders set out in...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Glassons Blasted For Glamourising Animal Cruelty
    Clothing brand Glassons have found themselves embroiled in another controversy after launching a new advert featuring a girl riding a bull. Animal advocacy organisation SAFE have asked them to remove the ad immediately as it glamourises animal cruelty....
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet
    Smuggling honey into New Zealand isn’t sweet Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group applauds the tough line taken by Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Border Staff at Auckland Airport. In deporting the couple found trying to smuggle bee products...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Taxpayers’ Union Responds to Joyce on Corporate Welfare
    Responding to Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce’s defence of corporate welfare , Jim Rose, the author of Monopoly Money , a Taxpayers Union report on corporate welfare since 2008, says:...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech from the Throne brings welcome focus on children
    Today’s speech from the Throne confirms the Government’s focus on children, youth and their families in the areas of health, education, youth employment, poverty alleviation and Whānau Ora; now the challenge is to ensure every child in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • John’s Job Fairs no fix for unemployment and poverty
    “John Key has clearly been looking to the US for his latest bright idea on dealing with employment issues,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty coordinator Sue Bradford. “Job fairs where the desperately unemployed queue in their corporate best to compete...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Speech From the Throne Foreshadows More Corporate Welfare
    Responding to the Governor General’s Speech from the Throne, which outlined that the Government’s intentions for the next Parliamentary term would include further Business Growth Agenda initiatives, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan...
    Scoop politics | 21-10
  • Green MP to speak at panel on Rainbow Mental Health
    Hamilton, New Zealand: Recently re-elected Green Party MP Jan Logie will be a guest speaker at a panel on the mental health of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trangender, Takataapui and Intersex people taking place on November 1st as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Evidence Supports GE Moratorium
    Federated Farmers spokesman Graham Smith's call for a 'rethink' on release of GeneticallyEngineered organisms is misguided, and instead it is time for a formal moratorium on GMOs in the environment.(1)...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Chatham Rise mining could have impact on whales and dolphins
    Wellington, 21 October 2014--Mining phosphate on the Chatham Rise, off the east coast of New Zealand’s south island, could potentially have many impacts on marine mammals like whales and dolphins, the Environmental Protection Agency was told today....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Council endorses Nanaia Mahuta as the next Labour leader
    Te Kaunihera Māori, the Māori Council of the New Zealand Labour Party, have passed a resolution to endorse the Hon Nanaia Mahuta as the next leader of the Labour Party...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Kaumatua to organise petition to end Maori seats
    Ngapuhi kaumatua David Rankin has announced that he will be organising a nationwide petition to seek support from Maori voters to end the Maori seats. “These seats are patronising”, he says. “They imply we need a special status, and that...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Announcing a New Voice for The Left
    Josh Forman is pleased to announce the creation of a new force on the Left of politics in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Public services held back by poor workplace culture
    A new report by Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Work shows that public servants are working significant unpaid overtime to ensure the public services New Zealanders value are able to continue....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • iPredict New Zealand Weekly Economic & Political Update
    Andrew Little’s probability of being the next leader of the Labour Party has reached 70% and Jacinda Ardern is favourite to become his deputy, according to the combined wisdom of the 8000+ registered traders on New Zealand’s predictions market, iPredict....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Prison Drug Treatment Unit marks a milestone
    Christchurch Men’s Prison’s Drug Treatment Unit (DTU) celebrated the completion of its 50th six month Drug and Alcohol Programme today, with the graduation of a further twelve offenders....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Security Council seat a chance for NZ to empower women
    The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand (UN Women NCANZ) welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the United Nations Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use its position to proactively promote effective implementation of the...
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Waipareira and ACC sign Partnership
    Waipareira and The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding at Whanau Centre, Henderson – marking a special day for the West Auckland Urban Maori organisation....
    Scoop politics | 20-10
  • Humanitarian aid desperately needed in Iraq and Syria
    Global Peace and Justice Auckland is calling on the government to provide humanitarian funding for non-aligned NGOs (non-governmental organisations) in the Middle East rather than give any support whatever for the US-led military campaign in the area....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Court Judicial Decision: Dotcom v The USA: 17 October 2014
    The United States of America is seeking the extradition of Messrs Dotcom, Batato, Ortmann and Van Der Kolk. The matter has been before the Courts on numerous occasions, and no further recitation of the facts is needed....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Marshall Island poet speaks at UN climate summit
    “The fossil fuel industry is the biggest threat to our very existence as Pacific Islanders. We stand to lose our homes, our communities and our culture. But we are fighting back. This coming Friday thirty Pacific Climate Warriors, joined by...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Many tourist car accidents preventable
    Simple steps could dramatically reduce the number of accidents involving tourists, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • RainbowYOUTH: 25 Years, 25 More
    In 1989, a group of young people in Auckland got together to form a support group for LGBTIQ youth. They called it Auckland Lesbian And Gay Youth (ALGY). After 25 years, several location changes, a name change, a brand reboot...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Outdated Oath shows need for Kiwi Head of State
    MPs are sworn in today and New Zealand Republic has written to MPs asking them to talk about why 121 New Zealanders elected by the people of New Zealand and standing in the New Zealand Parliament swear allegiance to another...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Council shouldn’t revenue grab from windfall valuations
    Auckland Council should state clearly they will not try and capture revenue as a result of the latest valuations and needs reminding that the City’s skyrocketing property values doesn’t change the level or cost of Council’s services, says...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • EPMU endorses Andrew Little for Labour leadership
    The National Executive of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union unanimously endorsed Andrew Little for the role of Labour leader, at a meeting held yesterday. “I have been speaking to our workplace delegates at forums across the country over...
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • World Food Day promotes Agroecology not GE technology
    The UN has stated that agroecology is a major solution to feeding the world and caring for the earth....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Labour Names Review Team
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has appointed Bryan Gould as Convenor of its post-General Election Review. He will be joined on the Review Team by Hon Margaret Wilson, Stacey Morrison and Brian Corban....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • Contenders for Labour leadership debate for first time
    The contenders for the leadership of the Labour Party debated for the first time on TV One’s Q+A programme today....
    Scoop politics | 19-10
  • UN Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme
    New Zealand's United Nations Ambassador Jim McLay on TV One’s Q+A programme....
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • The Nation: RSA President BJ Clark & Ian Taylor, New NZ Flag
    Lisa Owen interviews RSA President BJ Clark and tech innovator Ian Taylor about changing the NZ flag...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully
    Murray McCully says New Zealanders can expect a 5-10 year engagement against Islamic State if we join military action in Iraq and the government will take that “very carefully into account”...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • Lisa Owen interviews Julia Gillard
    Julia Gillard says there is “sufficient evidence” to fight Islamic State and does not think it will increase the risk of a domestic attack...
    Scoop politics | 18-10
  • NZ businesses to make child abuse a priority conversation
    Many leading New Zealand businesses have partnered with national child advocacy organisation Child Matters to participate in the fourth annual ‘Buddy Day’ - New Zealand’s only child abuse prevention awareness day....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Tribunal decision significant for SMEs
    The Human Rights Review Tribunal decided this week in favour of an employee’s right not to work on Saturdays for religious reasons. The decision may still be appealed but the Director of the Office of Human Rights Proceedings, Robert Kee,...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • On The Nation this weekend
    This weekend on The Nation… New Zealand has been elected to the United Nations Security Council, but what happens next? Lisa Owen interviews Foreign Minister Murray McCully from New York about our goals for reform, what America wants from us...
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • 1000+ supported by Te Arawa Whanau Ora
    Over 1000 individual whānau members are leading happier, healthier, more successful lives as a result of eight passionate and committed Māori organisations working at the coalface to help whānau find success....
    Scoop politics | 17-10
  • Nomination for Board Members Now Open
    CRF’s objective is to create opportunities for people from refugee backgrounds to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to every area of New Zealand society. It is an organisation that undertakes advocacy work using the strengths-based approach,...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Anglican Family Care Otago staff to take industrial action
    Social workers, family workers and support staff working for Anglican Family Care in Dunedin and South Otago will take industrial action after their employer refused a pay increase that would keep up with the rising cost of living....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Use UN Security Council role to overcome inaction and injust
    Amnesty International welcomes New Zealand winning a seat on the UN Security Council and is calling on New Zealand to use the role to ensure the body lives up to its role of safeguarding global peace and security....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Grisham’s ‘child porn’ comments ignorant
    World-renowned author John Grisham has come under fire by advocacy group Stop Demand Foundation, for comments it says trivialises the global child sex abuse trade....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Latest leak of TPPA intellectual property text confirms risk
    On the eve of the latest (non)round of negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) yet another version of the intellectual property has found its way to Wikileaks ....
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • New Zealand awarded UN Security Council seat
    International aid agency Oxfam New Zealand welcomes New Zealand’s election to the United Nations Security Council, saying it gives an extraordinary opportunity to make a lasting contribution to international peace and security and improve the lives...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • 40 more jobs lost to cheap imports
    40 more jobs lost to cheap imports Another New Zealand manufacturer is closing its doors, giving the lie to the idea that we have a “rock star” economy or any strategy for jobs growth. Wellpack is a paper bag manufacturer...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Pink Batts manufacturer to cut Christchurch jobs
    Pink Batts manufacturer to cut Christchurch jobs 29 roles are to be cut at the Christchurch manufacturing facility of Tasman Insulation, the company which manufacturers the iconic Pink Batts brand of products. The company is proposing to consolidate its...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
  • Kellogg cereal donations help the Sallies feed those in need
    Kellogg New Zealand commits 64,000 serves of breakfast cereal during World Food Day Coinciding with World Food Day this year, Kellogg New Zealand and The Salvation Army are reaching out to less fortunate Kiwis with the donation of 64,000 serves...
    Scoop politics | 16-10
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