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Jobs & Manufacturing

Written By: - Date published: 7:01 am, January 31st, 2013 - 75 comments
Categories: exports, jobs - Tags: ,

One of the many big problems National is failing to resolve is the lack of jobs, as they provide a 14-year high in unemployment – even after exporting 180,000 Kiwis to Australia under this government.  Indeed if we added them in, the unemployment rate would double to 13.8%.

It seems hard to remember a mere 5 years ago before this government with less than 80,000 unemployed – noticeably less than half the current number, even if we don’t include the new Australian residents.

More than 40,000 of those job losses have been in manufacturing.  And as it’s been found in various research that manufacturing jobs have a job multiplier of 2.9 (higher for high-tech manufacturing), that means about 80,000 other indirect job losses.  Combined that’s over 2/3rds of our unemployment rate, just by getting back to where we were when National took office.

It makes sense to have a manufacturing strategy.  Part of that has to be tools for a lower and much less volatile exchange rate.  No matter what the Herald and Steven Joyce say, that exchange rate has driven manufacturers off-shore and is driving more of them there.  Skellerup, Fisher & Paykel, Gallaghers, and many more – successful NZ companies that are exporting jobs instead of products.

It makes no sense for us to have the 9th most traded currency in the world.  And if we want to export anything other than milk powder (and there’s only so much milk powder we can make) it makes no sense for the dollar to be trading at over US80c.  The US, UK, Japan, Switzerland have all printed money to devalue their currency – we’re not on a level playing field.  Singapore and China have always manipulated their currency to advantage their exporters, and strengthen their manufacturers and jobs – the playing field has never been even.

So what do we do about it? Sit back, hands-off and tell exporters and manufacturers to work harder and smarter (as though they’re not already)?  Tell them that working some of the longest hours in the world isn’t enough?  Let them export jobs instead of products, as keeping the exchange rate high so that TVs are cheap is just too important?

That’s what I expect from National, but I’m also sure that the combined opposition manufacturing inquiry will come up with better ideas.  And I’m looking forward to seeing them enacted after 2014, and our backbone manufacturing businesses flourishing again – and along with them: jobs and wages.

75 comments on “Jobs & Manufacturing”

  1. geoff 1

    We’ve covered this before but, I can’t remember, what’s the argument for not lowering the interest rate?

    • CV - Real Labour 1.1

      Makes it harder to borrow money from overseas. And this govt needs to borrow a lot of money weekly. As Winston pointed out in his speech, Key and English have now borrowed more money than the rest of the history of NZ Governments combined.

      • tracey 1.1.1

        For real???

        This figure needs to be repeated over and over and over by opposition parties…

        How much does it work out per household?

        • CV - Real Labour 1.1.1.1

          Well I hope Winston is right with his claim…if you get a chance listen to his speech. He really sets the standard.

          • tracey 1.1.1.1.1

            Thanks will do

          • geoff 1.1.1.1.2

            Link?

          • mike 1.1.1.1.3

            Yeah I listened, really brilliant speech. Savaging Key and National. Mind you, I seem to recall him doing the same to National back in ’96, right before he joined them to form a coalition…

            “It was widely expected that he would throw his support to Labour and make Labour leader Helen Clark New Zealand’s first female prime minister. Peters had bitterly criticised his former National colleagues, and appeared to promise that he would not even consider a coalition with Bolger. However, after over a month of negotiations with both parties, Peters decided to enter into coalition with National. Michael Laws, the party’s campaign manager, later claimed that Peters had already decided to join forces with National and used his negotiations with Labour simply to win more concessions from Bolger.”

            • Fortran 1.1.1.1.3.1

              Sadly Winston is still a hypocrite, and will follow the Baubles wherever.
              And not pay back the $148,000 he stole from Taxpayers.

              Can you trust him – answer “Yes we can” or “Not bloody likely”.
              I know where I stand.

              • CV - Real Labour

                yeah, in the final analysis can you trust Winston? If he gets 6% or 7% next election he’ll once again hold what iPredict calls the “balance of power”. Could be very bad news.

                • NoseViper (The Nose knows)

                  But what makes Winston worse than what we have now and indeed what we may get? At least he fibs and prevaricates and orates with panache. I’d trade in quiff whatsisname from Ohariu Belmont for him.

              • McFlock

                Yes we can.

                He is cunning, but competent and not entirely unprincipled.
                As opposed to the incompetent, unprincipled idiots we have in government at the moment.

              • mike

                Then ask yourself which of the two major parties is more likely to sacrifice principles & cough up bigger baubles in order to take power? (Given that Labour will probably need the Greens also.)

                Another ‘mind you’ though, Winston might have learned something from the consequences of his ’96 decision.

                “New Zealand First was severely mauled in the 1999 elections, which saw Labour oust National from power. The party suffered for the rash of party-switching. Additionally, there was a wide perception that Peters had led voters to believe a vote for New Zealand First would get rid of National, only to turn around and go into coalition with National. New Zealand First collapsed to 4.3 percent of the vote, and would have been shut out of Parliament had Peters not managed to hold onto Tauranga by 63 votes.” (From the same wikipedia article as above.)

                Bottom line though, never forget that Winston’s in it for Winston.

        • David H 1.1.1.2

          Well they have borrowed (I think) about 42 Billion bucks. devide that by oh say 4.4 million that gives you a per person. So thats how many zero’s in a billion 9
          http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=1006030809051

          so we have 42000000000
          devide that by the population of NZ
          4400000
          equals
          9545.45454545454

          Just by my long forgotten maths lesson But in any case it’s a lot of money and at 10 grand pp then you could say that on Average (is what 4.2 people per house hold?) The sum owed by each household is about 40,000.

          Now tell me I can’t count. but please point out, where I went wrong

          • Fortran 1.1.1.2.1

            Where do you get your Govt borrowing figures from please.

            • David H 1.1.1.2.1.1

              Thats why i used words like ABOUT It is a figure I heard in a question in the house. as I also don’t know, and Can’t be bothered finding out the exact number of people in NZ so i I used the last figure I heard hence the words like About, average, Oh say and I think. All of these should go to show I was making a best guess. If you want to correct the figures, please do, but it’s too hotfor me to go dig thru dusty, boring, numbers.

      • geoff 1.1.2

        Thanks CV, so could the reserve bank print money to cover the extra lending costs?

        • Andre 1.1.2.1

          Greens released this today. http://t.co/QEFq0Ggt Previously unseen Reserve bank internal paper from May 2012: loan to valuation ratios limit house inflation

        • CV - Real Labour 1.1.2.2

          Sure, although we should bear in mind that the adjective “print” is a bit misleading in this context: the Reserve Bank would simply electronically credit the appropriate Government accounts as required.

          • geoff 1.1.2.2.1

            Yep, bit of pejorative and not really acurate either. i guess what i was driving at is would this be a different thing to QE?

      • aerobubble 1.1.3

        And where did it go? Sure some on higher welfare costs but welfare has a small job multiplier effect (think no case managers, more charity workers, more health problems, etc from a lack of welfare), its paying down debt that doesn’t (the big tax cut to the wealthy the pushed down jobs).

        I mean if the debt ridden were taken for a bath, the economy would open up to new entrances who would drive competition. But no Key crushes the opportunity for a health revamp of our economy that a good depression recession provides., f-ing national socialism for the few.

  2. tracey 2

    As for jobs… as part of my work yesterday I found myself reading Hansard on the debates and submissions on the Financial Assistance Package Bill before parliament.

    Sue Kedgely’s input is interesting because she refers people tot he 1990-ish debates when timber and the building industry were de-regulated. Several labour MPs beseech Williamson to do something for trades because in late 2010 and early 2011 he was being told there are not enough folks in trades… TWO YEARS it’s taken him, but now plumbers and mechanics cant afford to take on apprentices.

    I am particularly interested because this government is de-regulating the industry again by stealth. Taken away major liability from councils issuing consents and giving developments (read developers) a “fast tracked (read less stringent) process to get their buildings through.

    Unlike the designers and builders on those developments developers will have no personal liability, and as is the case historically developers set up a company purely for a development project, take the profit out and liquidate it, avoiding company liability.

    This govt’s cry of “open up land or else” means that govt intervention will see developers unfettered in their projects… more builders will carry the can over the next 10-15 years on the back of their personal liability, while developers use vanuatu and other tax havens for maximising income.

    IF directors of developing companies had to give a ten year personal guarantee (such as builders and designers now do) watch the standard of building improve… and for those who say they will stop building, is a badly built house full of rot and fungi better than none?

    • rosy 2.1

      Tracey, you’ve been putting forward some really good points on the building industry, developer liability and deregulation over the last couple of days.

      Maybe I’m talking out of turn here, but have you thought about putting it all together in a post about how you think things are panning out? I’m finding it very thought provoking.

  3. MikeD 3

    Great post. David Cunliffe’s speech in the house from earlier this week goes into this in quite a bit of depth. He just rips the government to shreds. We need him back on the front bench, urgently.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ON6vInrDbhk&feature=youtu.be

    • onsos 3.1

      I agree it would be great to have David Cunliffe on the front bench, but he doesn’t warrant that position now. He is a great speaker and has excellent ideas, but has not done the basic work of supporting his party. There is no reason for these roles to be in contradiction.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        He is a great speaker and has excellent ideas, but has not done the basic work of supporting his party.

        Interesting, then, that so many in the party seem to support him.

      • Foreign Waka 3.1.2

        This approach is exactly the mind set that gets the younger ones walking – in the opposite direction. When a person has such obvious talent then by all means use it, for everybody’s benefit.

  4. Lanthanide 4

    “even after exporting 180,000 Kiwis to Australia under this government. Indeed if we added them in, the unemployment rate would double to 13.8%.”

    Nice scare-mongering, but pretty specious.

    What has been NZ’s net migration over this same period? I’d expect we’ve probably slightly grown, or only marginally shrunk. So even though 180k may have gone to Aussie, others have taken their place, and in doing-so produced the current 7.3% unemployment rate.

    • Enough is Enough 4.1

      I agree Lanth.

      If 180,000 New Zealanders were kicked out of Australia and had to come home, they wouldn’t all go on the dole.

      They would all have to buy food and clothes (creating jobs), they would all have to send their kids to schools (creating jobs), some would want to start a business (creating jobs).

      Ben, your statement of fact that the unemployment rate would double to 13.8% can not be taken seriously and detracts from your message. Scaremongering rarely works.

      • Lightly 4.1.1

        call it 11%, then?

        How are they going to afford to buy clothes and food, btw?

      • bad12 4.1.2

        When you consider the number of DPB beneficiaries who will be forced to seek work by changes to that particular benefit and the number of sickness beneficiaries who will at some stage also be required to do the same i think the post author is being slightly moderate in terms of the numbers actually seeking work…

      • Richard Down South 4.1.3

        So, how many jobs more would the warehouse create? Or Pak n Save or Countdown? I doubt because theres a say 10% increase in sales, that they will hire many new staff…

      • aerobubble 4.1.4

        I heard that kiwis in Australia are percentage wise, more in employment, since they return if they aren’t. So add in all the extra home to be built, all the skill shortages being filled, and you get what economists call growth, populations rises cause growth. Our economy would get a boost, one longer lasting than the rebuild of ChCh because essentially all that is is a return to status quo, and the insurance funds need to be built up again, thus dragging on growth. National have good reason to delay the rebuild, the hangover falling into Labour years.

    • CV - Real Labour 4.2

      What has been NZ’s net migration over this same period? I’d expect we’ve probably slightly grown, or only marginally shrunk. So even though 180k may have gone to Aussie, others have taken their place, and in doing-so produced the current 7.3% unemployment rate.

      Not sure you’re addressing the point, I thought the question was: what if 180K Kiwi workers fled Oz and came back to NZ, essentially to collect the dole (subtext: we don’t kick out the new immigrants who have come here during that period when this happens).

      • Lanthanide 4.2.1

        Many of the 180k that went to Oz would already have had jobs in NZ before they left (at least 5 people at my work went to Oz with their families in the last 4 years, that I know of). It is likely many of these people could get their old jobs back, or jobs at the same company anyway. Also see Enough’s reply at #4.1.

        • geoff 4.2.1.1

          Quarreling over the exact figures is beside the point, the fact is that unemployment would be substanially higher were it not for the Australian job market.

          • Lanthanide 4.2.1.1.1

            You cannot and should not assume that.

            • geoff 4.2.1.1.1.1

              Oh right but it’s ok for you to assume that most of those 180k would get their jobs back if they return? Like I said below, double standard.

              • Lanthanide

                I didn’t assume it, I said it was likely.

                It’s entirely possible that if those 180k people came back from Aussie (or hadn’t left) that actually the unemployment rate would be lower than it is now. You are saying it definitely would be higher, which is an assumption.

                Note the difference:
                I say it’s possible it could be lower, you are saying it would definitely be higher.

                • geoff

                  You assumed it would be likely. I assumed it would be unlikely. I can be a pedant too.

                  • Lanthanide

                    No, I am going by the words you used.

                    If you didn’t mean to say, as a “fact”, that the number would go up, then you should not have said that.

                    Don’t blame me for your poor communication skills. I read what you wrote, if you didn’t mean what you wrote, but instead meant something else, you should have written something else.

                    • geoff

                      Fair call. I realised that just after I typed that reply but the editor wouldn’t let me
                      modify the comment after I initially submitted it.

                      Clearly I used the idiom “The fact is..” to cavalierly and for that apologise unreservedly.

                      Might I highlight a concern with your comment:
                      You cannot and should not assume that

                      You should retract that statement as clearly I can and did make that assumption.

                    • Lanthanide

                      “cannot” in the sense that there is no sound logical basis to make that assumption on, rather than “cannot” in the sense that it is impossible to make such an assumption.

                      I’m not aware of any other sense of the statement “the fact is” other than claiming (what the speaker wishes to be) an undeniable fact.

                    • geoff

                      “cannot” in the sense that there is no sound logical basis to make that assumption on, rather than “cannot” in the sense that it is impossible to make such an assumption.

                      Then what did you mean by “should not” in the “You cannot and should not assume that.” sentence? Are you fond of tautology?

                      Don’t blame me for your poor communication skills.

                • tracey

                  “likely”

                  Possessing or displaying the qualities or characteristics that make something probable:

            • Galeandra 4.2.1.1.1.2

              Lala, pedantry much

  5. aerobubble 5

    Rebuilding ChCh won’t deal to the fundamental problem with the NZ economy, that its badly run by self appointed geniuses and opposing factions who talk too much. The idea that Chch will be rebuilt and this will drag builders back from Australian (when so many homes have been wrecked by fire and storms) is dumb since the cost of transition back is high and the lower wages will mean the lower hanging builders who cant get work….

    So I wish someone would stand up and stop talking bollocks. The problem with the NZ economy is its very very rich and the speculator class run rings around the nonsense singers in the media by buying up the free press and stacking them with parrots who nail the framing neo-liberal dogma of the moment.

    We cannot grow NZ by lowering standards, we cannot increase competition by raising compliance costs (national standards – it just reduces competition and teaching time). If you stick you head up and say the contrary thing to logic, to ethics, to good economics, you get a immediate call to go on NZ TV its shallow, its hollow, its so blatant, and it costs us all MORE.

    I mean how absurd, the National party demanding cheap housing is impossible in Auckland! Its only impossible because they need to keep housing prices dear, scarcity is far too profitable, their major donors unproductive lifestyles would take a major hammering.

  6. Afewknowthetruth 6

    There is no better slave than a slave who thinks he/she is free.

    Such a slave will often defend to the death the slave masters right to own and exploit slaves.

  7. Daveo 7

    Afewknowthetruth:

    Manufacturing is just making stuff. If you consume anything then it has to first be made by someone. Like, for example, the computer you’re using right now, or the stuff in the house or office you’re typing from, or the car or bus or bicycle you use to get from A to B, or the medicine the doctor gives you when you’re sick. By all means, burn the lot of it and go live in a small-scale, subsistence economy, but don’t expect the rest of us to join your great leap backwards.

    • Afewknowthetruth 7.1

      You either prepare for ‘the great leap FORWARD’, i.e. away from the present despotic, idiotic system,or you have it forced upon you. Either way, everyone will end up RETURNING TO NORMALIITY, since the energy and resources necessary to maintain the present system do not exist. Hence, the system is falling to pieces globally.

      Have you noticed that Britain and the US have both recorded negative GDP. That is after desperation efforts in both nations to promote growth. Meanwhile, Spain, Portugal and Greece etc. fall off the cliff at an ever faster pace.

      To imagine that collapse is not coming to NZ is to be an utter fool. Sure, NZ will be one of the last places to go under. But there is nothing more certain than that it is going under.

      • Polish Pride 7.1.1

        Thats because they don’t currently have a large war going on.

      • King Kong 7.1.2

        By the way, you do realise that in your end of times scenario that people like me will be wearing the heads of people like you as hats.

        • Rogue Trooper 7.1.2.1

          will you suit a beard? Fess up raconteur

        • felixviper 7.1.2.2

          Is this sociopath (King Kong) contributing to this forum in some way that I’ve missed?

          • One Tāne Huna 7.1.2.2.1

            +1

          • fatty 7.1.2.2.2

            KK provides us with right wing intellect.
            Some of us who have the ability to think laterally mistake this for trolling, but you can be sure, KK offers us the best arguments the greedy team can put up.
            Its the well tested formula of firstly avoiding facts, then arguing with ideological rhetoric…then when that fails, depoliticise the argument with an unfunny joke that references a Labour failure from the past.

        • McFlock 7.1.2.3

          And yet if you start your dream outfit too soon, all of a sudden YOU’RE the nutter… :)

          Personally I’ve always wanted a skull goblet, but what the hey. Pre-Apocalyptic-World Problems, and all that.

        • Draco T Bastard 7.1.2.4

          Don’t get your hopes up too high. The lone wolf vampire always get hunted and destroyed by the community in the end.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      If you consume anything then it has to first be made by someone.

      Actually, the problem is that a hell of a lot of manufactured items don’t need to be made by anybody.

      the computer you’re using right now,

      Yep, I can just imagine the skilled person patiently chiseling the billions of transistors onto a CPU.

  8. Afewknowthetruth 8

    The CO2 content of the air is on track to break through 400ppm this year,

    The increase in average temperature of just 0.7oC that has resulted from the rise in CO2 content from 280ppm to 396ppm is already causing climate chaos and much loss of life, as well as massive loss in biodiversity and disruption to the food system. That rise in CO2 is largely due to manufacturing. in NZ

    The idiots who want to resurrect manufacturing (and want to persist with the global consumer society) want the CO2 content to rise faster than it is already rising and bring even greater carnage upon society than we already have.

    Fuckwits.

  9. Afewknowthetruth 9

    New Zealand’s total CO2 emissions are relatively small but NZ per capita emissions are enormous. It is only the relatively low population that permits the insanity of industrial living to go on without dire consequences.

    Clean and green. Yeah right! NZ would be one of the filthiest places on Earth if the current lifestyle were enjoyed by a population similar to that of Japan (127 million).

  10. mike 10

    Isn’t it rather obvious that when PP said ‘man’ was referring to the human race in general? Lanth your response “You don’t have to take part in the global economy.” which you’ve later qualified with “Having the means not to be part of the global economy is another question.” seems to be pedantic and pointless.

    So you’re saying that if ‘you’ are one of the small fraction of the population that has the means to escape form the global economy, then they can escape from the global economy? Thanks for that. But PP wasn’t claiming it to be a logical impossibility, he was talking generally. Generally, if you’re not in that small fraction, choosing to not take part in the global economy in the face of the myriad of societal pressures against you is a hard road that not everyone is cut out for.

    • mike 10.1

      The whole discussion that I was replying to seems to have disappeared… So this is what gas-lighting feels like..

    • Polish Pride 10.2

      yes I came on to read any updates to the same part. Would be interested to know if a mod has deleted it? anyone?

  11. ad 11

    Have the Parties who convened this inquiry committed to delivering on the findings into policy, or even in to a Coalition agreement?

    I know it’s the job of the Opposition to poke the borax and good on them for doing it successfully.

    But the convenors are the apparent next government. So what are the going to do? At very least they could commit to forming a united front against the gvoernemnt and writing common policy and, dare I say it, common strategy for leading the country beyond 2014.

    If they can’t do that them all this amounts to is a glorious stunt. And they need to have their position colelctively ready by the end of the inquiry, because that’s precisely the first line the media will ask: so what are you all going to do instead?

  12. Te Reo Putake 12

    Brighter Future Update:

    Joint media release: EPMU & FIRST Union
    Thursday January 31, 2013

    Summit Wool Spinners to close at cost of 192 jobs

    Summit Wool Spinners has this afternoon informed staff it will close its Oamaru plant, citing the high exchange rate as a contributing factor.

    The closure will affect all 192 workers at the site including management.

    Summit Wool Spinners has sold the plant to Godfrey Hirst subsidiary Canterbury Spinners Limited, which operates plants in Lower Hutt and Dannevirke.

    A closure date had not been finalised but it will be some time around the end of February.

    Members of the EPMU and FIRST Union were told of the decision at a site meeting at 3.30pm this afternoon. The workers will receive redundancy compensation through their union collective agreements.

    EPMU organiser John Gardner said that like many other manufacturing firms, Summit had been hit hard by the high New Zealand dollar.

    “Summit is the second largest employer in Oamaru and has been a part of the town for 130 years. These redundancies are devastating for staff and for the whole community of Oamaru which relies so heavily on these jobs.

    “Summit has been a very good employer and didn’t want to make these redundancies, but the government’s refusal to act on the overvalued exchange rate or provide any kind of strategy for manufacturing means they were left with few options.”

    Paul Watson, FIRST Union Textiles Secretary, said the textile industry was facing difficult times, and Summit’s announcement followed the closure of a Norman Ellison Carpets factory in Onehunga last year with 80 job losses.

    “This must serve as an urgent wakeup call for the government to be more proactive in its support for manufacturing. Manufacturers have been completely let down and workers have paid the price for this inaction through job losses.”

    The announcement comes as hearings got underway this week in a Parliament Inquiry into Manufacturing. Manufacturing is New Zealand’s third largest employing industry and has lost 40,000 jobs in the last four years.

    ENDS

    • Tiger Mountain 12.1

      Bad shit TRP, the real world results of this dirty filthy tory government.

      Do they really want to keep operating a nation state? makes one seriously wonder. F&P buggered off to Mexico and Thailand with hundreds sacked in Dunedin. At least the Thailand end is getting organised via the EPMU and FIRST Union efforts.

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  • Government needs to get Fishing reform bill passed now
    The Maritime Union is urging the Government to push through the Fisheries (Foreign Charter Vessels and Other Matters) Amendment Bill to protect workers from exploitation and abuse....
    MUNZ | 27-07
  • Womensfest at UOA
    Apologies for lateness!...
    The Hand Mirror | 27-07
  • Update on the Downtown Shopping Centre
    There’s a good article up on the Herald website today, with an update on what’s happening with the Downtown Shopping Centre. I’d suggest heading over there and checking it out. The article notes that “Precinct [Properties] expects to release images...
    Transport Blog | 27-07
  • Party Lists – Election 2014
    . . ACT Party 1. Dr Jamie Whyte 2. Kenneth Wang 3. Robin Grieve 4. Beth Houlbrooke 5. Don Nicolson 6. Stephen Berry 7. Dasha Kovalenko 8. Gareth Veale 9. Ian Cummings 10. Sara Muti 11. Toni Severin 12. Max...
    Frankly Speaking | 27-07
  • Party Lists – Election 2014
    . . ACT Party 1. Dr Jamie Whyte 2. Kenneth Wang 3. Robin Grieve 4. Beth Houlbrooke 5. Don Nicolson 6. Stephen Berry 7. Dasha Kovalenko 8. Gareth Veale 9. Ian Cummings 10. Sara Muti 11. Toni Severin 12. Max...
    Frankly Speaking | 27-07
  • I am still waiting for my cheque
    I have often said I wonder how some of the anti-science propagandists sleep straight in their beds at night. Lately this refers to various members of the local anti-fluoridation movement and their claims. Pity I am not the litigious sort – there...
    Open Parachute | 26-07
  • Yet Another National MP Spending Tens of Thousands of Tax Payers Money…
    The list of National MP’s whose arrogance is beyond measure, grows … “National list MP Paul Foster-Bell is defending a huge spike in his taxpayer-funded expenses as he campaigned for a seat selection. Wellington-based Foster-Bell’s spending increased from $7459 between...
    An average kiwi | 26-07
  • National Party Plans on Near-Starving Hospital Patients to Save Money
    Yes, the National Party continues destroying the Health system and now it’s patients with it! Article below from the ODT Warning over hospital food cutbacks Nutrition experts have warned a government cost-cutting team that patients could suffer malnutrition or even...
    An average kiwi | 26-07
  • Northcote Walking and Cycling improvements
    Auckland Transport are starting consultation tomorrow for a series of walking and cycling improvements to Northcote. All up there will be 5.2km of improvements from the intersection of Taharoto Road and Northcote Road through to the Northcote Ferry Terminal. Along with improving cycling facilities...
    Transport Blog | 26-07
  • Thankfully, Tories are ALWAYS wrong
    Back in 2008, 2009 and 2010, were we not assured, absolutely assured, that debt rising above 90% of GDP would send the economy into a deathly death spiral and lead to death?Indeed, ladies and gentlement, you had better hope the...
    Left hand palm | 26-07
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #30B
    14 concepts that will be obsolete after catastrophic climate change Abrupt climate shifts in the past offer warning for future Changing human behavior is major factor in selling cleaner cars, curbing congestion China’s energy plans will worsen climate change, Greenpeace...
    Skeptical Science | 26-07
  • French Lessons
    Aux Armes Citoyens! Exacerbating Labour's current difficulties is the unfinished character of the rank-and-file's 2012 revolution. It was as if the revolutionary crowds of Paris, having torn down the Bastille, then decided to build it back up again!“APRÈS MOI, LE...
    Bowalley Road | 26-07
  • Most politicians don’t care about elderly
    Back at the end of June the New Zealand Aged Care Association ran a full paged advert in the NZ Herald concerning a number of questions they wanted politicians to answer. They also sent each party a letter outlining their...
    The Jackal | 26-07
  • I wish you all solidarity
    On Thursday night was my valedictory speech in Parliament – the last official word of my nearly nine years as a Labour MP. Valedictories are rites of passage.  Some of us will be remembered.  Most of us won’t, until we...
    Red Alert | 26-07
  • Billboards
    We drove out to Porirua today and back through the Wellington commuter suburbs: Johnsonville, Ngaio etc. There was a scattering of billboards around, almost all of which were TeamKey/National billboards. Here’s a picture of the cluster near to where I live on...
    DimPost | 26-07
  • Reconcile this, please, Mr Coleman
    National’s Jonathan Coleman has some explaining to do. He has stated that: “Ministers had absolutely no knowledge of any pending FBI-NZ Police investigation.” The NZ Herald reports that Immigration NZ received a detailed briefing regarding the FBI’s interest in Kim Dotcom, ahead...
    Occasionally erudite | 26-07
  • Much to fight for in the Maori seats
    We all know it could be a fight to the death in the Maori seats this election, but it's startling to think that some candidates are borrowing money off their mortgages just to be able to stand at this election.It seems...
    Pundit | 26-07
  • A plea to all Labour Party activists
    Let's focus on being unfocused. Hey, maybe it will work....
    Imperator Fish | 26-07
  • Hosking hits back
    Greetings and salutations to you all. I’m broadcaster and National Party stalwart Mike Hosking and I just wanted to take a bit of time out of my busy Saturday eating Gruyère cheese and supping trim latte’s to speak on a...
    My Thinks | 26-07
  • The CRL and City Centre Office Shortages
    When the government finally announced they would support the CRL – but starting in 2020 – they listed two targets that would need to be on track to being met to bring construction forward. Rail Patronage to double to 20...
    Transport Blog | 26-07
  • A tale of two meetings…continued
    Last week I pointed out the marked difference between how many people are attending National's campaign meetings compared to the Internet Mana party's and thought a follow-up on how things are going is in order. Unfortunately for National thing's aren't...
    The Jackal | 25-07
  • We Are Not Anti Dairy
    A common reaction to our clean rivers initiative is that we are anti-dairy farming. This is completely untrue. The truth is that many dairy farmers, with a little cajoling from Fonterra and Dairy NZ, are doing a lot to improve...
    Gareth’s World | 25-07
  • Why the Super-Rich need Governments. (from Social Europe Journal)
     WHY THE SUPER-RICH NEED GOVERNMENTSDani RodrikThe very rich, F. Scott Fitzgerald famously wrote, “are different from you and me.” Their wealth makes them “cynical where we are trustful,” and makes them think “they are better than we are.” If these words...
    the Irascible Curmudgeon | 25-07
  • Four sackable offences
    We all know the National party is riding high in the opinion polls at the moment with old Teflon John seemingly untouched by any number of scandals that have plagued the government over the last six years. Much of this...
    The Jackal | 25-07
  • Another media gaffe – this time it’s TV3′s Brook Sabin
    . . Every so often (quite regularly, in fact), a media personality will say something outrageously offensive, or just plain gormless, that results in an uncontrollable  *facepalm* reaction. On 19 July, on TV3′s “The Nation“, it was Brook Sabin’s turn....
    Frankly Speaking | 25-07
  • Another media gaffe – this time it’s TV3′s Brook Sabin
    . . Every so often (quite regularly, in fact), a media personality will say something outrageously offensive, or just plain gormless, that results in an uncontrollable  *facepalm* reaction. On 19 July, on TV3′s “The Nation“, it was Brook Sabin’s turn....
    Frankly Speaking | 25-07
  • Holiday Highway approved
    Yesterday the Board of Inquiry announced their draft decision for the Puhoi – Warkworth motorway. Disappointingly they approved the Notices of Requirements and other related consents. This of course was in sharp contrast to the decision of another Board of Enquiry...
    Transport Blog | 25-07
  • Some thoughts on National’s Standards
    Regular readers of this column will be well aware of my feelings towards National Standards, charter schools and other such data-driven middle management nonsense being imposed upon the public education sector by the various financial experts, economists, business and farming...
    My Thinks | 25-07
  • Parking officers deserve safety at work
    The union representing the Auckland Transport parking officer severely beaten on July 17 says everyone has a right to go...
    PSA | 25-07
  • Let’s Change the Way we Talk about Abortion
    By Michele A’Court, ALRANZ Member (originally written for the Christchurch Press, June 2014) Two weeks ago, the Greens reignited our conversation about abortion, describing our current legislation as “dishonest” and proposing that all terminations be decriminalised. Ok, “reignited” is a...
    ALRANZ | 25-07
  • Pallet-boarding on the tram tracks
    If New Zealand hadn’t ripped up its tram tracks in the 1950s, I’m almost certain that some risk-taking Kiwi would have invented this first: Czech artist Tomáš Moravec… cut down the dimensions of a standard, European wood pallet, or “Eur Pallet,”...
    Transport Blog | 25-07
  • Out of control costs raise questions about National Science Challenges
    Amid strong criticism of the value of the National Science Challenges from some of the country’s senior scientists, new figures show administrative costs are skyrocketing while the level of investment in actual science remains a mystery, says Labour’s Innovation, Research...
    Labour | 28-07
  • Low build numbers and faulty repairs: what has Brownlee been doing?
    Despite being a man in a hurry new figures show just 2160 new homes, thousands fewer than needed, have been built under Gerry Brownlee in the last two years, say Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford and EQC spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove....
    Labour | 28-07
  • Joyce’s heavy hand stifling innovation
    The National Government should allow scientists and businesses to get on with innovation rather than allow Steven Joyce's heavy hand to direct it, Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman said today. Dr Norman was responding to reports today that several...
    Greens | 27-07
  • CERA spends almost $2m on 7000 flights
    CERA has spent $1.8 million on 7286 flights from Christchurch to Wellington in three years – a huge waste of money as Cantabrians still wait for solutions, Labour’s EQC spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove says. “Of course CERA officials do need to...
    Labour | 27-07
  • Nick Smith oversteps the mark yet again
    Nick Smith has yet again completely overstepped the mark as a minister – this time with a threat to muzzle Fish and Game if they don’t keep in line with Government’s views, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “Nick Smith...
    Labour | 27-07
  • Georgina Beyer to stand for MANA in Te Tai Tonga
    “It’s great to have Georgie on board” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP.  ”She’s strong-minded, stands up to be counted, and has fought for the rights of those who haven’t had any – and won.  That...
    Mana | 27-07
  • Green Party launches plan to protect our beaches from oil spills
    The Green Party today launched its plan to protect New Zealand beaches from oil spills. The plan is the second component of the Party's environmental priority this election: Rivers clean enough to swim in again, and beaches safe from oil...
    Greens | 26-07
  • Auckland rail use spike shows need to start link now
    The Green Party today welcomes Auckland Transport figures showing rail patronage has soared by 23 percent in June from June 2013, demonstrating both the value of electrification and the need to immediately get cracking building the Auckland City Rail link."We...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    The Green Party today welcomes Auckland Transport figures showing rail patronage has soared by 23 percent in June from June 2013, demonstrating both the value of electrification and the need to immediately get cracking building the Auckland City Rail link."We...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Puhoi-Warkworth decision doesn’t stack up
    The Board of Inquiry decision on the Puhoi-Warkworth motorway gives the green light to a project that doesn’t stack up, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Labour would spend $320 million immediately to fix the accident black spots, put in...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Key must stand Brownlee down during investigation
    The wise thing for the Prime Minister to do is ask Gerry Brownlee to hand in his transport warrant and to stand him down for the duration of the CAA investigation, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “It’s not good enough...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Puhoi highway won’t help Northland roads
    The draft decision by the Environmental Protection Agency to grant resource consent to the proposed $1.65 billion Puhoi motorway doesn't stop it being a waste of money, the Green Party said today. "The Puhoi motorway is an unnecessary waste of...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Green Party to focus on issues not sideshows
    The Green Party has launched its creative for the 2014 election; Love New Zealand. The Green Party campaign focuses on the issues where there is concern that we do not love New Zealand enough; our increasingly polluted environment, increased poverty...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Coleman must come clean about FBI briefing
    Former Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman must come clean about when he was told the FBI was investigating Kim Dotcom, Labour’s Associate Security and Intelligence spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Jonathan Coleman has previously said ministers were not aware of the American...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Regional economies need tailored plans
    News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional economies, Labour’s MP for Hauraki-Waikato Nanaia Mahuta says. “The Canpac site has effectively responded...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Kiwis to get the final vote on amalgamation
    New Zealanders will get the right to have a final say on any proposed local body amalgamations, says Labour’s local government spokesperson Su’a William Sio releasing Labour’s Local Government policy today....
    Labour | 24-07
  • Dr Rajen Prasad’s Valedictory Statement
    Draft Hansard Parliamentary Record. Subject to correction. Bula vinaka. Namaste, Mr Assistant Speaker. Thank you very much. Tēnā koe. I am a lucky migrant and am privileged to have received as much as I have from this country for over...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Darien Fenton’s Valedictory Statement
    Nga mihi nui - kia koutou. I acknowledge all Members of Parliament I have served with and I do so without rancour or criticism. Over nearly nine years in parliament I’ve found that despite furious debate about political difference, most...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Immigation and Kim Dotcom – Harawira
    “I just got a call from National Business Review reporter, asking whether there was any contradiction between my thoughts on immigration in 2009 and now, particularly given MANA’s newly minted relationship with Kim Dotcom” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau...
    Mana | 24-07
  • Nats to announce 2nd crossing without rail
    Labour Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says it has been leaked to him that John Key will rule out a rail option when announcing an accelerated timeframe for Auckland’s $5 billion second harbour crossing next month. “I understand the Government’s plan...
    Labour | 24-07
  • “They put Maori centre stage” – Harawira
    “I’m sorry I can’t be at parliament for the valedictory speeches of Tariana Turia and Pita Sharples” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Tai Tokerau, ”but I’d like to add my own best wishes as they reach the end...
    Mana | 24-07
  • ACT trying to have it both ways on zoning
    ACT Party candidate David Seymour’s campaign against changes to school zones in the Epsom electorate looks hollow given his party’s commitment to the abolition of school zoning altogether, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It’s disingenuous for David Seymour to...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Interest rate rise will hit the regions
    The latest interest rate rise will hit the fragile regional economies of  New Zealand and hurt exporters by putting more upward pressure on the exchange rate, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker.  “The regions are already hit by dropping  export...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Burning the flag or accepting the evil
    Burning the Israeli flag in Auckland in protest over the murder of innocent civilians in Gaza is nothing to be ashamed of” said MANA Leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira. “Calling for both sides to stand down when one side...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Photo op disguises abysmal failure
    John Key’s opening of four Housing NZ units in Bexley today is nothing more than an insincere photo op designed to hide the Government’s failure to rebuild the housing stock destroyed by the earthquakes, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto...
    Labour | 23-07
  • TAXPAYER UNION “outrageously stupid”
    Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says a MANA billboard “appears to have been funded by taxpayers”, and calls it “an outrageous use of taxpayer money”. “But the only thing that is outrageous, is how outrageously stupid Jordan Williams was...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Green Party launches Solar in Schools policy
    The Green Party will help schools install solar and save money on their power bills by investing $20 million into solar PV systems in schools. The $20 million is expected to:Help around 500 schools install solar over three yearsResult in...
    Greens | 23-07
  • Extent of job losses at Invermay remain hidden
    Despite growing concern in the agriculture and science sectors, both AgResearch management and the Minister responsible are continuing to hide the true extent of job losses at AgResearch’s Invermay campus, Labour’s MP for Dunedin North David Clark says. “Science and...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Tōku reo, tōku oho oho, tōku reo, tōku mapihi maurea – MANA launches ...
    “MANA is launching its te reo Māori policy this morning ahead of the first reading of the government’s Māori Language Strategy Bill this afternoon”, saidMANA deputy leader and candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes. “MANA’s policy is based on a love...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Connectivity Upgrade to close digital divide
    Labour will close the digital divide with its Connectivity Upgrade to ensure all New Zealanders can be part of a growing, more connected economy and have the right to access quality broadband, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.  “The digital revolution...
    Labour | 23-07
  • New parents deserve support – Labour will deliver
    ...
    Labour | 23-07
  • National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates
    National has refused a briefing from a group of Maui's dolphins experts, whose research shows 80 per cent of New Zealanders want greater protection for the critically endangered dolphin, the Green Party said today.Dolphin campaigner Gemma McGrath and marine scientist...
    Greens | 23-07
  • MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour
    “Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week”, said MANA candidate for Mt Albert, Joe Carolan. “A good start would be for all Labour Auckland MPs and members to join the Justice for Palestine...
    Mana | 23-07
  • We must act to save our dolphins
    A new report makes it clear for the urgent need to protect Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins while arguing  it is clear that there is no need for further research, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson.  “Labour backs the public call...
    Labour | 23-07
  • School told to manipulate national standards data
    Parents can have little confidence in the Government’s National Standards after an Auckland school was told to manipulate its data so it added up, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Valley School in Pukekohe was advised in an email from the...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Regional economies must have tailored plans
    News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional economies, Labour’s MP for Hauraki-Waikato Nanaia Mahuta says. “The Canpac site has effectively responded...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Auditor General slams Shared Services project
    The Auditor-General’s Office could not have been more damning about the 18 months spent on the Central Agency Shared Services (CASS) project at the Finance and Expenditure Committee this morning, says Maryan Street, Labour’s State Services spokesperson.  ...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato
    The potential loss of up to 114 jobs from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton is a massive blow to the Waikato region which has already lost hundreds of jobs, Labour says. Labour’s Social Development spokesperson and Hamilton-based list MP Sue...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital
    The decision to reject the proposed flyover at the Basin Reserve must be taken as an opportunity to properly fund Wellington’s transport future and must not be used as an excuse to take resources away from the capital, Wellington Labour MPs...
    Labour | 22-07
  • National out of touch with the regions
    John Key is out of touch with regional New Zealand if he believes tinkering with council regulations will restore opportunities to small towns, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “While the regions are crying out for sustainable growth and job opportunities,...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Flyover rejection a victory for sustainable transport
    The rejection of the proposed Basin Reserve flyover by a Board of Inquiry is a victory for sustainable transport in Wellington and paves the way for other alternatives to be given a fair hearing, Wellington Labour MPs Grant Robertson and...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Reo Māori Policy Launch
    MANA will be launching its Reo Māori policy at 10am Thursday 24 July, at Matangireia (the old Māori Affairs Select Committee room at Parliament). We will also be addressing our concerns regarding the Minister of Māori Affairs Māori Language Strategy...
    Mana | 22-07
  • Basin Flyover decision victory for common sense
    The Green Party welcomed the Environmental Protection Authority's draft decision announced today not to allow the $90 million Basin Reserve flyover in Wellington to proceed."Both popular and expert opinion opposed the flyover. The proposal was expensive, unnecessary and would have...
    Greens | 22-07
  • Loss Leading could destroy Kiwi lamb’s reputation
    Meat companies that supply supermarkets and sell New Zealand lamb as a loss leader in the United Kingdom should lose their access to this valuable quota market, said Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor. “Our reputation as a Lamb producer...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Ae Marika! 22 July 2014
    The big storm has gone, but the damage that it did and the saturation levels that it reached meant that smaller storms quickly overwhelmed roading, and water-flow systems again in the north. And although certain individuals are talking up the...
    Mana | 21-07
  • 2014 Roger Award nominations now open
    The Roger Award is for The Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand in 2014 Nominations are now open please visit the website to nominate the worst TNC in Aotearoa. You will need to include reasons why you think your...
    Mana | 21-07
  • Labour will revive the regions with new fund
    The next Labour Government will co-develop Regional Growth Plans for every region of New Zealand and will invest at least $200 million in a fund to create breakthrough opportunities for jobs and sustainable growth, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 21-07
  • Speech to Local Government New Zealand
    Speech to the Local Government New Zealand Conference 2014 Read our full regional development policy Download Introduction Early in my time as an MP I went for a long walk on a windswept Kare Kare beach with Waitakere mayor Bob Harvey. We talked...
    Labour | 21-07
  • Stop Israeli State Terror – Rally and March this Saturday 26th July, Aote...
     The humanitarian crisis in Gaza is getting much worse and the world is marching in unprecedented numbers. New Zealanders spoke out strongly last Saturday with a march of 5,000 people in Auckland (see picture below) – the biggest march ever...
    Mana | 21-07
  • NZ needs to assist UN with aid for Gaza
    The New Zealand Government should support the United Nation's efforts to raise money to assist humanitarian aid for the people of Gaza, the Green Party said today.The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) has made a...
    Greens | 21-07
  • Why it’s all over for the Conservative Party
    Whatever flirtations were made months ago to Colin Craig by National strategists, the polling must have come back showing them too much of their soft urban vote would walk if Key was in Government with Colin Craig.  The necessary inside muscle to...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Balance in the NZ Herald and has something gone terribly wrong at the Heral...
    So the ‘balance’ in the NZ Herald this year for the election will be… Guest columnists will include the acerbic Cactus Kate from the radical right, former Labour candidate Josie Pagani and broadcaster Mark Sainsbury. Right, so that would be...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Phew – National Party hubris seals strategy
    The National Party are bot listening to Matthew Hooton. Phew. Hooton has crunched the numbers and based on past polling National always drops 6 points come election day. National aren’t listening. Barging through the need to cut deals with all...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Noam Chomsky on the TPPA
    Noam Chomsky on the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Unacceptable secrecy around labelling people terrorists
    It’s good to see the Sunday Star-Times attempting to get more information from government agencies about Daryl Jones, the Kiwi killed in a US drone strike in Yemen.  The paper is right to complain about the government’s refusal to provide...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • A critical deconstruction of John Key – what’s behind the facade?
    Aspiring national leaders need a popular narrative of their rise to power.  Once in office, the narrative can be refined to fit the requirements of leadership and re-election.  Such is the purpose of John Roughan’s John Key: Portrait of  a...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Radio Live – off Mark
    The Top Marks lasted five weeks on Mediaworks radio station The Sound. This may have something to do with last being relevant in the mid-1980s when there were only two commercial FM licences in Auckland and they were on one...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Wellingtonians say ‘No!’ to Israeli aggression
    .   . Wellington, NZ, 26 July – About 600 Wellingtonians, and from further afield, met at the Cuba Mall Bucket fountain under a wintery sunny sky, to protest Israel’s continuing aggression in the Gaza strip, which – at the...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Shasha Ali – I am an indigenous person but I will never call ...
    Yesterday was indeed a politically hectic day in Aoteaora New Zealand, especially if you are an activist that cares about both human and non-human animal rights. Protest actions were organised to demand an end to factory farming from about noon, and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • Pro-Israel, Pro-Palestine or ‘Pro-Peace’?
    Latest protest for people of Gaza in Auckland In the past couple of weeks I have heard a lot of people say that they are neither Pro-Israel nor Pro-Palestine; they are pro-peace. This is a stand that I respect. Everyone...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • So we can’t feed the kids, the poor OR the sick now?
    Let me get this straight. We can borrow $10 billion in tax cuts over the last 6 years for the richest NZers, but we can not feed the kids, the poor or even the sick now? Revealed: Warning over hospital food...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • Kim Dotcom has said it, Laila Harre has said it and now David fisher says i...
    Fascinating piece by David Fisher in the NZ Herald breaking down how many opportunities the Government had to listen to officials and stop KDC entering the country and concludes KDC should never have been allowed in… It prepared papers for the...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • You, Me and the GCSB Public Meetings
      The GCSB and TICS legislation rushed through Parliament by John Key represent the largest erosion of civil liberties this country has seen since the 1951 Waterfront Lockout. In the post Snowden world we now know a mass surveillance state operating...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • A feminist takedown of Whale Oil
    Whale Oil does it again. How many more times is he going to attack and discredit Tania Billingsley publicly? In a short blog published on Wednesday ‘Nothing to be sorry for‘ Whale Oil also known as Cameron Slater, is defending John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Ares Rolinson – New Zealand First – We’ll Be Back
    Earlier this week, Bomber penned a missive which set out in some detail why he thought my people, New Zealand First, wouldn’t be making it back into Parliament later this year. Being a pugnacious, vindictive sort who’d never let such an...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • The changes teachers DO want
    “Oh you teachers, you just want everything to stay the same – what’s wrong with choice?  Bloody teachers.  Typical that you don’t want testing – trying to hide that you’re all useless. What about our poor kids?  Gnash gnash rant rant...” That’s...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • A feminist take down of Whale Oil
    Whale Oil does it again. How many more times is he going to attack and discredit Tania Billingsley publicly? In a short blog published on Wednesday Nothing to be sorry for Whale Oil also known as Cameron Slater, is defending John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • On so called Labour Party ‘distractions’
    The right wing of the Labour Party are constructing a narrative that Labour need to stop chasing distractions and focus on the real issues that matter and not these silly GCSB, inequality, domestic violence, media bias, TPPA issues. It is...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • Selfies: Labour’s Electorate MPs are at it again
    IT’S A LITTLE TRIANGLE of grass at the corner of Rewa Street and Mt Eden Road, ideal for election hoardings. Wandering along Mt Eden Road last Saturday morning to our weekly appointment with the brunch menu at Orvieto, my family and...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • Well, well, well – Jonathan Coleman did know about FBI interest into Kim ...
    Last years GCSB Town Hall meeting in Auckland Oh dear, the cover up and lies are starting to fall over now aren’t they… Coleman knew of FBI interest in Dotcom pre-residency decisionGovernment minister Jonathan Coleman knew the FBI was interested...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Why You Must March Against Factory Farming This Saturday, 12pm
    The rally this Saturday is critical because this is the FIRST TIME IN NEW ZEALAND HISTORY that a major party has agreed to ban all intensive factory farming practices. The Labour party, the Greens, Internet-Mana, the SPCA, SAFE and other...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Astronaut tweets photo of explosions over Israel and Gaza from space
      This is what a war zone looks like from space: From aboard the International Space Station, German astronaut Alexander Gerst tweeted this image as the station passed over Israel and Gaza in what he called ‘his saddest photo yet’....
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • When Firstline are focusing on flag burning rather than dead Palestinian ch...
    The IDF are butchering children in UN schools this morning and what’s the big issue on TV3s Firstline? Flag burning. How pathetic, and what a slap in the face to Mike McRoberts who is currently risking his life in Gaza...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • ‘Victim’ vs ‘Terrorist’
    ‘Victim’ vs ‘Terrorist’...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Petition asking TVNZ to stand Hosking down as election moderator jumps to o...
    In just a day the petition calling on TVNZ to replace Hosking as the election moderator has jumped to over 2500, you can sign it here. The defence that the Right are trying to run here is that John Campbell...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting: MIKE HOSKING FOR PM?
    Yes indeed. Mike Hosking is for the PM. And now he’s able to do even more as moderator (or should that be immoderator) of TVNZ’s election debates. Here at the Coalition for Better Broadcasting we feel it’s pretty safe to say that...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • The lie that “There is no alternative” to neo-liberal economic policies
    Supporters of President Maduro in Venezuela rally   Since the 1980s we have had drubbed into our heads that there was no alternative to the economic and social policies unleashed at that time. It even had it’s own acronym – TINA. The...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • A Kanaky tale of mining skulduggery and environmental courage
    Florent Eurisouké … still campaigning against mining. Photo: Del Abcede/PMC David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific AN EXTRAORDINARY story of mining skulduggery and a courageous struggle by indigenous Kanak environmental campaigners has been captured in a poignant new documentary,...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • UNBREAKING: The list of questions Mike Hosking will use in first TVNZ leade...
    “Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the first TVNZ leaders debate being held live in the gloriously beautiful Sky City ball room. It’s such a beautiful building boys and girls, we are so blessed to have Sky City...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Internet Party Party review
      I have been to A LOT of political party functions in my time, and they tend to be dull affairs at the best of times but what is happening with Internet MANA is something quite exciting. I went to...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Dear Seven Sharp – after learning Hosking will be the leaders debate ...
    I have to be honest, I had made the decision last night  to accept Seven Sharp’s hastily offered opportunity to appear on their show after I savagely criticised the bullshit whitewash story they did on John Key’s favourite far right hate speech...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates Wednesday, 23 Jul 2014 | Press Release This is another reminder that the National Government does not care about the survival of the Maui’s dolphin National...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Message from CTU President Helen Kelly
    MIL OSI – Source: Unite Union – Headline: Message from CTU President Helen Kelly Dear MikeThere’s only 43 days until September 3, when voting in the General Election starts. The last day to vote is September 20.Thanks heaps for signing...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour
    MIL OSI – Source: Mana Movement – Headline: MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour Posted on July 23, 2014 by admin in Joe Carolan, Press Releases“Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week”,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • We must act to save our dolphins
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: We must act to save our dolphins A new report makes it clear for the urgent need to protect Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins while arguing  it is clear that there is no...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • School told to manipulate national standards data
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: School told to manipulate national standards data Parents can have little confidence in the Government’s National Standards after an Auckland school was told to manipulate its data so it added up, Labour’s...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Regional economies must have tailored plans
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Regional economies must have tailored plans News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Auditor General slams Shared Services project
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Auditor General slams Shared Services project The Auditor-General’s Office could not have been more damning about the 18 months spent on the Central Agency Shared Services (CASS) project at the Finance and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato The potential loss of up to 114 jobs from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton is a massive blow to the Waikato region which has...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital The decision to reject the proposed flyover at the Basin Reserve must be taken as an opportunity to properly fund Wellington’s transport future and must...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Indonesia: New President Widodo must make good on human rights pledges
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: Indonesia: New President Widodo must make good on human rights pledges Indonesia’s new President Joko Widodo must deliver on campaign promises to improve Indonesia’s dire human rights situation, Amnesty International said....
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Communities in Sierra Leone turn their backs on female genital mutilation
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: Communities in Sierra Leone turn their backs on female genital mutilation While activists gather in London to discuss strategies to tackle female genital mutilation, communities across Sierra Leone have been taking...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • The Gambia: Activists mark 20 years of iron-fisted repression
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: The Gambia: Activists mark 20 years of iron-fisted repression The Gambian government must abolish the laws and iron fisted practices that have resulted in two decades of widespread human rights violations,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • A blog from the front lines of Palestine: It’s time for a new narrative
    I don’t know if I follow trouble or if trouble follows me, but somehow I seem to have found myself near one of the world’s hotspots again. The difference this time is that instead of sitting in some obscure location,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – The Path Ahead
    It’s well established that Labour has had a difficult couple of weeks. Getting back on to a successful path requires our focus to shift from looking inwards to outwards, heightened discipline, and inner conviction. While my assessment of New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Employers liquidating companies to avoid paying minimum entitlements
    Across the union movement we have seen a number of documented cases now where companies are liquidating their business in order to avoid their legal obligations, in terms of paying the minimum entitlements to their workers. The most recent example...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Carolan : Positively Controversial
    The protest in Auckland last weekend that the NZ Herald claimed was attend by only a hundred people. Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week. A good start would be for all their...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Come on TV3 News – you are better than regurgitating Israeli propaganda
    Say it isn’t true TV3 News, you are seriously bitching about this???? The leader of the Mana Party, Hone Harawira, has supported flag burning at a pro-Palestinian march in Auckland at the weekend. Mana Party flags can be seen in...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • The brutal siege of Palestine
    70 years ago the Jews of Europe suffered as much as any people can suffer. The Nazis set about ethnic cleansing and sent 6 million to their death. Today we watch in horror as Israel, the Jewish homeland created after...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Capital gains in the capital city
    Victoria University will today be hosting a public debate on the merits of more comprehensive capital gains tax—a step which taxation expert Associate Professor Dr David White considers would be beneficial for New Zealand. Organised by student group Beta Alpha...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Te Kupenga supports efforts of anti-violence campaigner
    Te Kupenga Whakaoti Mahi Patunga – National Network of Stopping Violence Services (Te Kupenga) wholeheartedly endorses statements made by DJ, Kickboxer and Anti-Violence Campaigner Richie Hardcore this morning on TV3’s Firstline about the role of men...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • iPredict Ltd2014 Election Update #28
    The chances of a fiscal surplus in 2014/15 continue to plunge and are down to 50%, according to the combined wisdom of the 7000 registered traders on New Zealand’s online predictions market, iPredict. The forecast surplus is now just 0.22%...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • TPPA is a bad idea
    “Currently New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam, the USA, Japan, Malaysia, Canada, and Mexico are still negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. Officially talks finished last August, but the reality is that they keep...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Getting privacy right in our data future
    Privacy Commissioner John Edwards welcomes the release of the New Zealand Data Futures Forum’s report....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Conference on Democracy, Ethics and the Public Good
    Conference on Democracy, Ethics and the Public Good A conference is to be held in Wellington on 1 and 2 August with the aim of starting a NZ-wide discussion about the quality of our democracy. The conference is hosted jointly...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Paddock to plate, and smart roads possible
    New Zealand’s international brand and exports could grow significantly with the creation of a data sharing ‘eco-system’ according to a paper released by the NZ Data Futures Forum today....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Ngapuhi wants to overthrow Maori King
    Ngapuhi is planning a hui for the end of the year – organised by iwi leader David Rankin – in which the future of the King Movement will be discussed....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Housing warrant of fitness little help for sick children
    A housing warrant of fitness has been promoted as a way of preventing sickness among children in poverty. The attached report shows that such a regime would have little impact on health outcomes but would come at a considerable cost,...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Upcoming Fabian Events in Auckland
    Sue Bradford ’s PhD thesis, 'A major left wing think tank in Aotearoa—an impossible dream or a call to action?' looked at why no major left wing think tank has developed in Aotearoa and whether the left in 2010-2013 was...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Senior Citizens, Not Senile Citizens
    The Taxpayers’ Union is questioning the merits and costs of the “ No car? No problem! Getting around your community without a car” brochure, released by the Office for Senior Citizens. The brochure’s purpose is to explain to senior citizens...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • NZ Troops Hone Their Skills in Queensland
    Around 260 New Zealand troops are on a 25-day Australian-led warfighting exercise in Townsville, Northern Queensland....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Maritime Union backs Green Party call for shipping lanes
    The Maritime Union is backing the Green Party’s policy to implement compulsory shipping lanes for coastal shipping, announced today....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Auckland Council Bypasses Public, Ditches Rodeo Ban
    Auckland Council Bypasses Public, Ditches Rodeo Ban The Auckland Council has announced that they are abandoning the rodeo ban on council land, put into place in 2008. This was done with virtually no consultation, says SAFE, the animal advocacy organisation....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Tolley and Coleman urged to meet West Papuan visitor
    Ministers Tolley and Coleman urged to meet West Papuan visitor Police Minister Anne Tolley and Defence Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman have a rare opportunity this week to gain first-hand knowledge about Indonesian police and military activities in West...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Minister Right to Give Fish & Game a Serve
    Reacting to Radio New Zealand’s report concerning allegations that Conservation Minister Nick Smith warned the Fish and Game Council that it acts like a 'rabid NGO', Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Government needs to get Fishing reform bill passed now
    The Maritime Union is urging the Government to push through a Bill reforming the fishing industry....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Ivory trade laws look set to tighten following petition
    A petition mounted by an Auckland schoolteacher has won the support of a powerful Select Committee and has moved the New Zealand closer towards a fully enforceable ivory trading ban....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Bilingual guide a demonstration of leadership
    “Waikato River Restoration: A Bilingual Guide” to the Waikato River that saw Tainui Waikato, Landcare Trust and the Waikato River Authority working together is a demonstration of rangatiratanga or leadership says Race Relations Commissioner...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Georgina Beyer to stand for MANA in Te Tai Tonga
    "It's great to have Georgie on board" said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP. "She's strong-minded, stands up to be counted, and has fought for the rights of those who haven't had any - and won. That...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Sir Bob Harvey
    SUSAN Sir Bob Harvey was behind the transformation of Norm Kirk, and one of New Zealand's most popular Prime Ministers. He also advised Bill Rowling, David Lange and Helen Clark, the latter as Labour Party President. Wild Westie a new...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Rod Drury
    Xero boss Rod Drury told TVNZ’s Q+A programme what the political parties are offering at this election is ‘all too small.’ “There's no policy, all it is a bunch of incremental stuff. “All too small. What we want to do...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Gerry Brownlee
    Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee Rules Out Fastracking Auckland’s City Rail Loop Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee told TV1’s Q+A programme this morning that he won’t be bringing forward an Auckland City Rail loop based on new figures showing...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Owen interviews Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey
    Lisa Owen interviews Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey Headlines: Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey suggests “we can move on some” changes to welfare for New Zealanders in Australia New Zealanders “brothers and sisters” who make “a massive contribution”,...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Flavell and Harawira on The Nation
    Lisa Owen interviews Maori Party leader Te Ururoa Flavell and Mana leader Hone Harawira Headlines: Hone Harawira says realistically his Mana Party can take three Maori seats, Te Ururoa Flavell sticks to prediction that Maori Party will win all seven....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • The Nation 26,27 July: Flavell & Harawira, Joe Hockey
    On The Nation this weekend…. With the Maori seats primed to play a pivotal role this election, Torben Akel reports from the key battlegrounds and meets the top contenders. Then the Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell and Mana Party...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Announcement of New Zealand First Candidate for Rangitīkei
    New Zealand First has endorsed Dr Romuald (‘Rom’) Rudzki as the candidate for the Rangitīkei Electorate in the 2014 General Election....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Labour Offer Len Brown a Hotel Tax
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the Labour Party's plan to allow councils to levy new 'pillow taxes' and regional petrol taxes. Reacting to this afternoon’s NZ Herald report Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union ,...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Cell phone evidence a first
    Cell phone evidence a first Evidence gathered solely from a cell phone has been used for the first time to convict a Hastings man for possessing child sexual abuse pictures. Michael Lawrence Worsnop, a 29-year-old orchard worker pleaded guilty to...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • New Zealand Aid Worker Helping in Gaza
    A New Zealand Red Cross nurse working in Gaza says she has never experienced anything like the current conflict in her long aid work career....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Parking officers deserve safety at work
    The union representing the Auckland Transport parking officer severely beaten on July 17 says everyone has a right to go about their job without fear for their safety....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Caritas Aotearoa NZ to provide Gaza humanitarian aid
    Caritas Jerusalem is providing medical assistance, food and other necessities to the thousands of vulnerable people affected by the escalating conflict in Gaza, and Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand is contributing an initial $20,000 to support the humanitarian...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • ALCP challenges parties to support Charlotte’s Web
    The leader of the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party Julian Crawford is calling on all other political parties to state their position on using cannabis oil to treat pediatric epilepsy....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Oxfam accepts cheque from Pacific Corporation Foundation
    Oxfam New Zealand has accepted a cheque for almost $1000 today from the Pacific Corporation Foundation toward recovery efforts in the Solomon Islands, following April’s flash flooding that left thousands homeless....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Draft report and decision – Pūhoi to Warkworth proposal
    The Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Wellsford Road of National Significance: Pūhoi to Warkworth section Board of Inquiry has released its draft report and decision....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • New Zealanders willing to pay tax to protect dolphins
    A report released this week shows a large majority of New Zealanders want Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins protected and they are prepared to pay for it....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Stop Smart Meters
    “The Democrats for Social Credit Party (DSC) wholeheartedly endorses the Stop Smart Meters campaign for a moratorium on installations of smart meters until the technology is proven not be a risk to health, and until home owners are given a...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Maori Roll Electors Urged to Vote Strategically
    Voters enrolled in the seven Maori electorates must learn to maximize their influence by voting strategically, according to the Maori Party candidate for Te Tai Tokerau, Rev Te Hira Paenga....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Politicians Ignore Families’ Concerns on Street Prostitution
    Family First NZ says that politicians are ignoring the concerns of families, lack the will to take appropriate action, and are happy to drag the ongoing problem of street prostitution into the next parliamentary term....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Plunket celebrates Te Wiki o te Reo Māori
    Plunket is proud to celebrate Te Wiki o te Reo Māori (21-27 July), with Plunket people across the country among several thousand New Zealanders taking part and increasing their kete of knowledge in te reo....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Coleman must quit or be sacked over Dotcom case
    Immigration New Zealand has done the right thing in distancing itself from Jonathan Coleman’s claims that ministers were not aware of FBI involvement in Kim Dotcom’s residency application, says the Internet Party. Internet Party leader Laila Harré...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Auckland Councillors, Not Emperors
    25 JULY 2014 Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland Councillors have voted to keep their ratepayer-funded business class travel perks, and considered new rules that would have exempted councillors from Auckland City's parking charges, Taxpayers’...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Cunliffe Looks Dodgy Lunching with Sex Offender
    Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig says that David Cunliffe's social meeting with a known sex offender while on holiday "looks pretty dodgy."...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Taxpayers’ Union Back LGNZ Calls For Greater Transparency
    The Taxpayers’ Union is backing Local Government New Zealand’s calls for the Official Information Act to be extended to cover the Local Government Commission. Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Lecture series to provide insight into 2014 election
    Could National’s refusal to reform MMP lead to the defeat of the government? Is the media providing voters with the information they require to make an informed electoral decision? What directions might John Key’s leadership take if he secures...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • National Rally Against Factory Farming
    Animal advocates and members of the public all over New Zealand will unite for a ‘National Day of Action Against Factory Farming’ Saturday, tomorrow 26 July in response to two recent exposés that showed horrific conditions on pig factory farms....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Women in Politics Finds Support at Conference
    Women in Politics, a brand-new organisation for New Zealand women in political office, was met with overwhelming support at the 2014 Local Government New Zealand Conference held this weekend in Nelson....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • The Government’s Fresh Water Policy – REVISITED
    Fresh water quality is the latest area to be in the sights of Gareth Morgan and his research organisation The Morgan Foundation. They enlisted a group of 16 scientists to help them review the government’s new fresh water policy....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Restoration of Post-graduate Allowances to be Key Issue
    As students prepare for the early voting that will take place on all university and many polytechnic campuses next month, the restoration of post-graduate allowances, removed by the current government in 2013, is emerging as a key election issue....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Honesty for Taxpayers
    ACT has a new proposal to make our democracy more accountable. The proposal may seem small but it could be the most significant idea in this election....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
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