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John Key: Business to blame?

Written By: - Date published: 9:39 am, September 24th, 2011 - 125 comments
Categories: business, john key - Tags:

John Key talking at the Champion Canterbury awards in Christchurch on Thursday night:

”We’re a $200 billion economy with 2.2 million fulltime jobs. In the end the thing that makes a difference is the business community – they’re the ones when confidence is high employs people and when it’s not they’re the ones that don’t and a lot of it is based on sentiment and if you don’t believe me go and have a look across the Tasman.”

Is he saying that if business had just kept the faith a bit more, the economy would be in better shape?

They’re the ones “that make a difference”. The government doesn’t need an economic plan; unemployment is because business has got a case of the jitters. If they just believed a bit more, everybody could be employed. It’s all based on sentiment don’t you know?

John Key knows. His years buying and selling currency means that of course he knows all about productive business*. And according to him, it’s all just a confidence trick.

*</sarcasm>

Although this post should be covered by the opinion section of electoral law and shouldn’t need authorisation, here’s mine anyway, just to be safe:
Authorised by Ben Clark, 54 Aramoana Ave, Devonport

125 comments on “John Key: Business to blame?”

  1. Carol 1

    “…they’re the ones when confidence is high employs people and when it’s not they’re the ones that don’t and a lot of it is based on sentiment and if you don’t believe me go and have a look across the Tasman.”

    Actually, I hear from some NZ businessmen who do business “across ther Tasman”, that business activity is more vibrant in NZ than in Oz at the moment. Aus business is apparently in a bit of a slump, albeit expecting that the Aussie mining industry will pull them out of the slump.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      Australia is at the start of their downturn.

      China is on a precarious path economically at the moment, and if China catches a cold, Australia will get pneumonia.

      BTW Key’s presumption that sentiment and confidence are all that is required only holds in a world where resource and energy availability is cheap and high. Neither holds today, nor for the foreseeable future.

      • Kevin Welsh 1.1.1

        Three negative quarters in a row for Chinese manufacturing is not good. Be interesting to see what they do about it.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1

          China already knows the answer, the question is can they implement it successfully in time. China can see that tradititional export destinations like the US and the EU are failing and they need to become more independent from them. Any why would you continue to ship real goods overseas in exchange for a river of printed paper flowing back in return (Euros and USD)?

          In recent years China has been trying to make up for the demand volatility from these foreign markets by massive internal infrastructure spending (some good, some bad e.g. the empty cities, the high speed rail which falls apart).

          Basically they have to move from a manufacturing export based economy to one where services and internal consumption become far more important.

          If China had sense they would also use a chunk of their cash holdings to create a public health system and double investment in their creaky very minimal social welfare safety net system.

        • freedom 1.1.1.2

          Gee i don’t know, what would China do if things got tight? Maybe call in the Trillions of dollars it has staked the USA and many other western Nations ? Perhaps it would sell some the world’s largest stockpiles of Gold? Or simply and most likely, China would carry on as usual as it has for thousands and thousands of years, watching calmly, as the western world heaves and grunts through the self centered idioms of the greed machine.

          Short of an ELE, China will be just fine.

          • McFlock 1.1.1.2.1

            Meh. Someone needs to buy the gold, and if people default on their debt because you called it in, you still get nothing.

      • queenstfarmer 1.1.2

        if China catches a cold, Australia will get pneumonia

        What, you mean it won’t be all the Australian Government’s fault?

  2. vto 2

    I don’t even understand what he said. He should speak clearly.

  3. AAMC 3

    Business & Government, hand in hand…..

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOyDR2b71ag&feature=player_embedded

    Based on business as usual, but as CV states it “only holds in a world where resource and energy availability is cheap and high. Neither holds today, nor for the foreseeable future.”

  4. ghostwhowalksnz 4

    Wasnt Key the one who made his mark early by sacking everyone before turning out the lights and getting an offshore job !

    Seems like he lacked confidence in his people to turn things around…… and just be a more happy face himself

  5. Craig Glen Eden 5

    This is the thing John Key is not a business man by that I mean John Key would have never taken his own money or borrowed from a bank and created a business.

    John Keys world is an already manufactured one.It is a total different set of skills to start some thing from nothing. I have watched this phenomena many times people who have worked in positions in big corporates like Sharp and Large accounting firms who decide they are going to set up their own business.In almost every case they fail, the reason they just don’t have the skills despite being successful in their corporate roles, they are not prepared for the graft and day in day out grind.
    They get disheartened pretty quick as the realization hits home that not only are they not bringing home the bacon but they could be grinding away for years.

    If these same people had say Daddy Morgan backing them they would be fine but they don’t.
    John Key is the typical corporate kid he has been successful in that environment put him on struggle street and he would fail.
    .

    • RedLogix 5.1

      Totally agree CGE. Not only are they not prepared for the sheer hard work involved; they’ve completely missaprehended how any success they met in the big corporate world was not really the result of their own talent and efforts… but a consequence of the collective effectiveness of so many people all focussed into one organisation.

      Without that collective supporting them… they quickly fail.

      • KJT 5.1.1

        They think their over inflated salaries, courtesy of the “cult of management” reflects their real abilities.

        Just to illustrate. Ports of Auckland just got a new general manager. He promptly sacked and disestablished at least two managers jobs..
        They have saved over $500 thousand a year in salaries and productivity has risen by almost a third.

    • queenstfarmer 5.2

      put him on struggle street and he would fail

      He was. He didn’t.

      • Craig Glen Eden 5.2.1

        When ?

        • queenstfarmer 5.2.1.1

          He was raised in a state house by a solo immigrant mum. That hardly makes him a “typical corporate kid” as you claim.

          • Draco T Bastard 5.2.1.1.1

            In a society that had decent social welfare – hardly struggle street.

          • prism 5.2.1.1.2

            @qstreet Where did Mrs Key immigrate from? And why – was it because NZ is regarded as a benign place for women alone bringing up children?

          • Craig Glen Eden 5.2.1.1.3

            So what, the state gave his mother a house to live my mother worked full time for hers and bought up two kids. Key is a corporate kid because thats the environment he was raised in career wise. He wouldn’t make it on his own he is to soft, this is the guy who gets the hired help to arm wrestle for his entertainment.

          • Vicky32 5.2.1.1.4

            She was a widow (hence, in the eyes of those around her, very respectable) and living in a State House wasn’t then what it is now. My Mum was on a widow’s benefit with her two youngest, and many of of our neighbours lived in state houses at the same time as Key and neither of these things was at all a big deal!In fact, there were other widows with children in our street in the 60s, and no one considered them “solo Mums” at the time!

            • Vicky32 5.2.1.1.4.1

              I’ve just Wikipedia’ed John Key, and learned that his father didn’t die until he was 6 years old, and that then his mother brought him up with two sisters in a state house. Not “struggle street” at all, really! Across the road from us when we were children at the same time – 1967 onwards, lived the woman my parents called “The Widow Bain”, a young woman with four sons.
              I know from my mother’s later experience, that a widow’s benefit with 2 or more children, was liveable. In fact my Mum resisted going on to National Super (she’d been an ‘elderly mother’ in medical terms) because among other things the widow’s benefit was more generous! (It took children into account.)
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Key

      • Zaphod Beeblebrox 5.2.2

        Didn’t Merrill Lynch go bankrupt?
        In what way was that a successful enterprise.

        • queenstfarmer 5.2.2.1

          Um, in that it didn’t go bankrupt. You may be thinking of Lehman Brothers.

          • Zaphod Beeblebrox 5.2.2.1.1

            Bank of America bought them out of their debts, as part of ther TARP deal- what else would you call it?

            • queenstfarmer 5.2.2.1.1.1

              A trade sale is the usual term – BoA bought them for US$50 billion, and it is still in business today.

              I love it that you first incorrectly claim (or suggest) that ML went bankrupt, and are now trying to redefine bankruptcy just so you have something to attack John Key with! Priceless!

              • Colonial Viper

                qstf is probably right on this count; Merill Lynch is doing fairly well by all reports.

                It’s BoA’s other activities, including their forced acquisition of Countrywide, which is going to destroy them.

                BoA has no reserves, and if it were forced to mark its ‘assets’ to actual market value, it would go under like the Titanic.

                • No actually Qtfr is not right.

                  BoA was bullied into buying Merrill Lynch by the then secretary of treasury and Goldman Sachs man Hank Paulson just like he bullied congress into giving the banks 700 billion while actually printing 16.1 trillion in give aways to his masters and now BoA is one of the five to big to fail actually failing big time with $ 53 trillion in worthless Derivatives on their books related to Europe’s collapse.

                  Greece is going to default and the European banks are going to claim their hedges with their American counterparts and that is the end of that. So not only was Merrill Lynch insolvent at the time BoA had to buy it BoA itself and 4 other banks are now on the precipice of total and unavoidable collapse.

                  All due not because of  some accidental bad loans but because of the scams they build on an unsustainable and fraudulent system which made a few individuals (And trust me John Key is just a food soldier with a food soldier income compared to the real winners here) obscenely rich while bankrupting the entire global economy.

                  Did John key know about this? Well, he was a member of the foreign exchange committee assisting the Federal Reserve of New York, a position he had taken over of his boss Stephen Belotti who shared this position with Robert Rubin who was instrumental in the repeal of the Glass Steagall act in 1999 making all this mayhem possible. John Key at the time was the head for Forex and European head for bonds and derivatives for Merill Lynch? He was right there right in the  epicenter when all this went down.

                  John Key met with Tomothy Geithner and Ben Bernanke in July. Geithner is the current secretary of Treasury and a former president of the New York Fed. He is also the protege of Larry Summers and Robert Rubin keeping Johnny boy in the loop so to speak.

                  So what do you reckon?

              • Zaphod Beeblebrox

                Can’t comment on JK at ML- he did what he could to feed his family as most people do. He did what he was paid to do.

                Just not sure how you can define the activities of investment banks in the 90’s and 2000’s in terms of ‘success’. Think you will find the $50b paid for ML was part of another set of deals, involving TARP and the fed.

          • mik e 5.2.2.1.2

            lehman bros didn’t have enough clout, with its lobbiests. ML had insiders like Goldman sachs who had an insider as treasurer.So they instantly removed the competition.

      • Puddleglum 5.2.3

        Qsf, I think you’re missing the point of the above criticisms of Key.

        He got out of ‘struggle street’ by hitching his wagon to the corporate world in a calculated fashion. (e.g., He chose accountancy as his major because he heard that accountants were the ones who dominated boards of directors.)

        Hi case is a shining example of someone getting out of struggle street by not creating a productive enterprise but by attaching himself to (and positioning himself within) an already created structure that gave disproportionate rewards to people in a certain place in the mega-machine.

        No innovation, just a keen eye for the cog that got the most oil. 

  6. Deadly_NZ 6

    Thats odd because this is what he said earlier. Not that he knows what he’s talking about. Or is he talking about just selling us to the Chinese..

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/5674399/New-Zealand-will-survive-with-Asias-help

  7. Afewknowthetruth 7

    An industrially productive economy is primarily concerned with converting natural resources into waste. Sometimes the waste gets diposed of very quickly, as in the case of peishable food packaging; sometimes the waste hangs around for many years and converts yet more natural resources into waste, as in the case of a motor vehicle.

    A service economy is primarily concerned with moving people and waste from one place to another, using rapidly depleting finite resources.

    In recent decades the conversion of resources intio waste has become increasingly donminated by large corporations, which have become so powerful they now write most of the rules, either directly or via ‘donations’ to political parties.

    According to orthodox economic theory, the faster an economy converts natural resources into waste the better off we all are (even if we render the planet we live on uninhabitable for our progeny in the long term).

    This insane system will continue to operate until:

    a) the resources necessary to run the system are no longer available ( We are rapidly reaching that point.)

    or

    b) people wake up to the fact that everything ‘official’ is insane and Orwellian, and is founded on fabrications and lies. (Judging by the nonsense that is posted on this forum by some people and by what is going on in society, there is little evidence that people are bothering to become informed or are waking up.)

    Clearly, those who benefit most [in the short term] from the present bizarre set of economic and social arrangements will continue to lie to the general public in order to maintian the ‘trickle up effect’ which provides them with their totally unwarranted benefits….. John Key being a prime example (along with all his cronies).

    Therefore, we are now seeing billboards all around town telling us to vote for these cretins because they are ‘building a brighter future’ (the same old trick of neuro-linguistic programming that has worked so well in the past).

    Unfortunately, the uninformed masses who don’t think for themselves or can’t think for themselves will vote for these cretins (or other cretins with similar ideas).

    • KJT 7.1

      I think its more because we treat 00’s on a computer as if they were real resources.

      Until it gets to the stage where the 0’s becomes too large a part of the economy and they have to fall back on taking from the real producers to sustain the ponzi scheme. Then! it becomes obvious that the amount of real resources, that can be sustainably utilised, do not match the number of 0’s.

      • Oscar 7.1.1

        The banks were the first industries in the world to realise the value of computers – It became super easy to put another 0 on the end of what they (didn’t) have in gold resources.

        If we had someone with balls as a Finance Minister prepared to call on the banks and ask them for their total resources in all cash/gold/stocks and bonds, and compared that to their debt exposure, the entire fractional reserve banking system would crumble overnight.

        The removal of the gold standard started the inevitable decline, hence why this world no longer relies on cash, indeed, it’s all debt and assets.

        Methinks we should adopt the ‘silver’ standard as a way to effectively halve the wealth overnight of the top 1% and I daresay that the cost of living would drop correspondingly.

        10 years ago, a 2L jug of beer cost 3.50$ where the minimum wage was 9$. Still left 5.50$ to spend on a pie to blow on while walking home.
        Now a 2L jug of beer doesn’t come cheaper than 12$ and the minimum wage is $13. What gives? Pies are about $3.50 too so a good 1.5 hours of work just to get some beer and a pie is fundamentally wrong.

        Sometimes I wonder if we actually did drop the minimum wage right down to $2 an hour, whether or not the multinationals would go, “uh oh, guess we can’t make people work for 52 weeks just to afford an ADIDAS top. Perhaps 10 weeks is more realistic” /sarc.

  8. Adrian 8

    I’ve just come from town where I was speaking to 20-something nephews and nieces and they are pissed off. They got jobs, burger flipping etc, ( theres nothing else out there), but a fuulltime promise very quickly turns into a dimminished hours partimer. These kids (and adults I also know of ) are officially employed but are in fact under-employed. Why? Because it’s cheaper and easier to get rid of them? But how can it be, more workers doing less hours must surely mean there is more paperwork, ACC, Tax etc? There is a real growing anger amongst the young about being pissed around with. I know of kids being made bankrupt because of stand downs after part time work dries up means there is a 13 week stand down and so they never get a benny and they can’t pay rent ( or continue to pay rent under a contract ) hence being sued for hundreds of rent they will never be able to pay. One 20 year old only owes $1200, made up of rent and a training course that the authorities reneged on and so faces a bankruptcy hearing. For $1200 fucking dollars!

    • millsy 8.1

      I for the life of me dont see the point of the 13 weeks stand down period. It seems to me to be punishement for something that really wasant ones fault.

      • Colonial Viper 8.1.1

        Labour should have sliced that stand down period right back. Maybe to zero.

      • KJT 8.1.2

        Makes employees more willing to tolerate exploitation and sadism from the boss.

        Also the reason why benefits have been cut since the 80’s.

        • Oscar 8.1.2.1

          Stand down period is between 14 – 16 weeks depending on who you talk to at WINZ – even they don’t know the real period.

          As my partner said “might as well be dead if you lose your job”

          • RedLogix 8.1.2.1.1

            Yup.. one of our tenants is in their stand-down period now. No cash, no rent.

            No point in trying to evict them cos they can’t get another place, so I get to pay the mortgage out of my own pocket. Afterwards I’ll get no thanks, they’ll never be able to afford the back rent and it’ll all end in tears just the same. But if I don’t pursue it and the others find out they’ll all try it on … bugger it’s so damned bleak and predicatable.

      • prism 8.1.3

        @millsy It is all part of a deep seated belief that people wanting benefits are not prepared to look to their own resources and are turning to the government for a handout when they could organise something for themselves and stand proud, individual, manage their own lives, never ask for help from anyone, make their own way in the world without props etc. etc. All convenient propaganda and slogans as an excuse for creating a fragile and unbalanced trading economy that favours the wealthy.

    • KJT 8.2

      McD’s gets a subsidy for “training” unemployed for three months. After that the incentive is there to encourage staff to leave, by reducing their hours, so they can take on another subsidised “trainee”.

      Most McD’s permanent staff locally are only guaranteed 12 hours a week, but are expected to be available at short notice. Because of the irregular hours, their staff, especially young women, have to be subsidised by their parents to get to work.

      Far too many other employers are getting away with the same crap.

      A teenager who was illegally dismissed from another job, not McD’s is currently living with us as he has no money until the stand down is completed. Also. WINZ will not even talk to him without photo ID. Which costs at least $120 to get. Pub card. Which requires a birth cert and a passport photo. He doesn’t want us to pursue the illegal dismissal because we live in a small town and he is finding it hard enough to find another job as it is.

      Don’t even get me started on the farmers and orchards who like to employ immigrants, because they can be treated as virtual slaves until they get residency.

      Or the business owners who bleat to immigration they cannot get New Zealanders. When the reality is they do not want to pay or train people.

      How are people going to support new business when they are not even paid enough for food, housing and transport.

      Why should wage earners and small business owners, who are working their guts out, be making only enough to survive.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.2.1

        Why should wage earners and small business owners, who are working their guts out, be making only enough to survive.

        That’s typical capitalism – pay the workers as little as possible so as to boost the amount the capitalists can put into their pockets.

      • oftenpuzzled 8.2.2

        Thanks for comment these issues need far more publicity then they are presently getting, we are not hearing about them thru media, mind you most media is controlled by Fairfax any how and they couldn’t care less. How do we get this info into the public domain to wake people out of their closed state of mind?

      • Descendant Of Smith 8.2.3

        I ran into a guy yesterday who had been sitting out his 13 week stand-down that he believed he must get for losing his job due to being laid off as there was no work.

        This of course is not correct and I’ve encouraged him to go and apply on Monday. He’s not convinced though cause he’d rather believe what all his mates tell him.

        With the work that is done by my wife in the disability sector it gets most frustrating when incorrect information is provided, particularly as many of her clients have intellectual disabilities and get very stressed and worried, so every now and then I put my old advocacy hat back on and help her out with information.

        I’ve on the odd occasion done the same here as well. It’s a serious problem IMHO that bad advice and wrong mythology perpetuates cause it causes real people unnecessary hardship. The other favourite is that you have to spend all your money first. I’ve seen people spend their $50,000 redundancy pay and not apply cause they believed some idiot union delegate who told them that.

        For what it’s worth my bits of advice are as follows:

        1. Here’s the policy link to stand-downs for leaving your job.

        http://www.workandincome.govt.nz/manuals-and-procedures/income_support/main_benefits/unemployment_benefit/unemployment_benefit-263.htm

        2. WINZ must take into account both the employers and the employees reason for dismissal BEFORE making a decision. You can not be imposed a stand-down if the reason you left was “good and sufficient”.

        3. They can’t give you a stand-down unless you actually apply and this decision must be put in writing and you can appeal it. Never accept someone simply telling you you can’t get benefit for 13 weeks because you lost your job. Always apply.

        4. If a stand-down for voluntary unemployment is applied you must be offered a re-compliance activity. If they can’t offer you one then organise your own e.g. doing charity work and get them agree to it.

        The compliance activity certainly means you can get a benefit and have money to live off.

        Also it’s common to confuse stand-down period which is normally one week with entitlement date which doesn’t occur until you stop being paid e.g. you may finish work today but you get 30 days holiday pay so your entitlement date is 31 days in the future. Most people tend to think how long do I have to wait as the stand-down period which while colloquially logical is not quite correct.

        Anyway I tend to use the MAP links when giving advice as they are the policy that staff have to follow – pamphlets etc don’t give the same level of detail.

        Hope this helps.

        • Descendant Of Smith 8.2.3.1

          Just reading the policy again if you are/ become unwell you can also go on Sickness Benefit. The voluntary unemployment stand-downs don’t apply there – at least not as yet.

        • Vicky32 8.2.3.2

          2. WINZ must take into account both the employers and the employees reason for dismissal BEFORE making a decision. You can not be imposed a stand-down if the reason you left was “good and sufficient”.
          3. They can’t give you a stand-down unless you actually apply and this decision must be put in writing and you can appeal it. Never accept someone simply telling you you can’t get benefit for 13 weeks because you lost your job. Always apply.
          4. If a stand-down for voluntary unemployment is applied you must be offered a re-compliance activity. If they can’t offer you one then organise your own e.g. doing charity work and get them agree to it.

          Wow, valuable information DoS! I hadn’t known any of that… :)

      • prism 8.2.4

        @KJT Case histories like this would be compiled as evidence of the real sort of NZ we are living in though some people manage to avoid the rough side themselves, and ignore the reality for others who actually can not be blamed for their own circumstances, though that would be the wish of the comfortable.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.3

      But how can it be, more workers doing less hours must surely mean there is more paperwork, ACC, Tax etc?

      That’s what computers are for. All these people complaining about “red tape” are scaremongers and nothing more.

      There is a real growing anger amongst the young about being pissed around with.

      Good. The rest of need to as well. We’ve let the capitalists have their way for far too long and it’s costing us far too much.

    • prism 8.4

      @Adrian I think this story needs to be told in capitals.

  9. KJT 9

    Hasn’t anybody noticed yet.
    Whenever a more Neo-liberal Government is in power, business gets the jitters.

    It happened in 1987, the 1990’s and 2009.

    That is because real business people, not corporate hacks and gamblers in existing assets, know a low wage economy cannot support real business.

  10. Well, he is right of course! As long as we believe the bankster’s crap they’ll get richer and the rest will get poorer.
    Here is the excellent Max Keiser with the magnificent Stacy Herbert: Financial war and the bankster’s scams explained
     

  11. Bored 11

    Fucking Key, the gambler from the trading floor using other peoples money, not his own, placing bets..what a wanker to tell people who have to set profit and loss for their business, do actual sales, actually deliver etc that it is a matter of confidence. What a scumbag.

  12. Thomas 12

    Ben Clark: What are you complaining about? Pray tell us, what drives the economy if it isn’t confidence?

    Don’t underestimate the value of confidence. Heck, money is just paper without confidence in its value.

    Businesses won’t hire if they expect the economy to tank next year. Employing someone is a long-term commitment. But if they expect business to be steady they will invest in hiring someone. That’s why confidence matters.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      Don’t underestimate the value of confidence. Heck, money is just paper without confidence in its value.

      You’ve hit the nail on the head there.

      Fiat money is intrinsically worthless.

      And when people see the Fed, the Swiss National Bank, the Chinese, the ECB printing the shit at full steam ahead while they go along with the bankrupting of sovereign nations like Greece/Ireland/Spain/Italy (with France being next on the list), how are people supposed to have any ‘confidence’?

      • Thomas 12.1.1

        CV: You somehow managed to hit the hand you were holding the hammer with. I think you should lead the way: Go to your bank. Withdraw your savings. Set them on fire.

        Economics is a social science. The drivers of the economy are people and their beliefs and actions. Economic predictions can be a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you predict that the economy will collapse, people will “hunker down”, stop spending as much, and avoid risk; consequently, businesses lose income, investment slows down, and the economy slows down.

        The recession wasn’t caused by a natural disaster. It wasn’t caused by resources running out. It wasn’t caused by a war. And it wasn’t caused by political action. The major cause was a domino effect in people’s beliefs.

        If people lose confidence in a currency (fiat or gold), it collapses. If people lose confidence in a company, its share price drops. If people lose confidence in their job security, they buy less. If people lose confidence in a bank, a bank run ensues. If people lose confidence in the economy, they won’t create jobs.

        I’m glad that John Key understands this. For those that don’t understand this, the ups and downs of the economy will be an eternal mystery.

        • Colonial Viper 12.1.1.1

          Thomas appears to believe that the economy = the financial markets = psychology.

          Well you are full of it like the rest of the neoliberal economic banksters who have been gaming the system for the benefit of the top 1%, leaving the other 99% as debt serfs and wage slaves.

          • Thomas 12.1.1.1.1

            And CV thinks the economy is a conspiracy that has absolutely nothing to do with people and their actions.

            • Colonial Viper 12.1.1.1.1.1

              Conspiracies imply secrecy.

              But the shunting of GDP growth into corporate profits and shareholder dividends, and away from employment and wages, has been obvious for all to see.

        • Puddleglum 12.1.1.2

          Thomas, apart from aspects of some branches of theorising (e.g., economic psychology, evolutionary economics) economics is neither a behavioural nor social science.

          In fact, strictly speaking economics is empiricist (not empirical) in ideological orientation and its ‘theory’ amounts to a logical model (rather than a psychological or sociological – i.e., scientific – model) of human action (see Hayek, von Mises, etc. and Popper’s clear explanation of the logical character of the economic model of his friend Hayek). 

          The view that beliefs and preferences drive behaviour is now well and truly outdated in the cognitive sciences. Cognitive mechansims are seen to be developmentally produced and a lot of theorising, currently, emphasises the evolved and embodied nature of cognition as well as its susceptibility to social situations. 

          Certain conditions ‘drive’ the forms of cognition supposedly ‘held’ by individuals.

          Connecting all of this to the focus of the post, the insightful question is not “how do individuals’ confidence and beliefs drive the economy?” but, instead, “what sorts of economic arrangements and circumstances include expressions of more or less confidence, and beliefs A, B and C rather than D, E and F by individuals?” 

          This is clearly well over Key’s head. Simplistic – and largely tautological – nonsense about ‘beliefs’ and ‘confidence’ nicely excuses any serious thinking about the processes involved. 

        • mik e 12.1.1.3

          Thomas what your saying is capitalism is one big confidence trick.Which the tax payer bails out every time it runs out of steam [Tanks], communism you would call that I suppose.

      • Thomas 12.1.2

        As for printing money, a crude explanation is as follows.

        If people have confidence in money, then ‘printing money’ increases confidence. So printing money can help mitigate a recession.

        In a recession, people are unwilling to spend money. Everyone tries to hoard money, which makes money scarce. This is a chain reaction. The more scarce money gets, the more people try to hoard it, the more scarce it gets, etc. That chain reaction was one of the main drivers of the great depression.

        Printing money tries to break the cycle by making money less scarce.

        But you can only push this technique so far. Eventually people lose too much confidence in money, they don’t save, and the economy ‘overheats’.

        The purpose of monetary policy is to strike the right balance. NZ monetary policy is excellent—world-leading in fact.

        • Colonial Viper 12.1.2.1

          More nonsense from Thomas.

          Who has conveniently forgotten to mention that the new money that the Fed has printed has gone solely to one tiny group in the economy: the tight group of banksters who are the Fed’s Primary Dealers.

          Put it another way – the banks got the money, leveraged off that printed money to make huge bets against the economy, and have now left the rest of us in a situation worse than that of 2007/2008.

          You have no idea lameass.

        • Bored 12.1.2.2

          Hello Thomas, you must be the latest newbie on this site to recommend a BAU approach that backs blindfolded bravely into the future, blithely ignoring the cliff you refuse to see. Enjoy the drop.

          A minor recommendation is that you prepare for a future where the paradigms you obviously hold dear are rendered obsolescent by any number of factors you seem ignorant of, such as peak bloody everything, and international total insolvency.

        • Zaphod Beeblebrox 12.1.2.3

          World Leading implies creative, original and prescient. I’m struggling to see how anything the RBNZ does could have those descriptions.

          Remember these were the guys who raised interest rates last year in anticipation of the CC Rebuild/RWC boom we were going to get this year.

          Following the failed IMF prescriptions really shows how poorly we are served.

        • Liberal Realist 12.1.2.4

          @ Thomas

          “That chain reaction was one of the main drivers of the great depression.”

          Call and margin loans were the major causes of the great depression, it had little to do with investor confidence.

          During the Crash of 1929 preceding the Great Depression, margin requirements were only 10%. Brokerage firms, in other words, would lend $9 for every $1 an investor had deposited. When the market fell, brokers called in these loans, which could not be paid back.

          • Colonial Viper 12.1.2.4.1

            During the Crash of 1929 preceding the Great Depression, margin requirements were only 10%. Brokerage firms, in other words, would lend $9 for every $1 an investor had deposited. When the market fell, brokers called in these loans, which could not be paid back.

            In other words, market participants were often leveraged 9:1 prior to the Great Depression. For every dollar the stock market dropped in 1929, those players lost $9. And so it turned into a blood bath.

            Guess what. The largest banks in the world are now leveraged at between 25:1 and 40:1.

            They’re royally fucked. And for the last 3 years, all they and their government cronies have been trying to do is to impoverish entire countries, trying to make tax payers pay for bank losses caused by their insane levels of leverage.

            • Liberal Realist 12.1.2.4.1.1

              CV quite correct.

              The fractional reserve banking system and lax or non existent regulation of the financial system created conditions that have allowed the largest transfer of public wealth into private hands in human history.

              Private (toxic) debt driven from complex derivatives such as ‘options’ all of a sudden become public liability whilst the banksters continue to collect huge bonuses paid for with public money.

              Now we have a situation where the sovereign debt burden is being placed firmly on the shoulders of the tax payer in the form of reduced living standards (austerity), all while the gears of the global ponzi scheme continue to turn.

              • Bored

                When it all colllapses the digits in databases and the slips of promisary paper will be worthless: if you cant pay the heavies because you have nothing tradable to give them, they wont enforce obligations with their fists….so the “rich” will be one with us (the “poor”). What a mess.

    • Thomas 12.2

      I’m still waiting for Ben Clark (or anyone else) to explain what, if not business confidence, makes a difference to job creation. Perhaps someone can postulate an alternate explanation for the phenomenon of a “jobless recovery”.

      This post doesn’t actually rebut John Key’s statement; it’s just a bunch of hot air.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.2.1

        And I’m still waiting for someone to explain why we’re being held to ransom by the banksters. We have the resources that would allow us to ensure that everyone can have a good living standard but, for some reason, we let the banksters and the capitalists control those resources for their benefit rather than us controlling them for everyone’s benefit.

        • Thomas 12.2.1.1

          Presumably you keep your money in a bank. If so, you should ask yourself the question. Why did you willingly give your money to the bankers?

          • Draco T Bastard 12.2.1.1.1

            Was it willingly or was it because I had no choice? It’s impossible to operate in our society now without a bank account.

            Besides – I was talking about resources, not money.

            • Thomas 12.2.1.1.1.1

              Money and resources are interchangeable—you can sell resources for money and buy them for money.

              And I don’t buy the argument that you are ‘forced’ to use a bank. You can at least minimise your bank usage. Keep your savings in a vault at home or invested in something else. Just use your bank when you really need to.

              Well? What’s stopping you?

              • Colonial Viper

                Money and resources are interchangeable—you can sell resources for money and buy them for money.

                No you idiot, money and resources are not “interchangeable”, they are exchangeable.

                Just try stuffing your Porshche petrol tank with dollar notes and see how “interchangeable” with petrol that money is.

              • Draco T Bastard

                And I don’t buy the argument that you are ‘forced’ to use a bank.

                I’ll tell you some of what will happen if you try it:

                1.) Your employer will refuse to pay in cash (This applies to WINZ as well – you must have a bank account to receive any government assistance that you’re entitled to)
                2.) When shopping around for the best deals you will find that you can’t access most of them (this doesn’t seem important but do remember that we’re supposed to be this maximising entity getting the best deals rather than paying the most)
                3.) When you go on holiday you better make sure that you carry enough to cover unexpected breakdowns etc – and when you get robbed be prepared to hitch home (be difficult from overseas).

                Sure, in theory you can do without a bank account – in reality though, na, you can’t.

                And minimising bank usage isn’t the same as not being forced to have a bank account.

          • Colonial Viper 12.2.1.1.2

            Time to nationalise the utility aspects of banking, and for governments to take back control of the supply of money into the economy.

            • Zaphod Beeblebrox 12.2.1.1.2.1

              In NZ this is inevitable. The government will be taking over re-insurance in NZ (despite Brownlee’s denials) and I’m pretty sure they will be needing to counter the withdrawal of the big 4 Aussie banks when NZ is deemed too risky to lend to.

              Then again creating own money and not buying it off the Europeans and US banks- would taht be such a bad thing?

            • Liberal Realist 12.2.1.1.2.2

              Time to nationalise the reserve bank and take back control of our money supply.

      • AAMC 12.2.2

        ‘Perhaps someone can postulate an alternate explanation for the phenomenon of a “jobless recovery”.’

        Greed!

        Another crucial factor in the “jobless recovery” is globalisation. The jobs go to the cheapest supplier, China, Thailand, Cambodia, not America, Britian, NZ et al.

        You can not seriously contend that the recession is the byproduct of a “domino effect of people’s beliefs”, in 2007 people had endless confidence in seemingly endless and cheap debt, they bought big TV’s and houses they couldn’t afford. And all the while the financial industry was inventing new ways to make money insuring against default.

        The drop in confidence was the result of the ponzi scheme falling over, the artificial bubble bursting.

        Your dreaming Thomas!

        Prosperity without growth.
        http://www.sd-commission.org.uk/data/files/publications/prosperity_without_growth_report.pdf

        • Colonial Viper 12.2.2.1

          Maybe Thomas thinks that if you can medicate enough people with antidepressants and ‘uppers’ that the economy will start booming once again.

          Lets be clear – the kind of growth we have left in our current economic arrangements only helps the top 1% of people.

          Corporations now find it far more profitable NOT to hire staff, and NOT to expand operations in western countries.

          After all, why would you expand into countries where the middle class and their discretionary spending power was collapsing?

          The growing wealthy middle class is located in China and India. That is where multinationals (who after all by definition have no loyalty to any one country) are focussing now.

        • Thomas 12.2.2.2

          AAMC: So let’s indulge in your fantasy world:

          The capitalist overlords are greedy. They want more. So they hire more slaves to work for them. And that’s why there are so few jobs… oh wait.

          It is in no one’s interest to have high unemployment.

          Sure there is a first domino. But the size of the recession is out of proportion with the crisis in 2007. The key amplifier is panic.

          You’re dreaming!

          • Colonial Viper 12.2.2.2.1

            It is in no one’s interest to have high unemployment.

            Yes it is. Corporations restructure and layoff staff to boost earnings, and usually shareholders respond by boosting share prices.

            So your statement is plain ignorant.

          • AAMC 12.2.2.2.2

            I’ll concede that of coarse confidence plays an important part in the equation, but you are the one who’s dreaming if you won’t concede that the constant drive for further efficiency and larger short term profit doesn’t play an equal or greater part of the cause of unemployment. Which decreases demand.

            “The capitalist overlords are greedy. They want more. So they hire more slaves to work for them. And that’s why there are so few jobs… oh wait.” There are lots of slaves in Asia, who are really cheap, so we can increase our pile of gold if we make our local workforce redundant.

            Western jobs now reside in Asia! And the kicker, as we (all WASP nations) have demonized Government and underfunded institutions, China and India have been educating millions, and so we now compete with them not only for unskilled but also for skilled jobs.

            A reminder of where this crisis began…
            http://english.aljazeera.net/programmes/meltdown/2011/09/2011914105518615434.html

      • prism 12.2.3

        @Thomas It is sad to hear of someone throwing himself out of a sixth floor window in Seoul. The head of a a bank or large institution had just discovered that confidence alone is insufficient to run a business on and when his confidence left him, there was nothing substantial behind him to face reality with.

      • mik e 12.2.4

        Thomas your name must be Rumpelstiltskin.for the last 20 to 30 years the giant multinational corporations have exported the jobs to the cheapest places to manufacture. They are not coming back.Unless you expect everyone to work for 50cents an hour in sweatshops.Buying locally made might be a good start I buy as much as possible locally from banking to clothing, Earth Sea and Sky makes top of thew line outdoor and casual wear thats about half the price of its competitors.

    • AAMC 12.3

      “Pray tell us, what drives the economy if it isn’t confidence?”

      Demand! No jobs, no earnings, no demand = no confidence. The pursuit of efficiency and short term profit result in unemployment, unemployment reduces demand, a lack if demand reduces confidence and round and round we go.

      But we need prosperity without growth, otherwise we have great business confidence, and my kids end up with no planet.

      • Thomas 12.3.1

        And what drives demand?

        If you think you will lose your job later this year, you won’t buy as much. If you think you’ll get a promotion later this year, you’ll buy more.

        Confidence drives demand.

        • AAMC 12.3.1.1

          Confidence is a factor in demand.

          As is income, affordable food that hasn’t been inflated by commodities markets and affordable housing.

          • Thomas 12.3.1.1.1

            Excellent, you accept that confidence is a factor.

            Of course it isn’t the only factor. But remember, the recession is about demand shrinking by a few percent. So, even if confidence is only a minor factor, that is enough to make a big difference.

            • Colonial Viper 12.3.1.1.1.1

              The problem is that Key doesn’t get that its only a minor factor, and these days very secondary.

              The concentration of wealth amongst a very few, hyper-financialisation of the real economy and offshoring of decent paying jobs is what has been driving confidence downwards amongst everyone who is not in the top 1%.

            • AAMC 12.3.1.1.1.2

              I accept that confidence is perhaps an amplification and a symptom of a much more complex problem.

              But lets indulge YOUR fantasy. Lets say for a moment confidence is THE main factor. What has been destroying peoples confidence? The current economic narrative revolves around debt, default and Austerity. This is a meme that National has capitalized on – despite our relatively low public debt to GDP ratio in comparison to the PIGS or the US – and used to justify it’s borrowing and it’s cuts.

              Do you then acknowledge Thomas, that John Key and the National party and the narrative they’ve propagated are responsible for the drop in confidence?

            • Puddleglum 12.3.1.1.1.3

              Thomas, you’re not talking about confidence – you’re talking about predictions. If confidence were the driver of the recession then we could just run ‘motivational’ workshops and the recession would come to an end.

              What you are referring to is the general principle of adaptive responses based on the reduction of uncertainty, negotiation of risk, etc.. That’s not confidence, that’s a rough and ready attempt at an adaptive way of proceeding.

              Key’s comment made it sound as if the main issue was that people were ‘accentuating the negative’ (to reverse paraphrase that vacuous song that was once used by Saatchi and Saatchi – during the 80s or 90s?? – to get us all believing that everything was hunky dory when it wasn’t). It’s as if he believes that people just need to smile and wave like him and then everything will be ‘a okay’.

              That sentiment is ridiculous and assumes wishes make reality. It always amazes me when people say things like “perception is everything”. No it isn’t. Perception – if it’s worth its evolutionary salt – has to result in adaptive responses to reality.

              To think otherwise and, like you, claim that ‘confidence’ is what it’s all about is nothing but magical thinking.

        • AAMC 12.3.1.2

          Which doesn’t of coarse touch on the idea of peak demand, or a slowing of demand as a byproduct of western consumers filling their houses with new TV’s and computers and cars and phones and couches and so on an so forth, with all of that cheap debt that was around, and now the just don’t feel they need much more, the TV’s pretty good, do you really need anything bigger than 42inch, and it’s locked into a 48 mth interest free loan anyway, the couches have got a good few years left in them, iPhone still works for the moment, got a new computer 2 years ago, microwave still works…..

        • Colonial Viper 12.3.1.3

          Thomas hasn’t made it into a world where deleveraging is the first priority for many.

          When people are getting promotions, pay increases or companies making profits now, they are not spending more, they are deleveraging instead.

          There is at least 5-10 years of this to go, and by that time the world will be in severe energy depletion.

    • AAMC 12.4

      ‘Manifesto of the appalled economists’ for Thomas.

      “The neoliberal paradigm is still the only one that is acknowledged as legitimate, despite its obvious failures. Based on the assumption of efficient capital markets, it advocates reducing government spending, privatizing public services, flexibilising the labour market, liberalizing trade, financial services and capital markets, increase competition at all times and in all places…

      As economists, we are appalled to see that these policies are still on the agenda, and that their theoretical foundations are not reconsidered. The arguments which have been used during thirty years in order to guide European economic policy choices have been undermined by the facts. The crisis has laid bare the dogmatic and unfounded nature of the alleged “obvious facts” repeated ad nauseam by policy makers and their advisers. Whether it is the efficiency and rationality of financial markets, or the need to cut spending to reduce debt or to strengthen the “stability pact”, these “obvious facts” have to be examined, and the plurality of choices of economic policies must be shown. Other choices are possible and desirable, provided that the financial industry’s noose on public policies is loosened.”

      http://www.atterres.org/?q=node/13&page=2

  13. Richard 13

    Confidence is the reason gold prices went up and has now dipped.. people ‘believe gold has a value’

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      No.

      • Thomas 13.1.1

        Yes. Gold is almost as worthless as fiat money. It can’t feed you; it can’t house you; it can’t warm you; it can’t do anything other than be shiny and hard to get. All that we ever do with gold is leave it sitting in a vault somewhere or wear it because it is shiny.

    • prism 13.2

      @Richard
      Confidence is the reason gold prices went up and has now dipped.. people ‘believe gold has a value’

      Lack of confidence is why gold prices went up. Gold represents a certain reality that pieces of paper or dark coloured symbols on a screen do not.

      Trust is what makes a society operate successfully. That is the word to use, trust; in the system, in that it will work as supposed, that the people who handle the credits that people build up from their efforts will act with probity, that those people will pay their legitimate taxes which support the properly functioning and fair system, and that the inevitable proportion of failures to meet standards will be small enough so the system can cope and absorb them. There is lack of trust now, and so gold has shot up in value but like housing it is solid, it can be handled, it has world wide recognition, it is sufficiently rare so the market doesn’t get flooded, and it can’t be replaced by other products to the same quality.

  14. Any jobs in Christchurch John Boy Pee said the soon to be laid off meat worker?

    What a sad country run by criminals!

    • mik e 14.1

      Oceana gold is looking at hiring 200 more workers at Macraes and Reefton.D4j. Excellent pay rates would suit freezing worker.

  15. tsmithfield 15

    Well, the IMF thinks that confidence is important for economic stability.

    It makes obvious sense. If people are confident about their economic future, they are more likely to spend and invest. If they lack confidence, then they are more likely to hold on to what they have for a rainy day.

    • AAMC 15.1

      And what gives them confidence…. A job?

      Also, the liquidity in Western markets has been a result of Asian economies losing confidence in the free Market, saving, and lending the money to us.

      Who is currently shitting themselves the most?

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 15.2

      Partly. Stable, employment, health care, superanuation and having somewhere to live all help as well.

    • Puddleglum 15.3

      tsmithfield, it’s disappointing that you’re rushing – like Thomas – to excuse Key’s vacuous nonsense. I’m getting really irritated by all this talk of ‘confidence’.

      The inference that is meant – rhetorically – to be taken by foregrounding the notion of ‘confidence’ is that nothing structural, systemic or institutional is amiss. It’s just that everyone’s got some irrational colly-wobbles.

      Apart from being unbelievably patronising to the economic actors to whom – according to right wing neoclassical economics – we should supposedly hand over all economic decision making (via markets), it also ignores what causes the behaviour that is here being called (lack of) ‘confidence’. Generally, those causes are the immediate conditions that people are experiencing.

      Promoting this idea that it’s all about ‘confidence’ is simply a way of avoiding sheeting home the responsibility for what is happening to where it belongs – to the structure of the system and to particular historical efforts to remove financial regulations and the like (and, frankly, that the IMF ‘agrees’ is more a testament to their rhetorical and ideological role in the economic system than evidence that the discourse about ‘confidence’ amounts to sensible commentary). 

  16. Afewknowthetruth 16

    Thomas.

    You seem to have missed the crucial point yet again.

    Industrial economies run on cheap resources and cheap energy -primarily oil, with natural gas, coal and electricity (dervied from various sources, including fossil fuels) contributing.

    Once the point of maximum global extraction of cheap energy has been passed (2005/6) the system starts to implode, just as we have been witnessing since the end of 2007. No amount of ‘confidence building’ by ‘idiot’ politicans will alter irrefutable geological facts.

    The fact is, at the moment we have ignorant clowns who refuse to accept reality (or saboteurs) as leaders.

    There is a fair chance we will have ignorant clowns (or saboteurs) as leaders after the coming election.

    Silver has been mentioend as the foundation for a new monetary system. Chris Martenson notes in Crash Course that there was virtually NO INFLATION over a period of 120 years when silver was used as the basis of money in the American colonies. That was BEFORE the money-lenders imposed their fractional reserve Ponzi scheme on society, of course.

    • AAMC 16.1

      Of coarse you’re right AFKTT, but crucially, he’s misguided within his own paradigm as well as yours.

    • Draco T Bastard 16.2

      A fiat currency can work – just so long as the banksters aren’t allowed to print money without restraint through the Fractional Reserve banking system as they do now. In fact, the only entity that should be allowed to print money is the government.

    • Thomas 16.3

      Afew: Energy production has not decreased; it continues to increase. That is a basic fact. So that is not the cause of the recession.

      Take your half-baked conspiracy theory elsewhere. Until energy production actually decreases, no one could, would, or should take you seriously.

      • Colonial Viper 16.3.1

        Afew: Energy production has not decreased; it continues to increase. That is a basic fact. So that is not the cause of the recession.

        Ahem.

        Please look at net oil available for export production figures (the so-called export-land model), not gross figures.

        It seems you are wrong, again.

        • prism 16.3.1.1

          Tennis anyone? It is nice of the RW persuasion to have one of their cohort stepping up to the net and trying out their racket styles in the weekends against the LW persuasion team.
          Thomas, keep going won’t you, you are offering great opportunities for debate, argument and retaliation, or if you can’t, send in an equal substitute.

      • Afewknowthetruth 16.3.2

        In November 2010 the International Energy Agency admitted that conventional oil had peaked.

        http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2010-11-11/iea-acknowledges-peak-oil

        The IEA, being a business as usual organisation, attempts to get round this inconvenient truth by declaring that unconventional oil and yet-to-be-discovered oil will miraculously maintain present arrangements far into the future, ignoring that the peak in discovery was around 1964 and that any oil discovered will be of low EROEI..

        http://www.chrismartenson.com/crashcourse/chapter-17a-peak-oil

        Bearing in mind that the system is already being propped up by energy sources that have a miserable EROEI (corn ethanol, tar sands etc.) and the extreme difficuly oil companies are now experiencing with unconventional oil (Deepwater Horizon being a prime example of a poor EROEI), and the peaking of high quaility coal in mant regions

        http://pubs.usgs.gov/circ/c1147/historical.html

        the question is how fast will we fall down the energy descent curve?

        The other important question is, is it worthwhile debating the crucial issues of our times with arrogant, uninformed boneheads such as yourself?

      • mik e 16.3.3

        The countries that have exported their jobs are living on ponzi money.And are not creating wealth but are merely consumers and service workers.

  17. Craig Glen Eden 17

    Right so if Confidence is the Key issue for business as Key and his little mindless followres seem to believe how does business confidence have any effect on our greatest exporter success Fonterra.

  18. randal 18

    according to National they are the party of business and John Keys is the man to make it all go boom. Well he is justa damp squib and he must stand in line like the rest of them and wait for the upturn. without getting to tricky or using esoteric political arguments the job at hand is to stop him and his cronies selling the states assets for their private gain down the track.

    • mik e 18.1

      The national party is run by failed businessmen and confidence tricksters .Thats why key is telling the truth for once, even his tricky spin can’t get the economy going but he is a good enough confidence trickster to get half of New Zealand to support him.Con artist KEY

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