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John Key’s surplus

Written By: - Date published: 2:09 pm, May 15th, 2014 - 85 comments
Categories: you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

John Key debt

A tiny surplus. After six years. And how much does New Zealand owe six years later? That’s right Seventy Five Billion Dollars. Mayby it should be you that apologises, John.

85 comments on “John Key’s surplus”

  1. mickysavage 1

    Hey the budget is promising 170,000 new jobs.

    “Compared to the December quarter of 2013, Budget forecasts show an additional 170,000 people in work by mid-2018, and the unemployment rate is expected to fall to 4.4 per cent.”

    Where have they done this before?

    http://thestandard.org.nz/nats-170000-jobs-evaporate/

  2. Tracey 2

    we have to pay 3.8 billion in interest per annum, and climbing, surplus of 370 million, and 1 billion extra spending.

    the promises about tax cuts are based on projections english has previously dismissed as “just forecasts”

    in whose household is having 37million in the bank but an interest repayment of 3.8 billion per year something to laud. other than english, key and gosmans of course…

    and ignore gosmans derail about 2008 projections, because he assumes too many thinga, conveniently leaves out other things, and selectively believes forecasts.

    • infused 2.1

      Cool. So tell us how Labour would have done it differently the last 6 years?

      Debt wise, nothing would be different.

      [lprent: He isn’t the Labour party. Ask them.

      The post isn’t about the Labour party. It is about the National parties peanut surplus, their accumulated debt, and their budget.

      Next person I see asking this particular diversion gets banned until after the election. I’m interested in the experiment of winnowing out the stupid trolls with a darwinian selection procedure. ]

      • Tracey 2.1.1

        no gosman, sorry, infused, you explain how its rock star economic management, without using projections which bill english dismisses as “just forecasts”

        how do you feel about labours suggestions for spending being adopted by english? he obviously doesnt share ggosmans, and your belief that following labour policy is a bad thing, is english wrong to have done this?

        • infused 2.1.1.1

          sorry, I’m not National, so can’t answer, as per sysop.

          [lprent: Good answer. ]

      • Tracey 2.1.2

        problem is, you got this line from john key and even gosman concedes you cant take the pm at his word…

        • infused 2.1.2.1

          No, I get this line by looking at history. It’s not hard.

          • Tracey 2.1.2.1.1

            its just a coincidence you never mentioned it til gosman did, and he never mentioned it til key did…

            its election year and in the world according to gosman, you cant trust anything the pm says, if he promises something not in the manifesto, you cant believe him. gosman 15 may 2014

            infused wants a cracker!

    • vto 2.2

      3.8 billion in interest for 3.8 million people

      =

      1,000 per every single person in the land

      my god

      • Tracey 2.2.1

        its labours fault because despite having no power for six years they have determined every economic turn this govt could take.

        john key and bill english have been powerless to this fact, dont they strike you as helpless folks too scared to alter things?

        • vto 2.2.1.1

          They are conservatives. Conservatives have little value except as a brake on human advancement. Oh, and to accrete to themselves from others over time.

          That is the conservatives lot in life.

      • alwyn 2.2.2

        Yes my son. What do you ask of Me?
        I fear that you are rather behind the times though. New Zealand’s population passed 3.8 million roughly 15 years ago. Unless of course you are assuming that there are about 700,000 married people in the country. If that was the case you would be close for the number of “single” people.

    • You_Fool 2.3

      I was trying to work out where all the cuts were when I was reading about the budget on the herald, as there seemed too much of a good thing – it almost seemed like a Cullen budget. Finally I found out why, the extra 1.37 billion to pay for the increased spending and surplus is from an overly optimistic forecast in revenue for the year, a forecast which has not been right in the past 5-6 years as it generally over-estimates the revenue.

      As John Armstrong on the herald said though, by the time the forecast is found to be correct or not it will be next year and after the election. Thus this budget is a big fat lie / lolly scramble in disguise.

      • Tracey 2.3.1

        can you post a link to the over estimated revenue?

        i think people forget that all budgets include a crystal ball spreadsheet aspect and think all the numbers are real.

        the smoke and mirrors of economics and accounting.

        as bill english says dismissively

        ” theyre just forecasts”

        and if i were opposition i would quote that over and over… even use guess or prediction instead.

        • You_Fool 2.3.1.1

          Sorry, I might not have been clear – I was basing my opinion on my reading of John Armstong’s opinion piece in the herald

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11255255

          Yes I know the revenue forecasts are just forecasts, and that the reality will be different. My question when reading the herald’s coverage had been “where is all this coming from” 1 billion new spending plus 375mil surplus without any obvious cuts (at least in the herald’s reports).

  3. mickysavage 3

    It appears that the surplus is based in large part on Auckland Transport money being recorded as a loan rather than a grant. In days gone by, at least under the last Government, money would be tipped in to make sure that projects would happen.

    Nowadays it is a loan! Voila we have a surplus!

    “Road
    The largest element of the Vote is the funding for roading ($3,873 million or 86% of the total Vote).
    This is primarily the funding for the National Land Transport Programme which is funded from road tax revenue collected by the Crown ($2,850 million or 63% of the Vote).
    $1,012 million of the balance (22%) relates to loans from the Crown:
    · $750 million for cash flow management. This appropriation does not take account of any repayments made and the facility may not exceed $250 million at any one time
    · $107 million to advance the construction of the Tauranga Eastern Link
    · $100 million to rebuild earthquake damaged roads in Christchurch
    · $55 million for projects in the Auckland Transport Package.
    Rail
    Funding for Rail makes up 11% of the Vote – $511 million, mainly:
    · $198 million for the KiwiRail Turnaround Plan, the aim of which is put the freight business on a commercially viable footing
    · $192 million for a loan to the Auckland Council to assist with the funding of the Electric Multiple Unit package
    · $90 million for a grant to the Auckland Council to assist with the funding of the Electric Multiple Unit package
    · $16 million for metro rail projects in Wellington.”

    • tc 3.1

      shonkey accounting from the masters of deception, nice work Mickey.

      A good question to the recipients of the funding would be what are the terms of repayment and has that been factored into future rate increases.

      Bring them into this as they’ve been played over govt ‘funding’ actually being more borrowing on them not central govt.

  4. A tiny surplus. After six years. And how much does New Zealand owe six years later? That’s right Seventy Five Billion Dollars.

    To be fair to the Nats, it’s excellent that they borrowed money, built up debt and clocked up six years of deficits as a way of minimising the impact of the GFC. It’s what we’d have expected a Labour government to do, and if they’d gone with the alternative (trying to minimise debt and stay in surplus by slashing spending), we’d be in way worse shape than we are now. The fact that they’ve clocked up debt and deficits isn’t something we should criticise, it’s their attempt to blame it on the previous government that grates.

    • infused 4.1

      And that’s what I’m saying. Labour would have done the same thing, or it would have been one hell of a rough ride. So why keep trying to bash it out?

      • Tracey 4.1.1

        so national is really labour and adopting david parkers policies and spending an extra one billion on them proves it?

        • infused 4.1.1.1

          Can you point me to what you’re talking about?

          National has become very center since they came to power. I don’t think anyone would argue that. Which is why Labour are having a hard time.

          • Tracey 4.1.1.1.1

            you say labour would have done what national did. read john armstrong, read the budget and read labour policy announcements over recent months. national has just adopted labour policicies in its budget spending. national have just adopted direct labour policy to stay in power. so national stands for power not ideology per se, they legislate to ideology but speak to popularity. they are deceptive indeed and its not for a better nz, its to stay in powercos thats what drives them.

      • risildowgtn 4.1.2

        Evidence of this clown? talking through your hole as usual…

      • geoff 4.1.3

        Except you’re wrong, infused, and so is Psycho Milt.

        What Labour might</> have done is spent money on building public infrastructure to stimulate the economy. That’s Keynesian economics.

        What National did was blow money on tax cuts for the rich which hardly stimulated the economy at all. That’s not Keynesian economics, it’s the rich rewarding the rich and making the poor pay for it. Typical National party economics really.

        • anker 4.1.3.1

          @Geoff, rich getting tax cuts proved inflationary in the Auckland House market I understand. No trickle down there

    • Tracey 4.2

      agree, and the invented idea things would be worse under labour.

      apparently, according to farrars budget stats, 51% of working kiwis earn less than 30k. instead of gasping at how they can afford to live, farrar uses it to lobby for tax cuts for those earning over 80k.

      given the drop in tax take, and the rise in debt, is nz evidence of a tax cut to the top earners resulting in a booming job market and an increase in minimum wage?

      bill english told employers to give people a pay rise, a few months ago. they seem to have ignored him and are lining up behind farrar for their second tax cut.

      • GMM 4.2.1

        Tax cuts are a bad idea (for now) but good politics to throw out the possibility considering Cunliffe has signalled tax increases for the top bracket. There’s nothing you could call a promise yet – just whetting our appetites.
        Meanwhile, if my son continues his good behaviour I may give him a biscuit.

    • ianmac 4.3

      Does seem to be at odds with the Nat mantra of “Labour just wants to borrow and spend.” How is that different from “Nats borrows 75,billion dollars?”

      • Psycho Milt 4.3.1

        Hmm, true – if they’re peddling that “Labour will borrow and spend” bullshit, it’s open season on their own borrowing and spending.

        • Tracey 4.3.1.1

          yup, in this budget they show they are really labour… and the only difference is they hold the govt benches. smoke and mirrors, its the great deceit. national voters ought to feel duped, but many wont. its the some that will realise and where they will take their vote that matters

          if english has subtitles, you could easily mistake his budget for a cullenesque budget, only more left.

  5. Colonial Viper 5

    Are we still feeding the mainstream misconception that Government surpluses are a good thing?

    Put another way – households and the private sector have to run a deficit (declining savings, reduced income and increasing debt) in order to provide the Government with this much vaunted surplus.

    Sounds good eh?

  6. Blue 6

    Free doctors and prescriptions for under 13s now. Good policy. Extended paid parental leave, parental tax credit increased by nearly 50%. Another good policy.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Need a full employment policy for 25’s and under. You can’t encourage people to have children then let these kids go to waste for years in the youth unemployment stats.

  7. Clemgeopin 7

    This budget is a con artist’s hoax budget.

    Key and English have simply copied and dressed up many of the Labour’s social policies due to shameless political expediency and have pretended it is their own!

    The glaring shame is that IN SPITE of selling off our very profitable power assets raising 4.7 billion dollars, the sleight of hand manipulated trick surplus is so very awfully small. Imagine if these buggers had NOT sold the assets to primarily help their rich mates! That is the extent of their economic proficiency.

    They were not even able to make a dent in their ever growing 65 billion dollar debt! $65,000,000,000! $11,000 per every person in the country!

    This is a very inefficient, useless government full of spin and BS!

  8. Gosman 8

    Why would John Key apologies for a debt that was largely caused by the fiscal situation the current National led government inherited from the last Labour led one?

    [lprent: It is vaguely on topic, but is just a diversion troll. Lets make that later in the day shall we – a lot later.

    I have to make a “drop the priority” for idiots tool for myself that adjust the selection order of comments. ]

    • mickysavage 8.1

      Why should we argue with you when you show no ability to comprehend what we say?

      • Gosman 8.1.1

        You certainly haven’t attempted to explain what specifically Labour would have done to reduce the deficits post 2008. All you have done is state that Labour had a pretty good time in the early days so they surely would have had the same result going forward.

        [lprent: He isn’t the Labour party. Perhaps you should explain how the ACT party can plan on increasing jobs in the next couple of months? If I see much more of this kind of dumbarse remark, then I’m liable to insist that you do (and help you find the time to do it in). After all you expect other people to do it. ]

        • infused 8.1.1.1

          Pretty much Gosman.

          At best, Labour would have the same debt.

          • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.1.1

            More debt hopefully, higher taxes on the top 5%, and definitely spent straight back into local communities, local community infrastructure, and readying the nation for a post-oil century.

            • infused 8.1.1.1.1.1

              I don’t have an issue with that.

              I’ve always thought there should be another tax bracket @ 120 or 150k, then have a tax free zone of 5-10k, whichever one works out.

              • Tracey

                which party is most likely to do that infused, and who do you vote for?

                • infused

                  No party will do it. Pretty sure you know who I vote for. I did vote for Labour once… the very first time I was able to vote.

                  • Tracey

                    vaccuous answer

                    • infused

                      Kind of ironic that you spelt that wrong…

                      There’s nothing more to say. No party will bring that in. It’s been discussed at length for many years now.

                    • Tracey

                      ive been reading too much gosman, his lazy spelling rubs off.

                      your solution is to vote for the party least likely to pass the tax regime you want? perhaps misspelt vacuous was the wrong word.

              • Colonial Viper

                I have a feeling that the ‘sensible left’ and the ‘sensible right’ of this country have a lot of common ground in making sure that NZ is well set up for the coming decades, and not just a minor pawn of foreign interests and faraway owners.

    • Lanthanide 8.2

      I asked you the other day Gosman when you claimed Labour had a massive spend-up to win the 2008 election.

      Please can you describe the elements of this massive spend-up?

      • You_Fool 8.2.1

        If I remember the right wing rants correctly they were:

        a) Working for Families
        b) Interest Free Student Loans
        c) Being Socialist
        d) Unassigned other spending, mostly given straight to unions
        e) massive taxes

        • phillip ure 8.2.1.1

          and don’t forget the shower-heads…

        • Lanthanide 8.2.1.2

          WFF and Interest Free Student Loans were not introduced in the 2008 budget. Gosman is specifically claiming a massive spend-up in that budget in order to ‘buy the election’.

          The only thing I recall is tax-cuts, which were smaller than the ones National subsequently delivered and had been trumpeting for literally years, so I think that’s pretty disingenuous to blame anything on that.

      • Tracey 8.2.2

        gosman asks all the questions lanth, you seem to be ignoring his rules.

        he might say he thinks nationals implementation of labours policy is wrong, maybe, but it wont stop him voting for the man whose word he says we cannot trust. see this admission in the other thread.

        very interesting first effort by armstrong

        the great brain robbery – national delivers labours budget

        http://m.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11255255

        • ianmac 8.2.2.1

          Tracey. An interesting take by John.
          As John Armstrong rightly says: “If ever an explanation was needed as to why Opposition parties like to stay mum on their policies for as long as possible then look no further than the contents of this Budget.”
          Exactly. There were some on this blog demanding that Labour released more policy months ago. But now they can get serious about policies that resonate with voters as can Labour.

          • Tracey 8.2.2.1.1

            yes that piqued my interest too… its also an opportunity to show that national has just compromised itself to do what labour would do, just to get back in power…

      • Gosman 8.2.3

        http://www.treasury.govt.nz/budget/2008/execsumm/01.htm

        Almost 5 Billion in extra spending increasing to 7 Billion. There’s your spend up right there.

        • Puddleglum 8.2.3.1

          The following is what the 2008 new spend was on:

          Personal Tax Cut
          $10.6 billion over four years will return a dividend to New Zealanders by:

          reducing the lowest personal tax rate to 12.5%
          increase the 21% threshold by $10,500 to $20,000
          increasing the 33% threshold by $4,500 to $42,500
          increasing the 39% threshold by $20,000 to $80,000.

          Economic Transformation

          $700 million capital for the New Zealand Fast Forward Fund to boost innovation in pastoral and food industries.
          $690 million capital in 2007/08 for the purchase of Toll New Zealand’s rail business.
          $325 million in Budget 2008 as part of more than $500 million to facilitate high speed broadband in urban areas and extend the reach of broadband into under-served regions.

          National Identity

          $276.4 million to develop defence capability.
          $165.2 million to strengthen New Zealand’s presence in the international community.
          $124.4 million to develop our arts and culture and preserve our unique heritage.

          Families – Young and Old

          Extra $3 billion to improve health and wellbeing of New Zealanders.
          $182 million to invest in more teachers and $180 million for more police.
          $446.5 million for community organisations.

          Business Tax Reform

          As announced last year, Budget 2008 funds $4.5 billion of Business Tax Reform that enables New Zealand business to grow and compete in a global economy, including reducing the company tax rate from 33% to 30%.

          You’ll notice that the personal and business tax benefits are the vast majority of that new (operating) spending of $4.5bn in the first year.

          If we compare that election year budget with the 2007 budget (link from Treasury here) you’ll see new operating spending and revenue commitments of $2.5bn.

          Comparing a non-election year budget (2007 – which included the tax bracket indexation, you’ll notice) with the election year budget (2008) it is clear that the only election year budget spend-up was the tax cuts. Those that, as Lanthanide pointed out, were less than National’s promised tax cuts (which amounted to their ‘election year budget’).

          If Cullen had not acquiesced to the tax cut mood that National had stoked, then the 2008 budget would have been no more of a ‘spend-up’ than any other budget he had delivered.

          So, unless you see ‘tax cuts’ as irresponsible ‘spend-up’ then the Labour-led government in 2008 presented a budget consistent with its general fiscal management throughout its term (I think it used to be termed a ‘slowly rising tide’ of new expenditure).

          • Lanthanide 8.2.3.1.1

            Thanks Puddle. Now we can link Gosman to this post every time he dribbles that ridiculous claim anywhere. I was quite sure he was furiously spinning the facts, and I’m correct.

            He’s chastising Labour for something that National forced them into the corner to do, and which National then turned around and did 3x worse.

            In fact I believe the context of Cullen’s “we’ve spent it all” was specifically in regards to the tax cuts, forcing National into a position where they would have to borrow for their tax cuts. Evidently Cullen erred in thinking that National would 1. actually not borrow for additional tax cuts on top of Labour’s, and 2. not horrendously spin and lie about the financial situation Labour had gotten the country into.

    • appleboy 8.3

      What a prat. You show us the logic defying reference that says/shows increasing debt to 75 billion is due to the GFC. And no, John Key and Bill English don’t count. Moronic.

  9. fisiani 9

    After the masterful Budget and the pitiful response by the Cunliffe followed by the oratory of John Key the victory champagne rolled out her on the back of the rogue Roy Morgan poll will have to be putback in the chiller.
    The question now is when will support for National exceed 50%. Watch the media flood the next few days with reminders of surplus, future tax cuts, free visits and prescriptions for under 13’s and increased maternity leave. This is the start of a tsunami of support for National as one red suburb after another turns blue.

    • thatguynz 9.1

      :roll:

    • mickysavage 9.2

      Hey Fisi it is a bit early for the kool aid isn’t it?

    • Anne 9.3

      You mean that thing on the telly this afternoon that 90% of the country didn’t bother to listen to?

      • Colonial Viper 9.3.1

        I’d be surprised if more than 100,000 people listened to it. And I won’t do the math in my head, but that seems far less than 10% of the country.

    • felix 9.4

      That’s funny fisiani, it sounded to me like the champagne had been flowing before Key’s speech…

  10. Marius 10

    if Key does another three year stretch and by the end of it can pronounce ‘Christchurch’ without fracking it up that will be good enough for me. I do have to wonder if he might be nibbling at the bottle between interviews. Drug test the lot of em.

  11. BLiP 11

    Same ole, same ole. David Cunliffe got it right last year . . . “funny money rubber numbers”

    http://youtu.be/Rl-yc4Gk1eQ

  12. Rosee 12

    English is talking the Budget on Stuff now-
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/10047316/Budget-live-chat-Bill-English
    I propose everyone bombards him with actual questions. Not the ego stroking that seems to be going on at the moment

    • tc 12.1

      It’s stuff, any questions not matching the desired narrative will not be seen…fearfacts R Us.

      The patsy questions and glowing endorsements are probably already prepared set to roll on cue.

      • vto 12.1.1

        Of course they are pre-prepared.

        just a crock of shite

        The website Stuff’s largest owner is the richest, most vile, hard-core right wing bitch in Australia, Gina Rinehart.

        Quite why people expect objectivity from media businesses that are owned by full-blown evil capitalists I have no idea … it is dumb of the highest order

  13. Tracey 13

    steady as you go when you are going no where. w peters

  14. Gosman 14

    Test

  15. Hami Shearlie 15

    Bill “Me too, Me too” English’s National Government call it a “job” if you work for one hour a week! How is that a “job”? You could hardly buy lunch for one day with your pay? I think most people would like to see the stats for how many full-time jobs have been created. You know, the jobs that people can do for 40 hours a week and live on the wage.

  16. Myron Gaines 16

    Meh, I’m no right-winger or National supporter, but I really doubt the debt situation would’ve been too much better under Labour, given the GFC and Christchurch earthquake are largely the reason the debt is so high.

    It could’ve been slightly better under Labour, but I think it’s just as likely that it would’ve been the same as it is now.

  17. newsense 17

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11255001

    The hyperbolic rugby analogy ‘commentary’ of the year goes to…

    oh the lucky charms. A’twinklin in the sun….

    Thought occurs: by this vacuous logic then how many times did Labour win the William Ellis World Cup? Must have been a damn few times and through in the ‘7’s and some Bledisloes and South African tours also for the low unemployment and the paying off debt.

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    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (‘MBIE’) regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue. Photo:  ...
    CTU | 21-11
  • Charging petrol station workers for drive-offs
    So workers at Masterton’s Night ‘n Day store have had their pay docked when criminals drive off without paying. From the flood of complaints coming from around the country, it’s not a practice that is confined only to Masterton, nor is it...
    Occasionally erudite | 21-11
  • Tearing up Westminster
    The central bargain of Westminster democracy is that the monarch stays out of politics, and in exchange they get to stay in the role, both legally and literally. Prince Charles - already famous for his undemocratic interventions in politics -...
    No Right Turn | 21-11
  • Journalism is not terrorism
    What happens if you're a UK journalist and you campaign for press freedom or report on police misconduct? The police database you as a terrorist:A group of journalists has launched a legal action against Scotland Yard after discovering that the...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • A century of changing transport spending
    Via Donal Curtin, I got wind of a fantastic Statistics NZ visualisation of changes to the Consumer Price Index over the last century. The Consumer Price Index, or CPI, is a tool that statistics agencies use to track inflation over...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • Boycott thieving employers
    In the past few days, we've learned of a new employer horror: petrol-station workers, often on th eminimum wage, being forced to pay for the crimes of their customers. Its unfair, immoral, and possibly illegal. So what can we do...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • Whiteboard Friday. How NZ’s welfare system traps people in poverty
    This Whiteboard Friday looks at how our current benefit system traps people in poverty, which is another reason we need to replace it with an Unconditional Basic Income. This week has been a big week for the Unconditional Basic Income....
    Gareth’s World | 20-11
  • Income mobility
    Recently Treasury has published a paper showing that most people do not stay at the same point on the income scale for an extended period. That is assuredly true, and is also a good thing in as far as it...
    Polity | 20-11
  • Read out, Xi in, as Hansen makes late change to All Blacks team
    All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has sprung a surprise by picking Chinese President Xi Jinping to start in this weekend’s test against Wales at the Millennium Stadium....
    Imperator Fish | 20-11
  • National restarts logging in West Coast forests
    The chainsaws stopped in native forest on public land in 1999 after a strong campaign by non-governmental organisations such as Forest and Bird and Native Forest Action (NFA), supported by the Green Party. Immediately after the 1999 election, the incoming...
    frogblog | 20-11
  • Persuasion experiment
    Michael LaCour, a PhD student at the excellent UCLA Political Science Department, along with Yale's Don Green, have a fascinating new paper on what causes people to change their mind on gay marriage. Many people know that a doorstep conversation...
    Polity | 20-11
  • $4.8 billion gone
    As readers know, the NZ Super Fund now contributes around $27 billion to our net position as a country, It will help us pay for the wave of baby boom retirements. Sadly, it is now clear that National's decision to...
    Polity | 20-11
  • Secondary teachers vote IES into collective
    21 November 2014 PPTA members have voted to include two teaching roles central to Investing in Educational Success (IES) in their collective agreement.At paid union meetings held throughout the country over the past two weeks 80.3% voted to include the...
    PPTA | 20-11
  • Labour’s Hercules?
    Hero? Saint? Both? Neither? In making Labour an electable proposition by 2017, Andrew Little faces a challenge of Herculean proportions. Then again, Hercules was presented with twelve impossible tasks. Little can succeed by successfully completing a more modest (but equally...
    Bowalley Road | 20-11
  • Roger Sutton and deja vu all over again
    What to say about the Roger Sutton story? Well, Andrea Vance has done some amazing work setting out the basic facts behind the carefully stage-managed whitewashing of Roger Sutton’s pseudo-departure. And stargazer at The Hand Mirror has responded to the...
    On the Left | 20-11
  • MoT acknowledge changing trends and future funding issues
    Last week the Briefings to government ministers (BIM) were published. I’ve already looked at what the Ministry of Transport (MoT) and NZTA have said about transport in Auckland and so in this post I’m going to look at some of the other points...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • Why we need to talk about the scientific consensus on climate change
    An interesting sequence of events followed the publication of a scientific paper the Skeptical Science team published in May last year. The paper found a 97% consensus that humans were causing global warming in relevant scientific papers. Finding an overwhelming...
    Skeptical Science | 20-11
  • 2014 – Ongoing jobless tally
    . . Continued from: 2013 – Ongoing jobless tally So by the numbers, for this year, January OceanaGold/Macraes Mine: 146 redundancies Fitzroy Yachts: 100 redundancies OceanaGold: 76 redundancies Tenix: 15 redundancies February Goodman Fielder: 125 redundancies Pacific Steel Group: 70-90 redundancies...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-11
  • 2014 – Ongoing jobless tally
    . . Continued from: 2013 – Ongoing jobless tally So by the numbers, for this year, January OceanaGold/Macraes Mine: 146 redundancies Fitzroy Yachts: 100 redundancies OceanaGold: 76 redundancies Tenix: 15 redundancies February Goodman Fielder: 125 redundancies Pacific Steel Group: 70-90 redundancies...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-11
  • Stuart’s 100 #56: More Dignity for Daily Users
    56 More Dignity for Daily Users What if there was a moment of civic dignity outside the Auckland District Court? The Auckland District Court on the corner of Albert and Kingston Streets is I think at last count the busiest...
    Transport Blog | 20-11
  • 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...
    frogblog | 20-11
  • The greatest tragedy of our time
    This is going to ruffle a few feathers. We are parasites. Yes you read that correctly – humanity is a giant collective parasite sucking the life juices from dear Mother Earth. I’m not a nihilist. I still believe there’s plenty...
    On the Left | 20-11
  • Proving anecdotes are reliable
    Here’s one to go with Let’s rely on anecdotes instead! Something I picked up on Facebook Similar articles  ...
    Open Parachute | 20-11
  • Proving anecdotes are reliable
    Here’s one to go with Let’s rely on anecdotes instead! Something I picked up on Facebook Similar articles  ...
    Open Parachute | 20-11
  • Class warfare in the UK
    Surprise, surprise! An independent study has shown that the UK's conservative government has been driving a massive transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich:A landmark study of the coalition’s tax and welfare policies six months before the general...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • That didn’t take long
    National's new teabreak law isn't even in force and employers are already abusing it:Yesterday a union member, who prefers to remain anonymous for fear of retribution, emailed Hotel Organiser Shanna Reeder. “This morning in the briefing our manager declared that...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • Justice is more important than international relations
    Yunus Rahmatullah is a Pakistani citizen. In 2004 he was disappeared by British forces in Iraq. The British then gave him to the Americans who rendered him to Afghanistan and kept him there without charge or trial for ten years,...
    No Right Turn | 20-11
  • The Sutton debacle
    Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: it’s not a good thing, except when you’re playing Frank Zappa’s 1988 instrumental album Guitar, in which case ‘Sexual Harassment in the Workplace’ is the opening track, and it’s a stonker. However, setting aside the...
    Occasionally erudite | 20-11
  • The dangers of ignoring context
    Here’s a 22 point plan for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.Entrench Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian lands.Never let a chance go by to duplicitously conflate Hamas and some in Fatah with the Islamic State/ISIS/ISIL so as to gild the imperiled-Israeli...
    Pundit | 19-11
  • Rapid transit has passed the acid test
    I recently ran across a New Zealand Herald article from 2000 on the region’s plans to start building good rapid transit infrastructure. (Which, as Patrick highlighted in a recent post, is exactly what is holding Auckland back relative to its...
    Transport Blog | 19-11
  • 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 | 21-11
  • 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 | 20-11
  • 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 | 20-11
  • 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 | 20-11
  • 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 | 20-11
  • 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 | 20-11
  • 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 | 20-11
  • 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 | 19-11
  • 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 | 19-11
  • 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 | 18-11
  • Damning report on Department of Conservation restructure
    The restructuring of the Department of Conservation (DOC) following National's severe funding cuts has been revealed as failure, the Green Party said today.The Taribon report has reviewed the new structure of DOC after 12 months. The restructuring, one of the...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Greens welcome Xi, but human rights need to be on agenda
    The Green Party welcomes the visit to New Zealand of Chinese President Xi Jinping and wishes to congratulate him on his recent announcement regarding China capping emissions for the first time.The United States and China recently unveiled a deal to...
    Greens | 18-11
  • Backing New Zealanders to get ahead
    New Labour Leader Andrew Little says it is an immense privilege to have been chosen to lead the party and to be given the task of ensuring it once again becomes a powerful force that backs New Zealanders in getting...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Andrew Little Elected Leader of Labour Party
    “The Labour Party congratulates Andrew Little, who has been elected as party leader in a robust and highly democratic process,” says Labour Party President Moira Coatsworth. “Andrew’s leadership will have the full support of the whole Labour Party.”...
    Labour | 18-11
  • Report into Brownlee security breach should be released
    The Government and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) should release the report into former Minister of Transport Gerry Brownlee's airport security breach, the Green Party said today."The actions of a Minister of Transport breaching security at an airport are a matter...
    Greens | 17-11
  • Brownlee must ask CAA to release the report
    Gerry Brownlee must ask the Civil Aviation Authority to release the report that finds he broke the law in breaching airport security, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It is inexcusable for any minister, let alone the then-Transport Minister, to...
    Labour | 17-11
  • G20 climate comment increases pressure on NZ
    The G20 decision to include climate change in its communiqué despite Australia's attempt to ignore it, increases pressure on New Zealand to come up with a credible plan to cut emissions, the Green Party said today.The G20 Leaders Communiqué from...
    Greens | 17-11
  • NZ joins G20 climate problem
    Confirmation this morning by John Key that his Government plans to do nothing to turn around NZ's rapidly rising greenhouse emissions means that New Zealand joins Australia as one of the problem children at the G20 meeting in Brisbane, the...
    Greens | 16-11
  • IRD joins Corrections in Phillip Smith failure
    It is incomprehensible that IRD and Corrections were not able to stop Phillip Smith from rorting the tax system out of $50,000 until it was too late, given that he was a notoriously manipulative prisoner stuck in jail, says Labour’s...
    Labour | 13-11
  • The Government has to listen to Olly
    When even hard boiled property investors like Olly Newland  say first home buyers have been shafted by Loan to Value Ratio lending restrictions, surely it is time for the Government to listen, says Labour's housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  "Auckland landlord...
    Labour | 13-11
  • Key used GCSB for political ends prior to 2014 election
    New documents released to the Green Party show that Prime Minister John Key used New Zealand's intelligence services for the National Party's political ends a few days out from the 2014 election, the Green Party said today.Documents released to the...
    Greens | 13-11
  • Government not meeting its climate target
    The Government must front up to the fact that its own advisors are now saying that New Zealand is off target in any transition to a low carbon future, says Labour’s spokesperson on Climate Change Nanaia Mahuta.  “A briefing to...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Briefing reveals Defence facilities ‘increasingly unfit for purpose’
    The Defence Briefing to the Incoming Minister reveals a deteriorating state in Defence facilities that are no longer fit for purpose, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  “The briefing is heavily censored but still reveals that Defence camps, bases and...
    Labour | 12-11
  • New projections show New Zealand missing climate target
    Briefings to Incoming Ministers released today reveal the Government's climate policy is failing with projected emission more than double what is needed to meet National's 2050 target, the Green Party saidProjections released by the Ministry for the Environment, as part...
    Greens | 12-11
  • National’s highways far less efficient
    National’s new state highways have a far lower cost-benefit ratio than motorways built under the last Labour Government, making a mockery of the Government’s bluster that its road building will boost the economy, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “New...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Governor points finger at National on supply
    The Reserve Bank Governor has admitted he had to keep loan to value mortgage restrictions in place because the Government’s attempts to increase housing has fallen ‘a long way short’, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The thousands of first...
    Labour | 12-11
  • Did Collins cover up Slater’s OIA requests?
    Disgraced former Cabinet Minister Judith Collins must explain why she appears to have tried to hide Official Information Act requests she fulfilled for Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater, Labour MP Megan Woods says. “New documents obtained by Labour show Judith...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Reserve Bank’s dairy warning must be heard
    The Reserve Bank’s warning that falling dairy prices are creating greater risks for the New Zealand economy must be taken seriously by Bill English and John Key, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “Dairy prices have nearly halved since February...
    Labour | 11-11
  • National’s housing failure keeps LVRs in place
    The Reserve Bank’s decision to leave loan-to-value ratio mortgage restrictions in place is further confirmation of National’s housing policy fiasco, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Reserve Bank would have lifted LVRs if they had seen any increase in...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Let’s see if it is plane sailing Mr Bridges
    Comments by Transport Minister Simon Bridges that Far North residents' anger over cutbacks to regional flights will be allayed by larger planes and cheaper fares out of Kerikeri, are just pure arrogance, says Labour’s Te Tai Tokerau MP Kelvin Davis....
    Labour | 11-11
  • Commerce Commission inquiry needed into building supplies monopoly
    The Commerce Commission must stop dragging the chain and urgently investigate the anti-competitive practices in the building industry that are driving up the cost of building materials, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Competition in the building materials market is...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air New Zealand grounds Far North
    The announcement by Air New Zealand to close services from Kaitaia to Auckland will be an absolute disaster for the Far North, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau Kelvin Davis says.  “Air New Zealand is sending a signal to the...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Pulling West Coast flights a savage blow
    Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw its Westport service is another kick in the guts for an already struggling community, West Coast-Tasman MP, Damien O’Connor says.   “Having been involved in the West Coast’s efforts to get Air Nelson to return...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Air NZ cuts economic lifelines to neglected regions
    Air New Zealand’s plans to cut its Eagle Air regional services to already struggling regions is a hammer blow to Westport, Whakatane and Kaitaia, says Labour's Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The regions of New Zealand are being abandoned by this...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Christchurch on the rent rack
    A jump of 20 per cent in weekly rents in the past year is a disaster for Christchurch, says Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “The Trade Me Property Rental Price index has rightly described the city as being a ‘...
    Labour | 11-11
  • Past time to act on warnings about palliative care
    Health officials have been warning the Government about a critical shortage of palliative care specialists for years, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader and Health spokesperson Annette King says. A stocktake carried out for the Ministry of Health shows New Zealand’s end...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour | 09-11
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour | 09-11
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour | 06-11
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • The Block NZ doing a better job than Nick Smith
    Nick Smith should consider calling in producers of The Block NZ with participants in the TV series completing more houses in two seasons than the Government’s failed Special Housing Area policy, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The Block NZ...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Meridian moves to kill competition from solar homes
    Big electricity companies are using their power to make it harder for families and businesses wanting to go solar and the National Government is doing nothing to help them, the Green Party said today. Meridian Energy announced today a 60-72...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Has John Key done all he could for Pike families?
    It will be forever on the conscience of John Key whether he did all he could to recover the remains of the 29 miners who died in Pike River, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says.  “The Prime Minister...
    Labour | 05-11
  • National further dashes hopes of new parents
    The National Government has once again shown its disdain for working parents by voting down proposals to extend paid parental leave, Labour MP Sue Moroney says.  “The Government vetoed an amended proposal that substantially reduced the cost of extending PPL...
    Labour | 05-11
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. 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 | 23-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Why Phillip Smith is the least of our worries
    Well, it turns out Phillip Smith wasn’t half as clever as he thought he was, and he’s been arrested within a week. If the Prime Minister is through with making tasteless jokes, perhaps we can ramp down the media hysteria...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Constraining Credibility
      Most economists and members of the public – on both the right and the left – believe that economies are constrained by resource scarcity most of the time. In this view, economies are supply-constrained, and that the economic problem...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Migrant Labour, exploitation and free markets
    Once more we read about a horror story of virtual slavery for a migrant worker in a restaurant in Christchurch. The silver lining that in this case compensation should be paid is not assured. Often in situations like this the employer winds up...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • On baby boomers who give my generation unhelpful advice: JUST DON’T
    One of my mum’s colleagues recently told her that there is no money in what her daughter was doing; volunteering at a women’s refuge and writing on politics. This guy, dispensing all his pearls of wisdom, told my mother that...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Morbid Symptoms: Can Labour Be Born Anew?
    THE CHAIRS in the final meeting venue have been stacked away. All that expensive signage, commissioned for the benefit of the television cameras, no longer has a purpose. For the second time in just 14 months, Labour’s Leadership Contest is...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • What’s Small, White, and Having Trouble Attracting New People?
    If your answer was something intimately connected to the person of Peter Dunne … then you’d be right. Last night, P-Dunney decided to bring his comedy and/or hair stylings to the twitterverse; penning a potentially somewhat ill-advised tweet in which he compared...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • LATE at the Auckland Museum review – Slacktivisim: Its not just for Slack...
    Monday night is my yoga night. I’m not really very good it, I don’t really have the bendy, but I made a New Years resolution. This Monday however, I decided to put the yoga on prone and attend a gig...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Ashley Dwayne Guy v The Queen: Appeal Upheld
    The appellant, Mr Guy, was found guilty by a jury of a charge of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection. After the verdict it was discovered that, by error, the jury had been provided in the jury room with two...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Zonta Club to Take a Stand Against Gender-Based Violence
    During the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence (25 November – 10 December), the Zonta Club of Wellington, along with members of the local community, will join nearly 1,200 Zonta clubs in 67 countries for the Zonta Says NO...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • New UNFPA report links progress and power to young people
    A UN report launched today calls for investment in young people as they are essential to social and economic progress....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says: "Only in the public sector do you receive a payout for ‘resigning’....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ must not turn a blind eye to China’s human rights record
    Amnesty International is calling on New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key to raise China’s shameful human rights record during President Xi Jinping’s visit to New Zealand this week....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Treasury’s covert & extremely odd welfare consultation
    A report this morning that Treasury is ‘crowd sourcing’ ideas on welfare policy is news to Auckland Action Against Poverty, even though we are currently one of the most active groups in the area....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ invites Pacific peers to review development cooperation
    New Zealand has volunteered to be the first development partner in the Pacific region to undergo a review of its aid programme by Pacific island peers. The review will focus on New Zealand’s development cooperation and will give greater insight...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • EPMU joins Pike River families to mark fourth anniversary
    Representatives of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are proud to stand with the Pike River families to mark four years since 29 men lost their lives. “This is a particularly solemn day given the recent announcements of Solid Energy...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • 2013 Assessment of New Zealand’s National Integrity Systems
    SPEAKER TUILOMA NERONI SLADE: Former Judge, International Criminal Court in the Hague, former legal counsel at the Commonwealth Secretariat, Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum 2008-2014. Introduced by Helen Sutch, Victoria University Council,...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Green Party ignoring Waimea’s environmental benefits
    Green Party MP Catherine Delahunty has overlooked the environmental benefits the proposed Waimea Community Dam will bring the Tasman community, says IrrigationNZ Chairperson Nicky Hyslop....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Women’s use of violence in violent relationships
    More than 80 percent of women who live with a physically violent partner will not initiate violence when they are not being hit, according to new research....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health
    Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health A credit score doesn’t only boil down a person’s entire financial history to a single number and somehow predict their credit-worthiness, it might also be saying something about a person’s...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • State Services Commissioner on Roger Sutton Investigation
    State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today said the investigation into Roger Sutton’s conduct was robust. Roger Sutton chose to resign as Chief Executive of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) yesterday....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Predator Free NZ project welcomed
    Federated Farmers and the conservation organisation Forest & Bird are welcoming the Predator Free New Zealand initiative as an ambitious but achievable project that will have real benefits for conservation and the economy....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
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