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Kiwis at the front of the queue?

Written By: - Date published: 10:42 am, March 4th, 2013 - 140 comments
Categories: capitalism, national, Privatisation - Tags: , ,

One of the promises that Key made about asset sales was that Kiwis would be “at the front of the queue”. For the past several days, however, there has been speculation that Mighty River Power shares would be listed in Australia:

Mighty River shares to be sold in Australia – reports

Shares in Mighty River Power will be available to investors on the Australian stock exchange, according to reports from across the Tasman.

A leading Australian business newspaper is reporting that shares in the state-owned enterprise will be “dual-listed” in both countries.

The revelation has prompted Labour to hit out at the Government, accusing it of breaking its promise to New Zealanders that they would be the first in line to buy shares.

See also The Herald’s coverage. Apparently an official announcement is due today, but it’s not likely that these media reports are wrong, as pretty much confirmed by Key on RNZ this morning:

The Labour Party says listing the shares on the Australian stock exchange contradicts the promise to prioritise New Zealand investors.

But Mr Key says where the shares are listed is irrelevant as the Government will determine the make-up of the ownership once it has gauged the level of interest from potential investors.

That “make-up of ownership” has previously been described as:

…between 85 per cent and 90 per cent will be held by New Zealanders, including its own 51 per cent stake.

Note that last important caveat. So, up to 30% of the current share offering can be sold off-shore (half the shares are on sale, 30% of that gives us 15% of the total assuming Key goes with 85% “held by New Zealanders”).

According to the overwhelming majority of public opinion, and simple common sense, these assets should not be sold. But if they are, and the demand is there, why not 100% Kiwi owned? Why will up to 30% of the current offering be flogged off overseas? (Note also, of course, that as soon as the shares are sold, there is nothing to stop Kiwis flicking them off to overseas buyers, and the percentage of Kiwi ownership will quickly plummet). So much for Kiwis at the front of the queue indeed.

140 comments on “Kiwis at the front of the queue?”

  1. infused 1

    There is an article I read somewhere in the weeknd that says the Aussie shares would be after NZers bought shares.

    • Tom Gould 1.1

      Key just can’t help himself lying, can he? Now he’s spending a million bucks on a party political broadcast, to cover up. Banana republic, anyone?

    • infused 2.1

      How is that sneaky?

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      The National Party leadership appear at odds tonight over the future sale of Kiwibank.
      English appears to favour a future sale but today party leader John Keysaid a sale was unlikely.
      At a social event as part of the National Party Conferenceon Friday night, deputy leader Bill English was secretly taped talking to two delegates about the possibility of selling the government-owned Kiwibank.

      Kiwibank has always been in Nationals list of assets to be sold but they won’t touch it just yet as it has massive support in the community.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1

        Oops, stuffed up the link :oops:

        English and Key at odds over future sale of Kiwibank

        • alwyn 2.2.1.1

          So, after reading your link I discover that just over four and a half years ago John Key wasn’t going to sell Kiwibank and Bill English was talking about the subject.
          Four and a half years after that surreptitious recording John Key is still not interested in selling it and English hasn’t said anything further.
          Somehow you turn it into “Kiwibank was always on National’s list etc”.
          As for the Government getting some expert opinion on the Kiwibank plans that seems to me to be an excellent idea. I only wish they had done it with Solid Energy.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.1.1

            And considering that JK lies him saying something different to BE doesn’t fill me with confidence.

          • felixviper 2.2.1.1.2

            It was always on the list, Bill English said so and as you correctly point out he has never reversed that position.

            It doesn’t matter what John Key says, he breaks promises like Gerry breaks wind: Openly and with no concern for those affected.

  2. vto 3

    It will be another one of John Key’s lies.

  3. freedom 4

    What is with the bonus share promises that may or may not be promises or bonuses or even shares? Doesn’t keeping a section of stock aside to service the promise, only cut into the promised return that promises to deliver such promise as we have only dreamed of. I mean it is incredible what a quickly diminishing promised return is going to achieve. At last count 5 billion dollars is going to balance the budget, build not only hospitals but schools too, save CHCH and give every Mum & Dad in NZ a live of prosperity and wonder, hey Key promised !

    as an aside- at work on the weekend ( work which is about to be taken away by a new bean counter of a boss) we had a few Aussie Exchange folk in, and boy oh boy did their mood change when i casually asked if they had any hints about how to go about listing NZ Energy companies on the Ozzie market. must have hit a nerve i reckon. :)

  4. Dv 5

    Contact energy has returned about 5% pa over the 12? years since listing.

  5. emergency mike 6

    “the Government will determine the make-up of the ownership once it has gauged the level of interest from potential investors”

    Gee, I hope all the mums and dads turn out to be as interested as John Key has been saying they are. But I guess things could get dynamic.

  6. Pascal's bookie 7

    Kiwis will be at the front of the queue, it’s just that the bouncer is gonna be all “Sorry, shoes.” and “Not tonight mate, not your sort of thing” and “Private function tonight”.

    • freedom 7.1

      chortles and smirks all day off that one PB ++good

    • tc 7.2

      +1 and once they’re gone that’s it folks.

      Deals done I reckon, Oz and beyond have already been lined up for them.

      • freedom 7.2.1

        gotta wonder what the final holdings of a certain mining magnate will be, why else would she give up so much of Fearfacts if not to be promised something altogether more critical ?

      • SpaceMonkey 7.2.2

        Look for the usual suspects… the likes of National Nominees (NAB), JP Morgan, HSBC, Dexia, Citicorp, Goldman Sachs, etc.

    • Rogue Trooper 7.3

      m-i-c-k-e-y m-o-u-s-e (a deeba deeba, that’s all folks)

    • Tim 7.4

      … yep! and the bouncer will prob be the one that deals ‘P’ on the side to make ends meet.

  7. Lanthanide 8

    Very interesting poll on stuff, with the current results at the time of writing:

    Would the Government’s partial asset sales push cause you to change your vote?

    Yes – I’d now vote for a party opposing asset sales
    285 votes, 36.4%

    Yes – I’d now vote for National
    68 votes, 8.7%

    No
    211 votes, 27.0%

    No – I voted for another party in the election
    218 votes, 27.9%

    Bit of an refutation about the so-called “mandate” they have to sell assets.

  8. Mary 9

    If Shearer is ever going to make a positive impact then asset sales is the issue he needs to take a stand on. He needs to say Labour will buy back what ever Nact sells (and then but them back, of course). The support’s there, especially if Kiwibank’s on the block, even if Kiwibank’s only being being touted now so it can be pulled back on to make the current sales more palatable. All Shearer needs to do is make the move and show he and Labour are in control of the discussion. All he’s doing now is just reacting which just makes him look like an idiot. Why can’t he do that? 70% of people are behind him! It should be easy.

    Answer is that at worst Labour are quite happy for the sales to go ahead, especially Shearer. At best they don’t really care. A man who would privatise the military would surely see no problems getting rid of a bank and a few power companies. That’s what happens when you have a right-wing government and a right-wing opposition.

    • Draco T Bastard 9.1

      He needs to say Labour will buy back what ever Nact sells…

      No, he needs to get together with every other party that opposes these sales and say that they will be renationalised without compensation and then do it the day that they’re in power.

      • felixviper 9.1.1

        +1

      • Mary 9.1.2

        You’re right. I need to learn to be more forceful.

        • Colonial Viper 9.1.2.1

          Well, there are more subtle alternatives than Day 1 re-nationalisation without compensation.

          Firstly, you compulsarily acquire 1/2 the Board of Directors seats. Which is the government’s right as a 49% shareholder.

          Secondly, you make it a mandatory requirement that an additional Board seat or two is filled by representatives from the Workers Committee of each power company.

          Thirdly, you apply a super-profits tax on on the earnings of those companies.

          Fourthly, you wait until the private sector owners beg you to take the company fully off their hands so that they can move on with their capital.

      • Tim 9.1.3

        Absolutely! Even if he comes out with some woosey statement such as “…there is no guarantee that [assets on the sale agenda] will remain with 49% private participation as opposed to being PUBLICLY owned.
        That actually might cause me to reconsider the firm decision I’ve made (after a lifteime of voting Labour), to party-vote anything BUT Labour, Nat/Act/Dunne/Conservative.
        They’d have to also make it abundantly clear that neo-liberal policy has clearly failed (the World!); that they will try and progress some sort of constitution that elevates the status of Te T o W, BORA, other legislation such as OIA; AND that whilst we have LIZ, the Guv is REQUIRED to refuse the Royal ascent to piss-poor legislation that breaches those Acts/Constitution. When eventually a republic, a President would effectively impeach himself if he/she legitimised anything that breached those acts/constitution.

        I notice Frank McS has recently written something on the need to entrench various things and provides ideas on the mechanisms available to achieve same. Funnily enough, I’ve asked the Green Party to comment on where they stand and how they would handle the issue. (No reply – After 2 weeks).
        Will it be Green, or will it be Mana I ask myself!

    • SpaceMonkey 9.2

      Why can’t he do that…? Probably because his constiuents don’t want him too.

      • felixviper 9.2.1

        You mean the people of Mt Albert?

      • Tiresias 9.2.2

        He can’t do that – or rather he could but won’t – because fortunately he’s brighter than you lot.

        Read the ‘Sequester USA” thread below. The US political system has become totally disfunctional and the country practically ungovernable because the Republicans – and the Democrats, come to that – are demanding all and giving nothing. Italy is ungovernable at the moment because Beppe Grillo’ M5S ‘party’ are refusing to work with anyone. Greece is in a perilously similar situation. It is axiomatic that in any PR system which doesn’t give one party an unopposable majority there is an opportunity for a minority to dig its heels in and bring government to a standstill.

        There are occasions when that might be justified – when perhaps the majority is seeking to abuse its powers by doing things unannounced and without any mandate much as the fourth Labour Government did under Lange, except that the FPP system then gave them the power – but under the conventions of the Westminster Parliamentary system which make it, and democracy, workable particularly under PR an elected Government has the right to do what it said it would do before it was elected however much you, and Her Majesty’s loyal opposition, might not like it. If Shearer now started making announcements as herein suggested he probably would kill the asset sales programme dead – but if Labour won the next election by anything other than an outright majority he could very easily find himself blocked from doing many of the things he campaigned on and which you’d want him to do because of such blackmailing and undercutting threats by the other side or sides.

        Democracy is a fragile thing – just ask the Greeks, and the Germans of the 1930s come to that – and think before you start a race to the bottom.

        • Draco T Bastard 9.2.2.1

          He can’t do that – or rather he could but won’t – because fortunately he’s brighter than you lot.

          Ah, yes, the traditional not undoing the actions of a previous government to maintain stability despite the fact that the populace wants them to and didn’t want the previous government to do it in the first place.

          That’s not more intelligent, just more sticking to what the rich want.

          • Tiresias 9.2.2.1.1

            No, I was merely responding to your suggestion that the power companies be re-nationalised without compensation.

            You are quite correct to believe such a suggestion from Labour would stop asset sales in their tracks. It would also trigger a capital flight from New Zealand that would make Greece, Iceland and ireland’s recent experiences look like minor financial hiccups. What do you imagine the New Zealand dollar would be worth if the Government started taking what it wanted without compensation? How much oil, how many pharmaceuticals, would we be able to buy if we had to pay cash for it in US$ at 10/c to the NZ$?

            Shearer/Labour would in my view be quite entitled to announce that in Government they would take back ownership of the power companies from private investors at a fair price, and such an announcement would undoubtably depress the sale – perhaps to the point of sinking it. Because they haven’t done so I agree with Mary above – I don’t believe the current Labour leadership is whole-hearted about its objections to the sale process and is quite happy to let National put some black ink on the Govt’s Books while avoiding the approbrium.

            Buying the power companies back would, however, be an expensive exercise and Shearer’s view might be that taxpayer’s money would be better spent on other things. As I haven’t heard anything from him on the point I’ve no idea where he actually stands.

            • Colonial Viper 9.2.2.1.1.1

              Capital flight/capital strike by the wealthiest corporations and individuals remains the single gravest threat to NZ sovereignty.

              Buying the power companies back would, however, be an expensive exercise and Shearer’s view might be that taxpayer’s money would be better spent on other things.

              As you say who on Earth would know what Shearer’s actual views on this are.

              ps it’d be relatively cheap to buy the power companies back; they’ll pay for themselves within 9 or 10 years.

              A great investment for NZ.

            • Draco T Bastard 9.2.2.1.1.2

              It would also trigger a capital flight from New Zealand that would make Greece, Iceland and ireland’s recent experiences look like minor financial hiccups.

              And would allow us to bring our economy back into line just like Iceland did.

              How much oil, how many pharmaceuticals, would we be able to buy if we had to pay cash for it in US$ at 10/c to the NZ$?

              Who cares as all that really means is that we would have to fall back upon our own resources which are quite enough to sustain us.

              Shearer/Labour would in my view be quite entitled to announce that in Government they would take back ownership of the power companies from private investors at a fair price, and such an announcement would undoubtably depress the sale – perhaps to the point of sinking it.

              Actually, it would be likely to push the price up due to the government guaranteed returns that Shearer would be promising.

              Buying the power companies back would, however, be an expensive exercise and Shearer’s view might be that taxpayer’s money would be better spent on other things.

              That’s why the government should also be taking back the power of printing money from the private banks.

              You, like most economists, have NFI WTF the economy is or what it’s for.

              • Colonial Viper

                Who cares as all that really means is that we would have to fall back upon our own resources which are quite enough to sustain us.

                Actually, in addition to the benefits of an import substitution programme, India and China will supply us with all the advanced manufactured products we need in direct exchange for: food and energy.

                Pretty good eh.

        • KJT 9.2.2.2

          You think we have Democracy? What a joke.

          At best we have a three yearly rotating dictatorship. Where the most you can do if you don’t like one lots policies, is to vote back the lot you didn’t like last time.

          Where idiots like Key, Douglas and the ABC’s and total mental vacancies like Parata, Brownlee, Banks, Hipkins can tell us all what to do.

          Where the opposition is , if being generous, out to lunch, if not you could say they are also conniving in the daylight robbery.

          The minimum requirement for democracy is binding referenda, with an achievable minimum trigger petition, like the Swiss.

          • Tiresias 9.2.2.2.1

            And why do we have “idiots like Key, Douglas and the ABC’s and total mental vacancies like Parata, Brownlee, Banks, Hipkins”? I suggest that we have the democracy we deserve, and for as long as 85% of the electorate (at least) regards democracy as a tri-annual tick in a box according to their view of the best act of the ones they were shown, we’ll get what you describe.

            You can vote for whoever you want, so in what way is it the fault of democracy there’s no-one in Parliament representing your views?

            Yes, I broadly agree with the concept of binding referenda. Let’s float one calling for the abolition of taxation and free Rolls-Royces all round.

            • KJT 9.2.2.2.1.1

              Hey.

              All we get is a tri-annual tick in the box, not democracy.

              As for referenda. I am damn sure we would not all vote to reduce taxes on the rich to the extent the country cannot function, sell of income earning assets and give tax payer dollars to crooks.

              • Colonial Viper

                Exactly. Tiresias thinks that putting paper into a ballot box = democracy, when in fact, voting is nothing more than a mechanical process used by democracies.

                • Tiresias

                  No, I’m suggesting we have the democracy we deserve because most of the voting population doesn’t engage any further than ticking the box at tri-anual elections. I do my best by actively supporting the party I think most closely represents my personal political views and doing what I can to get it to represent them even more closely – which is why I gave up on Labour some while back. Flogging dead horses eventually gets wearying.

                  And as for binding referenda I note that in 2009 the Swiss , by a majority of 57.5%, voted in favour of banning the construction of minarets in Switzerland, and by a majority of 68% against a ban on the export of arms and war supplies.

                  When a whole country does a Prosser it’s hard to argue he’s just a dim and lonely redneck.

                  • Tiresias

                    Oh, and the Swiss have just voted by 68 percent to back plans for shareholders to veto executive pay and for a ban on big rewards for new and departing managers.

                    So what do we have?

                    Swiss vote to curb bonuses and obscene executive pay – what a great nation.

                    Swiss vote to ban the building of mosques – what a backward, intolerant nation.

            • Rogue Trooper 9.2.2.2.1.2

              Yep.Merlins please

          • TheContrarian 9.2.2.2.2

            “The minimum requirement for democracy is binding referenda”

            Th minimum requirement for democracy is universal suffrage.

            • Tim 9.2.2.2.2.1

              ….. AND!!!! any ruling government is only as good as its opposition – something Joe Everidge (distant cousin to Edna) can’t seem to grasp when there’s no Public Sphere, no 4th Estate, and an up and coming (ONE Newzzzzzz) cabal of wannabe gliterrati reporters and journalists that can’t even handle the difference between ‘brought’ and ‘bought’ – which most of them – if they had time to sit down and think about it – actually are.
              Bring and Buy
              Brought and Bought

              Aye (Layzy!) you gorgeous creature!

          • TheContrarian 9.2.2.2.3

            No good having binding referenda if only men can vote on it for example

            • KJT 9.2.2.2.3.1

              All the indications are that we would have had universal suffrage a lot sooner in NZ with Swiss style Government.

              It was our parliament that blocked it!

              Their decisions reflect their society.

              Referenda in NZ, would reflect our society.

              • TheContrarian

                “All the indications are that we would have had universal suffrage a lot sooner in NZ with Swiss style Government. ”

                So what you are saying is that if NZ had a Swiss style of government before universal suffrage we would have had universal suffrage earlier?

                Considering NZ gave woman the vote before any other nation, and before the advent of ‘Swiss style of government’ was even a thing, your comment actually doesn’t make any sense.

              • Arfamo

                Everybody seems to like the idea of government by referenda but I doubt any government of New Zealand could make it work effectively. You still get left with many of the day to day business decisions and management of the budget having to be made by an elected govt and implemented or regulated by government departments and institutions. A pity we no longer have such an apolitical public service. I can remember a time when Ministers really were quite often talked out of bad ideas by senior departmental heads who really did think their role was to be apolitical servants of the public. But that’s 30 years ago.

                • TheContrarian

                  “Everybody seems to like the idea of government by referenda”

                  In the last year alone ~250 bills were presented and passed. The idea we could have referenda on all them is absurd. Even you said, lie Draco is want to say, we only have referenda on the ones that matter to the nation or herald major change then who decides which ones go to referenda? All bills effect everyone in some sense. Govt. by referenda isn’t really that feasible.

                  • Arfamo

                    I agree. Imagine how much time would be wasted just on trying to sort out an agreed wording for each item for referendum. I guess if someone wanted to waste the time on it they could try and come up with a really short, shortlist of key matters which ought to be subject to referenda, but those areas tend to reveal themselves when members of the public do CIRs anyway. Leaving us with the problem that governments aren’t bound by them and seem to enjoy thumbing their noses at them anyway. Wonder if the constitutional review will look at that.

                  • felixviper

                    That’s a fair enough point if you’re limiting the discussion to simply governing by referendum but not changing anything else in the system.

                    Which is a bit like saying “Cars can’t possibly run on electricity – they don’t have plugs!”

                    Perhaps another way to look at this is to ask why there are so many bills…

                    • Arfamo

                      Is that a particularly noteworthy number of bills? I dunno I’ve not kept track of how many bills have passed over the years. Maybe more bills now than in the past because of the need to continually fix up poorly considered, rushed legislation, but not sure that’s the case without seeing some numbers over the years.

                    • TheContrarian

                      “Perhaps another way to look at this is to ask why there are so many bills…”

                      Look at how fast the world changes around us.

                    • felixviper

                      And look at how slowly the system reacts.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Is that a particularly noteworthy number of bills?

                      One of the criticisms leveled against NZ parliament is that it’s the fastest lawmakers in the west or words to that effect. The simple fact is that we actually pass laws far too fast.

                    • Arfamo

                      Lol. This debate is becoming more obscure with each new post.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    In the last year alone ~250 bills were presented and passed.

                    Where’s the Natural Law that says that 250 bills have to be passed every year?

                    And, as I’ve also said, we can have the living standard we have today on 10 hours work each week leaving plenty of time for people to engage with government on those major policy decisions where it’s needed.

                    • Arfamo

                      Reducing work hours but not pay and spreading the work to give more jobs to people I’m sure is possible: it’s what futurists were optimistically predicting at the dawn of the computer revolution. But the world headed in the opposite direction, using computers to replace jobs and increase the hours worked by those who still have jobs. We are a very very long way from achieving the futurists’ vision.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      We are a very very long way from achieving the futurists’ vision.

                      And it went that way because of the profit driven free-market. A system that is presently using up resources at a rate that is unsustainable and putting us on course for the first, and possibly the last, Anthropogenic Extinction Level Event.

                      We could do it but some people don’t want us to.

                    • TheContrarian

                      “Where’s the Natural Law that says that 250 bills have to be passed every year?”

                      There is no natural law but the fact is this is how many bills are being passed.

                      “We can have the living standard we have today on 10 hours work each week leaving plenty of time for people to engage with government on those major policy decisions where it’s needed.”

                      I think you’ll probably find the vast majority of people don’t want to spend their free time reading government bills. Even if we lower the amount of bills being passed to 100 per annum that is still a hell of a lot of time taken if every one is going to vote on them. Essentially one every 3 days. Government by referenda is simply far to time consuming and complicated.

                      “We can have the living standard we have today on 10 hours work each week”

                      I put it to you that that’s bullshit. Care to quantify it?

                    • felixviper

                      TC, you’re still wedded to the idea that so many bills are necessary and that they have to be necessarily difficult to understand.

                      You haven’t really demonstrated this though, unless your argument is that the status quo is the best we can ever do.

                    • TheContrarian

                      I am not wedded to any particular idea. The simple fact is there are this many bills. I am open to any idea to reduce the number.

                      How many do you think there should be?

                    • felixviper

                      It’s irrelevant how many I think there should be.

                      If you’re not wedded to the idea that lots of complicated bills need passing then good, let’s move on.

                      Now that we’ve dealt with that, what’s your next objection to referendum?

                    • TheContrarian

                      No I am not wedded to the idea but the current reality is that there are over 200 bills being passed every year so you need to deal with that first because having referenda on all of them is not possible.

                      If there are only 10 bills a year then there is no issue in referenda on them but that is just plucking a number out of the air.

                    • felixviper

                      FFS you’re being dense this morning.

                      If you think ten is a good number then let’s use that for now. Ten bills a year.

                      Happy?

                    • TheContrarian

                      I have no problem with referenda at all if we are only voting an a few bills a year because we’ll have the time to investigate them before being voted on

                      So now, lets look at the problem of how many bills we have. You can’t just wave your hand and say “we’ll just have less” because you need to determine which ones we are going to have and which ones we don’t need.
                      How do we do this? Any ideas?

                    • felixviper

                      Actually we can, we just pass a law that says “no more than ten bills per year”.

                      Or “no more than 2 at a time”.

                      Or “only on tuesdays”.

                      Or whatever.

                      You’re treating the amount of bills like it’s a natural phenomenon when it’s simply a product of the existing rules and systems.

                    • TheContrarian

                      No I am not treating it as a natural phenomena – I am treating as the actual reality we currently have.

                      Of course we can pass those laws – so how do you determine which ones we’ll be voting on?

                    • felixviper

                      How do you think which bills go through the house are determined now?

                    • felixviper

                      ps do you really not understand that the “current reality” or whatever you’re calling it is determined by rules we made up?

                    • TheContrarian

                      OK then we follow the same method as we have now but limit it to ten per annum.

                      So we pass only 10 of these:
                      http://www.parliament.nz/en-NZ/PB/Legislation/Bills/Default.htm

                      Which would mean the last year of parliamentary business would take 23 years.

                    • TheContrarian

                      “do you really not understand that the “current reality” or whatever you’re calling it is determined by rules we made up?”

                      Of course.

                    • felixviper

                      Who says any of last year’s parliamentary business would’ve happened at all?

                      See?

                      You’re totally stuck on the idea that the outcome must not change. This is why you get called conservative btw.

                    • TheContrarian

                      I don’t think things shouldn’t change at all. I like change however I don’t just hand wave and say ‘things should be like this’.

                      It’s all well and good to say we could change the rules and say ‘we only need ten bills a year’ but you need to recognise the effect it would have and that, ironically, would mean things would change very little

                    • TheContrarian

                      We can take this up later though if you’d like – I have meeting to get to.

                      Enjoy your day.

                    • felixviper

                      Now you’re trying to make this about change for change sake. Please.

                      The question was really about why things are necessarily done a certain way and not another. As far as I can read you’re defending the status quo on no grounds at all other than that it happens to be the way things are done currently.

                      You say “I don’t just hand wave and say ‘things should be like this’.

                      I suppose I think that’s exactly what you’re doing.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      I think you’ll probably find the vast majority of people don’t want to spend their free time reading government bills.

                      That happens to be the price of freedom.

                      If you do not engage in governing yourself then you will be governed and all the freedom that your ancestors have fought for will be lost.

                      So now, lets look at the problem of how many bills we have. You can’t just wave your hand and say “we’ll just have less” because you need to determine which ones we are going to have and which ones we don’t need.

                      You continually ask the wrong question. It shouldn’t be about how many bills are passed but how many are basic housekeeping and how many are policy. I could be wrong but I think you’ll find that the majority of those 200+ bills fit the former with only a minority in the latter. Referendum only need to apply to the latter with elected representatives and the ministries doing the former as their normal jobs.

                    • TheContrarian

                      See now that’s a bit smarter. Voting on flagship policy but not the tinkering and/or housekeeping.

                      So referendum on policy like asset sales or WFF but not on smaller, housekeeping tasks, like a bill on improving the reporting of food handling by resturanteurs for example.

        • Colonial Viper 9.2.2.3

          Democracy is a fragile thing – just ask the Greeks, and the Germans of the 1930s come to that – and think before you start a race to the bottom.

          What the fuck do either of those situations have in common with NZ today?

          The Greeks: got indebted to bankers within the financialised Eurozone system which destroyed their country, and then had a bunch of pro-capitalist pro banking political leaders screw their country over and over again.

          And you wonder why the Greek populace is restive.

          The Germans of the 1930’s built Germany into a massive industrial and technological power by ignoring conventional economic thinking and investing in nation building infrastructure, so much so that the Germans literally took on the Imperial superpowers of the day.

          You really don’t know shit Tiresas.

          • Tiresias 9.2.2.3.1

            “What the fuck do either of those situations have in common with NZ today?”

            The Greeks, just like the Italians last year and the Germans in the 1930’s are getting anti-democratic governments as a response to financial crises – either foisted on them by their creditors as a price for not having the plug pulled completely or by popular demand. If you don’t think that could happen here you’re wearing rose-tinted specs.

            I certainly hope you’re not suggesting New Zealand the methods the Nazis used to achieve their ‘success’. However it is worth point out that part of Germany’s ignoring of conventional economic thinking was a massive re-armaments programme which benefits who, exactly? Oh, and when the war started in 1939 Germany’s national debt stood at 39 billion marks, and it’s been argued by those who do know their shit that one of the reason’s Hitler kicked-off WW2 was to avoid the economic collapse Germany faced.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timothy_Mason#The_.22Flight_into_war.22_theory

            • Rogue Trooper 9.2.2.3.1.1

              just like to say, i know a wee bit about TROTTR

            • Pascal's bookie 9.2.2.3.1.2

              Lol. All sorts of things have ‘been argued’, but that theory isn’t very compelling at all.

            • Colonial Viper 9.2.2.3.1.3

              So the common theme between modern day Greece and pre WWII Germany is the importance of avoiding the dangers of the international banking system and debt based monetary system.

              Nothing you’ve advised helps NZ do that.

              So what the fuck are you on about?

              I certainly hope you’re not suggesting New Zealand the methods the Nazis used to achieve their ‘success’

              Well, lets be much more specific shall we?

              German industrial and engineering technology leapt ahead, as did publicly owned infrastructure designed to boost economic activity and provide a common good to all (ahem, most) citizens.

              After the war Germany kept many of those lessons, becoming a unionised engineering and export powerhouse.

              So why not learn the things we can eh?

            • Arfamo 9.2.2.3.1.4

              Yeah, and it’s not like we have the option of autarky to get started, then taking the resources and lives of a whole heap of their citizens, and then subsequently conquering territories and grabbing their resources to try and balance the books. That economic approach probably looked good on paper, but it didn’t actually work out well as even a short term strategy for Hitler and Speer did it? :)

              • KJT

                Worked fine for Rome, The UK and the USA though.

                • Arfamo

                  The Vandals sorted Rome out. Didn’t do Mussolini a lot of good. The UK doesn’t look quite so great these days, and the US looks likely to take everyone down with it if it falls over.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    And the problem with all of them is that the rulers got too big for their boots and kept demanding more. The economy was fine before the great demands of the few.

                    • Arfamo

                      The rulers always get too big for their boots and demand more. It’s only the rulers who change. Big business owners and financiers are the rulers these days. But they rule by proxy through the democratic governments they control. If we, the voters, let them.

          • QoT 9.2.2.3.2

            In terms of Tiresas’ original comment – “democracy is a fragile thing” – I’m simply dying to know what similarities there are between the political situations of 1930s Germany and 2010s New Zealand. Because I know I personally long for the proud days of the Kaiser and am filled with fervent nationalism due to propagandist spinning of our recent epic military defeat and extortionist reparation agreements to Australia.

        • bad12 9.2.2.4

          Ah too late, the race to the bottom began in 1985…

    • muzza 9.3

      Mary, you’re onto it – Although its really the owners/controllers of the political parties/system, who are directing the theatre.

      The mouth piece politicans, paraded as *our* democractic choices every three years, exist to action the instructions!

  9. Tiresias 10

    I also understand Key was talking about a ‘loyalty bonus’ of extra shares going to Kiwis who hold their shares ‘long-term’ -which to him is apparently three years. I’m still holding the Contact shares I bought in 1999.

    However if this is part of the planning it means that Labour, if by some miracle it wins the next election with Shearer et al, will be bound to issue those loyalty shares to Key and his mates.

    Priceless.

  10. freedom 11

    The announcement on Asset Sales is clear as mud but three things leap into mind
    1: “Kiwis would have to invest at least $1000. They would be guaranteed at least up to $2000 worth of shares. ” of course there was no mention of how that will be fairly apportioned (see #3 )
    2: “Mighty River Power’s 800 New Zealand based employees would be guaranteed up to $5000 worth of shares” what does “nz based” really mean , why should people who simply work for the company get 2.5 X the shares of ordinary people, sure sounds like the governement’s mates getting 2.5 X the option available to you and your mates.
    3: “Ryall declined to say how much of the 49 per cent which had been put up for sale would go to retail investors. ” so basically we all know as much as we did yesterday.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10869016

    notice the immediate discrepancy in the two stories? according to the herald, Mighty river staff get offered 5000 shares not just $5000 dollars of shares. So confusion and diversionary tactics at the outset. This is straight out of the Scam the People playbook.

    • Lanthanide 11.1

      “So confusion and diversionary tactics at the outset. ”
      Don’t ascribe to malice that which can be easily ascribed to incompetence.

    • freedom 11.2

      note: the herald have since edited the story to “$5000″
      (and as expected without a hint of a retraction. It is a small detail but don’t details still matter? )

    • Dv 11.3

      AND they are going to allow up to 40 % of the float to go overseas.

  11. gobsmacked 12

    Shearer to be interviewed on this now (Radio Live, after news).

    • gobsmacked 12.1

      The interview (may be online later) was pretty typical Shearer … the first 2-3 minutes was fine, very clear with his prepared lines. Then Garner pushed further, with 3 predictable questions:

      Will you buy shares? – No.

      Then:
      Will your KiwiSaver provider buy shares?
      Will any of your MPs buy shares?

      Shearer sounded as though he hadn’t expected the questions. Why not?

      The i-view wasn’t a disaster, but it showed (as usual) his inability to cope with anything from left field.

      • QoT 12.1.1

        his inability to cope with anything from left field

        *rimshot*

      • Arfamo 12.1.2

        If this interview is online later – can somebody post a link?

      • infused 12.1.3

        He was on talkback as well, and fumbled when asked “Would Labour buy them back” Dodging the question twice.

        • Arfamo 12.1.3.1

          For chrissake!! How long have they freakin had to by now have worked up a freakin position on this?

  12. No point in pointing out the obvious, I suppose, but we lost this battle, good hiding style.

    No matter how many signatures have been collected, no matter how all single issue polls support keeping our assets, Goff fucked it in ’11 and really, from then on in, it’s been all over, Rover.

    Labour’s failure to oppose has allowed this to happen.
    Already looks like history repeating in ’14.

  13. Arfamo 14

    They’re talking about selling 3 more aren’t they? If they get four power companies flogged off before the next election, we’re stuffed. I can’t see any way a new government can nationalise them all without drying up overseas investment. I’m quite interested in the suggestion someone made earlier though that a new government with a 51% shareholding could maybe effectively take over the board and finesse them back into public ownership over time.

    • Draco T Bastard 14.1

      I can’t see any way a new government can nationalise them all without drying up overseas investment.

      We don’t need overseas investment and never have done. Why would we need foreign money to use resources we already own?

  14. Arfamo 15

    I’m no economist Draco and I wish we could be completely self-reliant, but I imagine if all foreign investment in NZ suddenly dried up we’d be in crisis. I don’t think the NZ-owned capital market is big enough to fund the entire economy, and our government couldn’t do it on taxes alone. But if you’ve got a link to anything produced by anyone showing how we could run a completely internally funded self-sufficient economy I’d love to read them.

    • Draco T Bastard 15.1

      I don’t think the NZ-owned capital market is big enough to fund the entire economy, and our government couldn’t do it on taxes alone.

      The government could do it. It’s the power of being a sovereign nation capable of printing the states money so as to utilise the states assets and resources effectively. The assets and resources that we already own – the infrastructure of a developed nation, the skills of our people and the resources within the borders.

      And I didn’t say anything about trade or self-sufficiency.

      • Arfamo 15.1.1

        Apologies. I must have misinterpreted what you were saying. But I’m quite lost now if you’re saying the government could fund the entire economy. I see no good reason for the Nats to partially privatise the power companies except the obvious one to drag in money to try and plug the hole left by the unaffordable tax cuts and their current borrowing. Just reversing the tax cuts would probably fix the hole faster. But they’ll never do that. So Shearer should say he will. But he won’t. He doesn’t know what he’ll do. Labour’s rooted with him in the front passenger seat pretending to be the driver.

        • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1.1

          But I’m quite lost now if you’re saying the government could fund the entire economy.

          Our entire economy is founded upon the resources we have here in NZ. As we already own these resources it’s just a question of using them. Money is a tool to do that but importing money doesn’t bring about any more ability to use those resources than what we already have. As this is true the only thing the government would need to do to bring about the use of those resources is to print the money and spend it into the economy. In this case taxes become a tool to prevent excess inflation, as well as payment for services rendered, by keeping the total money supply balanced.

          • Arfamo 15.1.1.1.1

            Whoops sorry – posted this in wrong place. Sounds great. What country is using this system? I’ll check them out.

            • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.1.1.1

              The entire global economy is filled by sovereigns trapped by this 400 year old banker run debt-based money system.

            • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1.1.1.2

              We did. Worked to but the banks and other capitalists don’t like it as it removes the country’s dependency from them and thus the power they have.

            • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1.1.1.3

              The thing that you don’t seem to comprehend is that money has to come from somewhere. There’s a few options but the one we use is the one where the private banks print money into the economy and charge interest on it. This is a system that, quite simply, doesn’t work as the interest is on top of the principal loaned and thus the only way it can be paid back is if another loan is created which also bears interest.

              This results in an inevitable credit crises when the debt is so high that it can’t be paid back – just like we just saw with the GFC. In fact, paying back the loans will actually cause the economy to collapse as it will remove money from circulation. The only reason why the economy hasn’t collapsed so far is because of a number of nations printing money hand over fist but it’s not bring the world out of recession because it’s all going to the private banks.

              The system I’m describing is one where the nation state prints the money, with no interest, and spends it directly into the economy. It would be spent on necessary services such as electricity, telecommunications and other ubiquitous needs. Generally speaking, the stuff that the society can’t do without.

              Money from that spending would be spent into the private sector which would be small and when it falls over, which it does frequently, it won’t hurt the people or even the economy.

  15. Arfamo 16

    Sounds great. What country is using this system? I’ll check them out.

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  • 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
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep 2.
    TDB Video: The Daily Blog Breakfast Club, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week Activist and blogger Jessie Hume and political commentator Keith Locke. This Week: Topic...
    The Daily Blog
  • When the teflon is stripped away…
    . . To re-cap something I wrote on 13 September, regarding a hard-hitting interview between “The Nation’s” Lisa Owen and John Key; For possibly the first time since Stephen Sackur interviewed Key on Hard Talk in May, 2011, this [...
    The Daily Blog
  • My Select Committee submission against the “terrorist fighters” bill
    This morning I gave this “oral submission” to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee opposing the Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill.  It is a pity only Greens are against the Bill. It’s a pleasure to be able to talk to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Pixies in the Garden? Making money
    In 2009, John Key said “there aren’t little pixies at the bottom of the garden printing cash” (John Armstrong, Colin Espiner). He was wrong of course. Just about every country has its own pixie-in-chief, though not at the bottom of the...
    The Daily Blog
  • AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE – Government must allow further scrut...
    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...
    The Daily Blog
  • 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
  • Q + A 30/11/14: Spying, Family Violence, Texts
    We'll debate why the State needs new powers to spy on Kiwis and the controversial laws that are being rushed through Parliament....
    Scoop politics
  • Arrival of Phillip Smith in New Zealand
    On arrival with his police escort at Auckland Airport tomorrow morning Phillip Smith will be met by other police staff and complete customs and immigration formalities....
    Scoop politics
  • UNICEF Calls on NZ Youth to Apply for Youth Ambassador Roles
    UNICEF NZ Calls on NZ Youth to Apply for Youth Ambassador Roles UNICEF NZ has once again launched its nationwide search for six new Youth Ambassadors and is calling on enthusiastic young people to apply before Friday, 12 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Kiwifruit Claim Filed in High Court in Wellington
    The Kiwifruit Claim’s statement of claim has been filed in the High Court in Wellington this afternoon....
    Scoop politics
  • Judgment: John Banks Dotcom Donation Appeal
    A The application to adduce the evidence of Messrs Schaeffer and Karnes is granted. B The application to adduce evidence of Mr Dotcom’s driving conviction is declined. C The appeal is allowed. D The conviction is set aside and a...
    Scoop politics
  • Doctors support call for independent health assessment
    Senior doctors and dentists are formally throwing their weight behind growing calls for a formal independent health assessment of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). A recommendation about the TPPA was put to 134 public hospital specialists...
    Scoop politics
  • Korero Mai Ki Ahau: Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 November 2014
    Broadcast on Waatea 603AM Saturday 12.00 - 12.30pm Sunday 12.00 - 12.30pm Both shows repeated 5.00pm – 6.00pm On Sunday Saturday 29 November 2014 | The new Minister for Maori Development is taking a fresh look at the Te Reo...
    Scoop politics
  • Anti-speeding campaign based on phony science
    Ticketing ordinary motorists will have no effect on the groups who cause most road deaths, says the car review website dogandlemon.com ....
    Scoop politics
  • Human Rights lawyers’ concerns over Terrorist Fighters Bill
    The Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill will dramatically erode human rights and civil liberties if passed in its current form, said the Human Rights Lawyer’s Association Aotearoa New Zealand (HRLA)....
    Scoop politics
  • Privacy Commissioner’s naming policy
    Following a period of public consultation, the Privacy Commissioner is implementing a new policy on naming agencies that are in breach of the Privacy Act. The change takes effect on 1 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Need for whole-of-government approach to family violence
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says The People’s Blueprint report by the Glenn Inquiry makes a strong case for a whole-of-government approach to combatting family violence, and highlights some of the ways we could do things better....
    Scoop politics
  • Stop Fracking in Our Big Blue Backyard – Frack Free Kapiti
    Evidence given at the EPA hearing of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) at sea blows the industry accepted line that fracking is not happening offshore in New Zealand right out of the water....
    Scoop politics
  • Solidarity with West Papua on 1 December
    Below are the details of the solidarity events in Aotearoa New Zealand to mark West Papua Independence Day, 1 December - there are four events this year: one in Christchurch, one in Wellington and two in Auckland. If you are...
    Scoop politics
  • No charges laid over piggeries investigations
    No charges laid over piggeries investigations 28 November 2014 The Ministry for Primary Industries did not have sufficient evidence to lay charges following two animal welfare investigations into incidents at piggeries earlier this year. The investigations...
    Scoop politics
  • Deep Sea Drilling in Rising Seas
    The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment's report on the effects of rising sea levels and climate change adds another argument against this Government's expansion of fossil fuel exploration....
    Scoop politics
  • Slower population growth in the long term
    New Zealand's population will likely grow by 1.4–1.8 percent a year during 2014–16, but growth will be lower in the long term, Statistics New Zealand said today....
    Scoop politics
  • Big Buddy on the Glenn Inquiry People’s Blueprint
    November 28, 2014 The inclusion of robust screening as a tool to prevent child abuse, highlighted in the Glenn Inquiry’s People’s Blueprint, is welcomed by Big Buddy CEO Richard Aston. “It’s heartening to see this high-calibre report come out...
    Scoop politics
  • People’s Blueprint for tackling Family Violence
    The recently Dunedin Collaboration Against Family Violence (DCAFV) is pleased to support the fundamental changes in the way our legal system deals with family violence that the report calls for. We need to do more to support victims, and ensure...
    Scoop politics
  • People’s Blueprint – Both Good News and a Wake-Up Call
    The Patron of the Glenn Inquiry, Dame Catherine Tizard, says there is some good news in The People’s Blueprint, after the shocking picture painted six months ago in The People’s Report....
    Scoop politics
  • Glenn Inquiry Funder Keeps His Promise
    The founder and funder of the Glenn Inquiry, Sir Owen Glenn, said today he has kept the promise he made when he set up the independent inquiry in 2012. “I set up the Glenn Inquiry because it was clear to...
    Scoop politics
  • Support for Blue Print call for a stand-alone agency
    Human Rights Commissioner lead on family violence, Dr Jackie Blue welcomes the Glenn Inquiry, ‘The People’s Blue Print’, which places at its heart that being safe and free from violence is a fundamental human right....
    Scoop politics
  • People’s Blueprint Offers Solutions to Family Violence
    New Zealand has a fresh opportunity to reduce child abuse and family violence and save and restore lives under a powerful new model for combating the problem proposed by the Glenn Inquiry....
    Scoop politics
  • Submission: Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill
    My three key areas of concern relate to: • The duration of visual surveillance warrants; • The controls around warrantless surveillance powers; • Clarifying the continuation of controls around access to Passenger Name Record (PNR) data under...
    Scoop politics
  • The case is clear for climate action that supports health
    The need for rapid action on climate change in New Zealand in order to protect health is clear, according to a group of climate and health experts. Countries elsewhere in the world are already taking significant action, while New Zealand...
    Scoop politics
  • EDUCANZ Debate Ignores Teachers
    The legislation for the creation of the new EDUCANZ to replace the former Teachers’ Council body is now undergoing its second reading. Without warning, it was promoted to the top the queue this week....
    Scoop politics
  • Phillip Smith en-route back to New Zealand.
    Police confirm that Phillip Smith has been deported from Brazil and is en-route back to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • 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
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