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Media response to Labour’s Monetary Policy Upgrade

Written By: - Date published: 2:32 pm, May 2nd, 2014 - 105 comments
Categories: david parker, Economy, Judith Collins, kiwisaver, labour, national - Tags:

parker2

The response to Labour’s Monetary Policy Upgrade released this week has been extraordinarily good.  I am certain that National’s minions have been beavering away looking for a slightly inelegantly phrased sentence or an addition mistake so that evidence of utter incompetence can be bundled up and shopped to tame media but so far nothing of the sort has happened. The best they have managed is Bill English in attack mode. As Vernon Small has said “[i]f Finance Minister Bill English’s first flailing attempt to attack Labour’s new monetary “tool” is any guide, the Opposition may be on to a winner.” Labour’s Tim Barnett has compiled a number of positive responses which has been circulated and this post relies on his list.  In a Dominion Post Editoral the policy was described as a “possible game-changer” and having “real heft”.  The editorial included the following comments:

Unlike its recent pronouncements on trucks in highway fast lanes, or the flagging national demand for wood, Labour’s ambitious new monetary policy has real heft. The idea is first to make KiwiSaver compulsory, with payment levels about 9 per cent of income. That’s not monetary policy per se, but it’s a good idea – our savings are chronically low, which pushes up our interest rates. Compulsory savings are also necessary for Labour’s next big idea – making KiwiSaver payment rates adjustable. Under the plan, the Reserve Bank could recommend increasing savings rates as a way of slowing the economy – or, conversely, lowering them to heat things up. If that sounds like a hole in the wallet, Labour says it won’t be. Finance spokesman David Parker says the tool will be used instead of interest rate hikes. So when the economy overcooks, people pay more into their retirement plans instead – in theory – of copping higher interest rates on their mortgages. If this works, there would be plenty of positives – higher national savings, healthier government balance sheets, lower interest rates, perhaps even some effect on the overvalued kiwi.

Brian Fallow in the Herald spoke glowingly of the policy.  He said:

Though billed as an “upgrade to the monetary policy framework”, what we got from Labour’s finance spokesman David Parker on Tuesday was a much broader economic policy than that would imply. It is subtle and complex, and therefore hard for people to appraise in the context of sound bites and partisan pushing and shoving. They could always read the document, uncatchily titled: “Improving Macroeconomic Stability”.

He then said this:

What is useful and innovative about the policy is that it creates a new tool for withdrawing some demand from the economy when it is heading (as it is now) into a period when willingness to spend is outstripping growth in the capacity to produce goods and services.

Even the writer of the New Zealand Herald Editorial on the subject expressed support.

The Labour Party has done well to come up with a constructive monetary policy for the coming election. Its proposal to make KiwiSaver compulsory and use its contribution rate as an alternative to interest rate rises is imaginative and reasonable. It is not a drastic departure from the monetary consensus that has maintained low inflation and underpinned the strength of the economy under successive National and Labour governments. Most importantly, Labour’s new policy would not undermine the independence of the Reserve Bank which would remain in complete charge of the currency and it would be entirely up to the bank whether at any time it wants to recommend an increase in KiwiSaver contributions instead of raising the official cash rate. Either device could take a little money out of circulation when inflation looms.

Bernard Hickey also approves.

It’s big and it’s hairy and it could change the way monetary policy is run. David Parker’s proposal for a Variable Savings Rate (VSR) certainly qualifies as the ‘big new tool’ he promoted it as over the weekend. It ties together Labour’s savings policy and its monetary policy in a way few expected. Parker is certainly hoping it is the tool that fixes the big, hairy problem for the economy, the over-valued exchange rate.

Even Paul Henry has expressed words of praise.

It’s a very cunning plan. You’ve got to admire the fact that this man has come up with something that at least is different and well and truly worth thinking about.

Of course there will be critics of the policy.  David Farrar has referred to BNZ Economist Tony Alexander who thinks that the policy will result in reduced interest rates which will increase the incentive to borrow money and therefore be counterproductive.  Well it would probably tend to reduce interest rates but if people are instead putting more money into savings than in paying interest increased borrowing will not necessarily occur.

The release has dominated policy debate for the week. When you combine the effects of this to Maurice Williamson’s deserved demise, Peter Dunne’s abysmal sacrificing of the ability to prevent the stockpiling of synthetic drugs for political advantage and the continued murkiness of Judith Collins’ Oravida dealings it has clearly been Labour’s week.  The best the right had was to try and manufacture a mini scandal about David Cunliffe’s grandfather’s medals.  This attempt well and truly backfired and left many questioning the utility of such behaviour.

Could it be that the tide is turning?

105 comments on “Media response to Labour’s Monetary Policy Upgrade”

  1. fisiani 1

    You obviously failed to actually closely read Tony Aleaxander’s more considered analysis of this compost heap announcement.
    I’d suggest that you do. It’s doozy.
    http://tonyalexander.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/WO-1-May-2014-.pdf

    • Chooky 1.1

      @ fisiani….well Tony Alexander would wouldnt he?…the BNZ is now an Australian owned Bank…the new Labour Monetary Policy means less money for Aussie Banks in interest hikes …less money going out of New Zealand…. and more money kept in NZ ‘ers retirement savings and in their pockets and in NZ ( it probably means also less NZers made bankrupt and bank repossessions for ordinary NZers unable to pay mortgage interest hikes)

      From wiki:

      …”Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) is one of New Zealand’s largest banks and has been operating continuously in the country since the first office was opened in Auckland in October 1861 followed shortly after by the first branch in Dunedin in December 1861.[1] The modern-day bank operates a variety of financial services covering retail, business and institutional banking and employs over 5000 people in New Zealand. In 1992 the bank was purchased by the National Australia Bank and is today operated as a subsidiary but retains local governance with a fully empowered New Zealand board of directors.[2]“

    • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2

      The banks don’t like it then… quelle surprise! Oh, and they have no idea how it will affect the economy:

      “First, it is completely experimental. We have no information on how consumer borrowing and spending or business pricing behaviour will change in response to a change in Kiwisaver contributions…”

      Oh I agree: it’s a doozy all right :lol:

    • mickysavage 1.3

      I did address Alexander’s article. I thought his conclusion that the policy would increase borrowing was rather odd.

      • Enough is Enough 1.3.1

        Well Micky lower interest rates means borrowing is more affordable. If it is more affordable it is likely to be more popular.

        There is nothing too odd about that.

        Furthermore if you have a bigger pot of gold in the form of a large kiwi saver account, a bank is more likely to look upon you in favourable terms with borrowing becoming easier.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.3.1.1

          Yep, that’s the theory – doesn’t work in practice though as the massive hike in house prices proves. Interest rates went up and so did borrowing right along with them which pushed house prices up because that’s all that people were borrowing on with the easy credit from the banks. Credit made easy to get by the high interest.

    • Paul 1.4

      Glad to know you’re on the side of the banksters, fisi.
      Explains a hell of a lot.

  2. Skinny 2

    Hey Micky with all due respect, how about a little less back slapping and actually provide the much hyped Labour Army ( who will be out doing the foot work to get the low income vote out) with some solid details of how this block is going to benefit from voting for Labour.

    You know the details of how they will be looked after when they are forced into Kiwi Saver ( reduced current income) and the rent raises etc. I do expect an answer from you btw just passing on the message from some of these punters who have asked. While I’ve explained things away, an actual position from within the Labour Party PR/policy development group would be good.

    • mickysavage 2.1

      Fair comment Skinny. I will give this more thought.

      • Ad 2.1.1

        Shouldn’t entirely be on your shoulders to do the job of the Leader’s office comms team.

        After all they are supposed to be the main provider for party comms that would assist the volunteers.

      • Skinny 2.1.2

        I would suggest through the LEC’s and feed on from there. I know the release is designed to get buy in from the business sector and middle bloc, which has been achieved successfully. Also the low income earners will be well and truly looked after. Just mindful of the switch off to voting effect if they get their back up, as sadly many are in the terrible position of only thinking about putting food on the family table, and having to get by week by week.

        • Ad 2.1.2.1

          The LEC’s get it from Head Office, who in turn get it from the Leader’s Office.

  3. Chooky 3

    +100 Great Post …this new Labour Monetary Policy is going to be a big winner…GO Labour !

    • srylands 3.1

      Except it is not monetary policy. It is a confused mix of a savings and monetary policy.

      The problem is that it is superficially appealing but the more you analyse it the uglier it looks. Just for starters – there isn’t the volume of funds in Kiwisaver to make it a viable monetary policy instrument. Interest rates affect $30 billion plus of NZD debt. Kiwisaver is a fraction of that. Secondly OCR goes up and down. Are you really going to put the Kiwisaver rate back DOWN after it has gone up? (You get your savings objective conflicting with the MP objective).

      Of course apart from simply not working, it overwhelmingly makes life easier for those on high incomes with mortgages. Those on low incomes without mortgages will just see it as equal to a pay cut. So what are you going to do? Carve them out? Which reduces the volumes as a MP instrument even further.

      It isn’t going to fly.

      I think the time has come for a compulsory national savings scheme. It is only a matter of time before the qualifying age for national super goes up to 70, so for those in their 20s and 30s now they better get saving. But Labour has munted the savings debate by mixing in monetary policy.

  4. Colonial Viper 4

    What is useful and innovative about the policy is that it creates a new tool for withdrawing some demand from the economy when it is heading (as it is now) into a period when willingness to spend is outstripping growth

    So this is a dead giveaway. Fallow lives in the top half of the Two New Zealands; in the bottom half there is no spare money to spend let alone ‘outstrip growth’, and there hasn’t been for a very long time.

    And ultimately of course that is the problem with this Labour policy. It’s aimed at the top half of the Two New Zealands. That’s the half who actually get some benefit from the mediocre so-called growth which has been occurring.

    The policy announcement is a feast for policy wonks, economists and monetary experts, but IMO leaves the 3 million NZers out there who earn less than $45K per annum (including several hundred thousand unemployed and underemployed) going “WTF so now I’m going to have less money to spend at the supermarket”

    it would be entirely up to the bank whether at any time it wants to recommend an increase in KiwiSaver contributions instead of raising the official cash rate. Either device could take a little money out of circulation when inflation looms.

    Or the government could just increase a few targeted taxes to “take a little money out of circulation”. Or is that verboten?

    • Skinny 4.1

      +1 I do realise it is aimed at the middle bloc of voters and is appeased most of the business sector, however now they are happy enough how about a bit more information. Let us hope the conspicuous silence isn’t going to be met with the ‘trickle down effect.’

    • Chooky 4.2

      @CV…well ( speaking as a financial retard) imo it has to be accompanied by other policies of course!….what would you suggest for the bottom half?

      ….the bottom half do benefit in the LONG TERM ie retirement savings…and NZ as a whole benefits in the long term …..less hemorrhaging of NZ wealth overseas and in the long term more money available to be spent in social welfare and maintaining NZ sovereignty etc ..so we All benefit in the long term

      …but this is not much consolation for the bottom half who are struggling NOW and cant even afford to save, let alone acquire a mortgage….so interest rate hikes dont mean so much to them…except perhaps to keep their rent down.

      AWAITING policies for the Bottom half……..(eg. stop foreigners buying up NZ houses …so NZers can buy them at an affordable price….incentives/help for NZers to acquire their first house?)

      • Chooky 4.2.1

        Bomber Bradbury answers the questions on what Labour policies are needed to help the Bottom half :

        “What the left miss in their criticism of Labour’s monetary policy” –

        http://thedailyblog.co.nz/2014/05/02/what-the-left-miss-in-their-criticism-of-labours-momentary-policy/

        Thankyou Bomber…you wee gem!

      • Colonial Viper 4.2.2

        ….the bottom half do benefit in the LONG TERM ie retirement savings…and NZ as a whole benefits in the long term …..less hemorrhaging of NZ wealth overseas and in the long term more money available to be spent in social welfare and maintaining NZ sovereignty etc ..so we All benefit in the long term

        Long term retirement savings? What are you on about? You really think those KiwiSaver funds being put into the “markets” are still going to be worth anything after climate change and peak oil really bite hard? (And they are just starting to now).

        And most of our KiwiSaver funds are going to Wall St. I count that as being “overseas.”

        • Chooky 4.2.2.1

          @ CV….Ok so you don’t believe in KiwiSaver or saving for retirement?….I have heard this argument before but not by someone who was that interested in economics (actually by someone who thought he had been beamed up…lol)

          Ok…..so you are saying Labour is pulling a fasty? … but I thought you were a Labour supporter?

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.2.2

          You really think those KiwiSaver funds being put into the “markets” are still going to be worth anything after climate change and peak oil really bite hard?

          Even without those I fail to see any value in saving money because money is nothing. Far better to actually conserve our resources.

          • Chooky 4.2.2.2.1

            @DTB…we need money to conserve resources…otherwise we go bankrupt and all the rich investors from overseas buy up NZ…as Nact is letting them do at the moment

            • Draco T Bastard 4.2.2.2.1.1

              Ah, no we don’t. In fact, under the present paradigm, saving money actually uses up more resources as more economic activity is used to a) accumulate the money in the first place and b) to pay the interest on the money after it’s been accumulated.

              Want to stop the overseas investors buying up NZ? Then ban foreign ownership. But even that won’t save any of our resources due to the paradigm of needing to dig it all up ASAP to pay the friggen interest.

              • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                You didn’t address Chooky’s point DTB, if NZ doesn’t have enough money those who we’ve borrowed the money from will extract their pound of flesh by some other means.

                Isn’t it better that Labour are moving toward taking some control of this process back?

                Judging by the stats, by far the greatest use that ‘money’ is being used for is speculation – putting money into a savings bank no longer assures you that that is not what it is going to be used for – you know that, so what is this mention about ‘using resources up’ from you when talking about ‘savings’ ? Making ‘money on money’ – by house buying and speculation are the most likely effects of putting money into a bank. Resources or anything leading to job creation hardly factors into those with the most ‘money’ these days.

                Isn’t it good that Labour are attempting to address some of this speculation and take some control back?

                How have those who use resources unwisely managed to do so? By having huge amount of influence over government policies due to the wealth they accumulate from using resources unwisely.

                Isn’t it good that Labour plan to address inequality and work on breaking up the activities that have lead to the concentration of wealth that have lead to the fucked up state of capture that governments across the western world have achieved in the last few decades?

                • Draco T Bastard

                  You didn’t address Chooky’s point DTB, if NZ doesn’t have enough money those who we’ve borrowed the money from will extract their pound of flesh by some other means.

                  Yeah I did.

                  Isn’t it better that Labour are moving toward taking some control of this process back?

                  But they’re really not.

                  Judging by the stats, by far the greatest use that ‘money’ is being used for is speculation – putting money into a savings bank no longer assures you that that is not what it is going to be used for – you know that, so what is this mention about ‘using resources up’ from you when talking about ‘savings’ ?

                  Not all of the money will be used for speculation. In fact, money put into a bank isn’t used at all except as a base to increase the money supply. That increased money supply is then used for both speculation and productive lending. Producing more inevitably uses up more resources.

                  Isn’t it good that Labour are attempting to address some of this speculation and take some control back?

                  So far, I haven’t seen them do anything about that. Sure, if their policy decreases our interest rates then we won’t see as much hot money coming in but I doubt if it’ll decrease them enough.

                  Isn’t it good that Labour plan to address inequality and work on breaking up the activities that have lead to the concentration of wealth that have lead to the fucked up state of capture that governments across the western world have achieved in the last few decades?

                  Haven’t seen any of that either.

                  • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                    Not too impressed with this response DTB

                    You did not address the point that Chooky made and I repeated.

                    It is all very well to write ‘But they are really not’ yet this says absolutely nothing . Where is the support for your conclusions? I say they are by shifting the focus on how to respond to inflation by including other factors in that process.

                    When the amount of money being speculated in the world exceeds the ‘world GDP’ by, what is it up to now? Tenfold? – I think you’ll find that the money going through banks is very much part of that speculative world.

                    Your last two points: Just because you haven’t seen them doesn’t mean they are not there.

                    Conclusion: lol you sound more interested in seeming sure and correct than you are on elucidating how you are coming to the conclusions that you are, so that both you and I and anyone reading can gain a deeper understanding. Perhaps you are simply stuck in a critical mode and incapable of providing a positive assessment on anything?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Please understand that adding billions into KiwiSaver retirement funds merely fuels the capitalist activity of needing to find places to invest/exploit in order to obtain exponential growth (which is what getting a few percent return p.a. is, mathematically).

                      This demand for ever more investment return by shareholders, bondholders and pension fund participants is what is accelerating the destruction of our ecosystems and social systems. Would you like your monies to go into a new dairy farm (which used to be covered by Amazon rain forest), a pipeline company (helping to take oil from the Canadian tar sands over the border into the US), some blue chip corporate (who decides to fire 5,000 frontline workers globally in order to increase profitability to meet investor expectations) or perhaps into the world of commodity derivatives speculation (driving up the price of wheat, soy and rice for the 1B people in the world who can barely afford to eat already).

                      So where would you like NZer’s KiwiSaver funds to end up?

                      We are very nearly at the end of this road “invest, maximise your returns, grow a nest egg”, yet because most do not think what that actually entails in the physical world, so many on the Left think it is sensible to continue on. It’ as if we were still in the middle of the mid 20th century energy and resource rich age with plenty of global wealth and native populations left to plunder and exploit, that we think that we can keep pedal to the metal in the name of saving for our retirements like Norman Kirk thought we should do 50 years ago.

                      Game’s almost over and modern civilisation is on its last life.

                    • blue leopard

                      I’m not too worried about that, CV, the next nat government would come along and thieve the savings and give it to their rich mates anyway. (bit of a joke, kind of…)

                      Thanks for your considered reponse. There are alternatives to this profit/growth driven business model though and I do think that to shift toward these alternatives we need to have policies that loosens the ‘standard business practice’ mentality. We also need ways to turn the wealth disparity around – I.e dissolve the concentration of wealth. Until that happens those with concentrated wealth (& thus power) continue to influence policies unduly toward what you (& I) can see aren’t helpful.

                      I haven’t absorbed all Labour policies in detail, yet I have had a sense that the main ones that have come out are attempts to get the middle class (who ever they are) on board while quietly shifting some of the advantages away from the very top tier of wealthy people.

                      Noticing the rabid and hysterical reactions of most of the mainstream media to the slightest whiff of questioning the status quo, I think that if my above suspicions are correct – this is a very savvy way to proceed – a political party can’t get anything done while in Opposition (especially not Labour, who seem to take up all their time in Opposition squabbling amongst themselves and leaving it to the Greens to play the real role of Opposition) and a political party can’t come out and shout blue murder (backlash from media and big money too strong) – so it is better to proceed quietly shifting the roadblocks to the massive change required. In the long run, I think such an approach will cause a shift faster than putting it all on the table now.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      You did not address the point that Chooky made and I repeated.

                      Yes I did. Right in this bit: Ah, no we don’t. As I keep saying, we can print the bloody money. That’s a really, really, important bit. It means, quite simply, that we don’t need stock piles of cash.

                      It is all very well to write ‘But they are really not’ yet this says absolutely nothing .

                      It says everything as they’re not taking control back – they’re leaving it in the hands of the Reserve Bank. Now, they’re giving the Reserve Bank an extra tool or two to help with inflation but they’re most definitely not taking control of the amount of NZ$ there are available and they’re leaving that in the hands of the private banks. It’s that latter that has the money growing exponentially.

                      When the amount of money being speculated in the world exceeds the ‘world GDP’ by, what is it up to now? Tenfold?

                      Quad last time I heard. Still, the only real solution to that is to destroy the money and the way to destroy it is through taxes – massive taxes. Saving it adds to the problem.

                      Conclusion: lol you sound more interested in seeming sure and correct than you are on elucidating how you are coming to the conclusions that you are, so that both you and I and anyone reading can gain a deeper understanding.

                      I’ve been saying these things on this board for a long time. I’m not going to go around repeating them every two comments.

        • blue leopard 4.2.2.3

          @ CV,

          I am in that ‘bottom half’ and I would always trust Labour to address the interests of this section of society in a manner light years advanced than National. I have seen and experienced that with my own eyes time and again each time there is a change in government-there is a substantial shift in culture.

          It is not solely about money either, you have to take into account what the poor bashing, protester bashing, arrogant and blatant disregard for democratic processes that the right wing conduct does to people. National have been taking away democratic processes and public involvement in democratic processes piece by piece behind the scenes and always do, Factor in the sense of insecurity that a right-wing government gives the struggling section of society – these types of conditions are always improved under a leftwing government no doubt about that.

          Does anyone ever stop to consider what the type of stuff that National conduct do to people’s morale?

          If this were National bringing in this type of policy – I would be a whole lot more concerned – because National are sell-outs and Labour and the left wing have a whole lot more nous than to sell out entirely to the wealthier classes – they may compromise but they do not sell-out in the manner National does. National think short-term – that is one of the reasons the left have been struggling – everyone wants a quick-fix. It doesn’t exist (o.k highly unlikely to exist) – not in the pretty fucked up state the world finances have gotten into and the concentration of finances and power and with the increasingly globally interconnected society. Improvement requires thought – and I really do think Labour are attempting to turn the boat around with this policy. Sure, I do have some doubts, yet I have absolute confidence what will continue to occur under a National-sellout government and I think those expressing grave doubts about this Labour policy need to give Labour a tad more credit for considering the lower-income earners. Because this government won’t and it must go.

          • Chooky 4.2.2.3.1

            +100 blue leopard..”I think those expressing grave doubts about this Labour policy need to give Labour a tad more credit for considering the lower-income earners. Because this government won’t and it must go.”

            …this is just one Labour Party policy …hopefully more will come out soon to protect those most vulnerable at the bottom of the socio- economic heap…eg incentives/aid to buy their own homes…and a ban on non NZers buying up scarce housing.

            • Colonial Viper 4.2.2.3.1.1

              BL/Chooky

              I’m not interested in a Labour Party which raises the retirement age on workers and the long term unemployed, or one which thinks that $400,000 to $500,000 homes passes as affordable housing.

              The Labour Party I want to see is one which will institute policies of full employment as well as full scale preparation for the hard landing that energy and resource depletion is going to deliver on our doorstep in the next 10-20 years.

              Does Labour tend to govern more responsibly and considerately than National? Sure, there’s no doubt about that. But not in every area, and also that’s not a high bar to set in of itself and only deserves a pass mark, not applause.

              • Colonial Viper

                Bump

              • Chooky

                @CV…agree with all those policies!…especially …”The Labour Party I want to see is one which will institute policies of full employment as well as full scale preparation for the hard landing that energy and resource depletion is going to deliver on our doorstep in the next 10-20 years.” ( you sound like a Greenie)

                Still cant see what is wrong with Labour’s new Monetary policy….especially if the KiwiSaver funds are invested back in New Zealand…still agree with Bomber Bradbury on this ( Australia has done well with this policy)

              • blue leopard

                @ CV

                Your reply is all well and good if those were the subjects you were actually talking about that I responded to – but they weren’t.

                This is the subject that I was responding to:

                “And ultimately of course that is the problem with this Labour policy. It’s aimed at the top half of the Two New Zealands. That’s the half who actually get some benefit from the mediocre so-called growth which has been occurring.

                The policy announcement is a feast for policy wonks, economists and monetary experts, but IMO leaves the 3 million NZers out there who earn less than $45K per annum (including several hundred thousand unemployed and underemployed) going “WTF so now I’m going to have less money to spend at the supermarket””

                And what I am saying is that on such a debatable point as the consequences of this policy – which could be numerous and are highly dependant on other policies as to what the effects are likely to be – you could give Labour a bit of credit for the likelihood that they will address possible adversities for the lower/no income earners. More so given that there are two other left-wing parties, at least one of which Labour are likely to have to depend on in order to form a government.

                Labour have announced an aim at targeting speculation to drive finance into productive investment, they have stated quite clearly that job conditions are hopeless and need improving and they have stated the aim of making steps toward a living wage.

                > i.e. If lots of people think in the way you are re this policy Labour won’t even get a ‘pass’. And do you think the stated ‘lower half’ of income earners will be better off under National’s policies settings? Like hell they will. <<

                I'm sure if the 'wonks' in treasury were reading your comments they would be clapping their little hands in delight – I doubt they are too keen on having to take other things into account when doing their little calculations. (Gee I hope those guys can multitask – might be hard for them to consider more than one thing at a time.)

                In summary, what part of this are you not hearing:

                “We believe this [policy] will help deliver secure and better paid jobs, less inequality and decent
                returns on our own capital.

                We will own more of our own country, and so have more control of our own destiny.

                We will also be better able to provide the social supports that New Zealanders know make
                our country strong and fair. These include universal access to high quality health care and
                education, and support for the elderly and the vulnerable. ” D.Parker’s policy announcement.

                My emphasis added.

                • Chooky

                  +100 blue leopard…particularly:

                  “this [policy] will help deliver secure and better paid jobs, less inequality and decent returns on our own capital.

                  “We will own more of our own country, and so have more control of our own destiny.

                  “We will also be better able to provide the social supports that New Zealanders know make our country strong and fair. These include universal access to high quality health care and education, and support for the elderly and the vulnerable. ” D.Parker’s policy announcement.”

                  Cant understand what CV is on about!…how could he disagree with this?

                  Looks like a game changer to me…the only ones who wont like it are the NACTS and overseas friends who are looking for rich pickings from a stressed economy

                  • blue leopard

                    @ Chooky,
                    I very much appreciate your positive and ‘can -do’ comments on this and other threads.

                    It really worries me that some left-wing people while attempting to be very clever and pre-empt problems with this policy (or other ‘challenges’ Labour might have), that all they will achieve is that of putting people off voting or ever believing that there is any chance for improvement in this country. I know that is not their intent – yet it is good to recognise the beneficial effects of some positive, confident messages – this is really important – and an aspect of humanity that you, Chooky, clearly understand.

                    Thanks Chooky and keep up the good work, it is most appreciated! :)

                    • Chooky

                      @ blue leopard …you are special…..Mutual admiration society!

                    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                      :) :D :mrgreen:

                    • Colonial Viper

                      In summary, what part of this are you not hearing:

                      Labour believes that if you get the correct market driven monetary settings in place, then the economy and jobs will eventually come right for low and median income people.

                      THAT’S the problem I have with it. Globally, we have seen that monetary policy mixing around around in the absence of a comprehensive fiscal stimulus strategy is just useless.

                      So what would tell me that Labour is on the right track is if there were a comprehensive and significant FISCAL programme to actually make it happen for low and median income earners within 100 days of a Labour Government taking office.

                    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                      @ CV 2.51pm

                      No they don’t

                      ‘Our research and development tax credits encourage innovation, and our accelerated
                      depreciation encourages industry to invest in productivity enhancing plant and equipment.
                      Our policies push New Zealand’s economy from volume towards higher value products and
                      services, both in traditional commodities and new industries.

                      I know from my discussions with business leaders that it is already widely accepted that we
                      are promoting an integrated series of policies which will lift export performance.
                      Our well-considered solutions form a joined up roadmap to growth and prosperity.

                      But significant as these steps are, we do not believe they alone will be enough to lift our
                      export performance to overcome our current account deficit and get our net international
                      liabilities on a sustainable downward track…..’

                      …..Labour has concluded that the current trend is clear and undesirable, and that monetary policy is partially responsible.

                      [added bold for emphasis]

                      It is very clear from this excerpt from Parker’s speech that Labour see monetary policy as part of the problem, not the entire problem.

                    • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                      @ CV
                      Labour believes that if you get the correct market driven monetary settings in place, then the economy and jobs will eventually come right for low and median income people.

                      No they don’t – It is very clear from Parker’s speech that Labour see monetary policy as part of the problem, not the entire problem.

                      [My first response was put in moderation. I quoted the relevant part of Parker's speech, possibly because this was quite a large copy and paste is why the comment is in moderation - so I've taken out the quote and that will appear in time]

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Owning our entire country is easy – ban foreign ownership.

                  • blue leopard (Get Lost GCSB Bill)

                    Yes, great idea DTB, there would be no consequences toward taking such a direct approach, I mean, a good test would be to note what reactions occurred to the mild yet clear indications of an of anti-neoliberal stance Cunliffe took in the Labour leadership contest. This didn’t cause any reaction with the big-money owned media – there has been absoulutely no campaign to discredit Cunliffe and Labour – none whatsoever – nothing to fear about introducing things that threaten the most powerful peoples grip on power…nothing whatsoever…no delicacy required…

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Put it to a referendum – I’m sure that the same 70% who voted not to sell our assets would also vote to ban foreign ownership.

          • just saying 4.2.2.3.2

            I am in that ‘bottom half’

            privileges you may enjoy, some of which you certainly do:

            Owning a house or significant equity in one.
            Having a job that you anticipate being able to keep and/or tradeable skills
            Literacy and other educational advantages
            What seems to be called ‘social capital’ but I tend to call ‘middle-class nous’
            Being male
            Being Pakeha
            Being heterosexual
            Social skills
            Having no major chronic illness or disability
            No signficant chronic illness or disability in your immediate family
            A stable family background
            Extended-family support
            Friends and other social support
            A partner and/or family of your own
            Other things I haven’t thought of.

            Thing is, it’s not just about income. It may well be that Labour governments have looked after your interests and you can be confident that they will continue to do so. However, there is a signifciant constituency that Labour has not looked after and seems to continue to be prepared to see as acceptable collateral damage.

            Does anyone ever stop to consider what the type of stuff that National conduct do to people’s morale?

            Have you stopped to think about what Labour has done to the morale of people who aren’t as lucky as you over the last 30 years, while in government and in opposition. Being slightly less violent than the alternative is part of the problem where no substantial change in the situation is ever on the agenda. As Russell Brand put it: Just another flavour of ‘we don’t give a fuck about you’.

            I think those expressing grave doubts about this Labour policy need to give Labour a tad more credit for considering the lower-income earners

            Sorry, I must have missed that, when did Labour consider lower income earners? Policy released so far seems to be based on the premise that caring for the smug middle class as well as the elite will create a “trickle down” for the poor. They know perfectly well that it never has and never will.

            • Colonial Viper 4.2.2.3.2.1

              Labour in government will be extending passport validity periods so you don’t have to renew your passport quite as often. It will make going away on regular overseas holidays easier and more hassle-free.

            • Chooky 4.2.2.3.2.2

              @just saying…”smug middle class”….i think not!

              …increasingly the middle class is struggling

              …and sometimes the workers on low incomes have it better, as in tertiary funding…eg my daughter who is an ‘A’ student has a $40,000 debt and is not going back to do postgrad honours even although invited to in two disciplines because she and we can not afford it ( the costs of postgrad degrees are now horrendous…way beyond the reach of most students from so- called middle class backgrounds…instead she is working in Australia)

              ….postgrad degrees are for the children of the rich thanks to Joyce and John Key NACT…or those who are very poor and on scholarships or grants

              her friend, whose solo Mother has a low income, has gone through university virtually debt free and is now doing honours….and good for her! and fantastic for her Mother who is very proud of her daughter!

              …so just saying the middle class in NZ is not thriving , has very few handouts, is getting increasingly squeezed….and has their back against the wall ….and you would be better off attacking the rich

              • blue leopard

                +1 Chooky

                …and perhaps it is better to talk about a ‘lower, middle class and an ‘upper’ middle class because Chooky may be describing the ‘lower’ part of the middle class….I don’t know the numbers… it seems lots of NZers are pretty comfortable and many are as Chooky describes…and all would be classified as middle class.

              • Draco T Bastard

                And that would be why education needs to be free and we need a UBI.

              • Colonial Viper

                …increasingly the middle class is struggling

                Ah yes, this would be the same well to do middle class who shrugged when thousands of factory staff and process workers were being laid off because of the high dollar and destruction of import tarriffs, but that wasn’t a big problem because that same high dollar kept petrol for the new SS cheap, made holidays to Asia a real bargain, and meant that electronic toys and smart phones could be upgraded every year.

                I see in the US that the American middle class has now fallen behind in income to the Canadians, and that US labour force participation has crashed to 30+ year lows.

              • just saying

                A tiny percentage of university students come from disadvantaged backgrounds.

                The government still pays for seventy percent of tuition fees for students, and many degrees make the fees a very worthwhile investment. I belive it costs a million dollars to train a doctor to specialist level. Which would be fine if there was any obligation for graduates to stay and use their skills for the people that largely paid for them.

                The real middle class is doing better than they have ever done. The lower middle class was always working class and that’s just becoming much more apparent now.

                Define “struggling” in regard to the middle class.

                The reason I’m talking about the middle class is because this is the minority that Labour represents slightly better than National, and targets its policies towards helping, as opposed to the majority that the Labour movement was established to represent.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Define “struggling” in regard to the middle class.

                  We can only afford to take the family on one overseas holiday this year because the kids private school fees have gone up.

                  • blue leopard

                    lol that is a pretty good definition!

                  • weka

                    That’s upper middle class. I largely agree with what you and js are saying about Labour, however I think it’s useful to understand the middle classes as something other than one amporphous lump.

                  • Chooky

                    @CV….i guess you will be voting Mana?!…certainly NOT Labour !

                    …because after all David Cunliffe has been repeatedly defined and accused of being ‘middle class’ by John Key’s NACT

                    ….and probably many other Labour MPs would fit into that pejorative definition of “struggling” middle class you have given

                • Chooky

                  @ just saying “The real middle class is doing better than they have ever done. The lower middle class was always working class and that’s just becoming much more apparent now.”

                  ….it might be interesting for you to attend a university graduation ceremony….recently I attended a B.Com grad ceremony ….about 90 percent were Asians ….where were the NZers?….tertiary education has become too expensive for many New Zealanders thanks to Joyce and John Keys Nact pay as you go or borrow as you go tertiary education policies

                  …..my daughter went to a large co-ed State Secondary School…..where there were kids from all backgrounds ( ….dentists….the very wealthy to the unemployed and very poor..) .it was a great education because it gave kids a feel for all the socio economic strata of New Zealand society and if they chose to try they could do well with the help of teachers and mentors ( or they could fool around, smoke and drink in the bushes and get up to mishief)….my daughter coached her friend( now doing honours ) throughout their secondary schooling…her friend was bright and very determined and saw my daughter as a role model….her own Mother a solo parent had left school at 15 but she supported her daughter going to university …however..Yet another friend of my daughters was a very clever boy who could have gone to university but his working class builder parents who had a good std of living never supported his staying at school….his getting a job was all they cared about….and their son was discouraged and put off university because of the fees and expense

                  i guess what i am saying is that there is blurry line between working and middle class in what was formerly egalitarian New Zealand ….and those who are most critical of the ‘middle class’ are in my experience often the very wealthy NACTS, with overseas interests and their friends, who have very dubious motives …and would sell NZ and their grandmother down the ( dirty) creek ….they are not interested in egalitarianism or equal opportunity or the socialist foundations New Zealand was built on…nor are they interested in the environment.

                  • just saying

                    I finished university three years ago. The majority of students were not of asian descent (though those doing health sciences were). I’m not sure about commerce students.

                    The overwhelming majority of students in my time (overall) were middle-class New Zealanders. A minority were from the elite and a tinier proportion were from working class backgrounds.

                    That blurry line will become much clearer in the next ten years, as most of the working-class who thought they had become middle-class end up back where they started from – up shit creek. And if they think Labour will help them, they should have been paying attention to how Labour has treated the bottom 20 percent for the last 30 years – crumbs from the table and a big kick if they don’t scrabble amongst themselves for them “nicely”.

                    …and those who are most critical of the ‘middle class’ are in my experience often the very wealthy NACTS… citation needed
                    I can’t imagine how they’d find the time out of beating up on the poor, quite frankly, but I’m interested to hear more.

                    • Chooky

                      @ just saying …i did say “in my experience”…so no citation available ….except from me…that should be obvious…

                      ….However I suggest you look very hard at history on where the middle class has been attacked…. and particularly the middle class intelligentsia who would oppose tyranny

                      1.) ….Iran under the Shah ( who was a puppet of the USA) the middle class was just about wiped out….tortured, exterminated ….and they were the very people fighting the multinationals and imperialism and wanted a democratic egalitarian society Western style

                      2.) …have you heard of the Cultural Revolution? ….where the middle class and intelligentsia were victimised and worse?…do you support this ?

                      3)…or what about Pol Pot?…he also victimised the middle class and the intelligentsia…how many were killed ?( hundreds of thousands, millions?)

                      4)….or what about Stalin?

                      Interesting that David Cunliffe has come under prolonged attack recently by NACT supporters for being ‘middle class’….how do you feel about this?!….do you agree with the attacks on him for being ‘middle class’?

                      I feel that trying to pit workers and the unemployed at the bottom of the heap against those fingered as ‘middle class’ and well educated…. who are fighting for a more egalitarian society is at best missing the point badly

                      ….at worst it is trying to split the Labour Party and it is playing into the hands of NACT….who have absolutely no interest in an egalitarian society or the ‘working class’ and unemployed at the bottom of the heap

                      ( Incidentally when I went to university it was FREE and there were many bright students from a ‘working class’ blue collar unskilled backgrounds…some I know got PhDs and others went on to head government departments…..this shows how far New Zealand education and society has deteriorated in the last few years and particularly under John Key and Joyce’s NACT )

            • blue leopard 4.2.2.3.2.3

              @ just saying,

              It was a good idea that from the outset you listed your suspicions on the privileges I might be enjoying. Out of the list of 14 I have 7 of these ‘privileges’ – and some of the other 7 are questionable as to whether I have them, or they have helped me due to the current state of NZ job market.

              It came across that you assume I am privileged and that is why I hold the views that I do, why I am asserting that Labour is more trustworthy than National. Is this correct?

              Perhaps I should have been more specific and said I fall into the ‘bottom quarter’ or less of the income bracket.

              Re your second point.

              You are aware that Brand is speaking in a country with a First Past the Post system?

              Do you think MMP changes anything? Does it allow for more chance to effect change or less?

              Do you think that if people voted for Greens or Mana in large numbers, this wouldn’t help improve things for this ‘lower half’ group we are discussing?

              On your last point, Labour have pretty clearly indicated that they are trying to move out of a corner that they and National have painted themselves into. Labour have stated they intend to achieve this through:

              >adding more factors for the Reserve Bank to consider when making their little calculations
              >directing the speculative culture of the wealthier NZers into productive enterprises and in this way make job creation [far] more likely.
              >improving job conditions and aiming at moving toward a living wage.

              Amongst other things.

              I think they are making a very good start and hope that they are given the chance to implement these aims because one thing is for certain, we are simply going to get the same old sell-out shite with National.

        • bevanjs 4.2.2.4

          Cripes – must be something odd in my coffee, I think I’ve largely just agreed with not just one CV contribution but two in a row. I certainly consider myself as from “the right” so that’s very odd.

          As a family on a single income of about $45k only a few years ago there was no way we could put even 2% into kiwisaver. No way it made sense, especially as CV points out, and in my own words the markets are just professional gamblers. Some silver bullet that!

          If people really wanted to stop the money flowing overseas we’d all chose individually to not have such big mortgages. We have the power right now, but we do love to keep up with them Joneses – if, of course someone, anyone, is available to facilitate our desires. Thanks foreign money, we apparently love you very much.

          • Colonial Viper 4.2.2.4.1

            Hey. IMO if NZ is ever to sort it’s shit out, ordinary Kiwis with left leaning ideas and those with right leaning ideas, will need to come together and agree on some basic and sensible ways ahead. The weird thing is, I do see this happening every day on a family, local and community level.

            • bevanjs 4.2.2.4.1.1

              would certainly be interesting if the old left/right nonsense got one heck of a shake up.

              • Chooky

                @bevanjs…well maybe some who seem to be on the left are actually on the right ?…who would know for sure……?

                …and left would be right and right would be left… = no rules and bloody good traffic snarl up

                ….anarchy…and confusion amongst the Labour Party masses

                ….might suit the NACTs very well

                • weka

                  Chook, your comments are now approaching the illegibility of phil’s. I’m finding that more and more I just skim them. All those dots and lack of conventional punctuation make for poorer communication. I like reading your comments, which is why I am saying something. Up to you of course.

                  • Chooky

                    weka …darls ( you fixated red-eyed sciency type birdie)

                    …you have just changed the subject …eh?

                    …deliberate or not ?….eh?

                    …spring up to the perch will you?

                    ….and stop grubbing around for science and punctuation in the bushes?…eh?

                    … Up to you of course!

                    ….now where is my philip ure and his vegan sausage?…eh?

                    …PS….feel free to skim on by…eh?

                    • weka

                      I will, thanks. Kind of disappointed that you are someone who would respond with that kind of passive aggressive dotty thing though :-(

                    • Chooky

                      @ weka…you are the one concerned with dots…and not “passive” aggressive …just aggressive and humorous ( dont be so sexist!…i dont do “passive”)

                      …suggest you lighten up old weka…and get a bit of humour into your life….a la philip ure…he could teach you a thing or two

                    • weka

                      even more passive aggressive :-(

            • Chooky 4.2.2.4.1.2

              @ CV…. “if NZ is ever to sort it’s shit out”

              …how about a few other countries sorting their gross over-population, human rights violations, sexism exploitation and pollution problems in their own countries …instead of fleeing to greener pastures like New Zealand and Tibet and spreading their problems here?….any advice for them from you?

    • srylands 4.3

      “Or the government could just increase a few targeted taxes to “take a little money out of circulation”. Or is that verboten?”

      You are confusing monetary and fiscal policy.

      • McFlock 4.3.1

        You did not address the point at all.

      • Colonial Viper 4.3.2

        You are confusing monetary and fiscal policy.

        You’re the one confused; tightening the money supply via increased taxes is a very straight forward exercise.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.3.2.1

          And is more likely to work – especially when the taxes come down hard on the rich as they should do.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.4

      Or the government could just increase a few targeted taxes to “take a little money out of circulation”. Or is that verboten?

      That’s pretty much verboten under the present economic paradigm – the paradigm that is, quite literally, sending us to hell.

    • Richard Christie 4.5

      but IMO leaves the 3 million NZers out there who earn less than $45K per annum (including several hundred thousand unemployed and underemployed) going “WTF so now I’m going to have less money to spend at the supermarket”

      When it all boils down this block will pay a similar burden as they are now.
      What currently happens when OCR and mortgage interest rates goes up? Do landlords absorb it? Nah, temporarily perhaps, but ultimately, it all gets passed down the line. We all have to be housed somewhere.

      I fail fail to see that this increases the burden on low incomes. What it aims to do and will probably achieve is keep the currency market under control and benefit the economy through that.

      • Colonial Viper 4.5.1

        I fail fail to see that this increases the burden on low incomes

        By forcing low income earners into KiwiSaver schemes at higher savings rates that they cannot control themselves, thereby taking away the cash in hand that they need for that weeks groceries or power bill.

  5. Tautoko Viper 5

    All that is needed now is for Labour to remove the age of eligibility for super from their election manifesto and instead call for a cross party working party after the election on this issue. The increased rise in age for super is the main stumbling block for many people I have spoken with who would otherwise vote Labour.

    • Chooky 5.1

      Tautoko Viper +100

    • Colonial Viper 5.2

      At the moment it’s electoral suicide. The increased retirement age policy will cost Labour 3-4 seats in Parliament this election. In other words, most of any probable margin of victory over the NATs.

      I figure that John Key will start hammering Labour on this policy 4 weeks before election day, when the TV debates roll around, and consequently Labour voters will stay home in droves.

    • Anne 5.3

      +1000 Tautoko.

      David Parker reminds me of an old vinyl recording needle that has got stuck in a groove and can’t get out of it.

      I’m old enough to remember those vinyl players. Once as a TV audio operator many years ago, a needle got stuck in a groove while playing God Save The Queen at the end of a nights viewing. The technical supervisor of the day when making out his report described the event as follows:

      “The Queen had a hole in her”.

      Yep, he ended up on the mat for insubordination.

      And yes CV. Key and co. are waiting for the start of the official campiagn and away they will go… the Labour Party plans to deny you your absolute right to a superannuation at 65. You will be forced to work until you are nearly 70 etc. etc….

      The stupidity is breathtaking?

      • Colonial Viper 5.3.1

        It’s like seeing road spikes laid down dead ahead and pushing the accelerator down harder.

  6. Draco T Bastard 6

    David Farrar has referred to BNZ Economist Tony Alexander who thinks that the policy will result in reduced interest rates which will increase the incentive to borrow money and therefore be counterproductive.

    That’s a load of bollocks anyway. If that had worked we wouldn’t have had the massive house price rises over the last decade or so.

  7. Ad 7

    This week counts as Labour’s first media-positive week in about 6 weeks.

    Hopefully Mr Cunliffe’s upcoming interview with Campbell Live plays well. Otherwise they will have his wife to deal with, which will have them emptying their bowels in seconds.

  8. Jim in Tokyo 8

    I’d like to see a public fund become the default for all new Kiwisavers. By all means keep the private option for savers who think they can pick a winner, but I’d like to see a proper public option (a public service, not an ‘SOE’) become the default for all new entrants. It’s vital for Labour to sort this BEFORE going compulsory.

    The current scheme as introduced by Labour is shoveling windfall profits down the throats of already bloated entities like AMP, ANZ, ASB, Mercer and Fisher. ANZ in particular are citing Kiwisaver grown as a driver as they hoover up another $887 million this quarter alone.

    • Ad 8.1

      There is the Kiwibank option now.

      • Colonial Viper 8.1.1

        Sorry to disappoint, but there is a 99% chance that KiwiBank has contracted a major private sector fund manager to manage those monies and merely takes a cut itself.

        I’d be interested if anyone has more specific information on this.

        The current scheme as introduced by Labour is shoveling windfall profits down the throats of already bloated entities like AMP, ANZ, ASB, Mercer and Fisher.

        I’m with you Jim. Making it mandatory to handover your working wages to the casino financial markets is a shite policy. Look at what happened to the value of 401Ks in the USA. Wall St thanks Labour for its policies.

        • Ad 8.1.1.1

          I had understood that upon buying the Gareth Morgan company that they had brought it fully in-house. Happy to be corrected.

          • Jim in Tokyo 8.1.1.1.1

            Kiwibank is a State Owned Enterprise. Its remit is to return a profit to its shareholder, which currently happens to be the NZ Government (actually it’s a subsidiary of another SOE, NZ Post).

            I’d much rather see Kiwibank become the default over ANZ et. al, as ‘profits’ would at least stay onshore and accrue to the NZ Government.

            But even better would be a proper public option without the neolib corporate trappings of the SOE structure. Just give us a zero-fee, passive indexed option. Or shadow the successful actively managed public ACC fund.

            Gekko types can still be free to pile into whatever active guru Gareth Morgan woo funds take their fancy, and we can all compare notes in 30 years.

            • Ad 8.1.1.1.1.1

              You are making two points. The first being that you don’t like the SOE setup.

              The second is that you want a public option for savings. Maybe the NZSuper Guardians could start up a side business to do it. But why even they would do it for free is beyond me.

              Re your first point, what a future Labour government might aim for is something in which public funds are required at minimum to work and invest together. But at maximum the ACC, NZSuper, public sector superannuation, and EQC funds are all pooled, and who also manage the remaining SOE shareholdings.

              This Temasek-like structure would be required to provide an aggregate return to the government for its capital, enabling the government to be certain about how much tax it needs to raise each year. It would also be required for example to fully pay for superannuation.

              That would also have the added bonus of reversing many of the structural reforms of the late 1908s and mid 1990s.

              You could also consider pooling in to that structure the income generated by Transpower that currently goes to EECA.

              The general point is to aggregate the existing assets and income generators, give them clear purpose, and enable them the freedom to grow.

              At the moment that’s what Christchurch and Dunedin Councils do, and if Auckland Council’s CCO reforms had any gumption they would try and do the same to alleviate their biggest income risk, which is transport: aggregate the income from all CCO sources, and from there figure out how much ratepayer income it needs.

              • Jim in Tokyo

                It seems like we are pretty much of the same mind here, but I want to be clear that my point is not that I ‘don’t like the SOE setup’.

                I’m rather responding to the suggestion that we don’t need a public super option because we have Kiwibank by pointing out that SOE ≠ public service.

                I think the SOE model can work well in some instances (I’d love to see NZ oil extracted by a state-owned enterprise for example) but it is a terrible option when public service outcomes are the primary goal. Just look at TVNZ for proof of that. Even worse when public interest goals clash with the profit imperative (Solid Energy).

                So you are right that the NZ Superfund is the logical and better comparison. Its viewed as wildly successful, but in fact over it’s life it has outperformed its benchmark passive index by about 1% PA.

                No one expects the NZ Super Guardians to work ‘for free’, but they draw modest remuneration and stick to their public service charter. The total cost as a percentage of funds invested is a fraction of what’s extracted by commercial fund managers.

                I’m in what I think is one of the cheaper superfunds in the country, a passive index, and my ‘managers’ still take .65% PA in fees. So a state administered passive fund would see me massively better off over 40 years.

                The Kiwibank managed options charge 1% pa, most of which (I’m speculating here) probably goes towards subsidizing cheaper mortgages so Kiwibank can grow its share in mega-profitable housing bubble. Another example of how SOE is not always synonymous with public service outcomes.

                Thank you for sketching out your ideas for restructuring NZ’s sovereign capital investments and aligning them with a common public goal, it’s an interesting and promising path to follow and along a similar path to the one I’m suggesting.

                But I’m not sure it is a prerequisite for fixing Kiwisaver.

            • dv 8.1.1.1.1.2

              Kiwbank sold their Kiwisaver to Mercer several years ago.

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    Real Climate | 01-10
  • New and Improved Ice Loss Estimates for Polar Ice Sheets
    In a previous post, several years ago, I discussed the various ways that we measure changes in the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets. Today, scientists still use these main methods for identifying ice changes but recent technological and data processing...
    Skeptical Science | 01-10
  • Crime Reporting Hides Reality
    The National Government has been clever at fudging data and hiding unwanted statistics. It has refused to measure the extent of child poverty, stopped independent environmental reporting and while there has been some worrying crime statistics, we only hear of...
    Local Bodies | 01-10
  • What Labour needs to hear: the 4th voice
    As he pops back and forth between New Zealand and the Pacific Islands, Shane Jones must look on himself as the luckiest of the three men who took part in the Labour leadership race just a scant 12 months ago.read...
    Pundit | 01-10
  • Extremes report 2013: NZ drought and record Aussie heat made worse by warmi...
    The latest climate extremes report finds that 9 out of 16 extreme weather events from last year were influenced by climate change. In particular, the conditions that led to New Zealand’s severe North Island drought — the worst for 41...
    Hot Topic | 01-10
  • On holiday
    Quick PSA: I won on holiday this week, which is why I'm not blogging much at all. Next week I will post once and only once on the Labour leadership contest....
    Polity | 01-10
  • World News Brief, Wednesday October 1
    Top of the AgendaAfghanistan and United States Sign Security Deal...
    Pundit | 01-10
  • Dancing Traffic Lights
    As a pedestrian it can be easy to become a bit impatient, especially when traffic lights are prioritised solely around the movement of vehicles which can leave a long wait between phases. Here’s one idea to keep people occupied while...
    Transport Blog | 01-10
  • Secure work, health and safety and pay rises
    This week the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions (the NZCTU) released their latest economic bulletin today with economist Bill Rosenberg answering the question about whether workers who have a collective employment agreement get bigger pay rises than those on...
    frogblog | 01-10
  • Shock! Horror! Wife defends husband!!!!
        In recent posts I’ve made some fairly trenchant comments about David Cunliffe, primarily about his media performance. Others, including some of his Caucus colleagues, have gone even further. The now resigned Leader of the Opposition has been under...
    Brian Edwards | 01-10
  • September ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    PLEASE NOTE: Sitemeter is playing up again making it impossible to automatically get the stats for some blogs – those I list below. Maybe more bloggers will shift to StatCounter or other counter. No stats could be found for these blogs: Works...
    Open Parachute | 01-10
  • September ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    PLEASE NOTE: Sitemeter is playing up again making it impossible to automatically get the stats for some blogs – those I list below. Maybe more bloggers will shift to StatCounter or other counter. No stats could be found for these blogs: Works...
    Open Parachute | 01-10
  • Auckland: the world’s friendliest city
    UK travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler has just named Auckland the world’s friendliest city in its 2014 rankings. It introduces Auckland with a great photo that highlights the city’s growing urbanity: FRIENDLIEST: 1. Auckland, New Zealand Score: 86.0 (tie) We...
    Transport Blog | 01-10
  • Waterview Breakthrough
    On Monday Alice the Tunnel Boring Machine broke through at Waterview after tunnelling for the last 10 months. And here’s a video of it happening. One of the things that is really impressive is just how accurate the machine is...
    Transport Blog | 30-09
  • Fundamental incomprehension II
    Another day, and another journalist who just doesn't get it about the Greens. This time its Duncan Garner:The Green Party needs a serious rethink. For as long as they have been in Parliament, they have been a left wing party...
    No Right Turn | 30-09
  • An Open Letter to Green Party Supporters: Why I slagged off your Party
    Last week I called for a Bluegreen Party – an environmental party that I could in all conscience, vote for. It prompted a huge response, which confirmed to me there is a clear constituency that is not being serviced. I...
    Gareth’s World | 30-09
  • Parliament should decide
    Yesterday John Key began laying the groundwork to deploy kiwi troops to Iraq to fight in another pointless American war. And with the Labour Party distracted by its autocannibalism, its left to Winston Peters to stand up for democratic values...
    No Right Turn | 30-09
  • The problem with warmongers
    The problem with warmongers is they appear to have no empathy for their fellow human beings. That's because war, and the industrial complex behind it, is invariably built upon people's prejudices.History is littered with examples of prejudice being used as...
    The Jackal | 30-09
  • Australia to criminalise journalism
    Imagine this scenario: Australian spies seeking to fight domestic terrorism borrow the tactics of their American counterparts and start running agent provocateurs to "flush out" those with terrorist leanings. But an operation goes horribly wrong, and actually results in a...
    No Right Turn | 30-09
  • School funding failing vulnerable students – time for a better way?
    1 October 2014 Schools with the greatest needs get too little to meet those needs, says PPTA president Angela Roberts. The current school funding system is failing to support our most vulnerable students and this morning delegates at PPTA’s annual...
    PPTA | 30-09
  • Waiho Papa Moana Hikoi
    More than 1,000 people marched up Queen Streen in Auckland yesterday, as part of the Waiho Papa Moana Hikoi, to protest outside Sky City at the New Zealand Petroleum Summit against plans to begin deep sea oil drilling in the...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-09
  • Why the Prime Minister and RB Governor are whistling in the wind
    Let there be no mistake, New Zealanders want the NZ dollar to be as high as possible. A 65 US cent dollar makes us a hell of a lot poorer than an 88 cent one. So why does the Reserve...
    Gareth’s World | 30-09
  • A targeted transport rate?
    An article in last Friday’s NZ Herald provided an interesting insight into where the investigations into additional transport funding options are at. This is the second phase of the project to close the supposed $12 billion funding gap over the next 30...
    Transport Blog | 30-09
  • Is New Zealand ready for an openly inane Prime Minister?
    In the current leadership race for the Labour Party there are two candidates: Grant Robertson and David Cunliffe. There has been much discussion of their strengths and weaknesses, but one subject has been delicately avoided; perhaps because of political correctness,...
    DimPost | 30-09
  • Is New Zealand ready for an openly inane Prime Minister?
    In the current leadership race for the Labour Party there are two candidates: Grant Robertson and David Cunliffe. There has been much discussion of their strengths and weaknesses, but one subject has been delicately avoided; perhaps because of political correctness,...
    DimPost | 30-09
  • Carpetbaggers
    So, those wishing to participate in the Labour leadership election (2014 edition) have until 11.59pm on Wednesday the 1st of October to join.I won't be joining, but I've noticed an alarming number of people on The Standard announcing that they...
    Left hand palm | 30-09
  • Gordon Campbell on the last rites for the TPP
    Column – Gordon Campbell The Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal is one of those litmus issues that has always had more to do with one’s place on the political spectrum than with any imminent reality. To date, the Greens have...
    Gordon Campbell | 30-09
  • Gordon Campbell on the last rites for the TPP
    Column – Gordon Campbell The Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal is one of those litmus issues that has always had more to do with ones place on the political spectrum than with any imminent reality. To date, the Greens have...
    Its our future | 30-09
  • ATTN MSM: this is not a political news story. I repeat, this is not a polit...
    New Zealand your media treats you as if you are stupid and vacuous, and articles like this are the only things your feeble minds can handle at any given time, unless Paddy has turned up with his friends Shouty Paddy...
    Politically Corrected | 30-09
  • How did the UK grid respond to losing a few nuclear reactors?
    This is a re-post from PassiiviIdentiteetti, written by Jani-Petri Martikainen. Answer: mainly by increasing the use of coal in power production. In the second week of August power company EDF decided to shutdown their reactors in Heysham and Hartlepool. This...
    Skeptical Science | 30-09
  • The very public evisceration of David Cunliffe
    Ordinarily, when the coup of a party leader is underway, one of two things happens. Either the incumbent simply walks, having seen the writing on the wall, or attempts to stare down their opposition in a closed room. Someone walks out of...
    Occasionally erudite | 30-09
  • Dr Sean Simpson from Lanzatech
    On 8th October, Dr Sean Simpson from Lanzatech will be speaking at the University of Auckland, on the subject of “Climate-friendly fuel: A challenge of scale and time”.  This is part of the Energy Centre’s Energy Matters lecture series. Sean...
    Transport Blog | 30-09
  • Stuart’s 100 #36 On the Beat
    36: On the Beat What if we had more cops on the beat? Isn’t it time the New Zealand Police started to recognise the changes happening in urban New Zealand? In our central cities and busiest town centres and main...
    Transport Blog | 30-09
  • Bonus growth for SaaS exporters
    The currency fall has a wonderful effect for exporters, especially those who have most of their costs back here in New Zealand. As I write this, the NZD versus the USD has fallen about 10% since earlier this year. As an...
    Lance Wiggs | 30-09
  • Hold fast to your Mana – Harawira
    Hone Harawira today called on the voters of Tai Tokerau to hold fast to their mana, and not be dictated to by those party leaders who have ganged together to tell them how to vote. “I call on our people...
    Mana | 18-09
  • Media Advisory – Interview availability
    This is to advise all media that Hone Harawira will be available in Auckland tomorrow, Friday the 19th of September from 7am to 4pm for interviews relating to his recent press releases. If you are interested in interviewing Mr Harawira on...
    Mana | 18-09
  • Labour stands on proud record on Suffrage Day
    Women have come a long way in the 121 years since New Zealand became the first country to give them the vote on September 19 1893, but there is still more to do, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Carol Beaumont says....
    Labour | 18-09
  • Polling Booths asked to treat Maori voters with respect
    “Polling booths without Maori roll voting papers, Maori people not being offered assistance to vote, people getting sent from Whangarei to Wellsford to vote, Maori people getting turned away from voting because they didn’t have their ‘easy vote’ card, Maori...
    Mana | 17-09
  • Aussie Liberals embroiled in Key campaign
    John Key needs to explain why Australia’s Liberal Party is interfering in New Zealand domestic politics and is encouraging Kiwi voters across the ditch to vote for National just days out from the election, Labour’s campaign spokesperson Annette King says....
    Labour | 17-09
  • The MANA Plan for Beneficiaries and Income in Waiariki
    Median Personal Income for Waiariki is $21,700. Over 13,000 Maori who live in Waiariki rely upon a form of government benefit including the Unemployment Benefit, Sickness Benefit, Domestic Purpose Benefit and the Invalids Benefit. “If you’re lucky enough to have...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Māori development crucial to New Zealand’s future
    Labour recognises the concern of Māori about child poverty and the rising costs of living, and in Government will make a real difference to the wellbeing of whānau and iwi, Labour’s Māori Affairs spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta says. “As our Māori...
    Labour | 16-09
  • MAORI PARTY – DON’T COMPLAIN … WALK
    “If the Maori Party are serious about stopping government spying on NZ citizens then they should tell the Prime Minister to either stop doing it or they will walk away” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira, on...
    Mana | 16-09
  • JOHN KEY SUPPORTING LABOUR
    “There is something really sick about a National Party Prime Minister coming out in support of a Labour candidate” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira, after hearing that John Key is urging voters to back Labour in...
    Mana | 16-09
  • SHUT DOWN THIS GOVT NOT KAITI WINZ – Nikora
    “I’m going to make it as hard for you to get help as I can” is Paula Bennett’s message to the people of Kaiti  said MANA candidate Te Hāmua Nikora today in response to the news that National will close...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Winegums make for better polling – Harawira
    I wanted to laugh when I saw the Native Affairs poll the other night (Hone Harawira 38%, Kelvin Davis 37%) because it was almost the same as the one they did back in 2011”, said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau...
    Mana | 16-09
  • The Leadership of MTS Lied – Harawira
    “Normally I’m happy to tell people that I was right but when I received the news about the staff cuts at Maori Television, I had nothing but sympathy for the three Maori media leaders who are going to be made...
    Mana | 16-09
  • Privileges Complaint Laid against Prime Minister – Harawira
    MANA Movement Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP Hone Harawira has today lodged a Privileges Complaint with the Speaker regarding the Prime Ministers denials in parliament that he knew anything about Kim Dotcom before 2012. “Information made public today appears...
    Mana | 15-09
  • Sharples’ new appointments are out of order
    The new appointments to the Waitangi Tribunal announced by Dr Pita Sharples this morning are completely out of order given the election is just five days away, says Labour's State Services spokesperson, Maryan Street. “This Government continues to show disdain...
    Labour | 15-09
  • MANA Movement Housing Policy
    “When families are living in cars, garages, cockroach-infested caravans and three families to a house then we have a housing crisis”, said MANA leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau, Hone Harawira. “When you have a housing crisis for low-income...
    Mana | 15-09
  • Bigger than the Foreshore and Seabed – Sykes
    “Over the past week I have received some disturbing information that has led myself and a number of Maori lawyers to conclude that this National - Maori Party - ACT and United Future Government are going to put an end to both...
    Mana | 14-09
  • MANA wants Te Reo Māori petition fulfilled
    Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau Annette Sykes, MANA candidate for Waiariki Te Hāmua Nikora, MANA candidate for Ikaroa Rāwhiti  “More than four decades have passed and the petition calling for Te Reo Māori in schools...
    Mana | 14-09
  • Primary focus on the critical issues
    A Labour Government will prioritise New Zealand’s agricultural sectors by recreating a Rural Affairs Minister and appointing a Primary Industry Council and a Chief Agricultural Adviser. Releasing Labour’s Primary Sector and Rural Affairs policies today, spokesperson Damien O’Connor says the...
    Labour | 12-09
  • Maori Television fears confirmed – Harawira
    ...
    Mana | 12-09
  • More ghost houses from National
    The Government’s desperate pre-election announcement of more ghost houses won’t fool Aucklanders wanting action on the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “These are ghost houses, to go with National’s ghost tax cut. Families cannot live in ghost...
    Labour | 12-09
  • National bows to union pressure over travel time
    National has reluctantly bowed to pressure from unions and adopted Labour’s fair and sensible policy to pay home support workers for the time they spend traveling between clients, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “This decision is long overdue...
    Labour | 12-09
  • I feel sorry for Labour Party members and supporters
    I feel really sorry for the members and supporters of the Labour Party as they watch their caucus tear itself to shreds. And no matter what the outcome of the coming leadership race Labour members and supporters will be the...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • Ummmm, why is Auckland Transport spying on Aucklanders?
    Ummm. What? Sophisticated surveillance coming to Auckland Surveillance technology that uses high definition cameras and software that can put names to faces and owners to cars is coming to Auckland. The surveillance has the capability to also scan social media...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • It. Is. About. The. Economy. Stupid.
    Liam Dann does a good job of explaining the positive and negative issues looming for the NZ economy and as dairy prices plunge again overnight alongside a large Wall st sell off  and China Bank rumours begin, his case for the negative...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • Don’t think of it as reinvading Iraq, think of it as redecorating Iraq
    I think some NZers view Iraq like an episode of The Block. Yes Iraq is the worst country on the street, but with a bit of elbow grease by our SAS and some great deals down at Bunnings, hey presto we...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Mana Maori alliance
    Most Maori you speak to on the street can’t understand why Mana movement and  Maori Party don’t combine it confuses them why Maori are divided cross benches in Parliament instead of a unified political power that represents 15% of the...
    The Daily Blog | 01-10
  • Party members and affiliates – the real losers in Labour’s leadership f...
    Hey, wanna do a back room deal that cuts the members and affiliates out? Cunliffe must be reeling. He has lost failed Ilam candidate James Dann. It must cut as deep as the loss of Steve Gibson. Apart from providing Claire...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, the election res...
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, the election result...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • The rich get richer
    Nobel prize winner Paul Krugman highlights the growing inequality in this article in the New York Times. The left wing slogan that the “the rich get richer” is a fact of almost perverse power. The most recent period of expansion in the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-09
  • A brief word on reinvading Iraq
    So after telling the country before the election that NZ would not send forces to Iraq, lo and behold now he’s won the election with a full spectrum dominance political majority, Key is suddenly now looking to join the re-invasion of...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • A brief word on the importance of ACT, Maori Party and United Future to Nat...
    I’m a far right wing clown who attacks tax money going on anything collective, gimmie some cash and privilege.  One of the great successes of National has been to implement hard right policy but have it sold as moderate. For some NZers,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Labour’s Angst
    Was Labour’s predictably low vote David Cunliffe’s fault? Was it policy? Was it something else that has aroused perceptions of electoral carnage? My analysis of the numbers suggests that, as uncertain voters made up their minds, there was a late...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Information wars: Gaza as “the last taboo”, the threat of mass surveill...
    “When the truth is replaced with silence” wrote the soviet dissident Yevgeni Yevtushenko, “the silence is a lie.” There has been a silence these past months full of noise, static and sound bites of those in power justifying their violence,...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • When the media say they covered Dirty Politics – did they?
    I was watching The Nation in the weekend, and watched the defenders of NZ media up against Minto telling him he was wrong in his claims of media bias and that the media covered Dirty Politics. I laughed. When the...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG – P Campbell – To the Left with love
    A week after the general election results I feel wrung out emotionally, having been through the disappointment, depression and anger of seeing  another right wing government elected overwhelmingly by winning support from the parts of NZ that will never benefit...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – I will be the new Labour Leader!
    One week after the election, while I was still waiting to be consulted about contributing to the review on what went wrong, what do you know? There is a leadership challenge. So instead of opting for a united, thoughtful and...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Pat O’Dea – A Prescient Post
    A very prescient pre-election post by Martyn Bradbury tells us why the Labour Party are at war now. “The NZ First-Labour Party attack strategy against Internet MANA better work” Despite Martyn Bradbury warning them this Right Wing strategy “Better Work”...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Rolinson – W(h)ither Labour (!/?)
    There’s an old saying that success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan. Not so in the Labour Party, wherein soul-crushing defeat on a scale unseen since 1925 definitely has many fathers (and more than a few mothers and...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • At the end of the day…
    At the end of the day…...
    The Daily Blog | 29-09
  • Cynicism towards Key’s sudden desire to help children in poverty
    Cynicism towards Key’s sudden desire to help children in poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Internet MANA the election and the media
    I’ve been very critical of media reporting of Internet MANA during the election campaign and not surprised at the predictable response from representatives of the corporate media establishment. I wasn’t going to carry this further but was asked at the...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Rachel Jones – A superficial discourse analysis of a superfic...
    On Sunday there was a story about Paddy Gower and his detached retina in the Herald on Sunday. Really? I hear you ask. Really? Yes, really. Pam Corkery will have sprayed toast crumbs over her dressing gown. The reporter has become...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Terrorising Australia’s Muslim population
    We should be suspicious when 800 police conduct “terror” raids across Australia, but only one person is charged with a relevant terrorism offence (of which we know few details). We should be suspicious of the lurid tales of terrorists planning...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • Another Labour leader has resigned and as per usual, the media lost its min...
    Another Labour leader has resigned and as per usual, the media lost its mind. I know the Labour party has its problems and I’m not even going to try to prescribe what should be done about it. But what I...
    The Daily Blog | 28-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – Loyalty, Leadership and the Labour Party
    My first after the election and I can only say I’m feeling pretty sad.  It was a terrible result, and feels even more so knowing the number of volunteers hours, hard work & sacrifice made by so many people who...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • A Study in Party Stability
    . In terms of long-term stability, one party above stands above all others, with the exception of personality-driven groups such as NZ First and United Future. That party is the Greens. If the Labour Party wants to look elsewhere for...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • Cunliffe vs Robertson – Round 2
    Much to the disappointment of the NZ Herald and other right wing pundits who have decided they would like to appoint the next Labour leader, Cunliffe has surprised by deciding to damn the Caucus and appeal directly to the members...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • The tasks before the left and labour movement
    Anyone on the left would have been disappointed at the result of the election. There was an opportunity to win, but that got lost through a combination of factors. There were tactical decisions made by Labour, the Greens and Internet-Mana...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • From Fiji’s dictatorship to ‘democracy’ – the AUT student team on t...
    Mads Anneberg’s profile on Ricardo Morris and Repúblika. David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. THREE STUDENTS from AUT University covered Fiji’s historic “from dictatorship to democracy” general election this month. While the election arguably legitimised Voreqe Bainimarama’s so-called 2006...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • David Cunliffe Resigns As Labour Leader – Forces Robertson Out of the Bel...
    David Cunliffe has made a smart move, resigning as the leader of the Labour Party so as to force a leadership primary campaign. The move draws rival Grant Robertson out of the beltway to parts of the country where he...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • Deep thought vs Deep prejudice
    . . This letter to the editor appeared in The Listener, on 27 September, and caught my attention; . . Mr Dawson wrote in response to one of those typically unthinking comments which  condemned the poor for their “unbridled, reckless...
    The Daily Blog | 27-09
  • The NZ National voters elected
    The NZ National voters elected...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Kate Davis – The post election postmortem is giving me post p...
    I feel the need to contribute to the discourse. This is a new experience for me. Not having an opinion, but expressing it on a popular forum in a public sphere. That’s why I have waited till now and put...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • A dictionary of education terms and definitions, brought to you by the let...
    Free to all TDB readers, please enjoy your very own cut-out-and-keep handy primer of terms that I predict you will need to know over the next three years… Achievement Gap (noun) Synonym for wealth gap. ACT (abstract noun) Intangible. Reported to exist in...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • A Mines Rescue brigadesman’s perspective on the Pike River Mine
    My husband and I lived in Greymouth in 2010, we were a coal mining family.  The day Pike River Mine blew up and the days following changed us profoundly, as it did for so many.  This is a Mines Rescue...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • The Left Triumphant! A Counterfactual History of the Last Twelve Months.
    DID IT REALLY HAVE TO END LIKE THIS? Reading through the commentary threads of the left-wing blogs it is impossible to not feel the anger; the sense of betrayal; the impression of having had something vital ripped from their grasp;...
    The Daily Blog | 26-09
  • GUEST BLOG – Myles Thomas: The media won it!
    Make no mistake, John Key is a clever communicator – reasonable, authoritative and relaxed – but without the media he wouldn’t be PM. Depending on your viewpoint, New Zealand’s news media are either a bunch of Grey Lynn lefties or...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • Not Learning Lessons Past: the West’s Response to IS
    In an earlier posting Ukraine, United Kingdom, Ireland, Scotland, I noted that the first lesson of conflict learned by Robert McNamara was “understand your adversary”. If we have honourable objectives, our first and most important weapon is empathy. In the Vietnam War,...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • GUEST BLOG: Dr Jarrod Gilbert – Proof of David Farrar’s deception: my ...
    In the lead up to the election the Minister of Corrections Anne Tolley launched a gang policy. In order to justify the government’s approach she used gang figures that overstated the gang problem. Not by a little bit, but a...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • SPECIAL FEATURE: Stuart Nash – Red To The Rescue?
    SPECIAL FEATURE by Selwyn Manning. IF THE ELECTION RESULT which was dished out to Labour was not enough to incite an immediate leadership primary, then the caucus’ refusal to recognise David Cunliffe as the leader should cement it. Now is...
    The Daily Blog | 25-09
  • Has the one party state crackdown begun already? Left wing NZ activist grou...
    Well known left wing activist social media group, ‘John Key Has Left Down NZ’ has been shut down on Facebook. At 11.40pm last night, Facebook, without any warning shut the group down siting a breach of terms of service as...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • Why Cunliffe should probably just let Nash & Robertson win
    We have to face some very unpalatable home truths. If you are a left wing political person, best you put your vote now to the Green Party, although you’ll have to do that all the while the Greens frantically tell you...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • The graceless win of Kelvin Davis
    The graceless win of Cameron Slater’s mate in the North, Kelvin Davis is difficult to swallow. Here Cameron Slater’s mate in the North is shitting on Hone Harawira by calling Hone all steam, no hangi as Kelvin rubs his ganged up win into...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • So Labour shifted too far to the left?
    So Labour shifted too far to the left?   Here’s the ill-judged view of Josie Pagani in the Pundit “Labour must change”: “At the last election I made myself a heretic when I wrote a column mentioning how unpopular the...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • Uncomplicated Loyalties: Why Cunliffe and the Labour Left Cannot Win
    THE STORY of David Cunliffe’s leadership of the Labour Party has been one of missed opportunities and unforced errors. That he was the only choice available to those who wanted to rid the Labour Party of its neoliberal cuckoos is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-09
  • So we can expect this now?
    So we can expect this now?...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Can Labour be saved? Why Whaleoil & National won and why we need a new ...
    As the shock of my optimism that NZers would recoil from the real John Key as exposed by Dirty Politics and mass surveillance duplicities wears off, I am surprised to find that the right in NZ are not content with...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Three more years (up shit creek and paddling hard)
    “If the future is not green, there is no future. If the future is not you, there is no future”. Emma Thompson’s stirring words to the climate marchers in London last Sunday are worth considering in the aftermath of the...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • One Party State
    In years to come this election will be seen as a historic turning point towards one party rule. I don`t mean this literally, absolute single party dictatorship is not in prospect. In the New Zealand context though, one party has...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • No More. The Left Falls.
    . We cannot be beaten down Because we are down already. We can only rise up and if you should beat us down, We will rise again. And again. And again… And when you tire of beating us down, We...
    The Daily Blog | 23-09
  • Hang tight everyone – Marama Davidson campaign reflection
    To the many people who had expressed their overwhelming support for me to enter Parliament this election – thank you. That the Greens held steady in a big loss for progressive politics is an achievement. We are hopeful that after...
    The Daily Blog | 22-09
  • Documenting historic Māori land law cases for the first time
    A new book from Victoria University of Wellington’s Faculty of Law will continue to put the spotlight on Māori Land Law judgments which have never before been published....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • ‘Oily’ people greet Petroleum Summit diners
    Greenpeace activists smeared in fake oil have greeted guests arriving at the part-Statoil sponsored Petroleum Summit dinner this evening....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Key Decisions Made About Labour’s Leadership Election
    Labour’s New Zealand Council has made the key decisions about the timetable and process around the election of Labour’s Party Leader. The result will be announced on Tuesday 18th November, following a comprehensive and extensive process unique...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Suspected $6 Million Dollar Wananga Fraud Alarming
    The Taxpayers’ Union is calling on on the Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi to front up over claims the Wananga has pocketed government overpayments amounting to $6 million of taxpayers' money. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Submissions sought on herbicide for weed control in maize
    The Environmental Protection Authority is calling for submissions on a herbicide to improve broadleaf weed control in maize. The substance CADET contains 100g fluthiacet-methyl in the form of an emulsifiable concentrate and would contain a new active ingredient...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Jesse Mulligan Lives Below Poverty Line
    Jesse Mulligan Lives Below Poverty Line TV personality Jesse Mulligan will live on the equivalent of the extreme poverty line this October in order to raise awareness of sex trafficking. Mulligan will survive on $2.25 for his food from October...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Narratives from the 2014 Election: What do we learn?
    Narratives from the 2014 Election: What do we learn? - Sue Bradford, Russell Brown & Kirk Serpes discuss....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Voices from Oceania to speak out on climate change
    Voices from Oceania to speak out on climate change at launch of Pacific environment report...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Changes to Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre messages
    The Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management advises that while changes to Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre messages come into effect from today (Wednesday 1 October), the Ministry has been, and remains, the authoritative voice for tsunami...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Police remove banner at Statoil Offices in Wellington
    Oil Free Wellington hung a banner at 9:30 this morning at the Statoil office headquarters in Wellington as the Petroleum Summit opened in Auckland. The banner, which read 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil', has now been removed...
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Mixed massages raise concerns
    Mixed massages raise concerns for Te Taumata Kaumatua Ngapuhi nui tonu, and Te Wakaminenga O nga Hapu Ngapuhi....
    Scoop politics | 01-10
  • Union Slams Port Boss’s Pay Rise
    The Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) says Lyttelton Port CEO Peter Davie’s 18% wage rise, taking his pay packet to $1.24m, is unjustified and inflammatory. ‘Lyttelton port has an appalling health and safety record, with three deaths on...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Prisons expert Ron Nikkel to speak in Auckland October 15
    Prison Fellowship NZ and JustSpeak have the privilege of hosting the former president of Prison Fellowship International, Ron Nikkel....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Hundreds of educators protest IES in Rotorua
    Four hundred educators from around the country took their opposition to the Government's controversial Investing in Educational Success policy to the public today....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Crime drops by 3.2 % in the 2013 / 2014 financial year
    Criminal offences dropped by 3.2 % in the last financial year according to figures released today through Statistics New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Narratives from the 2014 Election: what do we learn?
    I would like to invite you to a Fabians Reflection on "Dirty Politics, Dotcom and Labour’s worst result" with Colin James, Keith Ng, Stephanie Rodgers and Richard Harman. They will provide a debrief of analysis and lessons from the 2014...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Oil Free Wellington drops banner from Statoil headquarters
    Today members of Oil Free Wellington have targeted the offices of Statoil, by attaching a banner reading 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil' to the entrance of Vodafone on the Quay Midland Park, where Statoil's New Zealand office...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Media Statement from Karen Price
    “After a period of intense media attention and scrutiny of our family, I set up and used an anonymous Twitter account over the weekend and made a number of comments that I deeply regret....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Greenpeace disrupts Simon Bridges’ speech to oil industry
    Greenpeace activists have disrupted the opening speech by Energy and Resources Minister Simon Bridges at the Petroleum Summit in Auckland this morning....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • New Zealand Red Cross Responds to Drought in Tonga
    New Zealand Red Cross has sent an aid worker and two desalination units, to turn seawater into safe drinking water in the drought-hit Ha’apai islands of Tonga....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Can you ever tell if an email is real or forged?
    Computer industry veteran Brian Eardley-Wilmot warns that we should never take claims about stolen emails at face value....
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • NZ MPs to attend the ASPG Annual Conference in Sydney
    New Zealand MPs to attend the Australasian Study of Parliament Group Annual Conference in Sydney...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Independent Maori seats still needed in Parliament
    “He’s got to be joking!” is the reaction of the president of the Maori Party, Rangimarie Naida Glavish to a call by a former Labour Minister of Maori Affairs, Dover Samuels, for debate by Maori on whether the Maori electorates...
    Scoop politics | 30-09
  • Support for Democratic Rights in Hong Kong
    Rallies supporting the rights for universal suffrage will take place all over New Zealand today and tomorrow...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Trout Mass-Poisoned in New Zealand
    Trout Mass-Poisoned in New Zealand The Graf Boys New Zealand has some of the best trout fishing in the world! Every year thousands of international visitors wade pristine rivers in search of the freshwater game fish....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • New Zealand’s 2014 Hottest Vegetarians Crowned
    With winter gone things are heating up, and things just got even hotter with the crowning of New Zealand’s hottest vegetarians, says animal advocacy group SAFE. Marking World Vegetarian Day, 1st October, director James Napier Robertson and actor...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • A day to remember our duty to look after our senior citizens
    Human Rights Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue says International Day of the Older Person (1 October) is a United Nations day to celebrate our senior citizens, but also acknowledge the need to protect our kaumatua, or older people from abuse and...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Clear data needed on impact of benefit sanctions on children
    A lack of data on benefit sanctions means there is no way of knowing whether welfare reform is helping or harming children, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • The socialist alternative to austerity and war
    Public meeting: After the New Zealand election—the socialist alternative to austerity and war By Tom Peters 29 September 2014...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • New recruits to boost border protection
    Twenty six new recruits began an intensive nine-week training course in Auckland today that will see them graduate as Customs officers in time for the busy summer season....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Dwindling Mallard population shows up ‘pest’ myth
    The pro hunting organisation Fish & Game is researching the causes of the decline of the mallard duck population, upset at the prospect of fewer ducks to kill....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Support for Democratic Rights in Hong Kong
    New Zealanders in Auckland will gather on Wednesday to support the rights for universal suffrage in Hong Kong....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Campbell Live Exclusive Interview with David Cunliffe
    David Cunliffe resigned as leader of the Labour party on Saturday; but he still wants the top job....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Action needed on cycling safety
    “Clearly we aren't doing enough to protect the 1.5 million New Zealanders who ride bikes,” said Mr Morgan....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • World Rivers Day Passes Without A Whimper
    Sunday 28 September was World Rivers Day to celebrate clean, flowing rivers and caring about them. But a recreation-conservation advocacy the Council of Outdoor Recreation Associations of NZ (CORANZ) says the day seems to have slipped by without...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • The Kiwifruit Claim: Q&A
    1. Who is running The Kiwifruit Claim? The Kiwifruit Claim was founded by kiwifruit growers representing well in excess of 10% of the industry. 2. Why are you running this claim? The introduction of Psa into New Zealand had devastating...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Fed Farmers Need to Be Weaned
    The Taxpayers’ Union is calling on Federated Farmers to make a firm commitment to reject any future Government funding, after it was revealed that the lobby group had received over $200,000 of payments in recent years....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Children paying the price for charter school stitch up
    New Zealand children will be paying a high price for a one-seat deal between ACT and National, with an expansion of the beleaguered charter school system says education union NZEI Te Riu Roa....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Hikoi From North Reaches Oil Conference Tomorrow
    Today: The Hikoi opposing Statoil plans for seismic testing and deep sea oil drilling has marched through Dargaville and later be welcomed to Piringatahi Marae, West Harbour,Tamaki Makaurau/Auckland....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Communities Still Count
    The efforts of many organisations to influence the electorate and the political parties they voted for in the lead up to the 2014 Election is over. The voting public has spoken and provided a strong endorsement to the centre-right National...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Eleven social enterprises get ready to take off
    Eleven teams from across the country will take part in the Launchpad, Ākina’s programme to get social enterprise ideas off the ground....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • An open letter to the Prime Minister
    in which Transparency International New Zealand asks the Prime Minister to ensure integrity underpins all work he leads "in the best interests of all New Zealanders"...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Paula Bennett ‘great work’ acknowledged – McVicar
    “Paula Bennett, as Minister of Social Development, has contributed significantly in lowering our crime rate and preventing further victims.” - McVicar...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Key’s Restraint in Propping up ACT Welcomed
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming the announcement that ACT MP David Seymour will not be appointed as a Minister....
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • Only Concession is from the Taxpayer
    Responding to the confidence and supply agreement reached between John Key and Peter Dunne’s United Future Party, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says:...
    Scoop politics | 29-09
  • A Tent for Any Tenant
    AUT students and Salvation Army Manukau Community Ministries team up to raise awareness, as South Auckland’s housing situation moves from crisis to collapse...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Cycle Safety Panel Draft Report Seeks Comments
    The Cycle Safety Panel Draft Report and Recommendations was published on 25th September 2014 and the panel are inviting comments. Lucinda Rees from NZ School Speeds, the organisation campaigning for consistent speed limits outside schools, is encouraged...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • Labour’s Review – Terms of Reference Agreed
    Labour's Review - Terms of Reference Agreed Following a meeting of its ruling New Zealand Council yesterday, Labour has released the terms of reference for the comprehensive review initiated following its 2014 election result. The review will comprise three...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • The final countdown for Kiwi smokers
    There are just two days left until many smokers stubb out their cigarettes for the last time and embark on Stoptober – New Zealand’s first national quit-smoking month....
    Scoop politics | 28-09
  • “In A Democracy People Win And People Lose”
    “In A Democracy People Win And People Lose” – Chris Hipkins Labour Senior Whip I would say to all of the caucus and all of the members let's actually hear the arguments from the people who want to be leader,...
    Scoop politics | 28-09
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