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National’s mouthpiece on manufacturing doesn’t like details

Written By: - Date published: 2:10 pm, June 12th, 2014 - 115 comments
Categories: blogs, christchurch earthquake, David Farrar, Economy, employment, manufacturing - Tags: , , ,

David Farrar in his usual burst of hypocrisy and curious selectiveness about detailed numbers is proclaiming a headline rise in manufacturing. As is usual he is only interested in the top level numbers and doesn’t provide a link to even the summary data. I guess that is because they are rather depressing for employment and wage packets, which is what most voters expect from growth. But here is the view from the 9th floor of the beehive.

Seasonally adjusted manufacturing value for the 1st quarter of 2014 was $25.3 billion. A year ago in the same quarter it was $22.8 billion. That’s an 11% increase in the last year.

This of course is what Labour, Mana, Greens and NZ First call a manufacturing crisis.

Ah no. What they call a manufacturing crisis is that there are few or no jobs arising from this miraculous rise in manufacturing. Consider this from the March 2014 Household Employment Survey

The main contributors to the annual growth in employment were the construction industry (up
24,400 people – 14 percent) and the professional, scientific, technical, administration, and
support service industry group (up 17,700 people – 7 percent).
Although not statistically significant, there was also a rise in the retail trade, accommodation, and
food services industry group (up 17,100 people – 4.9 percent)

Manufacturing? I had to dig into the spreadsheets for that. It is in table 7 of the Household Employment Survey spreadsheet. The estimated employment in manufacturing declined from 246.2 thousand in March 2013 to 246.0 thousand.

So somehow we managed to have a 11% increase in manufacturing over the past year with no increase in employment in manufacturing jobs. Curiously David with his view coming from high in the Prime Ministers office failed to mention that. I wonder why? Could it have something to do with Labour, Mana, Greens and NZ First being completely correct (and David Farrar being a selective paid mouthpiece for National)?

Where the jobs are going to is the one-off Christchurch rebuild. Much of the growth in jobs in fact comes from Canterbury construction and the services servicing them.

The increase in Canterbury employment included an 11,900 (36 percent) rise in the construction
industry and an 11,900 (26 percent) rise in the retail trade, and accommodation and food
services industry group.

As usual most of the remainder comes from Auckland where we have a housing crisis and burgeoning ICT export industry.

Just shows what happens when you hold up working on peoples houses and businesses until the year prior to an election. Of course this was probably had nothing to do with Brownlee’s dithering for the past 3 years eh?

But lets have a look at the manufacturing information that David (curiously) did not provide from the more detailed PDF. What the government would like voters to see is this.

What they don’t want voters to see is what the manufacturing looks like without the dairy and meat in the following graph. That is because there are bugger all jobs in processing dairy (the rise in sales of meat is negligible), most of the processing is done in highly capital intensive plants.

Doesn’t that more like what voters are seeing when they look at our jobless manufacturing “recovery”.  I’d point out that when you dig further into the stats, you’ll find that even the upturn in this non-dairy and meat “manufacturing” sales, a large chunk of it also turns out to also be in barely processed commodities like petroleum and coal products, non-metallic mineral products, other food products like fruit or cereals, and wood. Each of which, like most farm products,  is subject to prices that rapidly change on the world market, which competitor nations can and do rapidly emulate and follow, and which are frequently subject to changes in the ability to enter markets like recent restrictions of milk powder into China. Most of the processing for which is increasingly done by machines rather than people because that is what is demanded by the market.

Even the dairy growth is faltering on the back of sustained drops in dairy prices and the buildup of stockpiles of dairy and meat products. The StatsNZ commentary says about dairy and meat that…

The volume of finished goods stocks (which is not seasonally adjusted) was 6.7 percent higher than in the March 2013 quarter, and is now at the highest-ever level for a March quarter.

This is reflected in the year to year stockpiles where there are more than 1.5 BILLION dollars in stock hanging around of dairy and meat.

Ah yes, rapidly heading for a local glut and probably job layoffs in what processing jobs there are in the dairy industry would be my bet.

So as you can see, there is a reason that David Farrar doesn’t like to provide links to the StatsNZ documents. While the commentary in them tends to only concentrate on the positives for the government, the information is there for everyone to see. Even those dumbarses who comment at the Kiwiblog sewer. We have a jobless recovery going on where almost all of the profits are going to a select few (including many government MPs) who own the sectors of the economy that the the government chooses to foster – their donors.

115 comments on “National’s mouthpiece on manufacturing doesn’t like details”

  1. geoff 1

    Excellent analysis, Lynn and once more showing Farrar up to be National’s toadie.

    • lprent 1.1

      Oh that was just a hook that I added in there after reading his hook post on mickey this morning.

      Damn stupid really. Lawyers do what their clients tell them and they can’t release what their advice was to them. Makes them an easy target for someone wanting to be a bit of an arsehole. I don’t mind using the same tactic…

      It really isn’t what this post is about – more of an afterthought after I’d looked at the current quarters data yesterday.

  2. ianmac 2

    Sadly though as interested as I am it is so hard to get a basic (simplistic?) understanding of the employment/production problems. Need simple catch words to try and shift the thinking of right leaning friends.

    In the first graph it has taken 6 long years for Manufacturing sales to creep back towards the highs of 2009. What were they doing in the interim!

    In the second graph we have huge stocks of unsold goods waiting for a free market buyer. 1.5 billion dollars worth of goods unsold for heaven’s sake! What sort of planning and support is going on or not going on there? Is the Government asleep at the wheel?

    • lprent 2.1

      And most of that graphs increase merely reflects the increases in dairy prices with a lesser increase in dairy volumes.

      Unfortunately I’m not good at slogans… sigh

      Perhaps people could suggest a few.

  3. The Real Matthew 3

    Who would have thought a technology based industry would shed jobs as technology became cheaper than employing wage earning individuals?

    Next they’ll have pre-pay at the pump and you’ll be buying your train ticket at a machine.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      We’re creating an economy which doesn’t need the majority of workers any more, while at the same time refusing to let people make a living in the field of arts, crafts, culture and literature.

      Speculators and financial scammers get rewarded the most in this environment.

      • Wreckingball 3.1.1

        I should have directed this reply directly at you CP.

        Also, Colonial Viper – “We’re creating an economy which doesn’t need the majority of workers any more, while at the same time refusing to let people make a living in the field of arts, crafts, culture and literature.”

        We are not refusing to make let people make a living in the field of arts and crafts etc. We have numerous authors and artists who make a great living. If people are skilled enough, and produce good products, then they can make a living. What do you propose? We subsidise people so that they can sit around making pottery. Very backward thinking. Please explain.

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1

          Firstly, it is crucial to accept that society requires a major not-for-profit arts and culture emphasis in order to de-prioritise the role of commercialisation and corporations in society.

          Secondly, it is crucial to accept that you cannot just have a few outstanding people making a “great living” from the arts – you need to nourish and support talent at every stage, and even give ordinary people in depth exposure to art and literature. This means funding scholarships, night classes, entry level jobs in the field, worthwhile career pathways, etc.

          Thirdly, it is important that as a society we put significant monies into teaching people who are interested skills like pottery, weaving, painting, writing, theatre, film making, CGI and dance.

          Very backward thinking. Please explain.

          Why on earth do you declare it backwards? Advanced civilisations need to maintain creativity and culture within their peoples, and that is what I am suggesting.

          • Jum 3.1.1.1.1

            Well said CV; when you want to produce robots you remove stimulus that excites parts of the brain that encourage humanity.

    • lprent 3.2

      Would that it was so. But most of the “manufacturing” growth is for simple conversion of barely processed commodities mostly using existing plant – even in the dairy sector.

      There is another set of data around (in several places statsNZ, MOBiE, and tax) that looks at capital investments that I neither had the time or the space to expound on. But once you exclude dairy then what you can see is very little investment in any kind of plant. In fact it looks like most “manufacturing” plant is being run down.

  4. Ad 4

    This still doesn’t feel like a recovery no matter what the banking economists say.

    It’s worth going into the tabbed sections of the statistics report that LPrent has linked to. In there you will find five-year series breakdowns for each of the manufacturing sectors.

    They do not make pretty reading if we are seeking a value-added export base for New Zealand.

    • Seafood processing in slow decline
    • Transport and machinery equipment in slow decline
    • Fruit, oils and cereals declining
    • Petroleum spiking around 2012 and still up pretty strongly
    • Chemicals and polymers gradually up, and also strong

    There is I am sure an industry story to be told in each one of those sectors.

    This morning Auckland Council determined to give the superyacht manufacturing proposal in Hobsonville a 1-year reprieve from turning the whole thing into housing. And sure, we need more housing and Council could have sold it off to pay down debt. Sigh.

    With neither central nor local government even imagining economic development in New Zealand, without a change of government we will continue to be the devleoping world’s bulk protein exporter. We need to be better than that. Where is Jim Anderton when you need him?

    • lprent 4.1

      Yeah I find it a bit terrifying for the future when I look at how shallow and vulnerable that National’s economic development strategy is.

      It is classic short-term rentier thinking about how to make money for property owners cheaply. Bearing in mind the whacking great debt that they foisted on us giving tax cuts to the wealthy and the greying of the workforce, it is a bloody silly idea foisting a crippled economy on to the kids to pay for it.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.1

        Yeah I find it a bit terrifying for the future when I look at how shallow and vulnerable that National’s economic development strategy is.

        I didn’t realise that they had one.

        it is a bloody silly idea foisting a crippled economy on to the kids to pay for it.

        National’s been doing that forever. It’s certainly the full idea behind Muldoon’s junking of Labour’s retirement savings plan back in ’75/6.

    • greywarbler 4.2

      Jim Anderton is amongst other things trying to recreate Christchurch cathedral. A bunch of the stolid Christchurch community can’t move into the 21st century and Anderton has saved historic buildings in the past. So he wants to recreate the past triumph in Chch.

      • Ron 4.2.1

        Interesting that Anderton a Roman Catholic I believe did not show much interest in preserving the Catholic Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Christchurch instead spends all his time attacking Anglican Authorities who want to move on with their own building.

        Jim Anderton is amongst other things trying to recreate Christchurch cathedral

  5. ghostwhowalksnz 5

    Looks like Farragoblog and the Oily Orca had the same burst of inspiration of the state of manufacturing

    F: The manufactured crisis gets worse.-June 11

    W:LABOUR’S MANUFACTURING CRISIS JUST KEEPS CRISISING ALONG- June 10

    Notice the same ‘angle’ on both reports, a pun on Labours ‘manufacturing crisis’

    Coincidence ?

    Or you get what you pay for .

    • ianmac 5.1

      They must be getting bothered that the people are aware of job shortages?

    • Tom Gould 5.2

      You get what you pay for. Plus a few of the big chattering chooks thrown in. Cheap at the price.

  6. infused 6

    You will find the manufacturing sector is actually now recovering and paying debt from the GFC.

    • lprent 6.1

      Correct. But most of that was over in 2013.

      The problem is that most of manufacturing aren’t growing. That shows up in the lack of capital and jobs going into anything outside of dairy. This is a time when we should be seeing new companies starting up and heading off to export as well as the survivors from the mid-00s that are expanding. They simply aren’t there.

      It isn’t too hard to look around and see the signs of more GFC style recessions in the next decade. What do we want? Go into more debt as the population ages? That appears to be Nationals strategic direction.

      • infused 6.1.1

        Nope. I look after quite a number, so I can tell you what’s actually going on.

        Most only recovered around December last year.

        The biggest thing is, simple manufacturing is dead. They need to adapt and change. A few of them are, and making good money off it. I can’t really go in to detail on what they are doing though, but it’s moving away from the traditional manufacturing process (knowledge based). The reason is other countries do it far cheaper, and that’s something that’s not going to change. People bleat on about quality etc all the time. But at the end of the day, it comes down to the dollar. Every time.

        The cost of shipping from NZ is also massive. There are only a few companies that handle bulk/heavy freighting around the world direct from NZ, and they charge out the ass for it.

        What do you expect the Govt to do? There are already a ton of tech based export programs going on in Wellington, which I am involved in. I think the problem is, not a lot of this is common knowledge.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1

          The reason is other countries do it far cheaper, and that’s something that’s not going to change.

          Actually, they don’t as it’s physically impossible for them to do so. It’s only our financial system that makes it seem as if they do. Basically, our financial system is delusional.

          The cost of shipping from NZ is also massive.

          The reverse must also be true.

          • lprent 6.1.1.1.1

            It is, but less so for quantity. The shipping companies prefer not to come into NZ lightly laden. They prefer to have something to offload.

          • KJT 6.1.1.1.2

            Not really. Lots of bulky heavy stuff from NZ.

            The stuff coming in is light, high tech. Plenty of space inbound.

            Removing New Zealand ships, and crews, did not result in the promised decreased costs for exporters, because the ships going to Europe/China/USA via Australia (our biggest manufactured export market) are already full of milk powder, meat, fruit, timber and coal.

            The overseas shipping companies act as a cartel, to keep prices high both ways, however.

            • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.2.1

              This despite what I hear is shit loads of spare freight shipping capacity internationally right now…

        • lprent 6.1.1.2

          Most only recovered around December last year.

          Yeah most that I know of who took a hit from the GFC financing issues were getting ahead in the second half.

          The biggest thing is, simple manufacturing is dead. They need to adapt and change. A few of them are, and making good money off it.

          The cost of shipping from NZ is also massive. There are only a few companies that handle bulk/heavy freighting around the world direct from NZ, and they charge out the ass for it.

          Agreed, but there are four types of manufacturing that survive.
          1. Tech exporters where the competitive advantage is software. NZ is too damn small a market so they typically export 90%+ (obviously I know them well)
          2. The ones where freighting to NZ is prohibitive – for instance the foam rubber stuff my sister was running
          3. The ones using a local resource and adding lots of value to it mostly for export. The small ones of those usually aren’t getting the support that they could use. That is where a number of manufacturers I know of now work.
          4. The bespoke manufacturers who support the others. They get no support and the support that they mostly need is introductions.

          There are already a ton of tech based export programs going on in Wellington, which I am involved in. I think the problem is, not a lot of this is common knowledge.

          First problem is in what you described. How much manufacturing is done in the wellington area? They shouldn’t be based there at all. Put them into Auckland, Christchurch, and some roving ones who poke their noses into the provincial centres (like Wellington :) )

          Another problem is that most of the support is targeted at the wrong targets, mostly the larger companies who really don’t need it except when they do a transition to a new product area. The small to medium ones don’t receive much at all.

          And another one is that the support is passive. Instead of the government going out and helping the SME’s to get it, they wait until people come to them. Which just lends itself to crony capitalism. It becomes who you know and/or lobby rather than being proactive and pushing ideas into companies (makes me irritated and thinking of the 1980s). If you are a SME exporter, then you need people actively coming to talk to you inside the companies with possibilities rather than trying to find time to get to largely meaningless meetings where there is little active and accurate details.

          Now you have to remember that I don’t have a particular stake in this. I write software and there usually isn’t that much of an issue finding work. I prefer companies related to manufacturing exports. But that preference is pretty much ideological. It employs a wider range of people. It certainly isn’t the best paid. But I’ve done a lot of exported software as a service as well in the past.

  7. Naki man 7

    “Ah yes, rapidly heading for a local glut and probably job layoffs in what processing jobs there are in the dairy industry would be my bet.”

    This is complete bollocks, job layoffs my arse, Fonterra Waitoa has just employed 100 new staff in its new 120 $mil UHT milk plant. A friend of mine who is an engineer for a company that is designing some of the many new milk powder driers being built in the north island over the next two years says he is very busy. The truth is there will be more jobs in the highly paid dairy industry not job layoffs. As for a local glut this is also horse shit.

    • lprent 7.1

      Well if they were going to lay off staff, then they wouldn’t do it in a new plant right?

      Stupid comment.

      • Naki man 7.1.1

        Yours is the stupid comment suggesting that there will be fewer jobs when there are lots of new plants being built. Fonterra and the other companies will be employing more staff. There is huge growth in the dairy industry even in the north island. Every year milk volumes increase and it has to be processed.

        • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1

          Bulk commodity manufacture

          Wish NZ could do something which required a bit more product innovation than tonne after tonne of milk powder

        • lprent 7.1.1.2

          Problem is that there is currently a mountain of unsold stock being created, presumably because the amount that is already being produced isn’t wanted in the market. Part of that is because plant and milk production in other countries is rising. The growth in the US for whole milk drying is phenomenal. Not to mention parts of Europe and China itself.

          So adding new plant in, if that trend persists, will eventually cause the fraction of the total milk production that is covered by the world market price falls (as we are seeing now), and closures of older plant. It isn’t like we haven’t seen this same pattern before in NZ.

          Personally I think that Fonterra and the other exporters have gotten myopically focused on China and haven’t started to think about what happens when that market stops taking all available production.

        • redfred 7.1.1.3

          Back Nack Man

          Again your stupidity astounds me.. do you understand how competition and markets work?
          Basically if there is a buck to made people pile into it and then it becomes a competition of scale and efficiency.

          Read this … NZ will be over taken in approximately 5 years as the biggest milk powder producer.

          http://keithwoodford.wordpress.com/2013/10/10/the-industrialisation-of-american-dairying-and-the-implications-for-new-zealand/

          What facts have you got?… none, some meaning less local job figures that have nothing to do with the bigger picture.

          Here is some more facts

          There were 60,000 dairy suppliers in the US and their milk supply was about four times the volume of New Zealand’s.

          “But 40 per cent of that milk is produced by 800 mega dairies.”

          http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/dairy/10037881/Kiwis-warned-off-mega-dairy-farming-model

          NZ Dairy won’t disappear but by the end of the decade it will not be the cash cow it once was… yes pun intended.

          These truths show how short sighted National are in pinning there hopes on dairy.

          What do you make of that information; does it worry you Naki Man? Can you comprehend how it makes what Key et al are doing on par with Muldoons wool stock piling? Do see how it makes a complete lie out of David Farrars spin for his beloved National party or are you just blinkered to the facts?

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      The truth is there will be more jobs in the highly paid dairy industry not job layoffs.

      So highly paid in fact farmers have been getting in trouble for breaking minimum wage laws.

  8. dimebag russell 8

    neighhhhhhhhh!

    [lprent: Horse imitations should probably be in OpenMike? They do seem rather pointless here. Perhaps you meant to say that you couldn't understand numbers and couldn't say anything? Silence may be a wiser policy. ]

  9. Gosman 9

    Do you have any evidence that David Farrar is a paid mouthpiece for National? Because if he was he constantly wanders off message.

    Regardless why are members of the left hung Up On Manufacturing jobs? Surely what industry someone works in is less important than total employment and wage growth in the economy as a whole.

    [lprent: Now considered to be a diversion comment. Moved to the current time. ]

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      It’s vital that NZ be a nation of production, and not just a nation of consumption, Gossie. And in that light, high value, elaborately transformed knowledge goods are what pays premium.

      I thought you would know this?

      As for your questioning of the longstanding Farrar/National link – LOL

    • lprent 9.2

      Do you have any evidence that David Farrar is a paid mouthpiece for National?

      I have enough that I am confident enough to state it. If he chose to take it up legally, then I know what I’d be looking for on a discovery motion. Not that I expect him to do so.

      Besides, if it is good enough for him to make similar statements about people here including me from 2007 onwards with absolutely no evidence, then I can’t help but feel that I am merely following his lead.

      I’d also note that I don’t consider that this is what this post is about. People are welcome to address that topic in OpenMike.

      Surely what industry someone works in is less important than total employment and wage growth in the economy as a whole.

      The rebuild in ChCh (as I pointed in the post) isn’t exactly a good basis for allowing growth in the internal economy. Outside of a bit of highly overdue construction in Auckland, the only sectors of the economy that appear to be growing permanent jobs are in Auckland.

      The dairy industry certainly isn’t as can be readily seen in the slow depopulation and lack of jobs of regions switching over to it after they finish their conversions. That damn stockpiling of the (presumably mostly ) dairy products is starting to worry the hell out of me because it is signalling a good solid bust.

      Manufacturing jobs are by far the best permanent way to soak up unemployment. Sure we are exposed to the rest of the world and have to sell to the rest of the world. At present this government is not trying to encourage that. You only have to look at the near complete drop in the support offered by MFAT or R&D funds to that sector except for a favoured few companies.

      At present the jobs being created are completely fragile and appear to be largely dependent on construction mostly in the rebuild of ChCh. Any disruption to construction jobs with the typical boom bust of that industry will have significiant carry over effects to a number of the other sectors of the economy that have been showing employment (eg the massive services rise in Canterbury).

      These are the factors showing up in the persistently well below projections income, business and GST tax take that shows no signs of stopping. The last budget was pretty much a fantasy in terms of showing any signs of being able to either pay off National’s debt or the prepare for the greying of the population. That is bloody worrying

      So yes. It does matter that manufacturing employers have been unwilling to do more than just survive over the last 5 years. We won’t have a good solid recovery that will sustain downstream employment until they do.

      • Gosman 9.2.1

        If you don’t want to be quizzed about your claims about David Farrar ‘ s formal links to the National party when you are attempting to make another point (in this case about the benefits of manufacturing jobs) you may want to refrain from making the comments in the first place. People such as geoff below obviously see this post as making that link even though you have stated it was not your main intention of the post.

        [lprent: It is my opinion backed by facts I know. He had a go at an author here today on a post directed at Labour, so he got one back in exactly the same style. If you are actually interested in that facet, then use OpenMike. Raise this again here and I will ban you until after the election. Clear? ]

    • Draco T Bastard 9.3

      Surely what industry someone works in is less important than total employment and wage growth in the economy as a whole.

      Nope:

      The books most sobering fact ‘Samsung produces 3/4 of our GDP with 123,000 employees’

      The type of industry counts for a hell of a lot and farming really doesn’t cut it.

      • lprent 9.3.1

        The books most sobering fact ‘Samsung produces 3/4 of our GDP with 123,000 employees’

        That is only the direct employees. Tech is always an ecosystem these days. Most tech companies have between 2 and 10x the number of direct employees coming in as associated supply companies, contractors, and other assorted supplies of services.

  10. Wreckingball 10

    What do you guys propose we do? Make sure that manufacturers employ people to do the jobs that machines can do. Shall we bring in handpumps into gas stations so that we need an attendant at each fuel pump? New technology in manufacturing naturally leads to a decrease in the number of jobs. But more manufacturing, will at least keep manufacturing jobs constant, if not increase the number.

    Also, Colonial Viper – “We’re creating an economy which doesn’t need the majority of workers any more, while at the same time refusing to let people make a living in the field of arts, crafts, culture and literature.”

    We are not refusing to make let people make a living in the field of arts and crafts etc. We have numerous authors and artists who make a great living. If people are skilled enough, and produce good products, then they can make a living. What do you propose? We subsidise people so that they can sit around making pottery. Very backward thinking.

    • JG 10.1

      Completely agree. It’s productivity growth, which should be celebrated. A lot of creative destruction embedded in those numbers too.

    • lprent 10.2

      Make sure that manufacturers employ people to do the jobs that machines can do.

      That would be valid if there were stats showing capital investment going into manufacturing. They don’t (look it up).

      Besides, what do petrol pumps in gas stations have to do with manufacturing? That is a retail industry not manufacturing.

      I’d also point out as a matter of general disclosure that I spent several years writing code for a local company that manufactured equipment for petrol stations. Not much of a market here. Most of it was exported. The company has since been sold to a overseas company.

      • Wreckingball 10.2.1

        1) capital investment is on the rise – take a look at the numbers. The main thing that will impact capital investment is if the government tries to decide what industries New Zealand should invest in. The market will determine what industries offer the best returns. Stupid ideas such as a green bank that invest in green technologies are useless. The market will invest in green tech if they think there are returns to be made.

        2) that petrol pump example was a broad example of a human doing what a machine can do. I am sure there are mechanical pumps used in manufacturing that could be replaced with humans.

        3) example of petrol pump equipment manufacturer is great. Kiwi ingenuity and then selling it to an overseas company. A great story. Nothing wrong with selling to someone overseas. That business owner has reaped what he has sowed. He can now reinvest that money as he wishes.

        • lprent 10.2.1.1

          capital investment is on the rise – take a look at the numbers.

          In manufacturing? That is a stupid lie. I may have to dig the figures out that I looked at in the December quarter and write a post if this is what the idiot brigade have as one of their current delusions. When I looked at it then, it was dismally low when compared to the capital cost invested. Depreciation was almost an order of magnitude higher.

          I am sure there are mechanical pumps used in manufacturing that could be replaced with humans.

          Why would you waste a human on doing something like that? They are both far too expensive in any modernish society (ie since the early 19th century).

          Nothing wrong with selling to someone overseas.

          In this case unlikely. They were all at or close to retirement. Most likely property.

          Much of their product range was shut down. I know the product I was working on was because it directly competed with a product that the buying company had just spent 20-30x our cost in R&D to produce.

          BTW: You sound like another mindless randian theoretician rather than someone with any idea about what you are talking about.

        • Draco T Bastard 10.2.1.2

          The market will determine what industries offer the best returns.

          Only in NZ. Everywhere else the government is stepping in and supporting chosen industry and succeeding. It’s pretty much how the so-called First World Nations started. It’s why we have computers to read this blog on (The Entrepreneurial State, Mariana Mazzucato). If it had been left to the “free-market” we’d still be back in the 19th century.

          Stupid ideas such as a green bank that invest in green technologies are useless.

          Green investment banks work bloody well and green technologies are what’s going to make us sustainable. The only stupidity that I can see is you.

          The market will invest in green tech if they think there are returns to be made.

          Profits are actually a thing of the past – we can no longer afford them as we can no longer go with the growth that supports them.

          Nothing wrong with selling to someone overseas.

          It’s a loss to the country that makes us poorer so, yes, there is something wrong with selling to someone overseas.

  11. dimebag russell 11

    Ban him now!

    [lprent: At this point I'm more likely to ban you for being stupid on my post. ]

  12. dimebag russell 12

    calm down lprent. I’m on your side. I cant help it if these sad sorry people drive me bananas.

    • greywarbler 12.1

      Help he’s being repressed! Now you can see the violence inherent in the system! (Monty Python) I think that the election might be made into a sharp satirical satire by someone clever. There must be lots of content if the right eye looked.

      Dave Armstrong doesn’t have any more Down the List on Sunday mornings. Perhaps he would be able to turn out some choice pieces on our version of political skulduggery which isn’t dug out but twisted with a tractor-driven auger. They were probably showing them at Mystery Creek, which might explain why our politics is such a mystery to us all.

      (Please complain if you miss Down the List to Radionz if you miss it – satire is like gold in NZ.)

    • lprent 12.2

      So add a point to your comments. Makes it a whole lot more useful and readable.

      When I’m moderating I look at comments against the policy and the past history of the commentator. If you don’t have a past history of contributing to the debate or trying to do so, then I will apply the poker

      • You_Fool 12.2.1

        My thought is that Dimebag is a night wing whinger posing as a left wing poster in the hope of making the left look like idiots…

  13. greywarbler 13

    Perhaps assiduous in manufacturing fibs and chimeras. And who can tell what they are?

  14. dimebag russell 14

    my past history is a worker who built bridges, planted forests, manicured the vistas of the rich, took out their garbage and generally tried to dodge the malice in blunderland. Lighten up lprent. this is war and while you might have some pretensions to be an honourable gentleman these people are vicious and need to be taken down at every peg. Trying to pretend that there is some sort of code of behaviour and pandering to the enemy is not the way to drive these scum out of office.

    • greywarbler 14.1

      Trouble is dimebag – because it is so serious it is necessary to marshall facts, make arguments and advance in the general direction of a reasoned political system. Which is why too many simple comments with no point aren’t useful. It’s not news to us that it is war. I bring some music videos sometimes, but they usually have a point to illustrate which I hope that people appreciate.

      So what do you think about manufacturing, can we compete if we can get the speculators filthy hands out of our pockets. Can we glide out from low wages to trending up while at the same time allow the exchange rate to go down, which makes imports dearer. Higher prices for imported stuff, then on more NZ manufactured stuff, will eventually balance out with more jobs, each one creating a ripple effect.

      • dimebag russell 14.1.1

        take you point gw but when some tory expostulates “horseshit” then what is there to say. I could have punned it and just said nay! however going round in circles is not my bag. cutting the gordian knot is. the thing is the situation is more dire than the polemicists realise. three weeks ago or thereabouts Rod Oram opined in the SST that New Zealand is slowly regressing into an agrarian economy similar to 1932 before the first Labour government was elected and began a programme of import substitution. This is now an historical event that is rapidly fading from memory as the pacific rim countries have assumed total superiority in manufacturing consumer goods. There may be 100 more jobs at Waitoa and other milk processing facilities but that is like trying to put out a fire with a water pistol but the upshot is that as manufacturing recedes into the memory then the job of ensuring a decent livlelihood and conditions for those employed and those to come is much harder as the tories maximise their position. I wish I had some concrete things to say about the future besides quoting a whole lot of statisticians numbers about growth but in the meantime it is necessary to expose the the thugs who use their economic power to gain psychological satisfaction beating up on those who cant fight back.
        OK?

        • greywarbler 14.1.1.1

          Dimebag russell
          I looked for the Red Oram piece you quoted and found such a lot of items from him that are totally current even though written last year or so. We definitely have to keep reading and thinking about the points he raises. Put your links in if you can because I get a lot of my information from reading the factual intelligent stuff that others place links to here.

          Rod Oram opined in the SST that New Zealand is slowly regressing into an agrarian economy similar to 1932 before the first Labour government was elected and began a programme of import substitution.

      • Gosman 14.1.2

        You are essentially arguing for lower wages to enable our exporting industries to compete. Seems like you’re not too different to the nasty Tories in that regard.

  15. john 15

    It is lunacy to look towards manufacturing as a big future solution to jobs.

    Globally, manufacturing is dieing sector. As a percentage of GDP it has virtually halved in recent decades – see

    http://motorcitytimes.com/mct/2013/06/paul-krugmans-model-economy-millions-trudging-to-their-factory-jobs-lunch-boxe-in-tow/worldmfg-2/

    Even with billions in government subsidies, not even Australia can afford to manufacture cars.

    The story at top gives figures of 246,000 working in manufacturing – that’s only around 10% of the workforce. It used to be nearly 30%.

    In 1980, a medium car cost $30,000. That’s over $100,000 in today’s money. Yet today we can still buy a medium car for $30,000, because it only takes a fraction of the workers to make it. It used to take hundreds of man hours to build a car – now it can be done in less than 30.

    Manufacturing is an important sector, but as a percentage of both jobs and gdp, it will continue to decline not just in NZ, but globally.

    Anybody who is looking to manufacturing significantly increase employment, in a country that is more isolated from the main markets than any other country on the globe, hasn’t taken their head out of the sand long enough to look at the big picture.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      1) We can’t just be a nation of consumers, we also have to be a nation of producers.

      2) Manufacturing creates skilled, well paid jobs for the working class. That’s a worthy goal and one worth fighting for.

      3) We have to prepare import substitution capabilities to prepare for the closing days of globalisation when NZ will have to be more self sufficient.

      4) Kiwis can innovate, design and make better stuff than the rest of the world.

      • john 15.1.1

        I agree we need to do what we can, but it’s lala land thinking that manufacturing will have a bigger percentage of jobs or gdp in ten years time (or even the same percentage as now).

        Meanwhile there’s shortage of an estimated 50,000 workers in I.T. in NZ.

        And we’re going to need another 50,000 workers in primary industries.

        http://www.ruralnewsgroup.co.nz/rural-news/trending/50000-more-workers-needed

        So why do people ALWAYS look to manufacturing – a sector that’s been declining globally for half a century – as the golden goose?

        • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.1

          1) Manufacturing is not declining globally – people are buying as much stuff as ever. Of course the issue is China, and other low cost manufacturers, whom corporates have outsourced our work to.

          2) We may need another 50,000 workers in primary industries but we already have 150,000 unemployed. And primary industry revenues per worker, and pay per worker, only ranges from poor to middling.

          3) People look at manufacturing (and these days it has to be about elaborately transformed high tech manufacturing) as the “golden goose” because in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s it was the route to take to vastly increase a nation’s living standards.

          • john 15.1.1.1.1

            CV says “Manufacturing is not declining globally ”

            As a share of global GPD, it’s been in significant decline for decades See

            http://motorcitytimes.com/mct/2013/06/paul-krugmans-model-economy-millions-trudging-to-their-factory-jobs-lunch-boxe-in-tow/worldmfg-2/

            Even in the 60s, 70, and 80s, it was in decline globally as a percentage of jobs and gdp.

            As I said earlier, it used to take over 300 man hours to manufacture a car. It can now be done in less than 30.

            • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.1.1.1

              Of course its been in decline as a % of GDP – but why is that the measure that is most important?

              A nation cannot just consume; it must produce. Or it will be at the mercy of foreign powers.

              One of the sectors which has had the most massive growth globally is banking and finance – but playing electronic numbers games is never going to be sustainable. The financial sector is a parasite sucking in and hoarding capital from every other sector of the economy.

              • john

                CV asks “Of course its been in decline as a % of GDP – but why is that the measure that is most important?”

                It is important, because –

                • Around 90% of jobs are NOT in manufacturing. This number is growing and has been for 50 years
                • Only around 10% of jobs ARE in manufacturing. This number is declining and has been for 50 years.

                If you want to do something significant with jobs, you look at the sectors that are growing.

                If you don’t want to make much of a difference, you look to a tiny sector that has been in decline for half a century.

                With only 10% of jobs, looking primarily to manufacturing for jobs, would be like having a anti speeding campaign, but only for cars with number plates that end in 7.

                • Colonial Viper

                  john, why are you so afraid of manufacturing?

                  Why are you so afraid of us becoming less dependent on foreign supply?

                  Why do you want to passively sit back and let manufacturing in NZ die?

                  What’s in it for you to be making these arguments?

                • McFlock

                  what a load of shite.

                  one could equally argue that if we want to find 200,000 more jobs for folk, we should concentrate on the sector that has been allowed to stagnate in job numbers while the rest of the economy has thrived.

                  Only an idiot thinks the only solution is to copy the already successful. A smart person takes a look at the poor performers and sees if they can be improved by somesimple mechanism, rather than consigning them to the dustbin of history.

                  It’s as true of managing employees as it is of managing an economy: the real success comes from figuring out how to do something well that others do poorly. Not trying to beat established success stories at their own game.

                  • john

                    McFlock says “Not trying to beat established success stories at their own game.”

                    You just shot down you own argument in flames.

                    Most countries in the world can manufacture more successfully than we can.

                    They are ALL closer to the major markets than we are.

                    Not even our MOST successful manufacturers, like F&P appliances, F&P healthcare, Methven etc, could not survive staying in NZ.

                    Repeat – not even our BEST manufacturers can survive here.

                    Only a fool would look to a tiny sector that is getting smaller and smaller and has been for 50 years, in a country that’s further from the markets than any other, as the golden goose of job creation.

                    Especially when we need 50,000 workers in IT now, and 50,000 in primary industries over the next few years.

                    Take the blinkers off.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      You’re all missing the essential point: International trade is dying. This is the natural result of all countries learning to do mass manufacturing cheaply and using their own resources. The other point, of course, is that jobs are dying out due to everyone being able to manufacture cheaply and without people. The economics of empire have reached their end.

                      We have to start envisioning our post work society. If we don’t what we’ll have a few very, very rich people and everyone else in poverty and we all know that ends.

                    • McFlock

                      Repeat – not even our BEST manufacturers can survive here.

                      And each of them wanted to stay, but the high dollar fucked us. And the dollar is high because of the RBA and government policy.

                      We manufacture damned well, with a good workforce. We just can’t sell shit even in our own country because this fucking regime makes imports cheaper by virtue of the fact that every time the economy starts to perk up and people get jobs, interest rates are raised as another gift to the banks.

                      We’re basically subsidising finance-sector profits with the jobs of workers.

                • felix

                  Around 90% of jobs are NOT in manufacturing. This number is growing and has been for 50 years
                  Only around 10% of jobs ARE in manufacturing. This number is declining and has been for 50 years.

                  I love it. Like it’s some sort of natural process. :roll:

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    It is a natural process. As productivity increases the percentage of the workforce needed in a sector decreases. The only thing that would keep it high would be exports but even the developing nations are now starting to catch up in industry with the developed nations and as that happens the market we can export to decreases. The end result is very little trade and a lot of people out of work.

        • geoff 15.1.1.2

          Eventually technology will make almost every job redundant. There might be a temporary bubble in I.T or in primary industries but that’s only until they can off shore that work or automate it.

          Why do you think almost every ‘recovery’ in every western economy is being described as a jobless recovery?

          So when there are no jobs left to do, what do you do, John?

          • Bluey 15.1.1.2.1

            Mostly you come and write comments on your blog of choice when there are no jobs.
            Until your savings run out, then who knows. I guess you have to learn how to catch a fish.

            • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.2.1.1

              Too bad your local stream is only good for catching cow shit and fertiliser.

              • Bluey

                That’s true, but I tend to live near the ocean. You give me an idea though to capture the shit and grow mushrooms on the river banks.

              • john

                We can now fish in local streams that in the 70s were black from toxic waster from factories and stunk from the raw sewerage that was pumped into them.

                The Waikato River used to have a fecal count 1000% more fecal matter than it has today.

                Not everything is doom and gloom.

                • Bluey

                  There were some like that downstream of Horotiu in the old Affco days down your way, but mostly you could drink from streams and enjoy it.
                  It is not better now. I have spent three months travelling around NZ recently with a German and she is absolutely horrified at the filth in this country. I felt ashamed. Even the West Coast of the SI, no bird noise except for the keas in Arthurs pass.

          • john 15.1.1.2.2

            But New Zealand’s recovery now has 166,000 new jobs since the recession. (Dec 09 2,152,000 jobs, rising to 2,318,000 in the latest quarter).

            USA now has it’s lowest unemployment since 2008.

            • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.2.2.1

              Now you’re just talking bullshit political talking points. Who is paying you to do this?

              USA now has it’s lowest unemployment since 2008.

              Can you also tell me when the last time the US workforce participation rate was this low?

              • Colonial Viper

                (for those who don’t understand, the US pretends that their unemployment is falling simply by not counting unemployed people. Clever eh. Eg if you are classed as a “discouraged worker” who has given up looking for a job, you fall out of the workforce participation statistics and are not counted as unemployed.

                In fact in the USA, you can have a 1 hr a week job being paid $2.50/hr and not be counted as unemployed.

                Some days if you simply wear a nice shirt, they’ll stop counting you as unemployed)

            • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.2.2.2

              But New Zealand’s recovery now has 166,000 new jobs since the recession. (Dec 09 2,152,000 jobs, rising to 2,318,000 in the latest quarter).

              So…how much has NZ’s population increased by in those 4 years? Did it increase by more than those 166,000 new jobs?

              Edit…oh would you look at that. Appears to me that population growth over the last 4 years is approximately 200,000. That means we’ve actually gone backwards in job numbers, relative to population.

              My friend John, it seems like you weren’t being completely honest in your statistical representations.

              • john

                Jobs have to be created by the economy. Just because one person arrives at Auckland Airport, doesn’t mean there is automatically one job created.

                The other thing you’re getting wrong is only half the population works.

                • Colonial Viper

                  That’s what I’m saying. Our population is growing faster than the number of jobs being created. Does that sound like much of a “recovery” to you? It doesn’t to me. At best the economy is treading water.

                  • john

                    CV says “Our population is growing faster than the number of jobs being created.”

                    Only half the population works. Jobs only need to increase at half the population increase.

                    And they’re growing significantly faster than that.

                    Do you not get tired of ALWAYS trying to find the most extreme negative position on every subject?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      I get tired of reading the same lame groundless bullshit from right wing gimps year after year after year, as though they operate as some kind of Borg, only with less imagination. A grey blancmange of grey blended parrots twittering grey blended dribble.

                      We need better wingnuts.

            • geoff 15.1.1.2.2.3

              You’ve just dodged the main part of my comment, john.
              Looks like you’re only here to play a game, where’s your intellectual honesty?

              I’ll ask again, what do you do when technology makes every job redundant?

              • john

                That will never happen.

                We have more technology doing more work than ever in the history of man.

                And we have more jobs than we’ve ever had before.

                Time to leave this vortex of infinite negativity.

                • geoff

                  Why is that an infinitely negative situation for you, john?

                  Can you not imagine your life without a job?

                  I suppose for some their job helps fill that empty feeling inside and distracts them from that persistent suspicion that they’re not a human at all but rather a very boring robot.

                  Are you a very boring robot, john?

            • Tracey 15.1.1.2.2.4

              How many lost since 2008?

              As for GDP percentages… 28% of GDP is financial services. Nothing to get you a lil nervous about there aye John.

              • john

                Not really.

                For Statistics NZ, the finance sector includes insurance and business services.

                So anything that is not farming, manufacturing, transport, accommodation or government, gets put in business services.

                So the finance sector includes –

                • investment and superannuation
                • vets
                • architects
                • engineers
                • all types of insurance including health insurance
                • every rented commercial building in the country
                • the mortgage on every house in the country.
                • scientists
                • hire companies
                • real estate
                • rental properties
                • accountants
                • software and computer companies
                • management services
                • employment services
                • travel companies
                • cleaning companies
                • agriculture service companies
                • advertising
                • the legal sector
                • and even pest control.
    • miravox 15.2

      “it is lunacy to look towards manufacturing as a big future solution to jobs.”

      Tell that to Germany, if you like

      German Chancellor Angela Merkel was once asked by then-British prime minister Tony Blair what the secret of her country’s impressive success was. She famously replied, “Mr Blair, we still make things.” In Germany, manufacturing still dominates finance, not the other way around, as Germany has continued to emphasize manufacturing and exports over the financial industry.

      • john 15.2.1

        Germany has the advantage of being in the dead centre of a market that’s hundreds of times bigger than ours, and their transport costs are a tiny fraction of ours.

        Even with those advantages we will never compete on, their manufacturing sector has still plummeted from 30% of GDP to around 20%.

        • miravox 15.2.1.1

          Plummeted? Certainly it lost markets in the GFC, but plummeting is a weird word for the 2nd largest exporter of goods in the world. It’s also rebounding in industrial production since the peak of the 2008 GFC.

          http://www.tatsachen-ueber-deutschland.de/en/economy/main-content-06/strong-economic-hub-in-the-global-market.html

          Around one euro in four is earned from exports and more than every fifth job depends directly or indirectly on foreign trade. Having been “export world champion” six times in a row between 2003 and 2008, in 2009, with exports worth US$ 1,121 billion, around one third of the gross national income, Germany was the second biggest exporter of goods worldwide after China (US$ 1,202 billion). Germany’s share of total world trade is around nine percent.

          I agree about the transport problems for NZ – all the more reason to focus on innovation in SMEs to prouduce for a stable internal market, rather than having international corps ripping off our stuff in a race to the bottom.

          • john 15.2.1.1.1

            So when the numbers for manufacturing are proven to have dropped significantly as a portion of Germany’s GDP, you use figures for all exports and pretend that it’s the same and just the manufacturing sector.

            That’s like including dairy, meat, wood, fish, wool, etc, in our export figures to pretend that manufacturing is booming here.

            • Colonial Viper 15.2.1.1.1.1

              John, you’re not interested in building this nation up, just tearing it down, why are you being such a disloyal prick, is it on behalf of the 0.1%?

              • john

                If you want jobs, you can look to sectors like IT that need 50,000 workers NOW, or primary industries who need 50,000 workers over the next few years.

                Manufacturing has been shrinking globally for 50 years. Manufacturing has been sheding jobs globally for 50 years.

                You’d have to be really stupid to think the answer to the employment issues of NZ (pretty much the worst country in the world to set up manufacturing) lie in manufacturing.

                If you really believe that, then give me a call – I’ve got a really good investment in Nigeria that you’ll love

                • Colonial Viper

                  john. Why are you afraid of manufacturing? Why are you so willing to abandon one of our largest export earning sectors?

                  IT doesn’t need another 50,000 workers. Where are the 50,000 job ads, my good man? Sadly, your lies and exaggerations hide a mischievous intent.

                  The answer to NZ’s employment issues is to stop the march toward neoliberalism, to abandon the TPPA, shrink the financial sector, halve the payments going to foreign owners, and to become more self reliant as a nation.

                  Why don’t you understand that john? Why do you believe that it is in your interests to weaken our nation and its independence?

                  I ask you again, and don’t keep running like a coward – why are you being such a disloyal prick? Are you even a New Zealander? If so, why don’t you fight for the 99% instead of for the 0.1%?

            • miravox 15.2.1.1.1.2

              And you provide nothing…

              Did you look at the link? It’s the quote was about the Germany economy’s export of industrial product.

              Maybe a comaractive picture of manufacturing output (not exports) will help. Note the trend – if German manufactuing is a reducing a contributor to GDP, it’s not because manufacturing has ‘plummeted’.

    • Tracey 15.3

      unlike your party/s which look to oil and coal mining. Solid Energy anyone??? Small job numbers in the oil and gas and coal industries…

  16. Bluey 16

    Wow, only half the population works. And the rest does what?

    • john 16.1

      The rest of the population are babies, children, students (around 30% of the population).

      The other 20% are retired people, home makers, and beneficiaries.

      Hence NZ population is 4.5m with 2.3m working.

  17. Bluey 17

    What is the definition of working though?

  18. fdx 18

    I always considered Farrar more of a codpiece than a mouthpiece.

  19. srylands 19

    This obsession with Farrar is worrying. Also of course manufacturing employment will decline – it is a sign of a prosperous and successful economy. Look at Australia.

    On that note, could you please ban me from The Standard permanently? I know I should be able to rely on self-control but my morbid fascination with the stupidity here keeps me coming back. However, I now know it is futile to change the collective mind set here. So for my own good please ban me. If you need an excuse let me know and I can post a bunch of stuff that I know is trivial, but for some reason presses all your buttons. However hopefully that won’t be necessary.

    • Draco T Bastard 19.1

      The problem with your mind is that it’s set in stone and continues to believe the fallacies that it was taught.

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    Potentia | 30-10
  • Tea Party takes on “President Obola”
    OK, so this happened: Theatricality is one of the best ways to shake the sleepwalking public awake. One brave liberty advocate made a bold statement when he donned a Hazmat suit and an Obama mask, and took to the president’s...
    Polity | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said.  Photo:  ...
    CTU | 30-10
  • Herald vs Hosking-in-Herald on teabreaks
    The New Zealand Herald editorial today is distinctly unimpressed with the government’s decision to remove mandated tea breaks for workers: It is a pity that almost the first legislative act of the Government's new term is an act abolishing mandatory...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • Ghost Dancing?
    Ghost Dancing circa 1890: With the buffalo effectively exterminated, the material basis for the Native American cultures of the Great Plains was destroyed. The Ghost Dance, it was believed, would reconstitute the basis for an independent indigenous existence. Has the...
    Bowalley Road | 30-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Way back in March, 2012,  I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18...
    Frankly Speaking | 30-10
  • WINZ: Bureaucratic Befuddlement and Confustication
    Yeah, I know. Confusticate isn’t a word, unless you’re quoting Urban Dictionary. Definition: This word is the coalescing of the English words “confuse” and “complicate”. It refers to anything of, or relating to the process of being both confused and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • Climate change and New Zealand cities
    Environmentalists sometimes have an uneasy relationship with cities. Because they concentrate a lot of people and economic activity in relatively small places, they also concentrate a lot of negative environmental effects. All that concrete, all that energy being consumed, the...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • Got a mystery? Just ask John!
    Tuesday, November 24, 2009John Key has learned the identity of the entertainer guilty of an indecency charge through the grapevine of people circumventing the suppression order....
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD....
    CTU | 30-10
  • Blocked
    It is safe to say before the election last month I was fairly prolific in the blogosphere as we headed to an election. Was it because there was a glimmer of hope for we on this side of the coin?...
    My Thinks | 30-10
  • Blend with the Bruntletts Group Ride
    While Vancourerites Chris and Melissa Bruntlett are here for their Auckland Conversation talk, Generation Zero, Frocks on Bikes and TransportBlog have organised a slow, family friendly ride around the city centre. The map is below. The ride is designed to be self-directed so...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • New research quantifies what’s causing sea level to rise
    There have been a number of studies that have come out recently on ocean warming and sea-level rise. Collectively, they are helping scientists coalesce around an emerging understanding of climate change and its impact on the Earth. Most recently, a...
    Skeptical Science | 30-10
  • Rawshark – Is she Maori or Pakeha?
    Cameron Slater blamed someone for being behind the hacking of his emails and passing them on to Nicky Hager. And then he named someone he thought was Rawshark. John Key says someone told him who Rawshark is but he ain’t telling. @B3nRaching3r is...
    Te Putatara | 30-10
  • Employment law: it’s toasted
    In an early episode of Mad Men, when the company’s going for the Lucky Strike account, sleazebag antihero Don Draper asks the client exactly how cigarettes are made. They talk through the process, mentioning the tobacco is toasted – and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • Owners of the wind
    Thirty-odd years ago in the Kingdom of Denmark lived some brave people who disliked nuclear power and loved renewable energy. Determined to keep their country clean and safe, they began building their own wind turbines. Today, thanks to these passionate...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • TPPA Bulletin #58
    NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014 Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin,Invercargill. REGIONAL UPDATES Auckland (1:00 pm at Aotea Square): speakers include Robyn Malcolm (Actors Equity), Bunny McDiarmid (Greenpeace), Dayle Takitimu...
    NZ – Not for sale | 30-10
  • Seabed mining: drums in the deep
    Out on the Chatham Rise, the ridge jutting into the waters off Christchurch and extending out beyond the Chathams, Chatham Rock Phosphate has a mining permit and is now seeking EPA approval for its project to mine phosphate for fertiliser,...
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Contact’s big solar buy-back drop bad news for Kiwis with solar
    The Green Party are calling for a law change to establish an independent umpire to set fair and reasonable buy-back rates after Contact Energy announced, from today, new small scale solar and wind generators will receive 50 percent less for...
    Greens | 01-11
  • John Key’s asset sales outed by his own Minister
    National needs to come clean about the motivations behind selling state houses after Paula Bennett's asset sale admission, said the Green Party today.On Saturday, Paula Bennett, the Minister for Social Housing admitted, in a televised interview, that the sale of...
    Greens | 01-11
  • James Shaw speaks on the four Bills formerly known as the Accounting Infras...
    The assurance industry is a critical component of our economic framework. The idea that there is a trusted independent watchdog of the public interest underpins investor confidence and ensures financial probity on behalf of our country's leading institutions. New Zealand...
    Greens | 31-10
  • ANZ needs to look after its workers after another super profit
    The ANZ bank needs to acknowledge the super profits it makes are coming at the expense of its workers, the Green Party said today.Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) 2014 full year results show a lift in performance...
    Greens | 31-10
  • James Shaw’s maiden speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • National’s “Auckland housing boom” a fizzer
    Falling Auckland consent numbers show the Government’s housing policy is going backwards contrary to wild claims by Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith that we are on the cusp of a massive construction boom, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Local job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Zero tolerance for forestry accidents a must
    The Government must adopt a zero tolerance approach to workplace accidents in the forestry sector to stop people being killed, Labour’s Forestry spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It is time for the Government and the forestry sector to put an end...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Return to less holidays on the cards?
    John Key needs to lay his cards on the table regarding the Government’s intentions around holiday pay and annual leave entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “A day after National pushed through laws that take away the legal...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Catherine Delahunty Speaks on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill
    Kia ora, Mr Assistant Speaker. He mihi nui ki te Whare Paremata. Welcome to the glorious 19th century, dressed up in the not-so-new flexibility-speak. At the final moment of this bill, let us drop the charade. The Government has a...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Ruataniwha Feds refuse to present a balanced view
    A bid to sell the Ruataniwha water project to Hawkes Bay farmers has turned in to an incredibly one sided affair, says Labours spokesperson on Water Meka Whaitiri.  “It’s being promoted as ‘Ruataniwha it’s now or never’ and it promises...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Worker’s rights dealt severe blow with Bill’s passing
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill is another blow to workers' rights in New Zealand, the Green Party said today.This afternoon, National's Employment Relations Amendment Bill passed with the support of Act and United Future."This bill will force...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Barriers to reporting sex crimes must go
    Both the Government and police need to take action to ensure that, in future, sexual abuse victims know they will be taken seriously, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “The young women involved in the Roast Busters case, and...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    Greens | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health on management of Katherine Ric...
    Is he satisfied that all conflicts of interest that arose by the head of Food and Grocery Council Katherine Rich being a member of the Health Promotion Agency were managed in accordance with the provisions of the Crown Entities Act...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Bennett parks numbers on social housing
    Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett admitted today that well over 1000 families have been subsidised through the accommodation supplement to stay in the Ranui campground, somewhere she has previously described as not the right place for children to be growing...
    Labour | 30-10
  • 50,000 sign petition against anti-worker law
    More than 50,000 Kiwis have signed Labour’s petition against the Government’s scrapping of tea break entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “That’s the equivalent of five people signing our petition every minute for a week. It shows the...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Address in Reply Debate – Dr Kennedy Graham on UN Security Council- 2...
    In the Speech from the Throne last week the Prime Minister identified the usual domestic goals for his Government. I counted 17. They are not my subject today. I wish instead to focus on matters beyond our shores. In the...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Key misled public over Jason Ede
    Information contained in a new chapter of the book Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, that Jason Ede stopped working for the National Party on the night the book Dirty Politics was released, shows Mr Key and senior ministers hid...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Greenpeace report highlights better path for NZ agriculture
    A Greenpeace International report highlights a better way forward for New Zealand agriculture than the GE and chemical mutation technologies supported by Federated Farmers, and the National Government through its research funding packages, the Green Party said today. "This report...
    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Patrick Gower interviews Social Housing Minister
    Bennett says National could sell off “thousands” of state houses but Housing NZ will still be the “dominant force” in providing social housing in NZ....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • The Nation: Lisa Owen interviews Mike Moore & Chris Liddell
    Lisa Owen interviews NZ Ambassador to the US Mike Moore and corporate high-flyer Chris Liddell about the US midterm elections....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • David Parker event – the future of work, Sun 2 Nov
    Labour leadership candidate David Parker, an experienced lawyer and businessman as well as a former senior government cabinet minister in the Helen Clark Government, will join three prominent New Zealanders in a panel discussion on Sunday to address...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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