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One day older and deeper in debt

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, March 21st, 2013 - 103 comments
Categories: debt / deficit, exports, jobs, monetary policy, overseas investment - Tags:

There’s this almost puritan kind of myth that we’ve got so much international debt as punishment for our spendthrift ways. We ‘live beyond our means’, apparently. But it’s not true. If ‘our means’ is the money we make in exports, then most of the time, they exceed what we spend on imports. Yet, we run a $10 billion deficit as a country. Why? Because of the profit outflow.

We hear about the current account deficit all the time and most of us conflate it with the trade balance (ie exports minus imports) but the trade balance is just one part of the current account deficit – the other big part is the income balance. That’s how much overseas investors make in profits on the debt Kiwis owe them and the assets they own in New Zealand minus the profits New Zealanders’ loans and investments overseas make.

The trade balance is usually in surplus – we export more than we import (although not at the moment). It’s this second part – the income balance – that causes the current account deficit to be so massive.

Here’s the latest figures, breaking down how we racked up $10.5 billion in deficit last year:

current account balance 2012

As you can see, we exported more goods than we imported, imported more goods than we exported and ended up with a small trade deficit. But that’s dwarfed by the nearly $10 billion that was the net outflow of dividends and interest (the ‘current transfers’ is overseas aid, other donations, remittances, and people taking their money with them when they leave the country).

The irony is that to fund the deficit we have to borrow more from overseas or sell our assets to foreigners. And that just means a greater outflow of profits the next year. On and on, worse and worse each  year.

Now, let’s go right back and look from the start of the neoliberal era to the present. Remembering that for quarter of a century, the Right has blamed our international debts on us ‘living beyond our means’.

current account balance 1987 to 2012

We’ve actually exported $17 billion more worth of stuff in the last 25 years than we’ve imported. But it’s a pittance compared to the net $189 billion we’ve sent offshore in interest and dividends. That $163 billion figure at the end – allowing for currency fluctuations and asset value changes – that’s pretty much the net $150 billion that we owe the rest of the world in the form of debt and overseas ownership of New Zealand assets.

You can see the cycle, we borrow from overseas or let foreigners buy our assets, then we have to pay them interest and dividends, and we pay for those by selling more assets or taking on more debt… and so on.

Now, part of the solution is exporting more and importing less – that’s half of why we need a lower dollar, the other half is to create and protect Kiwi jobs.

Other steps to improve the trade balance include government favouring Kiwi businesses for big contracts (note National sent the rail rolling stock, Novopay, ultrafast broadband cable, and Mighty River website contracts overseas), investing in R&D, and importing less oil – the rising cost of crude means that we spend $8 billion importing the same amount of oil that cost us half as much in 2005.

But more important is reducing or at least stemming the growth of our debt pile with the rest of the world.

Start by looking at the banks. The foreign banks are the biggest owners of New Zealand debt and the biggest cause of the balance on income deficit. They make their money by inflating our housing market. Bring in rules to stop the foreign banks lending so much money into the housing market and not only will you make housing more affordable, you’ll reduce our current account deficit and international debt.

The next biggest source of international debt is foreign ownership of New Zealand assets. Although smaller than our debt via the banks, the rate of return is higher for the foreigner investors. Tackle this by preventing foreign ownership of strategic assets, by not selling our public assets, by putting in rules about overseas landlords for residential property and generally insuring that foreign investment is real investment in new capital wealth – not just buying what we already have.

(The other sector of foreign debt is the government sector – actually, we usually lend more to the rest of the world than we borrow thanks to the Reserve Banks big overseas reserves, but that’s gone negative under National, too).

If we don’t do something, if we keep on just letting foreign capital buy up more of New Zealand and pay for the pleasure by sending a larger and larger share of our GDP overseas each year, then our net international debt is forecast to grow from an eye-watering $150 billion this year to a disastrous $200 billion in four years.

Where does that road end? It ends when our debt pile gets so big that our overseas creditors fear we won’t be able to make our payments and they stampede for the exits – our businesses are suddenly left high and dry unable to get refinancing, the government has to pay much higher interest rates on its debt, and the currency suddenly plunges sending shockwaves through the economy.

Better to manage things and avoid hitting the wall like Greece did, by using the kind of policies I’ve mentioned above. Of course, those are the policies that the Greens, Labour, NZF, and Mana espouse, and which National has rejected in favour of sticking its head in the sand and letting the wealth flow out of our country at the rate of $10 billion a year.

103 comments on “One day older and deeper in debt”

  1. IrishBill 1

    Crikey. I was aware expatriated profits were big (like decent percentage of GDP big) but that’s astounding. On the other hand it’s a simpler policy fix than a massive trade deficit would be.

    • lprent 1.1

      It is freaky… Much of that is just from interest on housing mortgages – pretty unproductive for the country. And easier to contain.

      • Lanthanide 1.1.1

        Government should reduce OCR by 1% and introduce 1% tax on residential mortgages instead. Keep the money in NZ.

        • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1.1

          Nope, the government should stop the private banks from printing money and take over that function themselves. Make loans out to businesses and individuals at 0% and dump the OCR altogether.

          As soon as the government takes the privilege of printing money off of the private banks then we can do something about the economy. Leaving it as is will continue our path to debt slavery.

  2. ad 2

    So how many on this site have Kiwibank accounts?

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      I used to have a PostBank account until some shit of a government sold it off.

      • SpaceMonkey 2.1.1

        I have my savings (minor) in wholly-owned NZ banks and my borrowing (also minor) with an Australian bank. But my real savings are in physical precious metals – gold and silver. Have been a gold and silver bug since the GFC when I first realised how much of a racket the global financial scam was.

    • every loyal Kiwi should have a kiwibank account. the government should give westpac the flick and use its own(ours actually) bank.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        Cullen could have done that.

        • Alanz 2.2.1.1

          Looking forward to Shearer doing that.

          I opened my Kiwibank account in the first week it was established. Foundation member, I am, and that is printed on my card.

        • Pete 2.2.1.2

          I imagine there were some rules under the Public Finance Act he had to stick to. Westpac probably made the better offer.

          • Colonial Viper 2.2.1.2.1

            Ah ha. But what was the better offer for the country?

            I imagine there were some rules under the Public Finance Act he had to stick to

            The Westminster powers of a sitting Government come in handy at that point.

      • aj 2.2.2

        Or a Co-operative Bank account
        Or a TSB account
        Or a SBS account
        Or a Credit Union account.

        • Ed 2.2.2.1

          There is also Heartland Bank. I don’t know which of those is wholly New Zealand owned, although I suspect Credit Unions would be. This uncertainty is a good reason to keep Kiwibank wholly owned – it is clear to everyone that it is not putting money in the hands of overseas shareholders..

    • Saccharomyces 2.3

      My home loan is with Kiwibank…… why? Because they gave me the best deal.

      • geoff 2.3.1

        Yeah they give you good deal as long as you at least 20% deposit. Good luck to the average first-home-buyer getting that much money together.

    • lprent 2.4

      Kiwibank? Me personally, this site, our household account, and I think Lyn has at least one because I send stuff there when she pays for my airflights or whatever..

      I also have an account with a ANZ (damnit) for my apartments mortgage. I originally fled to the National bank to escape the irritating and fee ridden clutches of the ANZ many years ago and now they have gobbled me up again. At some stage I will summon the time to move again when and if they irritate me again.

      • Pete 2.4.1

        They got me young. When I was five years old I had a school banking (do they still do that?) account with the post office. Which was a two minute walk from my small suburban school. And then a couple of years later someone closed down that post office and I was given a different passbook – not one with the colourful design of kids flying kites over some blocky city, but a boring grey one that simply said “Postbank”. Then they got bought out by ANZ. By that stage it was too much of a hassle to change banks.

        I do have a Kiwibank account in my name. It was originally a flat account.

      • McFlock 2.4.2

        just when you thought you were out, anz pulled you back in…

        Kiwibank myself.

    • r0b 2.5

      I’m with KiwiBank.

    • karol 2.6

      I have been looking at opening a KB account – sorted out the specific account that suited me – am planning to do it in the next week.

    • Tiresias 2.7

      I’ve banked with KiwiBank since its day one.

      As at today I have something over $150,000 on on-line call, 32-day and 90-day notice accounts there but the week-end’s events in Cyprus have made me seriously consider the wisdom of maintaining so much in one jurisdiction, let alone one bank. Indeed, given the present exchange rate this might be a good time to park some in a US$ account in New York. If it’s good enough for our Great Leader it should be good enough for me.

      • SpaceMonkey 2.7.1

        I wouldn’t go near the US dollar… it’s on a hiding to nowhere. Personally, I maintain as little fiat currency as possible, I invest what I can into gold and silver. If I was to store cash in a non-NZ currency, I’d look for a currency whose central bank is not quantitatively easing it into oblivion.

        • Tiresias 2.7.1.1

          I avoid precious metals – they need a functioning market and if the excrement really hits the fan…

          So my primary investment is a chunk of good land far from the madding crowd from which I supply my own milk, cheese, beef, mutton, lamb, veges, chooks and eggs, with my own spring above the house which was still running before last week-end’s rain, and enough solar power to keep the freezers chilled if nothing else.

          I cook and heat my home and water with wood from the forests around me in which there are deer and pigs and possoms gallore (and rabbits too, alas), gather oysters on the beach nearby and have snapper, blue cod, green-lipped mussels and salmon as short row down the bay.

          Oh yes , and I’ve a rifle for the deer and pigs and a shot-gun for the possums and rabbits, and plenty of ammunition for both.

          There’s supposed to be gold in them thar hills, too, but I’ve never bothered to look for it.

          • SpaceMonkey 2.7.1.1.1

            You are where I would want to be when the SHTF… I’ve always considered land (as opposed to real estate) as the number one investment – provided you can get it without the assistance of a bank and that’s out of reach of most people these days. I like your set up.

            I should qualify that my investment in precious metals is really a hedge, not an investment. Which is why I distinguish the physical from the paper. It is a response to loss of confidence in fiat currency and paper precious metals (especially gold and silver) are being gamed even more than other ETFs – TPTB are desperately trying to keep the illusion going that the US dollar and other QE currencies are actually worth something now.

            I will convert it back when things settle down but if that’s not in my lifetime, I’ll leave a map for my children with an ‘X’ for where I’ve buried my hoard! Lol… :)

            • Tiresias 2.7.1.1.1.1

              I must admit that, just sometimes, it would be really, really nice just to be able to send out for a pizza.

          • North 2.7.1.1.2

            Do you ever Tire’ of the Good Life ?

    • Kevin Welsh 2.8

      Yep, Kiwibank here. Joined the first day as a Foundation Member. Do all my banking through them.

    • The Al1en 2.9

      I have one. I started it when I took out my 100% first time buyer mortgage, and I’d never dream of changing banks… Until the nats privatise it.

    • infused 2.10

      Nope.

      Don’t give me the loyal crap. They need to drop their fees. It’s nice to be able to actually walk in to a bank and deal with issues there and then.

      Also, kiwibank didn’t give me a mortgage, TSB did.

  3. Dem Young Sconies 3

    I’d be happy to see the total of foreign debt & capital nationalised without compensation. The cabal of vulture capitalists shouldn’t be rewarded for their theft.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      There’d be an immediate capital strike against NZ. Say bye bye to fuel, pharmaceuticals, farm exports.

      • Dem Young Sconies 3.1.1

        We have plenty of our own oil for fuel.
        We can source generic pharmaceuticals.
        With the stress on the environment, and animal welfare issues, we shouldn’t even be farming ruminants in NZ anyway. We can make do with just supplying the local market, and countries that aren’t controlled the the world bankster elite.

        • tinfoilhat 3.1.1.1

          Look I’m as green as you get, but your post is just silly and delusional……… or are you a RWNJ troll doing a very poor parody post ?

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.2

          We can source generic pharmaceuticals.

          Yes NZ can manufacture one or to two dozen of the most commonly used drugs, several of them by violating international patents (hey in for a penny…), but that leaves pharmacy shelves 95% empty.

          • geoff 3.1.1.2.1

            Does this mean you’ve recently changed your tune a bit regarding this, CV?

          • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.2.2

            Oh, noes, we might have to do some R&D.

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.2.2.1

              And what do patients who need their medications daily do for the 5-10 years before that R&D outputs?

              Any other glib solutions?

              • Draco T Bastard

                As I said below, I doubt if we’d actually lose all that you assume we would.

          • geoff 3.1.1.2.3

            No I’m getting you confused with DTB

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.2.3.1

              no probs mate

              I think a dramatic “Great Leap Forwards” style exercise is to be avoided for the moment, in favour of a planned, strategic import substitution programme.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2

        That’s ok, we don’t need them.

        Pharmaceuticals we can, and do, make here.
        Fuel, meh – that’s what we have electricity for and we also have our own oil wells. Sure, it’s only 44000 bbl/day rather than the 150000 we use but it’d work out.
        I’m sure the farm exports wouldn’t decrease either – they’d just change destinations.

        I don’t think we’d lose as much connection to the rest of the world as you think we would.

        • geoff 3.1.2.1

          Didn’t Iceland tell the IMF to fuck off? The icelandic bloke that Kim Hill interviewed last week didn’t give the impression that Icelanders were starving in the street. It’s all scaremongering that
          the powers that be use to try and keep nations under control. There’s just no way that business, financial or otherwise, would ignore the trade potential of 4 million westernised consumers.

          Speaking of finance….it looks like the karma might finally be catching up with the likes of Jamie Dimon and J P Morgan. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lynn-parramore/jamie-dimons-ultra-americ_b_2915429.html

          Bring on the global debt jubilee.

          • Tiresias 3.1.2.1.1

            Sorry but the Iceland-economic-miracle-sans-IMF is fiction. Educate yourself.

            http://icelandicecon.blogspot.fr/2013/01/the-economic-truth-on-iceland.html

            “So there you have it. The cosy picture drawn of the economic miracle of Iceland has serious stains on it. Despite the fact that the economy has, partially, rebounded to its pre-crisis level, the underlying foundations are so termite-infested that the slightest wind could blow the whole economy to kingdom come! That applies especially to the problem of abolishing the capital controls.”

            • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2.1.1.1

              IMF Says Bailouts Iceland-Style Hold Lessons in Crisis Times

              Iceland refused to protect creditors in its banks, which failed in 2008 after their debts bloated to 10 times the size of the economy. The island’s subsequent decision to shield itself from a capital outflow by restricting currency movements allowed the government to ward off a speculative attack, cauterizing the economy’s hemorrhaging. That helped the authorities focus on supporting households and businesses.

              “The fact that Iceland managed to preserve the social welfare system in the face of a very sizeable fiscal consolidation is one of the major achievements under the program and of the Icelandic government,” Zakharova said. The program benefited from “strong implementation, reflecting ownership on the part of the authorities,” she said.

              It seems that the IMF disagrees with, from what I can make out, is a RWNJ think tank.

              • Tiresias

                I’m not denying Iceland did much better for its people than, say, Greece or Argentina, but believing there’s an easy, pain-free way out of such a mess that only punishes the guilty is a delusion.

                • geoff

                  I never said Iceland had a pain-free transition. I was pointing out that they haven’t been shut out of the global economy in the way that say North Korea has been.

                  If anything, Iceland hasn’t gone far enough. What you appear to be advocating for is crony capitalism. It is absolutely possible to punish the guilty more effectively than has been done so dar and it is slowly beginning to occur in the US because it has become politically untenable to ignore the crimes.

                  • Tiresias

                    ” What you appear to be advocating for is crony capitalism.”

                    What on earth have I written that makes you think that?

                • Draco T Bastard

                  I never said there was a pain free way out of the mess that the banksters have left us in but I do believe that we do need to look for a way out and getting rid of foreign owners/investors and telling the banks where to get off is a good start.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    For it to be not wholly disruptive it’ll have to be a decades long project. And they’ll make sure that the government responsible doesn’t survive in power that long.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      That’s why you put it to referendum. Governments may change, the people won’t.

      • SpaceMonkey 3.1.3

        Worse than that… I suspect the banksters would engineer a coup or a crisis to overthrow the Government. They might have tolerated our anti-nuclear stand but renationalisation of capital would send TPTB into apoplectic fits and see NZ reduced to rubble like Libya or Iraq. All in the name of democracy, of course.

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.3.1

          They got rid of Salvador Allende, Chile. TPTB then installed a neoliberal, banker friendly leader by the name of Augusto Pinochet.

          • Colonial Viper 3.1.3.1.1

            From wikipedia

            Financial conglomerates became major beneficiaries of the liberalized economy and the flood of foreign bank loans. Large foreign banks reinstated the credit cycle, as the Junta saw that the basic state obligations, such as resuming payment of principal and interest installments, were honored. International lending organizations such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the Inter-American Development Bank lent vast sums anew.[43] Many foreign multinational corporations such as International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT), Dow Chemical, and Firestone, all expropriated by Allende, returned to Chile

    • Tiresias 3.2

      Or you could make yourself even happier by migrating to North Korea and living the experience of a citizen in an International pariah.

  4. bad12 4

    10 Billion and rising, for the last quarter the current account deficit widened from 2.5 billion to 2.7 billion so on that track it will soon be an annual 11 billion,

    Government ‘contracts out’ some 30 billion dollars of ‘work’ annually, much of this also goes to overseas company’s,

    Labour have said that they will look at all this 30 billion dollars of spending to see which of it can be spent here in New Zealand,

    Obviously we as a country are now tied into being sucked dry like the host of a leech by various international trade agreements so the Government cannot simply proclaim that all it’s spending will favor New Zealand owned and operated companies,

    Such trade agreements tho do not preclude a silent and unspoken bias by any Government toward having it’s contracted ‘work’ carried out only by New Zealand companies,

    Interestingly or not, Chinese buyers of our diary products have at the latest auction pushed the price of milk powders up from 4 thousand dollars a tonne to 5 thousand dollars a tonne thus going some way to ‘saving’ those farmers who have been hard hit from the drought losing up to 20% of production and as an incidental once contracts are settled helping to at least stabilize the current account deficit…

  5. Lan 5

    Why its annoying to hear the Gibbs, Fay, Richwhites etc (tho latter two seem quite quiet these days) making smart remarks about the New Zealand economy that they plundered in the 80s! And now with the energy “companies” government is doing it all again .. not to mention the sale of our best land and housing stock. Nuts.

    • Tim 5.1

      Yea, Messrs Fay and Richwhite are rather amusing. (As in trying to feign horror at Crafar farms potentially going offshore and doing a deal, considering their history).

  6. vto 6

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIfu2A0ezq0

    I owe my sole to the company store ….

    • Lightly 6.1

      I believe it’s ‘soul’, but in New Zealand’s case, the soles of our shoes is more accurate.

      • vto 6.1.1

        Yes of course, brain wobble… It is also “another day older” not “one day older”.

        16 tons and whadda ya get..

        another day older and deeper in debt..

        Johnny Cash does a good version too. “St Peter don’t you call me ’cause I can’t gooooo ….. I owe my soul to the company storeeeee…”

  7. DH 7

    Good commentary Anthony James but you must be joking when you say Labour have policies to fix it. I’ve yet to see one.

    For what it’s worth some $100billion or so of our overseas debt is owed by the Australian owned banks. We don’t owe it, the banks do. We just owe the banks via mortgages but that’s domestic debt, not foreign debt.

    One of the most effective means of managing away much of that overseas debt is to cut the banks adrift and force them to wind down their capital base paying back their overseas borrowing. We can do that by greatly expanding Kiwibank. It needs a large injection of capital and if the Govt is going to put an SOE on the sharemarket it should be Kiwibank. Not to sell it but to expand it; issue more shares to the NZ public.

    • bad12 7.1

      Australian owned banks??? your kidding are you not, your belief in the ‘fairy tale’ of New Zeland banks being owned by our close mates from Aussie makes me smile,

      As our bnaks are nominally owned by the Australian Banks the Australian Banks are all owned by the bigger fish in the pond namely the International Banking Cartels,

      Mostly you wont find the names of the big US banks on the share registers of those Aussie banks, such shareholdings are all held in Nominee companies and it is the name of the nominee companies which appear on the share register,

      Keeps a hell of a lot of us believing in the ‘fairy tale’…

  8. DH 8

    “Good commentary Anthony…..”

    Damn, where’s the edit function. I meant James, not Anthony…. duh!

  9. Harriet 9

    Someone who is adding to the total wealth of this country is not depriving you of anything.

    But someone who is consuming the nation’s wealth, without contributing anything to it, is.
    Yet our tax system penalizes those who are producing wealth in order to subsidize those who are only consuming it.

    Tax reform is overdue, national debt or no national debt. :cool:

    • Draco T Bastard 9.2

      Someone who is adding to the total wealth of this country is not depriving you of anything.

      Foreign investors aren’t adding anything to this country.

    • Colonial Viper 9.3

      Yet our tax system penalizes those who are producing wealth in order to subsidize those who are only consuming it.

      What do you mean by wealth? Do you mean “money”?

      You do know that all wealth originates from the resources of nature, right?

      • DH 9.3.1

        “What do you mean by wealth? Do you mean “money”?”

        Money is just a medium of exchange; a convenient means of storing value that’s portable. If a nation increases it’s collective wealth then it must follow you’d need more money in circulation to cover it. We’re only in trouble because we’re not increasing wealth, rather inflating the value of assets. Money isn’t the problem, they’ve just allowed too much of it to be created.

        If the Reserve Bank had been told to include asset inflation in their low-inflation targets we probably wouldn’t be in this mess. From a monetarist perspective there’s no difference between consumer inflation and asset inflation. They’re both monetary in origin so it’s a total mystery why they’ve ignored asset inflation.

    • Colonial Viper 9.4

      Tax reform is overdue, national debt or no national debt. :cool:

      Also, do you believe in the provision of a commons of goods for society? And how do you believe that commons of goods be paid for?

    • bad12 9.5

      Harriet, the pathetic ‘contributes’ argument has been round and round so often that i cannot be bothered to raise the arguments with you that show it, (the contributes/doesn’t contribute argument), is a load of bovine defecation,

      Needless to say your argument only holds the slightest bit of credibility where the individual does not contribute over the period of a life-time,(how many million of the New Zealand people do you know in that category,

      You are of course free to pack your s**t and find a country to reside in where the State contributes mostly ZERO to the individual and the individual is solely responsible for their own means of existence,

      Vanuatu springs to mind as the closest destination, Somalia if you hanker for the African sunshine…

  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    The next biggest source of international debt is foreign ownership of New Zealand assets. Although smaller than our debt via the banks, the rate of return is higher for the foreigner investors. Tackle this by preventing foreign ownership of strategic assets, by not selling our public assets, by putting in rules about overseas landlords for residential property and generally insuring that foreign investment is real investment in new capital wealth – not just buying what we already have.

    Don’t need any of that, just need to ban foreign ownership. As your figures show, we don’t need, and have never needed, foreign investment. The people who say we do are lying even if they don’t realise it as we have enough resources (both physical and human) in the country to support ourselves. This is true of every country.

    So, who benefits from investment? The rich of other countries who have so much accumulated money that they can’t invest in their own countries any more as there isn’t enough wealth in that country to absorb the money.

    If we don’t do something, if we keep on just letting foreign capital buy up more of New Zealand and pay for the pleasure by sending a larger and larger share of our GDP overseas each year, then our net international debt is forecast to grow from an eye-watering $150 billion this year to a disastrous $200 billion in four years.

    What you describe here is The Road to Serfdom and it’s the exact opposite of what Hayek said. The road to serfdom isn’t from socialism but from capitalism.

  11. AmaKiwi 11

    For the past 30 years we have NEVER had a year with a positive balance of payments. NEVER. Greece boasts precisely the same record.

    They fiddle while Rome burns (or NZ drowns). 30 years of National AND Labour governments and NONE has taken steps to keep us from serfdom.

    Since the politicians are too timid / compromised / short-sighted to sort it out, it’s time for the people to take back our government. 30 YEARS of inaction!

  12. Peter 12

    “The foreign banks are the biggest owners of New Zealand debt and the biggest cause of the balance on income deficit. They make their money by inflating our housing market.”

    Can someone please explain why they are allowed to?

    Excellent article!

    • Draco T Bastard 12.2

      Can someone please explain why they are allowed to?

      Mostly, as far as I can make out, it’s because people don’t realise that the banks are printing money at such a rate as to cause that inflation. It’s not so much that we’re allowing them to as that we just don’t know that they’re doing it and that they’re doing it only for their own benefit.

  13. ghostrider888 13

    however, according to the sage Joyce, in the Dec quarter, “New Zealanders received record returns from OFFSHORE investments (of which they re-invested locally 7%, from memory)” Well, that IS helpful…

  14. Plan B 14

    So we are left with the idea that somewher out there in the great big world, outside of New Zealand there is a great big chest filled to the brim with New Zealand dollars and that when we want to buy a house, our banks go and get some money out of the chest and lend it to us and that our interest payments have to go offshore to the people who have the chest filled to the brim with New Zealand dollars.
    The funny thing is that we as a country sell nothing in New Zealand dollars, nor can we spend New Zealand dollars outside of New Zealand. In fact there is noone in the world who actually wants New Zealand dollars except us.
    So there is no chest filled with New Zealand dollars at all is there.
    All we have is banks running a scam whereby when they type the loan into existence on a computer they pretend that the money is owed to someone in another country. It sounds so silly that no one would believe it so they don’t. Trouble is it is basically a true story

  15. infused 15

    “Bring in rules to stop the foreign banks lending so much money into the housing market and not only will you make housing more affordable, you’ll reduce our current account deficit and international debt.”

    How would housing become more affordable?

  16. prism 16

    James
    This is good stuff. But I don’t understand one part under a small table.
    “As you can see, we exported more goods than we imported, imported more goods than we exported and ended up with a small trade deficit. ”

    It appears from the table that we imported more services than we exported and…. Is this correct?

    I

    • prism 16.1

      I wonder if my question can be addressed?   Possibly there are some other confused people out there besides myself.  Or do you have to be one of the favoured to get a  response?

  17. prism 17

    Now we’re told that our banks can, if they foul up too much, take a portion of our savings and we are told that the answer to our country’s woes is to save more! Government here not content with facilitating dodgy financial businesses that in going bust have destroyed good people’s lifetime accretion of savings, the government now introduces a new tax and almost justifies the saying that “All tax is theft”.

    Our own Reserve Bank thinks it is right to take what are privately owned cash assets and give them to the business we are dealing with. And now we are told that it all underlines another verity, that there is no such thing as a safe investment. As the whole deal is man-made why isn’t there action to ensure reasonable safeguards?

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      So if the highly paid bank CEOs and boards fuck up and lose a tonne of money in the markets, we the savers get to bail them out.

      Yeah that sounds fair.

      • Tiresias 17.1.1

        Yeah, fair like an understanding that we’ll tolerate muggers as long as they only take 10% of the money in our wallets, but if we start objecting they’ll take it all.

        • prism 17.1.1.1

          Tiresias
          Well Terry Pratchett wrote that into his Discworld story of Ankh-Morpork.  The Patrician set up a guild to control the unfortunate habits that we have. so there is one for thieves, and there is one for killings, each with their own set of proscriptions, rules and expectations.   This business with the OBR or whatever it’s called is sort of similar.   An attempt to codify the customary practices really.  Fact over-ruling fiction eh!

    • Colonial Viper 17.2

      Anat Admati’s new book “The Bankers New Clothes” focusses on these issues exactly.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WdU5ik-fzZs

  18. aerobubble 18

    We’re an export nation, ergo we would accumulate wealth unless another process was imposed to extract wealth. The question is, how do we let wealth leak out so easily? Whose in charge? Govt.

    Govt is too easily lobbied because it has no upper chamber. Loopholes, oversights, tax regimes, all pander to exporting our wealth.

    • Draco T Bastard 18.1

      Govt is too easily lobbied because it has no upper chamber.

      /facepalm

      That has got to be the most nonsensical thing I’ve seen in a long time – and I’ve been having long chats with Tribeless. The lobbyists will obviously lobby both houses.

      As I’ve told you before – having two houses only produces worse government as which ever party has dominance of one house can, and will, prevent anything that they don’t like going through and if one party dominates both houses it just becomes another rubber stamp. Just look at the US and the trouble the republicans have been causing over the budget for the last few years.

      Some people won’t learn from history and, apparently, some can’t learn from what’s going on in front of their nose.

      • Colonial Viper 18.1.1

        Exactly. Two houses and getting rid of the Queen and having a formal constitution etc. – all beside the point and all with their own potential risks and additional unseen complications.

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    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • How biased is the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • PM’s Post-Cab on Iain Rennie, China and the Smith Inquiry
    In a press conference held today in Wellington, Prime Minister John Key answered questions regarding Iain Rennie’s potential resignation, the independent inquiry into the Smith/Traynor escape, and recent trade deals with China....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Safety Week 2014 focused on a safe summer
    ACC’s annual Safety Week kicks off today. With summer just around the corner, Safety Week this year is focusing on keeping safe when playing sport, enjoying recreational activities or drinking alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Safety focus during motorcycle month
    As the Central District Police annual Month of Motorcycles campaign cruises into its second week, the results so far have been positive with many motorcyclists playing their part to keep our roads safe....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST
    Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST The Sensible Sentencing Trust is slamming a decision which may acquit a Whakatane offender of serious dangerous driving charges....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons
    Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons to show violence towards women is never OK...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media
    Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media to say “no” to domestic violence Everyone has the right to feel safe at home. Many do not. One in three partnered New Zealand women report having experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner...
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • Smoke Alarms in Rental properties
    TPA says recent calls for mandatory smoke alarm installations in rental properties is an opportunity for all parties to come together to improve the safety and quality of rental housing....
    Scoop politics | 24-11
  • CTU will not engage in Governments sham consultation process
    Today the CTU has sent a letter to Prime Minister John Key articulating serious concerns about both the content and the rushed process the Government has clearly signalled it intends to follow to progress the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Job vacancies steady in October
    The number of skilled job vacancies advertised online remained steady in October across most industry groups and occupations, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • 600 Slaves And Counting on New Zealand Soil
    The 2014 Global Slavery Index has just been released, and buried within its pages is New Zealand’s growing issue of human exploitation and slavery. When taken in conjunction with the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons Report 2014,...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and NZ
    Media Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand: Police Commissioners take a stand against violence against women and children...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • NZ Police Commissioner makes a stand against Family Violence
    New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush has joined with his Australian Police Commissioner colleagues at Parliament House in Canberra this morning to take a stand on violence against women and children....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Amnesty International campaigns for end to domestic violence
    Amnesty International will be making a donation of over $500 to Aviva (formerly known as Women’s Refuge Christchurch) at the conclusion of Tuesday’s inner city march against domestic violence....
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Waka Hourua celebrates what’s working in suicide prevention
    On 19 and 20 November, Māori and Pasifika national suicide prevention programme Waka Hourua held its first national hui-fono in Auckland. The theme was Whakarauika Mai: Bringing Communities Together to Prevent Suicide in Aotearoa. ...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Ashley Dwayne Guy v The Queen: Appeal Upheld
    The appellant, Mr Guy, was found guilty by a jury of a charge of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection. After the verdict it was discovered that, by error, the jury had been provided in the jury room with two...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
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