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Open mike 14/06/2014

Written By: - Date published: 6:30 am, June 14th, 2014 - 224 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

openmike Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

224 comments on “Open mike 14/06/2014”

  1. (jamaica has decriminalised marijuana..mon..!

    ..here are some classic reggae pot-songs..

    ..so you can celebrate with a suitable soundtrack..)

    http://www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2014/jun/13/classic-reggae-ganja-anthems-jamaica

    • joe90 1.1

      Meanwhile, six months into Colorado’s green experiment, money is flowing and crime is decreasing.

      This week, official data from the U.S. revealed that the murder rate in Denver (capital city of the state of Colorado) is down 52.9% since the use of recreational marijuana was legalised in the state last January. This means that while there were 17 murders in Denver alone from January to June 2013, in 2014, the number went down to 8.

      Not only that, but sexual assaults have also dropped by 13.6%, auto theft is down 36.3%, robberies in general by 4.8%, crimes against property by 11.4% and aggravated assaults by 3.7%.

      According to experts, although very little time has passed since marijuana was legalised in the state, the results do not seem to be the product of mere chance.

      https://www.lamota.org/en/blog/colorado-crime-legalisation/

      • phillip ure 1.1.1

        wow..!..that’s some cool stats/facts there..

        ..(they should be sent to every politician..

        ..and maybe that high-profile pot-fretter..jim mora..?..)..

        ..chrs..i’ll link to it..

        ..and over on the financial ledger side..

        ..the pot industry in california is worth $23 billion to the californian economy each year..

        • phillip ure 1.1.1.1

          and no wonder cops oppose legalisation..eh..?

          ..it’s all a matter of patch/funding-protection for them..

          ..if crime dropped here by such radical-rates..+ no pot-criminals to chase/lock-up..

          ..there wd be less need for them getting ever-increasing funding/new-tasers/fun in helicopters hunting pot etc..etc..

          ..they would get less resources..

          ..it’s as simple as that..

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.2

        This week, official data from the U.S. revealed that the murder rate in Denver (capital city of the state of Colorado) is down 52.9% since the use of recreational marijuana was legalised in the state last January.

        Give the masses their soma; the power elite might find it quite an agreeable thing to do going forward if it keeps the riots and civil disobedience at bay.

        • phillip ure 1.1.2.1

          it could go either way..

          ..as in once that is sorted..it’s a matter of ‘what’s next..?

          ..that could temper their soma-urges..

        • Lanthanide 1.1.2.2

          With a bleak future between energy scarcity and climate change, I think soma is a distinct possibility.

        • emergency mike 1.1.2.3

          “Give the masses their soma; the power elite might find it quite an agreeable thing to do going forward if it keeps the riots and civil disobedience at bay.”

          I think you might be confusing cannibis with television there CV. Also, you might want to look up civil disobedience in wikipedia (there’s a picture of Ghandi), because I couldn’t find murder, sexual assault, nor car theft in the ‘techniques’ section.

          Furthermore, in my experience cannabis culture reliably leads to an increased distrust of authority, greater interest in creative pursuits, and much, much less interest in the working trap pay your taxes get a mortgage train your kids to do it too then you die ain’t it grand lark. Soma it’s not.

  2. “..Teen Marijuana Use Remains Flat Nationwide – As More States Legalise..”

    “..As marijuana’s national popularity continues to grow-

    • and more states have legalized either medical or recreational use of it -
    • a new federal survey shows that those shifting attitudes have not produced a surge in teen use..”

    (cont.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/13/teen-marijuana-use-flat_n_5492135.html?ref=topbar

    • JanM 3.1

      What on earth makes anyone think that making something legal is going to attract a teenager, for goodness sake?

      • phillip ure 3.1.1

        well..that is one of the main arguments of the prohibitionists..

        ..should we call it the mrs reverend lovejoy-syndrome..?

        ..’won’t somebody think of the children..!..’

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.2

        What on earth makes anyone think that making something legal is going to attract a teenager, for goodness sake?

        Lowering the drinking age to 18 did.

      • Lanthanide 3.1.3

        Making it legal certainly would increase incidental and ‘first-time’ usage, but I doubt it would do much to swell the ranks of regular users.

        • phillip ure 3.1.3.1

          in america the uptake has been seen in those in their 40’s – 50’s – and 60’s..

          ..because..any teenagers wanting to smoke..wd already be doing it..legal or illegal..

          ..it is their elders who have been cowed into submission by prohibition..

  3. Saarbo 4

    This is actually a bloody good article from Fran O in todays Herald.

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11273606

    I think she is calling for a tougher CGT as well!

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      Key would be a shoo-in at the September 20 election as political leader if this country enjoyed a presidential system instead of the rag-tag MMP system we have here.

      There’s the attack on MMP.

      Not simply being skilled at finding the centre of politics. Or managing the economy – where his Government does deserve credit.

      And that’s just a small portion of the kissing of John Key’s arse in that piece.

      Can’t really say I saw anything of worth in there.

    • Ad 4.2

      Irrespective of her politics she is a wise head. Something needs to click inside a Prime Minsiter who is coasting to victory at the end of his third term: it’s a will to monumentality, that will to rank oneself in the history books for having achieved something. To become one of the greatest.

      There will be many reviews of his Prime Minsitership as the election looms – and he deserves the praise Fran awards him.

      But with such momentum going into a third term, including in particular many parts of the economy, he needs to ask whether a merely excellent managerial record will be enough.

      Helen Clark bequeathed us the Rugby World Cup, and the greatest sustained economic boom we have ever had outside of a world war.

      John Key will leave us with a similar economic surge, the Sky City Casino, the Lord of the Rings second set of films, management of the Christchurch earthquake rebuild, and a recovery after the GFC that largely left the social service network New Zealand has been used to intact. Pretty rare if we look across the OECD.

      A part of his ego needs to kick in that only leaders have: what greatness will he leave? Will he simply be a more inspiring and secure Bolger? Can he leave us in a better place than Clark? Regrettably it is currently likely that he and his party will win the election, and in that circumstance I want him to go big.

      • Colonial Viper 4.2.1

        Helen Clark bequeathed us the Rugby World Cup, and the greatest sustained economic boom we have ever had outside of a world war.

        Yes, as long as we remember that it was all built on an unsustainable massive local and international private sector debt and asset price bubble. Just keep saying that so no one forgets, it’s where all the money flowing into the NZ spending economy came from.

        • Ad 4.2.1.1

          Without high internal savings rates, the only alternative is external debt.
          You’re about to provide a counterfactual history for Helen Clark’s economic leadership in which New Zealanders could or should have put their debt into something besides housing? They weren’t “transformational” enough?
          Or did you miss Labour’s unemployment stats for that era?

          • Colonial Viper 4.2.1.1.1

            Steve Keen the Australian economist has demonstrated over and over again that employment is the inverse of debt acceleration. The money which accelerating debt levels pushes into the economy is the major driver in creating jobs.

            The moment debt acceleration halts – unemployment significantly worsens. Which is to be expected as debt supplied money into the economy dries up.

            Without high internal savings rates, the only alternative is external debt.

            High levels of household savings significantly depress consumer spending into the economy. Remember the mantra of our leaders has been “growth.” While increasing savings or paying off debt may indeed be a personal good, if everyone does it a severe recession will result.

            • Ad 4.2.1.1.1.1

              To get back to the actual point Fran has made, here’s a poser for you:
              If John Key is re-elected, what’s the best he should deliver for the New Zealand economy?

              Remember, he’s not a no-growth, no-debt, socialist, nationalising guy.

              • Colonial Viper

                I just spent 15 minutes composing a comment describing a policy platform for National constructed around concretely realising the “New Zealand Inc – Open to the world for New Business” vision of the nation.

                Then I deleted it because if National ran with anything along those lines, Key would win a 3rd term hands down.

          • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.1.2

            Without high internal savings rates, the only alternative is external debt.

            BS. We savings as much as we need foreign investment – not at all.

            • Colonial Viper 4.2.1.1.2.1

              Very few on the Left accept that government can spend NZ dollars into existence by spending money from a designated Reserve Bank account operated by Treasury, into the general economy.

              Once those dollars are in circulation they can then be saved and spent by the citizens, as appropriately encouraged by government. And that’s one way of getting internal savings.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Very few on the Left accept that government can spend NZ dollars into existence by spending money from a designated Reserve Bank account operated by Treasury, into the general economy.

                That’s because they’ve been listening to the RWNJs for too long.

                • Colonial Viper

                  And have no leverage to push back at the international banking system with. Even if they had the will.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    And have no leverage to push back at the international banking system with.

                    Don’t really need it. Sure, we’ll probably become a pariah state but we can survive that – and the Rest of the World will go WTF??!

                    Even if they had the will.

                    And that is the problem. Of course, it’s not the politicians that need the will but the populace to push the politicians in the right direction.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      IMO only peaceful mass movements can bring about the change we want in Parliament. Which is why they try as hard as they can to keep the populace sedated and uninformed.

                      Don’t really need it. Sure, we’ll probably become a pariah state but we can survive that – and the Rest of the World will go WTF??!

                      There are actually some advantages to being aligned with Empire. I’ll admit that much. Problem is that this Empire appears to be edging into an age of insanity and is determined to go down in flames – we shouldn’t follow.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Which is why they try as hard as they can to keep the populace sedated and uninformed.

                      And they don’t seem to like it when you throw the truth at them. Especially when it comes to money.

                      There are actually some advantages to being aligned with Empire.

                      There certainly can be but I think I’m glad that we’re not Inner Circle in this one. Makes it easier to break off and go a different way.

                      Problem is that this Empire appears to be edging into an age of insanity and is determined to go down in flames

                      Considering that all empires have gone down in flames perhaps it’s empire that is the insanity.

      • miravox 4.2.2

        John Key will leave us with a similar economic surge, the Sky City Casino, the Lord of the Rings second set of films, management of the Christchurch earthquake rebuild, and a recovery after the GFC that largely left the social service network New Zealand has been used to intact.”

        Surely you omitted the /sarc tag?

        • Ad 4.2.2.1

          Not saying I like it, and I leave that to you to winnow fact from fiction.
          But as GDP climbs and unemployment tracks below 6%, Key could claim things are going right.
          And NZ popularity polls consistently agree.

          • Tracey 4.2.2.1.1

            fiction is the new fact

            • Colonial Viper 4.2.2.1.1.1

              The Left may think that the values it holds and its policy positions clearly represents the best interests of the bottom 90% of the population.

              However, approximately half of them don’t agree.

              • Tracey

                Agree with you. But you also know that political parties such as national and labour and ACT dont just control the message they pay money to mask it.

                Lots of people think that john key is ordinary and honest, which is exactly the image they set out to create. That half the people believe that is down to the success of the dark arts of advertising and marketing. Which is different to those who, when presented with cracks in the veneer, put their fingers in their ears and say la-a-la

                • Colonial Viper

                  Also, Labour has left a huge political space vacant on the Left. It gave plenty of room for the Greens to fill, and as the Greens have gradually marched towards the centre (accepting that they are still fairly left), breathing space for parties like Mana has opened up.

          • Ergo Robertina 4.2.2.1.2

            “John Key will leave us with a similar economic surge, the Sky City Casino, the Lord of the Rings second set of films, management of the Christchurch earthquake rebuild…’

            The Government isn’t trumpeting its actual ‘management’ of the rebuild as a success though. It’s relying on the economic stimulus for its growth figures, which is different.
            The likely effect of Chch on the ballot in Sept is being underestimated because of the Auckland-Wellington focused media.

      • phillip ure 4.2.3

        ..it won’t be his ignoring of child-poverty he will be reviled by future historians for..

        ..it won’t be his putting his boot on the back of the poors-necks..and screwing..that he will be reviled by future historians for..

        it won’t be his blowing out our debt to ‘foreign-bankers’ from $12 billion upon taking office…..to over $60 billion..(and growing..)..accompanied with/by massive tax-cuts for the wealthiest that he will be reviled by future historians for..

        ..it won’t be the asset-stripping of commonly-owned/paid-for assets that he will be reviled by future historians for..

        ..it won’t be his wholesale fanning of the evils of inequality that he will be reviled by future historians for..

        ..it won’t be his allowing american-spooks to spy all over us that he will be reviled by future historians for..

        ..it won’t be his opening up of our national parks for wholesale drilling/mining-exploration..

        ..it won’t be his attempts to sell out our sovereignty to corporates..via the tpp..that he will be reviled by future historians for..

        (i could go on..but you get the idea..)

        ..what key/this government will be reviled by future historians for..

        ..will be for what those future historians will still be wrestling with the consequences of/from..

        ..the ignoring..for craven reasons..of what they knew/had been told..

        ..namely their uncaring/ongoing trashing of the environment/world..

        ..by their just continuing to do what they knew would wreck the future..

        ..and in fact ..not only ‘doing nothing’..but actually just doing even more to ensure to fuck that future..

        ..for those future historians..

        ..it is for this that john key (and all who sail with him..)

        ..will be writ large in the annals of infamy…

        ..this is his ‘heritage’..

      • Lanthanide 4.2.4

        Why are you giving Key credit for not destroying something against the wishes of a large section of his voting base, who would love nothing more than to put strict restrictions on welfare?

        The credit goes to Labour for paying down national debt, giving the following government the financial headroom largely continue with BAU + a large tax cut.

    • ianmac 4.3

      Yes Saarbo. I had to check twice that it really was Fran’s writing! I always have the feeling that Key and his mates English, Joyce, and Brownlie make their announcements then away from the camera snigger and say of us, “Suckers!” Can you imagine agreement to cross-party discussion on Super or Electoral Reform or CGT?
      The importance of the Farrar research is to let Key know how much he can get away with rather than what is right for National philosophy. And we the people fall for it.

      • phillip ure 4.3.1

        “..The importance of the Farrar research is to let Key know how much he can get away with rather than what is right..”

        ..+1..

  4. (i just linked to a mindblowing-stat..)

    china has used more cement in the last three years..

    ..than the usa used in the whole of the 20th century…

    ..whoar..!..eh..?

    • and the clowns that rule over us..

      ..can’t even make a decent start on rebuilding christchurch in that time..

      ..that time when china has used more cement than the usa used in the whole of the 20th century..

      ..kinda puts the whole ‘we’re doing all we can!..as fast as we can..and don’t you dare question me..!’ hand-flapping of that fucken idiot brownlee into some perspective..eh..?

      ..i’m surprised the people of christchurch haven’t rioted..

      ..(must be all those ‘good schools’ they went to..eh..?..

      ..all that standing in line..does inculcate obeisance to ‘authority’..

      ..all those little..and not so little..cartmen-clones..

      ..insisting/demanding you obey their dictum:

      ..’respect my authority..!’..)

      ..three years later..?..still shivering in broken homes..

      ..but hey..!..the stadium-plans are proceeding apace..!..eh..?

      ..and rugby will be the winner on the day..eh..?

    • Chooky 5.2

      scarey!…at that rate they could concrete New Zealand several billion times over….anyone for a concreted New Zealand?

      imo….no more immigration from grossly over populated countries… They have to sort out their own over population, exploitation of women and consequent environmental trashing and pollution problems out at home…. and not export them

      Keep New Zealand Green!

      • phillip ure 5.2.1

        chooky..

        ..have you driven around new zealand lately..?

        ..are you saying we don’t have enough room..?

        ..you do know the japanese call new zealand ‘the empty islands’..eh..?

        ..and there is more than a whiff of the pull-up-the-ladder paula bennetts about anti-immigrant sentiments..

        ..i’m here..but you can’t come..

        ..and of curse the environmental-realities from future climate-change will likely make a lifeboat of nz..

        ..(libertarians must daydream about ‘taking over’ new zealand..eh..?

        ..no need fot those utopian-fantasies of building ‘free’ nation-states on discarded oil-platforms and the like..

        ..fanciful notions all..

        ..but new zealand..?..mm!!..now yr talking..!)..

        ..so given that invasion will be a likely future if we insist that ‘nobody can come here..!’..

        ..i think we should start ‘getting real’ about this..

        ..and be much more open/welcoming to economic/refugee-immigrants..

        ..(my ancestors..five generations back..were economic-refugees..

        ..celts looking for a better life..)

        • Chooky 5.2.1.1

          Depends on whether you are ecocentric or anthropocentric …..I am with the Greens and Winnie on this… and many Labour voters I know …and not a few National voters I suspect

          ….also I dont think the Tibetans or the Palestinians, who have had their lands flooded with new immigrants in recent history and been marginalised in their own countries , would agree with you…nor would the early Maori or many of the later Maori…..who were ecocentric in their Gods and ecocentric in their values and where women were respected.

          …Sorry over- population does not go with respect for the Earth or its animals or with it flora or with respect for women!

          …Over population happens in patriarchal societies where males lord it over females ..and the female population is uneducated, economically exploited and denied control of their own fertility….these countries with a gross overpopulation imbalance need to face up to social and environmental issues they have created at home!…then they will have the respect of everyone.

          In the West, feminists have fought long and hard for control over their fertility , for equal access to education and equal career opportunities and pay…Depends on whether you are ecocentric or anthropocentric …..I am with the Greens and Winnie on this… and many Labour voters I know …and not a few National voters I suspect

          ….also I dont think the Tibetans or the Palestinians, who have had their lands flooded with new immigrants, would agree with you…nor would the early Maori or many of the later Maori…..who were ecocentric in their Gods and ecocentric in their values and where women were respected.

          …Sorry over- population does not go with respect for the Earth or its animals or with it flora or with respect for women!

          ….Over population happens in patriarchal societies where males lord it over females ..and the female population is uneducated, economically exploited and denied control of their own fertility….these countries with a gross overpopulation imbalance need to face up to issues they have created at home..then they will have the respect of everyone….and they should be encouraged by developed nations to do just this!.

          In the West feminists have fought long and hard for control over their fertility , for equal access to education and equal career opportunities and pay….and the environment is also the winner ……we are not keen to see this eroded ……

          • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1.1

            …Over population happens in patriarchal societies where males lord it over females ..and the female population is uneducated, economically exploited and denied control of their own fertility….

            Human over population has only occurred as a result of knowledge, technology and energy availability.

            Patriarchal societies have been the rule for tens of thousands of years but for almost all that time the human population has stayed at 200M or less.

            these countries with a gross overpopulation imbalance need to face up to issues they have created at home..then they will have the respect of everyone….

            This is a completely imperialist attitude. Why should these nations seek the approval of white western European-based societies, ones whose population make up only a small minority of the world population but who grab and use up the majority of the world’s resources?

            • Chooky 5.2.1.1.1.1

              @CV…Tell that to the Tibetans!…Tibet was not overpopulated by Tibetans….. and nor did they exploit their natural environment..it was treated with reverence.

              ..also Tibetans have quite a lot of support in the West for their culture and religion Buddhism and their cause against Chinese imperialism and invasion…and persecution and genocide…not to mention and overpopulating Tibet

              ….and the Tibetans also seek the support of western European-based societies

              • Colonial Viper

                Tibet fell to a regional power. That’s what happens when your country is colonised.

                • Chooky

                  no excuse for what happened in Tibet in this day and age…and what is still happening in Tibet!

                  …and we dont want it to happen here!

                  …does China regard itself as a regional power?…over all of South East Asia?….this is what we were told when we were in China

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Yes.

                    This is why the US is moving additional aircraft carrier groups to the Pacific and encouraging Japan to re-arm and re-militarise in a big way.

          • Chooky 5.2.1.1.2

            ( that comment to philip ure got mangled in the editing…should read as follows)

            Depends on whether you are ecocentric or anthropocentric …..I am with the Greens and Winnie on this… and many Labour voters I know …and not a few National voters I suspect

            ….also I dont think the Tibetans or the Palestinians, who have had their lands flooded with new immigrants in recent history and been marginalised in their own countries , would agree with you…nor would the early Maori or many of the later Maori…..who were ecocentric in their Gods and ecocentric in their values and where women were respected.

            …Sorry over- population does not go with respect for the Earth or its animals or with it flora or with respect for women!

            … Overpopulation happens in patriarchal societies where males lord it over females ..and the female population is uneducated, economically exploited and denied control of their own fertility….these countries with a gross overpopulation imbalance need to face up to issues they have created at home..then they will have the respect of everyone….and they should be encouraged by developed nations to do just this!.

            In the developed West where population is static or declining, women have acquired status ….Feminists have fought long and hard for control over their fertility , for equal access to education and equal career opportunities and pay….and the environment is also the winner !……we are not keen to see this eroded! ……

            • bad12 5.2.1.1.2.1

              The settlement of Aotearoa by Maori was in fact a story of population pressure, my lot originally from the far North a 1000 or so years ago were forced by the burgeoning population there to seek new homes,

              Their migration down the Motu to Wellington accomplished over many years through both friendly and hostile tribes, with some elements of the tribe opting to stay on in friendly places further north was essentially the same migration that the South Island tribe Ngai Tahu had made befor them,

              Mamoe having recently vacated the lands the original inhabitants Ngati Tara had allocated them for the South allowed Manaakitanga to be extended and my lot who then occupied those vacated lands,

              Thus the situation existed for a further 500 years until the next wave of internal migration occurred in the later part of the 1700’s and the early years of 1800…

        • bad12 5.2.1.2

          Interesting this ”better life” Phillip, to gain this better life your ancestors first had to remove from those that were already present here their ”standard of living”…

  5. dimebag russell 6

    they must be pretty stoned then.

  6. DH 7

    There’s been a lot of claims about Kiwis being poor savers and other claims that renting is better than owning a home. I thought I’d try some maths on it, may interest people;

    The basis of the rent discussion was this article here;

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/money/9776610/Low-rents-deter-home-buyers

    With a follow up here;

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/personal-finance/news/article.cfm?c_id=12&objectid=11237251

    To summarise; a person renting a $427k house at $450 per week paid $7193 pa less than a person buying the $427k house with a 20% deposit of $85k. Therefore the renter was financially better off and was renting by choice. So says the property investors federation.

    The numbers tell a different story. For the below calculations we’ve assumed a longrun interest rate on savings of 4% after tax and annual inflation of 3% on both housing and rents**.

    A person who rented and saved the $85k & $7193 pa would have saved $499,000 after 25 years (that’s with interest compounded).

    A $427,000 house will be worth $868,000 in 25 years time.

    A person paying $450 week rent now will be paying $915 week in 25 years. They will have paid an extra $268,000 in rent increases, for total rent payments of $853,000.

    The home buyer will have a $868,000 freehold house in 25yrs. They would have some increased costs from inflation on maintenance, rates, insurance, interest rate changes etc so allow $100k in ownership costs. They would have no rent increases, they’d save the $268k-$100k which would compound to $228,000.

    The renter will have nett savings of $499k and continue to pay rent.
    The home buyer will have nett savings of $1.09 million and have no more mortgage payments.

    A Kiwisaver account returning 4% after tax will need a $1.19 million balance just to pay $915 per week rent, deduct the $499k savings and the renter would need to contribute $699,000 more than the home owner. You’d have to save over $293 per week, at 4% compounding, to achieve that $699k in 25 yrs. Even at an optimistic 6% return you’d still need to save almost $180 week for a balance of $470k. And that’s just to pay the rent in your retirement… without allowing for future rent inflation.

    Clearly the renter is worse off financially by a very wide margin while we have housing inflation. It’s also clear that buying your own home ranks as saving, no real surprise why people are borrowing rather than paying more into Kiwisaver.

    Feel free to find flaws in my maths…..

    ** 4% is fairly generous, that’s term deposit rates after withholding tax is deducted and you wouldn’t get that much compounding when you’re banking your savings weekly. 3% rent & housing inflation is conversely conservative, historical inflation was higher.

    • Ad 7.1

      Nice work there.

      Do you think overall New Zealanders are saving more for their retirement than prior to Kiwisaver?

      What futher instruments beyond Kiwisaver should a future Government propose that would acelerate our savings rate?

      • DH 7.1.1

        “Do you think overall New Zealanders are saving more for their retirement than prior to Kiwisaver?”

        I don’t know the figures, a point I was making there was that paying off a mortgage is saving. The word ‘saving’ really needs to be reappraised in this context.

        “What futher instruments beyond Kiwisaver should a future Government propose that would acelerate our savings rate?”

        Well again, what do you call ‘saving’ ? As things stand most renters would be saving more for their retirement paying off a mortgage than they would putting the money into Kiwisaver.

        • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1

          Bear in mind the big difference in liquidity between having half a million accessible in savings accounts and a million dollars not accessible locked up in the bricks and mortar of a house.

          • DH 7.1.1.1.1

            Is there really that much difference? To get decent interest rates on savings you need to lock them up on term deposit for 5 yrs. (90day TP rates are 3%, 12month 4% and 5yrs 5.5%, before tax) There’s other options but anything offering good returns usually requires locking the funds up for a period. Can sell a house quicker than that.

            • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Uh, no. Firstly you haven’t thought that you might only need say $100K in a hurry. Trying to sell a $1M house to try and find $100K of liquidity is silly. Your commission would set you back an extra $30K upfront, for instance, which is a very big cost on trying to access just $100K.

              And, no one puts $500K into a single 5 year term deposit.

              What they might do is split it into ten $50K deposits. Put them in for 12 month rolling terms, just over a month apart. That way every 5 weeks or so you have the option of accessing one lot of $50K with no interest penalty.

              • Lanthanide

                Firstly you haven’t thought that you might only need say $100K in a hurry. Trying to sell a $1M house to try and find $100K of liquidity is silly.

                That’s why we have these things called “mortgages”, where they lend you money held against your “security”, aka the house.

                • Colonial Viper

                  That’s fine Lanth, but when you’re retired, living on a significantly lower income, and almost all your net worth is tied up in your house as in this scenario, how are you going to service the mortgage without selling your home?

                  • Lanthanide

                    If you’re retired and need $100k for something, and don’t want to sell the house, then a reverse equity mortgage is the instrument you need.

                    What you’re actually saying here is “you need $100k to pay for some emergency”. In the case of access to readily liquid money, the costs on accessing this $100k will be much less than if you owned a house. Big whoop. If you own a house and end up with several hundred thousand more in assets than in the other case, even if there’s more of a penalty if you need to access the cash, you still come out ahead.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Look that’s fine. Using your home as the basis of your retirement savings has been the NZ way for decades. Retirees don’t usually get reverse mortgages in NZ though, they just tend to “downsize.”

                    • Lanthanide

                      Reverse equity mortgages have only been available recently, IIRC first available around 2004-2005, and then dried up during the GFC, but they are now available again.

              • DH

                “Firstly you haven’t thought that you might only need say $100K in a hurry.”

                No big deal, the homeowner has saved $228,000 in cash from avoided rent increases.

                I added that rather than deducted it off the renters savings because it would equate roughly to wage increases that the home owner can save and the renter has to pay in rent increases.

                I’ve applied the same scenario to both because it’s the only way you can make an honest comparison. In reality many people would probably downsize or move during a 25yr term but if you keep doing the comparison it would still work out similar.

    • ianmac 7.2

      And when I saw my sister’s final mortage repayments a few years ago it was funny. She was paying $3.50 per week back to the State Advances. Wow! Cheap rent eh? Decades earlier the mortgage repayments would have been huge against their income but steadily as wages increase so the difficulty of repayments diminish.

    • Colonial Viper 7.3

      The home buyer will have a $868,000 freehold house in 25yrs. They would have some increased costs from inflation on maintenance, rates, insurance, interest rate changes etc so allow $100k in ownership costs.

      Ownership costs are going to be closer to $200,000, I think.

      Just looking up the typical $260,000 ~median house here in Dunedin. (Yes it’s that low).

      City council rates of $1900, regional council rates of $130, p.a. If rates kept completely static that’s $50K just in rates over 25 years – and we know that those rates are going nowhere but up.

      • DH 7.3.1

        “Ownership costs are going to be closer to $200,000, I think.”

        They included that in the $7193 pa difference, I just added more to cover inflation and possible changes in interest rates.

      • Tracey 7.3.2

        Sorry, are you saying rates on a 260k house in dunedin are 1900pa

        • Colonial Viper 7.3.2.1

          yes. Approx. to say +/-5%.

          • Tracey 7.3.2.1.1

            That seems way higher than auckland

            • Colonial Viper 7.3.2.1.1.1

              Well we have a nice covered sports stadium to pay off. I also suspect that trying to service a city with a much lower population density than Auckland (the official city boundaries for Dunedin are huge) is expensive.

    • karol 7.4

      Well, it also depends on a lot of factors, for me, and the kind of life/society I want to live in. As a single person, I am quite happy with minimalistic rental accommodation – less than half the weekly cost you cite above.I am a lifetime renter by choice. I have reasonable freedom of movement, and no desire to perpetuate the self-centred profiteering outlook that permeates the home buying market ethos. It’s always been a turn-off for me.

      And your comment is just all about the benefits to the individual home buyers, while renters who don’t have a choice are exploited by the whole ethos.

      I have watched while my parents generation end up having to give up their homes and go into resthomes. Ultimately, home ownership is no guarantee for life accommodation. I have enough money in life savings and pension schemes to see me through my retirment. Others don’t, and their circumstnces will not be fixed by perpetuating the focus on the benefits to the individuals who can afford it, to buy their own homes.

      • DH 7.4.1

        I’m not making a punt for home ownership Karol, I’m merely putting up some numbers to show how seriously disadvantaged people can be financially if they put their cash in the bank (or Kiwisaver et al) instead of buying a house.

        I would think the message is that the situation needs rebalancing, possibly even reversing. If the Govt wants us to save then they need to do something to make it worthwhile. Instead they feed us bullshit.

      • geoff 7.4.2

        +1 karol

        The obsession with owning property is just a coping strategy people have adopted to protect themselves from the economic decline that is happening all around them.

        While plastic crap and electronics gets ever cheaper, all the essentials in life, food, shelter, electricity get more expensive year on year.

        I was going to say NZ should take a leaf out of Germany’s book, but it seems even they have succumbed to the Western disease:

        http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/13/berlin-property-boom-germans-end-home-rental

        • Colonial Viper 7.4.2.1

          The obsession with owning property is just a coping strategy people have adopted to protect themselves from the economic decline that is happening all around them.

          It’s the natural and intelligent response to the increasing rewards of participating in a property price bubble and the decreasing rewards of hour by hour wages.

          • geoff 7.4.2.1.1

            Some mix of fear plus greed. The key ingredients for capitalism.

          • karol 7.4.2.1.2

            It’s the natural and intelligent response

            For those on middle and upper range incomes.

            • DH 7.4.2.1.2.1

              “For those on middle and upper range incomes.”

              Yup. I do take it for granted that people understand this is primarily about those on lower incomes who for whatever reason are not, and probably never will be, in a position to buy a house. I’m not personally affected by it, I have the luxury of choice.

              In reality few people would be able to save the $85k deposit in the first place, they wouldn’t save anything like $499k even if they did have the $7193 pa in disposable income.

              We’ve had housing inflation since the seventies, what’s changed is back then NZ had similar inflation on everything and regular wage rises to cover it. Since the RBNZ started meddling we’ve had high inflation only on housing and wages are pegged to consumer inflation which is much lower.

              IMO the root cause of the growing inequality in NZ is housing.

      • geoff 7.4.3

        http://www.thebubblebubble.com/germany-housing-bubble/

        This article is interesting, it suggest the German property boom is a reaction to the very low euro-zone interest rates which were implemented to stop the eurozone collapsing.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.5

      There’s been a lot of claims about Kiwis being poor savers and other claims that renting is better than owning a home.

      I’m pretty sure that that is a fiction spread by the rentiers so that they can boost their own income.

      Things is, I actually think renting is better – so long as it’s state rentals done at cost and that cost doesn’t include getting the price of the building back.

    • felix 7.6

      The renter will have nett savings of $499k and continue to pay rent.
      The home buyer will have nett savings of $1.09 million and have no more mortgage payments.

      Not really. The home buyer EITHER has a million bucks OR a mortgage free house. You can’t cash up the house AND have no mortgage/rent payments.

      • DH 7.6.1

        I think you’re missing the purpose. I presented a snapshot of the relative financial positions people would be in after a 25 yr term. Whether freehold house or cash in the bank, they’re both savings in this context. I used 25 yrs because that’s how long a mortgage is, it’s easier to do the calculations. Take it out to 35-40 yrs as a retirement projection for 25-30yr olds and the homeowner would probably be up by another $million.

        • Colonial Viper 7.6.1.1

          Worth bearing in mind that these are all smooth-run scenarios

          Redundancies, divorces, illness, housing crashes etc can drastically change the picture

          • DH 7.6.1.1.1

            Yeah they can, it’s a generalisation but I can’t think of any better way to do it. I do think it would apply to the majority though, can proportionately cut all the figures for cheaper houses & they’d still work out to the same ratios.

            There’s also the provinces to be covered, my numbers are really about the big cities. Homeowners in many provincal areas may be worse off than renters. All this newfound property wealth hasn’t been spread evenly around has it.

        • felix 7.6.1.2

          Yes DH they’re obviously both savings but in the case of the home owner you’ve counted the same savings twice.

          You counted a million-odd in savings AND a mortgage-free house. That’s just not true.

  7. yeshe 8

    Controls on GMO’s too tight, according to the ignorant, self-serving and dangerous Amy Adams in the Herald overnight .. but gone this morning from the web page, anyway as far as
    i can see.

    THIS HAS TO BE AN ELECTION ISSUE. Adams has prevented other councils from having their individual non-GMO status — for sure, this insane govt will change the laws if they get another term.

    Her submission to Auckland on Unitary Plan includes this:

    “Proposals to control genetically modified organisms were also unduly and unnecessarily stringent, she said.”

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11273582

    No thanks Amy, sod off.

    • Tautoko Viper 8.1

      +1 Yeshe
      Amy Adams, Tim Groser and Phil Goff all need to read the article entitled “Pesticide and GMO Companies Spend Big in Hawai’i”
      https://www.commondreams.org/view/2014/06/12-1

      “Kaua’i County — consisting primarily of the island of Kaua’i, known as Hawai’i’s “Garden Isle” and home to Waimea Canyon State Park — passed a law in November 2013 that requires disclosure of pesticide use and GMO crops sewn by growers and created buffer zones around schools, parks, medical facilities, and private residences. The law is set to go into effect in August 2014.

      Hawai’i County banned GMOs altogether in November 2013, and a Maui County initiative to ban GMOs recently obtained enough citizen signatures to be placed on the November 2014 ballot.

      Since experiencing these setbacks, the big agricultural firms have retaliated in a big way.

      Syngenta, DuPont Pioneer, Agrigenetics (doing business as Dow AgroSciences), and BASF have sued Kaua’i to block its law.”

      NZ needs to say NO to GMO, No to TPPA (which allows these Big GMO and Pesticide companies to sue under the investor-state dispute system and NO to Amy Adams’s efforts to remove the voices of people in the regions.
      Tim Groser-Hoping that agricultural tariffs are removed in 20 year’s time in return for selling out to these amoral Corporate Bullies is treason. (Hear that Phil Goff?)

      • yeshe 8.1.1

        +1 back again! It’s remained my greatest fear from the TPPA that Monsanto will destroy our food and environment … I can but say again, it has to be an election issue .. appreciate your thoughts, thanks. They all need to sod off !

  8. geoff 9

    I’m not even going to link to it but Chris Trotter’s last blog piece on Bowalley Road is dire.
    The guy has clearly got it in for the Labour party, attacking Cunliffe at every chance.

    I’ll add that this isn’t just his internet bletherings like the rest of us, this was published in 5 NZ newspapers.

    I probably wouldn’t mind his criticism if it was well founded but Chris’s arguments have degenerated into mysticism. In the last one he essentially says that he thinks that Cunliffe just doesn’t have the ‘gut instinct’ whereas key does.

    He then goes on to compare with previous leaders ( Gough Whitlam, Norm Kirk), all who according to the political oracle, Chris Trotter, had the ‘gut instinct’

    It all reads a bit like something Steven Colbert would do, the truthiness levels are sky high.

    And as one commenter said beneath the article, both Whitlam and Kirk lost elections before they won them. As did Helen Clark I believe.

    • swordfish 9.1

      “And as one commenter said beneath the article…”

      Yeah, that was me, I’m afraid. Always been markus on Bowalley Road and Brian Edwards Media and, of course, swordfish here and occasionally on one or two other blogs.

    • ianmac 9.2

      As Fran Sullivan says Key is heavily reliant on polling to decide directions safe enough to pursue. His gut instinct is thanks to Farrar. I doubt that Opposition parties can afford the luxury of polling. But would they if they could afford it?

      • geoff 9.2.1

        National does way more polling than any other party. They can afford it.

        But you’re right, and Fran O’Sullivan has hit on a major difference between Key and Cunliffe.
        One has polls and the other has principles.

      • Tracey 9.2.2

        Relying on polling, as you rightly say, is not the same as gut feeling or instinct.

    • amirite 9.3

      “And as one commenter said beneath the article, both Whitlam and Kirk lost elections before they won them. As did Helen Clark I believe.”

      geoff, the difference being that if David Cunliffe loses the election he’ll probably lose the leadership too.

      • geoff 9.3.1

        I don’t think he will.

        Remember that Cunliffe signifies the power of the membership & the unions over the self-serving members of the caucus.

        If the caucus manage to pry the leadership from Cunliffe, against the wishes of the membership and the unions, then that will be the end of the Labour party.

        • Lanthanide 9.3.1.1

          It’s ultimately Cunliffe’s decision. If he doesn’t want the job, for whatever reason, he’ll step aside and the membership and unions can’t do anything about that.

          • geoff 9.3.1.1.1

            It’s not his decision if he wants to stay and gets kicked out.

            • Lanthanide 9.3.1.1.1.1

              How would you know he got “kicked out”?

              • geoff

                Huh?
                Are you being obtuse?

                If Cunliffe is challenged for the leadership and then gets voted out then that’s what i mean by being kicked out.

                • Lanthanide

                  “If the caucus manage to pry the leadership from Cunliffe, against the wishes of the membership and the unions, then that will be the end of the Labour party.”

                  “If Cunliffe is challenged for the leadership and then gets voted out then that’s what i mean by being kicked out.”

                  This would require at least some of the unions and membership to vote against Cunliffe, since the caucus only gets 40% of the total share. It’s also likely that Cunliffe would get at least 8-10 votes out of the total caucus, so I would suggest any challenger that fairly won in a vote would have had to be supported by a large share of the membership and unions, if not the majority. Which is, you know, democratic.

                  • geoff

                    That’s correct. I’ve no argument with that.

                    But that is all irrelevant when addressing what you originally stated which is, It’s ultimately Cunliffe’s decision..
                    As you said yourself, if he’s democratically voted out then it isn’t his decision at all.

  9. karol 10

    It’s bad to hear that some people in West Auckland still have no power after this week’s storm. There should have been, and continue to be, more public information about the current and on-going state of play on this.

    Good on the Weekend Herald for giving an update.

    The worst cases are the people still without any electricity – as with the Glen Eden couple featured in the article.

    I and a neighbour have been without hot water since the storm. We have been told it’s on the to do list, but not the highest priority. Of course, people with no electricity at all should be attended to first, but we’ve had no info on what’s happening on that front.

    We are fortunate in having electricity for everything else but hot water.

    But, it’s been hard to get anything other than some very general comments about the current situation.

    It’s mainly the showers I miss – washing in a bowl of heated (in a kettle, on the stove) water is getting to be a pain, but do-able.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      Privatisation and profit drive are just sooo much better than the government providing adequate services at cost.

      /sarc

      • karol 10.1.1

        Yeah, that to. What is appalling is that the lack of info about what is happening. At first I accepted the information given. Last night and this morning I had begun to fear nothing was being done, and our situation had been overlooked – or that maybe our situation was failure just at delivery of hot water to me and my neighbour due to a very local fault at point of delivery.

        The powercos don’t seem to respect their customers enough to provide adequate public info about what is happening.

    • Ad 10.2

      Pull down the Vector app onto your phone and you will get pretty fast updates.

      Also a smart electrician can fix your hot water cylinder so that the lines company cannot trip the water heater mechanism again.

      • karol 10.2.1

        Fixing the heater mechanism is up to my landlord.

        Why do you assume I have a phone with access to such aps?

        • Ad 10.2.1.1

          Then pull it onto your computer.

          The heater mechanism is supposed to be able to be shut off by the lines company so that they can respond to the whole grid in times of high stress. Over to you if you don’t want a way around that.

        • ianmac 10.2.1.2

          A while ago I lost my hot water heating. Everything seemed in order but it was the meter itself that had failed. Trustpower replaced the meter but in the meantime a friendly electrician by-passed the meter to give us H/W.
          That is no help to you but a phone call to your supplier should get action. Don’t you miss it when it is not there. Sympathy.

          • karol 10.2.1.2.1

            The thing is, the landlord lives on premises and all the electricity, heating etc goes through their supply. I am dependent on their communications with the suppliers, and on how they arrange the connections etc.

            So, ultimately, if the companies gave full information to the public then I would be certain of what is happening. There is no news on the powerco website.

      • bad12 10.2.2

        True Ad, such rationing hasn’t happened here in Wellington for so long i cannot remember when the last time the ability for the power Co to shut off the hot water heating component of electricity supply was used,

        i have tho lived in areas where this form of rationing has been more common place, my fix, wire in the 3 point end of a extension cord alongside of the existing wiring, make this safe by cutting from the extension cord the female end with no wiring protruding,

        Then, at times when the power supply to the hot water cylinder has been cut all that is required is an extension cord plugged into a normal household socket and plugged into the cylinder by removal of the dummy female plug end,

        Warning!!! do not try this at home, it could be described as dangerous for the electrically illiterate and is more than likely illegal as well…

  10. Draco T Bastard 11

    Testing a six-hour work day

    Greece, on paper, is the second-hardest working country measured by the OECD, its people putting in an average of 2033 hours of toil a year.
    Greece is also bankrupt.

    Evidence is mounting that long hours do not equal productivity, and may even indicate the opposite. It’s one of the reasons Sweden is about to try a six-hour working day in Gothenburg with a view to making it a national policy. Swedish workers already put in considerably fewer hours than New Zealanders, but are economically considerably better off – counter-intuitive to our constant self-exhortations to “work harder!”

    For the last 30 years, since the neo-liberal revolution brought in by the 4th Labour government, NZers have been working ever harder but we’ve pretty much failed in working smarter. We’ve been doing things the same way but doing more of it rather than looking for better ways to do it.

    • geoff 11.1

      Why pay for expensive capital to improve productivity when you can just change the employment laws and pay people less. Easy eh?

    • Tracey 11.2

      Thats cos more and more people are doing one and a half to two peoples jobs for thw same money

  11. why is gower interviewing an e.t.-impersonator..?

    ..and brace yrslves for farrar pontificating on child-poverty (falsely) thus:

    ..’you can’t solve problems like this by just throwing more money at them..

    ..it’s much more complicated/complex than that..’

    ..as the excuse to continue to just do nothing..

    ..this is the pile of stinking-randite/neo-lib bullshit farrar has been peddling since forever..

    ..he probably has it on an app..titled ‘rightwing-lies..a daily guide/how-to..’..

    • well..i was wrong..

      ..despite the interviews with boston and the childrens’ commissioner on child-poverty;..what to do..?..being the most interesting part of what came before..

      ..the numpties @ the nation instead deciding that banging on about the e.t.-impersonater for most of their on-air time..

      ..will key..?..won’t key..?..

      ..is/was much more important an issue than that child-poverty frivolity..

      (pfftt..!!..eh..?..best just ignore that ‘silly’ wills..our paychecks/tax-rates are at risk here..this is serious..!..(see later..)

      ..and there is ‘a moment’ in the interview owen does with the childrens’ commssioner..

      ..(where she spent half the time trying to play wedge-politics oldies vs. children in poverty..who would we prefer to hurt..?)

      ..the moment comes after the commissioner disabuses her of that fanciful-‘wedge’-notion/solution..

      ..and she..her thesis thrashed/demolished.. (querolously) says:..’so who do we have to look to to help solve this..?’

      ..wills/commissioner (calmly) answers:..’people like you and me ..lisa..’

      ..owen actually squirmed in her seat/looked decidedly uncomfortable..shaken even.. at that revelation from wills..

      ..that was ‘the moment’..

      ..(that maybe dictated that panel-silence..?..on that frivilous/trivial issue of child-poverty..)

      ..this is the sad/irrelevant excuse for public/current-affairs commentary/taxpayer-funded broadcasting we are forced to endure..

      • phillip ure 12.1.1

        i hope the next govt keeps on wills as the childrens’ commissioner..

        ..(one of the few good things key/this govt did..appointing wills as childrens’ commissioner..

        ..and i don’t think he turned out as they hoped/expected..)

        ..he so much looks like he knows what to do..

        ..to fix up what is so wrong..

        ..and is just itching to get cracking..

        ..and it wd be a shame to lose those skills/that institutional-knowledge gained..

        ..and he would fit in very nicely with the aspirations of a progressive government..

        ..that childrens’ commissioner wills..

  12. Chooky 13

    Home Thoughts From Abroad:

    ‘Taking freedom for granted’

    By Michael Timmins / June 11, 2014

    “At the moment I am writing this in Quetta, Baluchistan, scene of a current insurgency with simmering sectarian violence thrown in as well. There are differing reports, but there was a bomb here this weekend killing over 20 people. Regular news in these here parts….Men’s egos and desire for power overcoming the ability of regular folks to live without fear. This is not at all helped by the “advances” of technology and the use of unmanned aerial vehicles to mete out a peculiar form of justice with a direct relevance in this part of the world…..

    In saying that, and I want to emphasise that I am not suggesting a parallel between the two countries, I got to thinking today about our little country. I had to acknowledge, as I acknowledge my own privilege in writing this, that there are people who live in New Zealand in fear. To them, the rock-star economy is illusive. They can’t even buy a ticket to see the rock-star economy. Actually, many don’t even get to join the queue.
    The egos of men, this relentless pursuit of short-term profit at any cost, the commodification of education, our covert surveillance, an elected elite providing consistent evidence of corruption, and the decision to ignore or even deny privilege, all narrows the scope of our achievement and ultimately denies our potential…..

  13. Penny Bright 14

    Ok folks – focusing on the IMPORTANT stuff? :)

    5 sitting weeks to go and corrupt Minister of Justice Judith Collins’ ‘Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Legislation Bill’ (whose passage is required before NZ can ratify the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) is still nowhere to be seen on the Parliamentary Order Paper.

    http://www.parliament.nz/resource/en-nz/00HOHOrderPaper1/557820959ded99caaa42250414a4391d6d0fa908

    How does NZ deserve a seat on the UN Security Council when we (and I use the ‘we’ word very lightly’ haven’t even got our domestic anti-corruption legislative framework in place?

    Seriously?

    How competent and ‘fit for duty’ is Judith Collins as Minister of Justice – swanning around overseas, getting her ‘look at me me me’ photo taken with celebrities, when CRITICAL legislation, which is HER responsibility – the ‘Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Legislation Bill’ – which she PROMISED would be introduced last year, is nowhere to be seen ….

    What a disgrace.

    And NZ Prime Minister John Key still supports this corrupt, incompetent Minister?

    What does that say about his ‘fitness for duty’ as Prime Minister and Leader of the National Party?

    Penny Bright

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  14. Penny Bright 15

    No disrespect – but Chris Trotter knew nothing about the Committee for Auckland (who really run the Auckland region) until after the 2013 Auckland election – when I potted them to 1.4 million people in my 150 word candidate statement.

    So – in terms of how informed Chris really is as a political commentator?

    Not particularly, when it comes to some KEY issues, in my considered opinion.

    Penny Bright

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

  15. Good article worth a read entitled,

    ” The Dark Side of the “Green Economy” – Why some indigenous groups and environmentalists are saying no to the “green economy.”

    A quote from the body

    “The Green Economy is a perverse attempt by corporations, extractive industries, and governments to cash in on Creation by privatizing, commodifying, and selling off the Sacred and all forms of life and the sky, including the air we breathe, the water we drink, and all the genes, plants, traditional seeds, trees, animals, fish, biological and cultural diversity, ecosystems and traditional knowledge that make life on Earth possible and enjoyable.”

    http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/its-your-body/going-against-the-green

    I like green but too often these ideas get co-opted by capitalism and the elite for their own gain.

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      looking forward to you speaking out against dairy intensification and the pillaging of protein from the sea – no matter who is benefitting from it.

      • geoff 16.1.1

        Are you vegetarian, CV?

        • Colonial Viper 16.1.1.1

          Nope not at all

          • geoff 16.1.1.1.1

            What are your thoughts on the contribution that meat-eating has to climate change?

            • Colonial Viper 16.1.1.1.1.1

              China used 3.5B tonnes of coal last year. That’s 800kg for every man woman and child in NZ. Ask yourself how much of that was used to produce the meat patties in the Double Whopper I had today. If you answer “none” then you would be correct.

              • Lanthanide

                “Food miles” are really over-represented when it comes to actual carbon emissions, because food is transported in bulk.

                By far the highest emission point in getting food from the farm to your table is the final ~1-10km trip from your house to the supermarket and back again in the car.

                There was a study down showing that beef and lamb shipped to the UK and consumed there had lower carbon emissions than UK-sourced lamb and beef, simply because in NZ we have open paddocks to keep the livestock rather than heated/ventilated/serviced/etc sheds.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Inputs like the manufacture and application of fertiliser and pesticides are the biggies IMO…and that includes for feedstock…

              • geoff

                CV, that’s the same argument the right uses to say we shouldn’t bother taxing carbon.

                http://www.salon.com/2014/03/31/we_cant_stop_global_warming_unless_we_start_eating_a_lot_less_meat/

                • Colonial Viper

                  Well, I would agree with them that we shouldn’t bother taxing carbon. It’s a waste of time.

                  What we should be doing within the next 3 years:

                  Get 25% of cars and trucks off the road, put in place public transport powered by renewables, reinstitute trains all over the country mostly electric ones, get coastal shipping up and running properly, and get rid of half the cows in the country.

                  That’s what needs to happen. IF we are serious about setting a climate change example and if we are serious about readying for energy depletion. How much of that will a carbon tax achieve – none of it.

                  IMO what is a carbon tax for except to delay and make it appear like Govt is being proactive about climate change. The Tories will be back in power in 3 or 6 or 9 years and gut the carbon tax so its symbolic at best.

                  We don’t have 20 years to start making in roads to this problem. That was back when Limits to Growth was published, in the early 70’s. Now, we have 20 years to get sorted full stop and waiting 10 years for a carbon tax to kick in and have effects is too too late.

                  • geoff

                    nevertheless, the huge required drop in emissions means people will have to eat far less meat, at least as it is presently produced.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I have no problem with that. 3.5B people in the world would be lucky to have any meat even once a week. But its this kind of personal lifestyle fixation which really gets me when the problems we are facing are on a societal/civilisation scale.

                      We have to get a quarter million or half a million fossil fuel vehicles off NZ roads in the next few years and replace that capacity with renewable energy powered alternatives and public transport. Worrying about an end to Big Macs is the least of our concerns.

                    • geoff

                      I don’t see how it is personal lifestyle fixation.

                      It’s just recognising that less meat has to be eaten.

                      I think you could be wrong to dismiss agriculture’s contribution to climate change.

                      This page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_and_agriculture

                      has a graph at the top which shows contribution to greenhouse gas emissions by sector.
                      The agricultural by products contribution (12.5%) is almost as big as the transportation fuels (14%) contribution.
                      That suggests you could save as much by laying off the big macs as you could by your preferred option of cutting back on fossil-fuel-based transport.

                      That article also states:

                      Land use change such as deforestation and desertification, together with use of fossil fuels, are the major anthropogenic sources of carbon dioxide;

                      and the deforestation wiki page states:

                      According to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat, the overwhelming direct cause of deforestation is agriculture. Subsistence farming is responsible for 48% of deforestation; commercial agriculture is responsible for 32% of deforestation; logging is responsible for 14% of deforestation and fuel wood removals make up 5% of deforestation.

                      This suggests to me that agriculture is a huge contributor to climate change.

      • marty mars 16.1.2

        I am against dairy intensification especially very large herd sizes, the draining of wetlands to create areas to grow cows where cows shouldn’t be, pollution of our waterways (I’d make the farmers get their water downstream of their farms for their personal use and the commodification of animals. I don’t eat animals. I am opposed to commercial fishing especially where slave labour is used on ships and the overfishing of species. I don’t eat fish.

        I oppose those activities no matter who is doing it.

    • Ad 16.2

      Sounds like you’ve come straight out of too much postwar Heidegger; The Question Concerning Technology.

      I am quietly amazed by the many who are still quoting absurdist theory this close to an election.

      The time for policy rumination and moist Left melancholy is gone. All we have time for is mobilisation and fundraising. After the next month, even fundraising will be too late.

      • marty mars 16.2.1

        “Sounds like you’ve come straight out of too much postwar Heidegger; The Question Concerning Technology.”

        Not really but it was an interesting read – thanks.

  16. Penny Bright 17

    To keep Chris Trotter directly in the loop – I’ve just posted this on his blog.

    (It’s yet to be published – all posts are subject to moderation):

    “No disrespect – but Chris – you knew nothing about the Committee for Auckland (who really run the Auckland region) until after the 2013 Auckland election – when I potted them to 1.4 million people in my 150 word candidate statement.

    So – in terms of how informed you really is as a political commentator?

    Not particularly, when it comes to some KEY issues, in my considered opinion.

    John Key is an ex-Wall St banker, who helped to set up the dodgy derivatives market when he worked at Merrill Lynch, the collapse of which caused the Global Financial Crisis.

    That’s one of the main reasons why I shall be standing against John Key in Helensvile as an Independent Anti-Corruption / anti-privatisation Public Watchdog’ – in order to confront him directly on such issues.

    You may recall that I polled 4th in the Auckland 2013 Mayoral campaign, polling nearly 12,000 votes.

    Did YOU predict that Chris?

    How about the committal for trial and subsequent guilty verdict of John Banks for electoral fraud?

    Did YOU predict that Chris?

    Kind regards,
    Penny Bright

    http://www.dodgyjohnhasgone.com

    • Clemgeopin 17.1

      Penny Bright, I do not know much about you apart from reading your posts here which show that you are a determined person pursuing important public interest issues. That is really commendable when we see the lack of active interest and apathy shown by many people towards politics. Good on you.

      Have you tried putting yourself as a candidate for any of the progressive parties to fight the election? If not, why not?

  17. fisiani 18

    21% is the crucial number for Labour List MP’s. With Labour likely to gain Kelston and Christchurch Central electorates the number of List MP’s shrinks to 0 when the Labour vote collapses in September. Goff Shearer Mallard, King would all be safe but the stalwarts like David Parker would be gone.

    • North 18.1

      As alerted by someone recently…….FizzyAnus hard out sweet talking himself while one hand typing…….again.

    • McFlock 18.2

      47% is the crucial number for National. Any less than that and they are in opposition, or have a neolib pyrrhic coalition with “no asset sales” NZ1.

      • fisiani 18.2.1

        Correct for once McFlock. That’s why National currently polling 52.5% is aiming to go even higher and given the unstable fragmented backwards looking extremist opposition seems highly likely to do so.
        BTW 47% with Winston First polling 4.5% is equivalent to National polling 49.2% which would easily be enough.

        • bad12 18.2.1.1

          You have to wonder whether Fis doesn’t see His huge ability as the ”sage” as wasted here at the Standard,

          Such a grand display of matakite coupled with an immense flight of fantasy evident in every comment would make Fis a sitter as the author of fantasy in some soft porn publication…

          • fisiani 18.2.1.1.1

            As a sage I can give you some free advice. Ian Lees-Galloway in Palmerston North needs a high list ranking to be an MP after the election. National have attracted a star candidate in Jono Naylor who is the current and three time mayor of Palmerston North. He is admired by both Left and Right and has higher name recognition than anyone else in the Manawatu.
            That is one of two seats that National will gain.

            • bad12 18.2.1.1.1.1

              As a sage Fis you are stuck in the FPP past, who cares who the representative for Palmerston North is except those who live in the past of the First Past the Post electoral system,

              (geez don’t say that you live there, now that would explain a thing or two, a mind such as found in ”the Tron” but twice as small)…

              • fisiani

                Who cares? Are you thick? ILG was ranked number 37. If he does not win PN then he is a goneburger. If he somehow wins then someone higher ranked on the list loses out eg Jacinda.

                • McFlock

                  so IF labour do as badly this time as national did in 2002, you might have a point.

                  Keep that hubris, it can only help the country get the government it needs, rather than this current regime of the corrupt and the incompetent.

                  • fisiani

                    I do not expect Labour to score as high as National in 2002. The phone is off the hook.

                    • bad12

                      Fis, the phone is definitely off the hook, if your wanting to find it just engage in a little contortion, its jammed in that place the sun don’t ever shine…

                    • McFlock

                      Fisi says Labour <21% in September.
                      you heard it here first.

        • McFlock 18.2.1.2

          the difference between what national polls and what it gets in the election was palpable last time.
          And they’re polling lower now.

          And Winston just needs to get to 5% to be in on the tory-fucking party.
          Tell us, oh sage, did you make any predictions about how banksies court case would go? :)

          • fisiani 18.2.1.2.1

            Got Banks verdict spot on and took money off suckers who longed for a by-election on ipredict. Going to make a packet on Palm North and one other electorate.

            • bad12 18.2.1.2.1.1

              Bullshit…

            • McFlock 18.2.1.2.1.2

              got a link for you predicting banks verdict here?

              • fisiani

                Never predicted it on The Standard and never claimed to have done so.

                • McFlock

                  Never said you had.
                  Simply asked whether you were supporting an unsubstantiated prediction with an equally unsubstantiated claim of brilliance. It appears you were.

                  but now you’ve made a verifiable prediction as to what Labour will get in september.

                  • fisiani

                    Yes I predict sub 22%

                    • BM

                      25% would be my prediction, but sub 22% if the Cunllife implodes.

                    • Clemgeopin

                      For National I predict SUB 44%
                      For Labour I predict 36% Plus
                      For Internet-MANA 6 % Plus.
                      For the GREENS….? 10 % plus

                      For CONS, SUB 3 %
                      For Maori, 1%

                      For ACT 0%
                      For UFUT 0%

            • Lanthanide 18.2.1.2.1.3

              The by-election was predicated on Banks resigning over the whole situation 18 months ago. He never did, despite obviously being guilty. The police utter failure to lodge the case they clearly should have ended up delaying everything, and here we are today.

              So if you placed those bids after the police chose not to prosecute, then it was hardly a long-shot prediction.

              • fisiani

                Placed the prediction after he was found guilty! That’s how thick some rabid Lefties are.

                • McFlock

                  Wow, so a market failed to adjust to new information in a timely manner?
                  And you think taking advantage of that counts as a “prediction”?

                  there’s a double fucking surprise. /sarc

    • srylands 18.3

      I would be surprised. 25% support for Labour is likely rusted on for now. These are people who will vote Labour because they don’t think, are stupid, or because their parents did or all of the above.

      • fisiani 18.3.1

        25% bedrock I agree but if 20% of them stay at home that takes it down to just 20%.

        • dimebag russell 18.3.1.1

          that makes it about five eights of sweet f*ck all. goodbye national.

  18. bad12 19

    More on the Buses here in Wellington, it appears that the Chairperson of the Wellington Regional Council understands the story of Cinderella at the ball in its entirety,

    Fran Wilde heading the Regional Council, which looks remarkably like an old peoples home for old politicians who have long past their use by date on the national stage but still crave, well crave something best not addressed here, now says that the Wellington City Council Mayor is opposing the scrapping of Wellington’s trolley buses based upon not having ALL the information,

    Such a statement from Wilde raises the specter of ”Granny State” and a following query of just who does have all the relevant information,

    In the world according to Fran, a new text brought about by the all seeing eye, She does and the wiring for the Wellington trolley buses will have to go because in 2017 this network covering a huge swathe of Wellington City ”Will become too dangerous to use”,

    And i have it on good authority Cinderella’s Prince will turn into a fucking Frog, worlds on this date will also collide giving George Powell’s bride the most terrible thrills,

    My view would be that such thinking as exhibited by the Wellington Regional Council will eventually make the planet too dangerous to use as well and they best be got rid of at the earliest oportunity, the next Council elections should do nicely…

    • srylands 19.1

      Christ whatever that means. Are you saying the technical report is wrong and they are cost effective after all? Really? Or you could be saying something else entirely because as usual, you write in discursive riddles.

      • bad12 19.1.1

        Yes SSLands, you have to have at least 3 working neurons crashing around inside the cranial cavity causing electrical discharge to be able to understand some of the stuff i publish here,

        You obviously fail at the first hurdle, and, being drunk doesn’t help matters either…

    • dimebag russell 19.2

      too dangerous my bum. if that is the case then renew it. I dont trust fran wilde one iota. she has probably already got a finders fee from the the other alternative supplier.

  19. bad12 20

    Lolz, is it the word ”buses” that the computer so dislikes that it captures such comments into moderation…

    Edit: obviously not…

  20. dimebag russell 21

    the national party must have stumped up some cash to pay fizzyanis overtime on a Saturday and he spent most of it on mind bending drugs.

  21. JanM 22

    I am absolutely horrified – having just acquired my son’s chooks I went off to RD1 to buy them some food seeing I can’t totally free-range them (they are in a large cage that can be moved around with access to greenery and soil). I had heard from a local source that at least one product contained palm kernel so when I went in I asked about that and was told they all did except one!!!
    Needless to say, that’s the one I have ( it’s from North Country Grains in Kaitaia, by the way – a GM-free company), but I would have been there for hours reading the small print had I not asked, and how many people taking innocent pleasure in keeping their own chooks have any idea that they are doing so at the cost of the orangutans – not many, I bet!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • veutoviper 22.1

      Thanks for that information, JanM. I will possibly be acquiring a neighbour’s chooks when they move back to Auckland in a few months and I would not have known this. Will check out North Country Grains for availability in Wellington.

    • BM 22.2

      David Cunnlife has chooks.

      His chook feed better be free of palm kernel otherwise I have no idea how he’ll be able to form a coalition with the greens!!!!!.

  22. dimebag russell 23

    they all trying to make monkeys out of everyone. they like the thing in the ‘Fifth Element’ that wants to eat the earth. Only these humans have no idea what they are doing. Its a period of mass delusion and madness that we will be lucky to escape from.

  23. a great movie on tv4 @ 6.30..

    ..chicken run..

    ..it’s made by the wallace and grommit crew…

  24. Tracey 25

    according to the herald

    ” The current theory circulating around Parliament – albeit one apparently denied by McCully himself – is that the foreign minister will announce he is withdrawing from the race for East Coast Bays, and do so so close to the election that National will not have time to pick another candidate”

    • Lanthanide 25.1

      Which is funny, because that would be so utterly transparent to the voting public, especially since the rumour is public now, so far in advance.

      • Colonial Viper 25.1.1

        Yeah it risks a loss of party vote support nationwide and Opposition parties would have a field day. It would likely set up a Labour win in the electorate.

        • Lanthanide 25.1.1.1

          I wouldn’t go as far as to suggest Labour would win the electorate. Remember that National voters are being told “we need support parties or we won’t be in government”. Suggesting National voters in the electorate would knowingly vote in a Labour candidate with the high chance of them blocking a National government, doesn’t make a lot of sense.

    • srylands 25.2

      Yeah well if you believe that you will have some of the ipredict action won’t you? No? I thought not. Because it won’t happen.

      • dimebag russell 25.2.1

        i-predict that Labour will open a big can of whipass on National and sh*t in carrying a pig!

      • Daveosaurus 25.2.2

        Because nothing else says ‘verifiability’ the same way as does an internet gambling site…

  25. Draco T Bastard 26

    Death From Above: How American Drone Strikes Are Devastating Yemen

    Symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, trauma and anxiety are becoming rampant in the different corners of the country where drones are active. “Drones hover over an area for hours, sometimes days and weeks,” said Rooj Alwazir

    And this is the sound of the drones

    The US, such a shining example of humanity – NOT.

    • Colonial Viper 26.1

      The US have fucked up the Syria and Iraq situation so much that ISIS/ISIL are only tens of kilometres away from marching on Baghdad.

      There was a report that 800 ISIS militants routed 30,000 Iraqi army personnel out of Mosul.

      • phillip ure 26.1.1

        this is going to end up the same clusterfuck as the fall of saigon…

        ..helicopters pulling americans off the roof of the embassy..

        ..the american empire..routed yet again..

        • Clemgeopin 26.1.1.1

          I heard on the radio this afternoon that America is making preparations to evacuate their embassy personnel from Baghdad. Not looking good for Baghdad and Iraq.

          • Colonial Viper 26.1.1.1.1

            And this is funny but not funny haha…the Iranians are sending in elite units to help the Shia govt in Baghdad out against the Sunni extremist forces – just as the US is considering launching an air war against those same Sunni forces – i.e. Iran and the USA will be fighting on the same side to try and salvage the Shia govt

            BTW the only reason ISIS/ISIL have got so far is that the Shia govt has been playing a corrupt game of divide and rule and the Sunnis around Saddam’s home town have fucking had enough of it and so are helping the militants on the ground.

            • phillip ure 26.1.1.1.1.1

              it gets even more complicated..

              ..isis have been/are being funded by americas’ ‘good-friend’..saudi arabia..

              ..it’s all getting kinda surreal..

              • Colonial Viper

                Yes the very armaments that the US Qatar and Saudis let flow into Syria to try and get rid of Assad are now being used in Iraq against the Baghdad govt.

                (Bear in mind that the [mostly Sunni] Saudis are totally fine with this as Iraq has become way too aligned with their regional [Shia] enemy Iran over the last few years).

  26. karol 27

    I just finished watching Al Jazzera documentary that I recorded this morning: “Goldman Sachs: The Bank that Rules the World”. On again at about midnight tonight on Freeview.

    Promo for it. The full doco doesn’t seem to be online yet.

    Sobering. How Goldman Sachs has no ethics, and leads the banking world in supporting an oligarchy.

    • Mike the Savage One 27.1

      Are you talking about the Federal Reserve and US Dollar currency program they recently showed, or is this another one?

      I saw the one on the FS and the GFC and bailout recently, and it just repeated what we knew already, apart from little bits of new info.

      Why is it, that this is repeated again and again, and that informed people at least, know all this now, and why is it, that most in public were scared to shit a few years ago, and now, all is back to “normal”? NOTHING is back to normal, the debt is larger than ever, is less likely to ever being paid off, and we have too many vested interest parties now report to us daily economic stabilisation, even “success” with growth figures and so???

      So the stock exchange is a “surface event”, really, as that is NOT connected anymore, nor was it years ago, before and during the GFC, to the REAL economy. The REAL economy is on slippery slopes, China is easing, likely to face the limitations after years of growth, Japan is not moving, Europe is snail growing, and the US is in territory not seen before, with sluggish “growth” and with a totally destabilised Middle East close to contraction again.

      WTF are people and media on about, with a “rock star (shite) economy” built on molten ice?

      WTF is this dumb populace here on about, to trust the crap we get reported, and WTF is a Labour opposition about, to not call it what it is, a kettle full of rotten, stinking manure, nothing else?

      Maybe they all bought into this corrupt, about to collapse system, and now where we have Islamic Radicals take over the Middle East, make no doubt about it, that is how Muhammad the Prophet started, your oil wells will soon be outside reach, and we will all have to pay extra premiums to fill the tank.

      Hah, get the horses and donkeys on the road, bet a bicycle, the quarter acre and two to three car household in Kiwiland lifestyle is GONNER, FOR GOOD!

  27. Once was Tim 28

    Anybody else catch Paxman’s Newsnight – the Hilary Clinton interview?
    Christ!
    Paraphrasing ….. the US is not about imperialism, rather “promoting values”.

    Strewth!

  28. Mike the Savage One 29

    Sorry, I have not been here a while.

    What is going on, here, where there is usually a hive of activity?

    Where is the “light bearer” of “the left”, our trusted opposition leader David, David Cunliffe? Where are the ground breaking policies to decide this election, where are the lined up champions of the Labour opposition to serve as the gladiators to take Key and his line-up out, if I may ask?

    There is such a damned silence around, a lack of news, a dearth of information, have they already given up the fight?

    Or is this the quiet before the storm, where Parliament will start again on Tuesday? I am desperate to learn and hear, what the damned hell is going on.

    I have never seen TS so silent and void of activity over a weekend for a long time, and I wonder, have all the staunch vocal defenders of the left and liberal cause resigned, started their own business, or focus on their paid jobs, as they may realise, Teflon Key is not to be beaten?

    Gosh, I thought that Standardistas were fighters, were is the fighting spirit, does it need to be reignited, and how?

    • geoff 29.1

      Said the 204th comment on Open Mike.

      • Colonial Viper 29.1.1

        And the All Blacks were playing tonight, being fair :twisted:

        • Mike the Savage One 29.1.1.1

          They play every two or so weeks, that is no excuse, dear comrade! Fighters fight on a number of fronts, while in the stadium, watch the outside and prepare the missiles for targeted firing. It is election year after all, I trust you wore your red scarf.

  29. Philj 30

    xox
    Finally TVNZ have provided quality broadcasting in their coverage of the Word Cup,so far…

  30. Anne 31

    Internet Party petition to get rid of coat-tailing and reduce the threshold:

    https://internet.org.nz/petition

    Sign now. Only running for a week.

    Every public protest, whatever form it takes, will help.

    • Colonial Viper 31.1

      Uh, don’t you think the IP running a no-coat tailing policy but not specifying the level they want the threshold dropped to, is seriously counter-productive to their own best interests?

      • Draco T Bastard 31.1.1

        Actually, they say that they want a discussion and point out that the commission recommended dropping from 5 to 4 and then to 3 and that Rob Salmond says 2% wouldn’t cause problems.

    • Mike the Savage One 31.2

      Seems like a bloody smart tactic, to do this, and gather names, phone and email details, to then use to promote Internet Party. Surely this is not quite straight dealing, but then again, what have we to lose?

      • Anne 31.2.1

        Sorry to disappoint MtSO, but there is an ‘OUT’ feature if you don’t want the information provided to be used in any way to promote the I.P., and to decline any updates or news by way of email. I used it.

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    Polity | 30-10
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    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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