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Open mike 14/09/2012

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, September 14th, 2012 - 75 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

75 comments on “Open mike 14/09/2012”

  1. Stephen Doyle 1

    It has occurred to me that New Zealand is a premium economy in which to have a business. http://www.doingbusiness.org/data/exploreeconomies/new-zealand/. Therefore like any premium product, there should be a premium price. At the supermarket we pay more for Anchor than Home Brand, more for Dilmah than Choysa and more for Hunters than Jacobs Creek.
    Offshore owners of businesses in New Zealand should also pay a premium for doing business here. Currently the tax rate for business is, I believe, 33%. I propose that a sliding scale of share ownership V tax paid should be introduced. If the offshore entity has a 51% ownership, the tax on the profit shifted outside of New Zealand climbs to, say, 39%. The scale then continues until on the final n% of shares owned, the tax is, say, 90%. However if they are 100% owned offshore, but choose to reinvest their profits back into the New Zealand economy, the tax rate would be mitigated, at an appropriate rate.
    Seems like a great way to either raise revenue, or ensure that the money made out of New Zealanders is reinvested in New Zealand.
    I’m sure you will correct me if I am wrong.
     

    • Uturn 1.1

      On the issue of the wine, by memory, NZ wines have a baseline price they can’t go under when sold in NZ. That’s why we don’t have cheap (sub $10) NZ wines compared to Aussie wines. Can’t remember the rationale, but it’s a industry/trade agreement. Probably doesn’t help, though, that the profits from a boutique vineyard of a few thousand vines will be necessarily less than a block with hundreds of thousands of vines.

      Dilmah is imported here, already blended, to a warehouse in sunny Ellerslie, if I remember correctly. Choysa isn’t grown here, so what is premium NZ about those things? Our ability to re-handle or box product?

      Is Anchor and Home Brand the same product except for the colour of the wax paper around it? How do we arrive at “premium NZ” anything – just believe it is?

      • ianmac 1.1.1

        All the tea labels are from bulk produced tea plantations. No label like Choysa or Tiger or Dilmah have their own plantations. They buy from the bulk producers just as carpet manufacturers buy from wool “plantations.”

    • Lanthanide 1.2

      “we pay more for Anchor than Home Brand”

      Except for Anchor’s niche value-added products (lactose-free milk, extra calcium etc) and ones where the production process matters (cheese) you’d be a mug to buy anchor as it’s the same product as home brand.

      “Seems like a great way to either raise revenue, or ensure that the money made out of New Zealanders is reinvested in New Zealand.”

      Working for a multinational IT company that has exports in the $50m+ US range, it sounds like a good way to ensure the Christchurch office is shut down. We’ve already had a tough time with the exchange rate.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.2.1

        Working for a multinational IT company that has exports in the $50m+ US range, it sounds like a good way to ensure the Christchurch office is shut down.

        I see you’ve bought into the capitalist lie that the owners of businesses are the ones that create work. Here’s the truth:
        If the work is there then the work is there, it doesn’t need a particular company or its owners to be satisfied.

  2. dan1 2

    I have smiled at the NZHerald TV advert celebrating the launch of their new format.

    1981… Everyone knew what side they were on.
    Yeah right… except for our current Prime Minister.

  3. Bill 3

    The US’s ‘war on terror’ and ‘containment’. How’s that working for them? Anyone got an up to date tally of current US embassies under various levels of siege?

  4. Logie97 4

    Oh that stench…

    John Banks seems to confirm the character of the long line of municipal mayoralties throughout history (worldwide) who are less than squeaky clean (dodgy) – there to line their pockets through what ever means available. No surprises in the latest revelations really – did anyone expect different?

    • Dr Terry 4.1

      Logic97. The only surprise is that we actually got to learn about these latest revelations! But no surprise over the Key-Banks affair – they are glued together in dubious ethic, game-playing, defiance of anything or anyone that might represent decency.

  5. marsman 5

    TPPA

    Avaaz has a petition to be sent….

    ‘To all the governments negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement:

    As concerned global citizens, we call on you to make the TPP process transparent and accountable to all, and to reject any plans that limit our governments’ power to regulate in the public interest. The TPP is a threat to democracy, undermining national sovereignty, workers’ rights, environmental protections and Internet freedom. We urge you to reject this corporate takeover.’

    If you wish to sign the petition here is the link:

    http://www.avaaz.org/en/stop_the_corporate_death_star/?bgkRPab&v=17848

    • Rosie 5.1

      Hey marsman, I was going to post this petition yesterday but I held off becuase I wondered whether folks were getting sick of me posting Avaaz petitions as well as Labour Rights petitions.

      I’m glad you put it up though. Avaaz does make a difference and their campaigns work. The Americans seem to be taking the TPPA seriously. I get daily emails from all sorts of American organisations opposed to the TPPA. Sure our population is a drop in the ocean compared to theirs, but at least they have knowledge of it and are standing up to it. We seem oblivious to the threat here in NZ.

  6. Rosie 6

    Have you ever thought about how the supermarket operates, as you wander the aisles doing your grocery shopping? Having had the misfortune of working for a supplier to foodstuffs in 07 I can say that the unfair practices of foodstuffs reffered to in this article is just the tip of the iceberg

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/7673843/Supermarkets-called-too-powerful

    There is also the issue of suppliers having to provide merchandisers to put the product on the shelf, once it arives from their warehouse or the hub, and do the displays. Merchies are low paid contract workers who usually have to organise their own ACC, sick and holiday pay. They also have to use their own cars and phones for the job, often being poorly compensated. This way the supermarket hires less of their own shelf fillers. Most NW workers are on minimum wage or slightly above. Foodstuffs have been known to block workers attempts to unionise while Aussie owned Countdown (Progressive Enterprises) has a good collective agreement and doesn’t block workers from joining the union. Countdowns’ starting hourly rate is higher than NW’s.
    I shop at NW because I like to support NZ owned businesses and because they have more NZ made products and stock products from small suppliers that Progressive Enterprises won’t touch. Countdown on the other hand has a better employment agreement. Its a domestic dilema. Either way, the business of supermarkets really needs to be exposed. They are getting away with alot more than we realise.

    • muzza 6.1

      Hi Rosie, definitely agree that its something which most people simply can’t/won’t or don’t want to know…

      They go to the shop/supermarket, or whatever it might be, they buy/consume, and give very little thought to the practices of the establishment they are spending money at.

      It is generally outside the scope of the bandwidth available to people..

      Seriously , next time you are unfortunate enough to have to frequent a mall/supermarket, have a look at the faces/eyes of the people wandering around…its like a zombie nation!

      • Rosie 6.1.1

        Hi Muzza. Zombie nation indeed:) Its like folks go into a sort of catatonic state. My favourite is a bunch of people standing aimlessly right in the middle of a thoroughfare and you have to weave and dance through them. Its like they are dazzled by the fluoro lights and noise, which to me is one of the many reasons to avoid a mall excursion. Those mega supermarkets do that to folks too.

        If I ever the $$$ to spend on something non grocery item I usaully go to an independant retailer in a non mall setting. I try to go for items that haven’t impacted negatively on the environment or the producer. Doesn’t always work out that way though, as its hard to avoid completely.

        • muzza 6.1.1.1

          Good stuff Rosie, any thought given to what else is in play behind the shelves and “bright lights”, has to be a good thing.

          Sometimes in AKL is not easy to get to a supermarket which is not attached to a mall, so its after hours or early mornings in order to avoid the stunned mullets wandering aimlessly around “the mall”

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1

            Mate calls them gormless, doddery consumers. And that’s exactly what they are. On autopilot they simply just walk into you, can’t even make eye contact if they try, like every reflex and instinct for self preservation they have has already died.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      Supermarkets actually need to be nationalised and run as a government service with free delivery. They’re effectively a private duopoly which is just as bad as a private monopoly. Nationalising will get rid of the dead weight loss of profit that they impose upon us and free delivery will help us save on scarce resources.

      • fatty 6.2.1

        True…I would love to be able to shop at a government run supermarket. I’m sick of having two options, both of which provide poverty wages, and rip off customers and local suppliers.

      • millsy 6.2.2

        I prefer the halfway house of co-operative grower/supplier ownership myself.

    • Vicky32 6.3

      Countdown on the other hand has a better employment agreement. Its a domestic dilema

      No dilemna for me! I haven’t got a car, and NW are too far away… Countdown do not have  a very good wage, but supporting NZ business is not always the way to go.

      • Vicky32 6.3.1

        Countdown do not have  a very good wage, but supporting NZ business is not always the way to go.

        Range! It should say “Countdown do not have  a very good range” drat it! (I was multi-tasking, silly me…)

  7. I’ve recently reached a milestone on my blog – 1500 posts – three and a half years of blogging. Much of the inspiration to keep going comes from this site, from the posts and comments, the arguments and understanding, the links, knowledge, and new ideas introduced or stories broken. So I want to say thanks to all.

    It seems that I follow the comments of my favourites here as much as those I really disagree with – which is interesting, I wonder if others are the same.

  8. Kotahi Tāne Huna 8

    How to get the vote out in 2014.

  9. fnjckg 9

    on the other side of Pascals’ wager

    Devaluation lowered across the boom in the House this weak
    dearie me, dear oh dear oh dear

    Joyce-mobility of low income families. into what?
    -’dynamic environment’. dynamite jobs. and he has ‘thought’ of an even more destructive plan; neo-liberal capitalism

    i always enjoy Nanaia Mahuta’s questioning in the House

    H.B Climate. many retail shops being left empty. vacancies for Green businesses?

    Agree with Margaret Mutu’s assertion re colonisation of Public Servants, NGOs etc

    Cunliffe is an effective communicator imo

    to the consumption ‘priests’ Steppenwolf-”The Pusher”

    off to fellowship now. will leaven People rather than burn the faithful. God Bless u and have a Great Day

  10. Enough is Enough 10

    2014 won’t be a repeat of 2011. The left and centre will come out in numbers against this government.

    Although we always need to push the issue, the motivation in 24 months will be huge for the vast majority of New Zealanders who will by then be living below the poverty line. 2011 was the elction that matttered because it allowed the Nat to complete their intentional destruction of New Zealand society. 2014 will be about the rebuild of the economy and society

  11. fnjckg 11

    btw, of all the internet cafes in all the world, u would not believe wot was just on the radio?

    -Waiting for The Sun

    Mazarati? I believe. Wow.

    • David H 11.1

      Have a nice Day.

      Shine on you Crazy Diamond.

      • fnjckg 11.1.1

        “…i’ve always been a little crazy..”
        however, To the Fun Police,

        ” the loonatic is Off the Grass”

        have a little compassion; unless you come as a little child, u shall not see…

        Wonderful to hear the call of Unity through Maoridom over water, imo;

        Ride Free.

  12. Draco T Bastard 12

    Nationalise Money, Not Banks

    In the 1920s the leading academic economists, Frank Knight of Chicago and Irving Fisher of Yale, along with others including underground economist and Nobel Laureate in Chemistry, Frederick Soddy, strongly advocated a policy of 100% reserves for commercial banks. Why did this suggestion for financial reform disappear from discussion? The best answer I have received is that the great depression and subsequent Keynesian emphasis on growth swept it aside because limiting bank lending to actual savings was too restrictive on growth, which became the big panacea. Also there is the obvious vested interest of commercial banks in retaining the privilege of creating money and lending it at interest.

    It seems that more and more economists and other informed people are coming out in favour of a 100% reserve currency created by the state rather than the banks. Now all we need is for the politicians to wake up to the fact that we actually need to go to such a system.

    • Ben 12.1

      Do you have links to any resources which explain how the transfer from fractional reserve to 100% reserve would work?

      • Colonial Viper 12.1.1

        You turn the commercial banks into savings and loans institutions like the NZCU, the Co-operative Bank, and finance companies (albeit regulated and run to far higher standards).

        The Reserve Bank would provide new funds to all other institutions as required.

        Also worth reading about the public (state owned) Bank of North Dakota.
        http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2009/03/how-nation%E2%80%99s-only-state-owned-bank-became-envy-wall-street

      • Draco T Bastard 12.1.2

        You could read the article and you could go to the top address that the article is on and read their information. You could also do a Google search. My own method would go something like this:

        *) Build lots state housing which would be rented out at 5% of household income
        *) Offer 0% mortgages through the national bank (Kiwibank in our case) which would be paid back at 25% of household income. This money would be created at the time that the mortgage was created
        *) Offer to buy privately owned residences which the present owner could then rent from the government at 5% of household income
        *) While doing this slowly (over say, two years) reduce the banks reserve/capital ratio to 1:1

        Done this way it shouldn’t disrupt the economy. There are other ways and it’s probably worth having a discussion about them.

    • fnjckg 12.2

      “Jesus has left Chicago…”

    • BernyD 12.3

      You’d have to scrap the futures market, which is the main driver of this inflation.
      Created for “Financial Security” reasons, and abused by the controlling oranisations for profit usinfg the same “Financial Security” argument as justification.
      It’s also the main driver behind the current Oil fiasco, which is costing the whole planet jobs every day.

  13. Is this the best time to place even more stress and bureaucratic heavy-handedness onto Christchurch communities and families? http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2012/09/christchurch-suffers-schooling-shock.html

  14. Colonial Viper 14

    Someone please tell Jenny about the “Arab Fall” [Autumn]

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/arab-fall-becomes-anti-us-blowback-turmoil-spreads-morocco-sudan-and-tunisia

    If 2011′s Arab Spring was all about the propaganda “hope” of democracy (driven paradoxically by soaring global good prices as we predicted in early 2011 before the first Tunisian domino toppled), then 2012 Arab Fall, is all about the blowback to US policies and intervention in the region. And while we are amused by the media’s narrative that an entire continent can suddenly come to arms against Pax Americana over a YouTube clip, we are confident that what some hate-mongering preacher has to say about Mohammed is about as relevant to what is happening in the Middle East today, as how the global economy performs impact the S&P. Absolutely none. What we do know is that the anti-American revulsion, which started on September 11 in Egypt and has since taken Libya and Yemen by storm, is spreading like wildfire.

    • thatguynz 14.1

      CV, you know full well that you’ll get more waffle about anyone > Assad = GOOD don’t you?

    • Urban Raskal 14.2

      Who would have thought that supporting a bunch of rebel militias would be bad for the citizens once they are “left to it”. A whole bunch of ethnic cleansing in Libya tends to show it’s not the best way of bringing about democracy.

      But I suppose the cries of “Evil Dictator” across the MSM will always overshadow the warnings from the activists actually on the ground, until the people who warn against it are cast down as sympathizers.

      • Colonial Viper 14.2.1

        As ZeroHedge put it the other day:

        Total number of US ambassadors to Libya killed since “Arab Spring” = 1
        Total number of US ambassadors to Libya killed during Gaddafi’s rule = 0

        • Te Reo Putake 14.2.1.1

          Well, given that there was no US embassy for the last 30 years, Gaddafi didn’t have much opportunity to kill any ambassadors, did he?

          • uke 14.2.1.1.1

            The US has had an embassy in Libya since 2006 (with a hiatus from Feb to Sept 2011 while the war was in progress). So that was five years under Gaddafi with no ambassadors being killed.
             
            America also had an embassy there between 1969 and 1979, when Gaddafi was in power. The embassy was attacked and burned down by “a mob” in 1979, but it doesn’t seem that anyone was killed.

            • Colonial Viper 14.2.1.1.1.1

              Thanks a lot uke.

              TRP: you suck.

              • Te Reo Putake

                And you can’t count, CV. For the majority of the Gadaffi regime, there was no US embassy, something that Zerohedge, and you, clearly did not know.

                • Colonial Viper

                  The “majority” of Gaddafi rule? WTF are you on about? Some kind of political statistical dodge?

                  15 years of US diplomats under Gaddafi…US ambassadors killed = 0

                  1 year of Arab spring…US ambassadors killed = 1

                  TRP said:

                  Well, given that there was no US embassy for the last 30 years

                  Seems like you’re the one who didn’t know. Thanks once again to uke for pointing out the facts:

                  The US has had an embassy in Libya since 2006 (with a hiatus from Feb to Sept 2011 while the war was in progress). So that was five years under Gaddafi with no ambassadors being killed.

                  and sucks once more to TRP for dodging them and hypocritically accusing others of ignorance.

      • Vicky32 14.2.2

        But I suppose the cries of “Evil Dictator” across the MSM will always overshadow the warnings from the activists actually on the ground, until the people who warn against it are cast down as sympathizers

        Sadly, you’re exactly right… :(

  15. captain hook 15

    Congratulations to Wellingtons Dompost for the two articles by Chris Trotter and Brenda Pilott today.
    The National Party are the purveyors of freedom and democracy but they are steadily trying to erode all our rights and freedoms in a welter of corporatist neo-liberal legislation that is based on ideology but also represents a transfer of jobs and decision power to a select group of consultants and 10c mba’s closely tied to the national party.
    this tampering of the very warp and weft of society must stop and be exposed for what it is before they do too much damage.
    the shadowy Constitutional Advisory Panel and the Local bodies act need more scrutiny and more action so they can die the death just like kweeweees shonkey aset sales.
    they are no good and neither are the spnsors, The National Party.

    • Bored 15.1

      Thanks Captain for mentioning these, I read them over coffee this morning, top articles. Seems to me Trotter gets given a hard time by the “left” for being “incorrect”. He is still in my mind one of the most perceptive scribe on the “left” side.

  16. Draco T Bastard 16

    Beyond the Morality of Spending and Saving (Money) – Part 1

    The consequence of TINA as a leadership ideology, which I think might be more the focus of discussion by critics of austerity, is that TINA leads to bullying the public both rhetorically and increasingly physically via the use of the surveillance and police power of governments to enforce austerity measures. Efforts at coercion and control are already occurring both in North America and Europe where austerity measures are being imposed via physical force and political intimidation in certain municipalities, regions, and nations as a whole. Austerity isn’t a necessity but is made to appear “necessary” via coercion as well as the ideological blinders of mainstream economics.

    Sounds remarkably like NACT are doing especially with all the beneficiary bashing that we’re seeing out of them as it’s becoming more and more desperate as their financial formulaic answers continue to fail to work.

    Beyond the Morality of Spending and Saving (Money) – Part 2

  17. RedBaron 17

    Anybody out there able to help and tell me that I am wrong wrong wrong……..?

    While meandering home I stopped at the local chainstore bookshop to scan the magazines. I always figure Gina can afford me! But I picked up the NBR dated today and scanned that too. On the inside editorial type page David Shearer appears to be agreeing that a sickness beneficiary who collects an NZ Herald off his porch to read is a sponger!

    I’m still in shock – if I read this correctlyI think they can forget about being in power again.

    • Draco T Bastard 17.1

      Couldn’t say but I’m finding this an interesting read:

      In 1929 Labour’s leader, Harry Holland said, in a speech in parliament, “Gentlemen, we are revolutionists.” Of course, no-one, especially in the Labour Party, took him seriously. Keeping strictly to bourgeois parliamentarism, and gradually acquiring more parliamentary seats, the party’s pretence of being “socialist” wore increasingly thin. In fact, a number of important changes had taken place in the party organization and programme in the 1920s, to make it a more fit party for administering capitalism.

      Even today we see that Labour is still more interested in managing capitalism than achieving any actual reform that would benefit society.

      • Balanced View 17.1.1

        DTB – for my benefit, are you able to very simply describe some of the reforms you would make?

        • Draco T Bastard 17.1.1.1

          Try scrolling up a bit.

        • Colonial Viper 17.1.1.2

          IMO

          1) Democracy in work places.
          2) Worker owned enterprises.
          3) Making the reserve bank the sole source of debt free, interest free money into the economy.
          4) Government policy of full employment.
          5) Active government ownership, control and democratic governance of all core infrastructure.

    • Olwyn 17.2

      I couldn’t find it on their website, but I would very much like to know if you are right or not. If you are right, then it simply makes me sick. Each day new job losses, each day Bennett crowing about next round of sanctions, and this kind of thing from the Leader of the main opposition party!

      • prism 17.2.1

        Olwyn do you mean by ‘their’ website, the Dompost one. I was looking there and couldn’t find things mentioned above.

        • Olwyn 17.2.1.1

          The NBR website. http://www.nbr.co.nz/ – that is the paper that RedBaron mentioned. He is referring to a print version. I would very much like to know, after all the fuss over the roof guy, if David Shearer actually agreed that a sickness beneficiary who collects an NZ Herald off his porch to read is a sponger.

  18. captain hook 18

    how to spot a national party voter.
    these days they use interrogatives much like secret handshakes to let each other know who they are.
    Anyone who listened to the manawatu/northland game the other night on the radio would have heard the stockand station agent with an interest in Rugby, announcer end every second sentence with an interrogative.
    much like mike valentine did in his opening sentence on close up tonight.
    interrogatives are dishonest, disrespectful and an invalid fallacy in any book of logic so it is no wonder that the National Party has chosen this mark of dishonesty as their badge of recognition

  19. Ae 19

    I am concerned about the Christchurch School closures and mergers. I know this was inevitable but I feel far too soon. I also believe that all teachers deserve to be recognised for their efforts during the big earthquakes and for managing the well being of children after these events. I know my daughter’s classroom teacher was looking after her 3 hours after the initial February quake as we could not get across town. Mean while she had her own family to worry about and due to communication issues could not get through to them. They could have been dead but she still stayed and looked after our girl. Outstanding!! I don’t think too many politicians would have had this courage. These schools that are being merged, closed, built if this is a quick process I know many CHCH residence will be up set because the government is able to push for these to be done quickly yet there are still many residence who feel neglected as they live in their cold damp earthquake damaged houses.

    • Dv 19.1

      Yes it absolutely disgusting the way Parata, Brownlie and Langston have treated the schools on ChCh

      If the teachers had behaved like those three, education would have collapsed in ChCh after the quakes.

      For them to DUMP and run is disgraceful.
      What happened to ‘accord’ with all the major education groups after their last stuff up.

      I dont know how chch can have any confidence that they the Nacts will be able to organize such a huge task. Or is it just another list.

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    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    Frankly Speaking | 29-07
  • $212 million in spending on roads with few benefits
    A couple of days ago I received a bunch of documents from an OIA request to the NZTA on the $212 million in regional road spending announced recently. I haven’t been able to look at them yet seeing as I’m away however...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • State Department cuts through the acid political environment on oceans and ...
    Secretary Kerry hosted a remarkable conference in June called simply Our Ocean. It enlisted international policy makers, scientists, and the private sector to take action to ensure a healthy ocean for the future. The conference laid out the science, impacts, and...
    Skeptical Science | 29-07
  • Vote Choice: Winston Peters – the Conservative
    Vote Choice: Winston Peters – the (well, a) Conservative This week’s featured politician is Winston Peters. According to Peters life begins at conception because…the royal baby (?!). We know this because, again, Bob McCroskie from Family First did the hard work for us...
    ALRANZ | 29-07
  • National Makes Jokes About Domestic Violence, and Now Unemployment
    How far we have fallen in NZ that our current Government spends much of it’s time in Parliament making jokes about domestic violence, and today – unemployment. Key and some of his dishonest thieving Ministers have in the past few...
    An average kiwi | 29-07
  • Guest post at the Standard: Walking through the wrong door is the least of ...
    I have a guest post over at the Standard right now – Walking through the wrong door is the least of Gerry’s problems. Jump over there and read it in full! What we need in Christchurch is more houses, now....
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 29-07
  • Minor Party pre-campaign pontifications
    A look at the tracking polls for small parties helps explain what’s been happening over the last few days (larger interactive version here); The Conservatives are only slightly higher than they were last election suggesting they’ll get 2.6% max. Probably...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • Minor Party pre-campaign pontifications
    A look at the tracking polls for small parties helps explain what’s been happening over the last few days (larger interactive version here); The Conservatives are only slightly higher than they were last election suggesting they’ll get 2.6% max. Probably...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • An abhorrent innovation
    The Rt. Hon. Humphrey Horswell, QSM gives his opinion on the recently-released National Party list...
    Imperator Fish | 29-07
  • Stuart’s 100: #2 Whitcoulls Queen Street
    Urban designer Stuart Houghton has set himself a personal project of coming up with 100 ideas for improving Auckland at the rate of one a day. He is Tweeting them here: @HoughtonSd  Discussing this project with Stuart he said that “I see the city is...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • The OIA and the Statutes Amendment Bill
    Back in February the government introduced a Statutes Amendment Bill to make numerous "technical, short, and non-controversial" amendments to legislation. The bill included several amendments to the OIA and LGOIMA which I thought fell into that category. The bill was...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • How We Solve The Income Inequality Problem
    click here for some very good ideas from the New Economics Foundation...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • How to make farmers clean up their act
    Order them to stop milking until they've fixed their effluent problems:A Thames farming company has been hit with a $47,000 fine and ordered to stop milking until it fixed the overflowing effluent system at its Kopu farm. The order came...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • The Truth About What Keeps People In Poverty From Those Who Live It
    Click here to read this report from the Family 100 Research Project July 2014...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • Eye Candy, Window Dressing and Deep Pockets.
    I came back from six weeks abroad to see the beginning of the Internet Party’s “party party” launches. It leaves me with some questions. It seems that what the Internet Party has done is this. Using Kim Dotcom’s wallet as...
    Kiwipolitico | 29-07
  • Wealth, Income and Inequality in Australia.
    worth a read click here...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • World News Brief, Tuesday July 29
    Top of the AgendaLull in Gaza as Pressure for Cease-Fire Mounts...
    Pundit | 29-07
  • National’s roads are pure pork
    Last month the government announced it would be spending $212 million on regional roads. Every single one of the priority projects (and eight of nine lower priority projects) is in a National-held electorate, which suggested immediately that this was pre-election...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • Another fluoridation whopper from Declan Waugh
    Declan Waugh is a self-proclaimed “scientist and fluoride researcher” who seems to spend all his time misrepresenting and distorting  scientific literature and health data to promote his anti-fluoride cause. Waugh has an avid following, among fellow anti-fluoride activists and propagandists. The...
    Open Parachute | 29-07
  • Whyte supremacy
    Emphatically, he says, an ACT party led by Whyte would not go to war on Treaty issues. “I’ve got no interest in Maori-bashing as a political game.” Dr Jamie Whyte back in January when he assumed leadership of ACT.  The...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • Whyte supremacy
    Emphatically, he says, an ACT party led by Whyte would not go to war on Treaty issues. “I’ve got no interest in Maori-bashing as a political game.” Dr Jamie Whyte back in January when he assumed leadership of ACT.  The...
    DimPost | 29-07
  • New Fisk
    It's not just radicalised Islamists - what about foreign fighters who flock to the other side?...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • How we should deal with rorting MPs
    Prosecute them for theft:Former parliamentary speaker Peter Slipper tried three times to have criminal charges thrown out of court following claims he misused his travel entitlements during several trips to some of the Canberra region's most prestigious wineries. But three...
    No Right Turn | 29-07
  • July 14 AT Board Meeting
    The Auckland Transport Board is meeting today and as usual I’ve had a look through the papers to see if there is anything interesting. Below is the collection of items or comments that caught my eye. The rest of this...
    Transport Blog | 29-07
  • Powerful and Cold-hearted
    click here to read this compelling article ...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • Wilkinson and Picket Lectures in New Zealand
    Click here to get these lectures. Folks who missed the Douglas Robb lectures last month can view them here l...
    Closing the Gap | 29-07
  • The Changing Priorities Of Protest
    The Changing Face Of Protest: In marked contrast to the theologically- and ideologically-driven protest movements of the 1960s, 70s and 80s, contemporary protest, like this demonstration against the latest Israeli assault on Gaza, tends to be led by those whose stake in...
    Bowalley Road | 29-07
  • Why Voters Aren’t Angrier About Economic Inequality
    This is the USA but there are strong parallels here in New zealand ...
    Closing the Gap | 28-07
  • Goodbye Nick Smith
    On the back of recently trying to silence DOC over their concerns about the impact of the Ruataniwha irrigation project on water quality in central Hawke's Bay, Nick Smith is once again bullying a statuary body with threats that clearly...
    The Jackal | 28-07
  • Minister for Conservation of What?