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Public transport vs private transport. Don’t waste money on fasttracking motorways

Written By: - Date published: 1:08 am, November 26th, 2013 - 99 comments
Categories: auckland supercity, Gerry Brownlee, local government, phil twyford, public transport, Steven Joyce, transport - Tags: , , , , , ,

Ok, I know this image has a lot of issues. It is a 256 color gif which means it is dithered to hell. Whoever took it has issues with colour balance, tilt and even the focus point. But none of that matters. It certainly makes its point about what kind of road space we’re paying colossal amounts for and for what?

Transit-versus-Cars

Basically because there are a pile of numerically illiterate morons at the New Zealand Transport Authority and as National MPs who can’t seem to handle the fact that car traffic numbers are just dropping. FFS they have just let through some more motorway builds in Auckland that we probably don’t need. I guess it is one way for National MPs to get re-elected on the stupid vote. Why?  As Matt L at Auckland Transport Blog says

I imagine it would have been fairly embarrassing for the government if it had to go through some public consultation and the public rejected the projects.

Combined they are a commitment to more than a billion dollars of expenditure for roads that make little economic sense in era when private car usage in Auckland is going down as petrol prices go up (links in the images).

 

And meanwhile the idiotic traffic planners at NZ Transport Authority appear to be so in love with their obsession with a mythical traffic growth pattern that they are ignoring the reality of the actual decade long  pattern of static state highway growth.

And even more telling that Aucklanders don’t drive as much – so where in the hell are the drivers that are meant to populate the billions of dollars of roads coming from? Just look at the falling rate of kilometres people are travelling.

But then look at how traffic planners actually operate…

As Matt L says (BTW: I love Auckland Transport blog)

This graph was from a year ago and in the past when I’ve posed it, there have been some that say “look it’s starting to rise again” but the reality is it isn’t. The most recent monthly data shows traffic have flat-lined and volumes are still less than it was a decade ago (monthly figures only started in late 2007).

Meanwhile Auckland public transport even in its current appalling state keeps slowly rising as more new capacity is added. That is despite the complete screwup on integrated ticketing that apparently resulted from Stephen Joyce preventing intervention by ARTA in the snapper card decision a few years ago. Presumably to allow his mates in Infratil to continue to extract money out of Auckland public transport. Basically I can’t see any other logical reason for him to make such a colossal error of judgement.

Of course the biggest single problem with  public transport in NZ and especially in Auckland has to the the funding of infrastructure. Why? Well despite their insane optimism about the mythical maniacs driving on motorways, they constantly underestimate the takeup on infrastructure of public transport when we finally extract it from dipshit politicians who are so in love with road builders.  Britomart is a good example. Even without the City Rail Link that would allow the rail system in Auckland to finally allow trains to operate efficiently where required, people are using the station far more than projected.. I’d love to show the graph of parking costs in central Auckland to demonstrate one reason why. I use buses to go into town, or even taxis. They are cheaper than parking.

Of course there is always the “disaster” of  Northern busway travelling to and from the North Shore. Despite the right wing idiots (like John Roughan* in 2007 and even now in 2013) commenting throughout its construction, it appears to have been successful.  Of course providing a system that allows commuters read while rapidly going to and from work is going to be unsuccessful right? Wrong. The predictions of loadings caused the only real problem. They didn’t multistory the parking lots at the station because some fools thought that traffic would rise so slowly that they’d never need it. Dickheads…

Essentially, Aucklanders are coming out of their cars for exactly the reason displayed in the flashing image above. Now while this would be a problem for road makers if they hadn’t already pocketed the NZTA planners and Stephen Joyce/Gerry Brownlee/etc and got them  wasting taxpayers money by fast tracking useless motorway projects for their profits. In the meantime each public transport project is done with central government reluctance and but has immense usage and popularity. Basically Aucklanders probably need to tear the transport taxes from the central government so we can build the transport system we need. That is something I tghink a lot of Aucklanders would want to vote for…

My thanks to the amazing bloggers at Transport Blog (hey, they changed their name – still mostly Auckland :) ).

* I’ve come to the conclusion that John Roughan must be one of the best predictors of anything in Auckland. Basically whatever he says should be done is completely opposite to what should be done. It is so consistent that he must be a perfect reverse midas stone for someone. If you always bet against him, then you’re far more likely to be right. But he is also so completely dumb. After listening to him moan about how much of a pain that the traffic from the North Shore is, you’d have to ask why he hasn’t just hopped on a bus?

99 comments on “Public transport vs private transport. Don’t waste money on fasttracking motorways”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    I got sick of constantly rising petrol so I got a bike. My monthly petrol bill for my routine life is now about $20.

    Cycling has been an eye opener, in particular how lethally bad Auckland’s roads are for cyclists. So simple road rule changes – like giving absolute right of way on zebra crossings to pedestrians ansd cyclists – and lane seperation of cycle lanes would see an explosion of cycling. Imagine how many lives saved/injuries prevented there would be if they spent few hundred million of the money allocated for roads on a dedicated cycle network! Auckland is crisscrossed with dozens of parks, designed a largely separated cuycle network would be a cinch – and no need to build it with gigantic trucks in mind, so it will be way cheaper.

    And there is the rub. The trouble with a cycle network is roading companies can’t give a kickback for building it.

  2. karol 2

    Thanks, Lynn.

    It is continually frustrating for me to use public transport. My use is infrequent and irregular. So when I look on MAXX’s (strange) planner for a specific journey, I ften find the time it would take to travel from one side of Auckland to another is much longre than it would take by car: eg if going from new Lynn to the North Shore or South Auckland. This has a lot to do with bus journeys being convulted and long through infrequently used routes. And most journeys to North or South involves going through Britomart/Newmarket.

    Train journeys to and from Britomart still far too long. Off peak it is much quicker to go by car – usually I travel at times when it’s possible to find a park. And probably not more expensive if I pay for parking.

    And now I have to work out what to do with my old (only a few months old) HOP card. I believe it’s now defunct and I need a new one.

    • framu 2.1

      re train – from out west its still quicker by car even during rush hour(s)

      from all three aspects of cost, ease of use and time the car wins hands down

      between me and my partner we spend $25 each per week by car (not including maintenance etc) – by train? somewhere round the $70 each per week

      There in lies the problem – i dont really want to drive, but on those 3 key aspects it makes more sense to drive.

      and yes the maxx site is crap – the simple idea that the timetable you see at a bus stop should be the same timetable you see online seems to have escaped who ever designed it. It doesnt even know the routes and bus stops near my place – the closest it gets is a bus route some 15 – 20 min walk away, not the one that goes past the end of my rather short road, which is also alongside a train station

      • karol 2.1.1

        Train from the west to Britomart in peak times is definitely cheap and quicker. But not so going from the west to the North or South in either peak or off-peak times, when I am most likely to do those journeys. I will look at it again when I get a gold card. The extra time on public transport can be usefully spent.

        A big argument for free or $1.00 per journey public transport.

        MAXX: yes, for journeys that require more than one vehicle: bus-bus or bus to train to bus: MAXX doesn’t have a clue. It is better to search for each leg of the journey separately.

        Buses and trains not turning up on time, then magically disappearing off the bus/train stop timetables – tell me about it!

      • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2

        between me and my partner we spend $25 each per week by car (not including maintenance etc) – by train? somewhere round the $70 each per week

        This is actually why PT needs to be a nominal $1 per trip or even free. Get people using the more efficient system. As it is they’re pretty much forced into using the least efficient system due to cost.

        and yes the maxx site is crap – the simple idea that the timetable you see at a bus stop should be the same timetable you see online seems to have escaped who ever designed it.

        Actually, the thing that the people who have designed it seem to have forgotten is that timetables are used for planning journeys and thus need to be accurate. It’s no use to have the Real Time Board showing that the bus is going to be half an hour late as the people who were relying on that bus are now also late.

        It doesnt even know the routes and bus stops near my place – the closest it gets is a bus route some 15 – 20 min walk away, not the one that goes past the end of my rather short road, which is also alongside a train station

        It probably does but the software used to determine the route has determined a shorter time going the wrong way for some reason. Best thing to do is actually complain about it and AT will get around to fixing it.

        BTW, I usually don’t have any problems with the Maxx site in planning journeys.

        • Ron 2.1.2.1

          When I read your opening quote I thought at last someone is going to mention the G word and correct the sentence.
          Dam I was wrong

        • framu 2.1.2.2

          “This is actually why PT needs to be a nominal $1 per trip or even free.”
          yep – thats my argument in a nutshell

          “It probably does but the software used to determine the route has determined a shorter time going the wrong way for some reason.”

          considering i was putting the bus stop in question as my start point, i would still call it pretty bad

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.2.2.1

            considering i was putting the bus stop in question as my start point, i would still call it pretty bad

            Yep but still the only way that it’s going to get fixed is by complaining about it.

  3. Philj 3

    Xox
    The trucking company lobbyists, Ken Shirley etc, is behind this madness. The number, AND Size, of trucks is rapidly growing. The highway construction companies also profit. At the same time squeezing public transport, cycling and walking is struggling. As an active walker, I have noticed that the footpath has been lost to speeding cyclists seeking refuge from dangerous motorists. Business rulz NZ! The ‘government’ is a front for big biz.

    • karol 3.1

      Yes. Pedestrians are also a marginalised section of the transport system. Walking is a very stop start, and often stressful, mode of transport – waiting for long periods at intersections where there could be overbridges/underpasses (the recently redesigned New Lynn Transport Centre for instance).

      And increased amounts of trucks on Auckland’s urban motorways make driving a pretty scary thing.

  4. Tracey 4

    If you look at how john key says infrashtucksha you get a clye in the word

  5. Great post. On the topic of John Roughan – remember how accurate is projections of the MRP share price were?

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    One issue that this post did not raise directly is the insidious damage that patriarchy is doing to Auckland’s infrastructure and planning. Industry profits, big trucks, flash luxury cars, and the ability to show them off for all to see (preferably at more than 11km/h) are all sick symptoms of a hyper masculine culture predicated on individualistic symbols of economic power and wealth.

    A Holden SS V8 with its 10 speaker stereo system cranked up is testosterone inducing. Being stuck on a crowded bus collectively squeezed in between other peoples’ grandmothers is not. Let alone a discussion on walking and bicycling. And what’s the use of being at the top of the male dominated socio-economic pile if you can’t show off your new Cayman S at 115 km/h on a brand spanking new multi-lane motorway.

    Until the issue of patriarchy as a contributor to our problems is directly recognised and addressed by transport policy, Auckland’s transport issues will never be solved.

    • RedLogix 6.1

      In daylight the view from where I am is just vast mountains as far as the eye can see. One dusty ant trail of a track loops and wiggles it’s way up here.

      Auckland’s traffic madness seems like several lifetimes ago. I really don’t miss it.

      • Colonial Viper 6.1.1

        Hearing ya. Door to door home to work, 12 minutes, with harbour views on the way in. That’s Dunedin for you.

        • Chooky 6.1.1.1

          Lets keep it that way….the biggest issue for New Zealand is over population….we dont need masses of new immigrants if we are to keep our style of life.

          • Bearded Git 6.1.1.1.1

            With the greatest respect that is bollocks. Just over a million people on the South Island which is bigger than England. Many more people can be absorbed bringing huge talent and resources to the country. It’s how we do it that counts.

            • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Many more people can be absorbed bringing huge talent and resources to the country.

              It will bring more people but it won’t bring any more resources. I’d really hate to be living in England in the next few decades as the easy trade in food declines as the price of fuel goes up.

              We have a maximum amount of people that we can support and we have absolutely NFI what that maximum is. Places like England are already far beyond it.

              • Colonial Viper

                It will bring more people but it won’t bring any more resources.

                If they bring their talent, their machine tools and their super computer nodes here, that’s both people and resources.

                And yes, shipping offshore our physical fresh water, phosphorus, potassium and organic carbon in exchange for electronically created currency units, is not going to be sustainable in the long term.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  If they bring their talent, their machine tools and their super computer nodes here, that’s both people and resources.

                  I know it’s strange but I don’t like thinking of people as resources. And we can produce the machine tools and super computer nodes here with the resources and the talents and skills of the people already here. Sure, it’ll take awhile to get setup to do so but that in itself is work that needs to be done.

                  • ropata

                    I know it’s terrible but I must confess that I drive a big black Holden Commodore because it’s super comfortable, one of the few models I can actually fit into without smashing my head or shoulders. I think it actually makes me drive better because it is relaxing to drive and I don’t feel like I am racing everybody. Or it could just be a male mid life crisis :P

            • Chooky 6.1.1.1.1.2

              @ Bearded Git.. with the greatest respect THAT is bollocks!……where do you come from?…my family have been here for generations both Maori and Pakeha

              Nah!….more stress for New Zealanders and South Islanders on roads, housing, land , jobs, apprenticeships, health care, hospitals, state ‘free’ education, the underclass of Maori, Polynesian and Pakeha NZers…. superannuation, old age care….serfs in our own country?…nah!

              ….have you visited Asia, India , China and Tibet with your backpack?….do you want Little Asia or Little England here?….Many Brits want to escape from there to here…..as do many Asians. They should sort out the environmental degradation, overpopulation , social unrest issues in their own countries.

              …and lets sort our own inegalitarian society first…. before we start putting money in the bank and share portfolios of NZ capitalist class whose real allegiance is not to NZers or NZ.

      • lprent 6.1.2

        I’m looking forward to the company moving premises this week.

        I will be a comfortable 15 minutes walking distance with the inner Link as a wet weather route. Hopefully my AT HOP card that I brought back in April will finally be able to be used on the Link.

      • Rogue Trooper 6.1.3

        are you there for some time to come Red.

    • Chooky 6.2

      CV….agree wholeheartedly about patriarchy and anti-ecological, anti environmental values and gross motorways for speed and individualistic egotistical transport with the consequent trashing of the environment

      …motorways are an ecological and feminist issue as many ecofeminists have pointed out as well as ecotheologians and Deep Ecologists

      …the patriarchal capitalist rationale is that increased population requires these motorways…which become a part of the patriarchal male ego…and the patriarchal ego view of progress….the making of motorways is money making in itself for big companies and those with shares in them

      …patriarchal rationale is more people equals more markets, equals more money making opportunities, equals more and faster transportation , more speed , faster individualistic cars etc etc

      ….as a result the earth gets raped and plundered….and our environment trashed ( then it becomes status to live away from this patriarchal God awful mess of pollution, noise and population)

      ….It should also be noted that the patriarchy creates overpopulation…….hence the suppression of women causes overpopulation… see Catholic Church stance on anti- contraception and absolute denial of womens’ rights to control their own fertility (eg. overpopulation in the Philippines)…..see also China’s gross overpopulation, environmental and human degradation and 35 million extra males by year 2020

      I think I will be voting Green!

  7. Tracey 7

    Ok… in frashtrucksha gives a clue… fat fingers

    • fender 7.1

      Key thinks ‘in-frashtrucksha’ is a waiter/waitress bringing a fresh bottle, or a truck load off piss?

  8. Tracey 8

    Of course the answeer cant be for everyone to leave auckland but what if incentives were given to relocate businesses. Doesnt change the desire of the young to be in the big city but…

    auckland has heaps of close satelites from orewa to pukekohe. It wld not be profitable to the train company to run better and faster services but it woukd have other major crossover benefits but this requires people to understand you lose money in one place but make it somewhere else = balanced. Hard to do things this way following pure capitalist theory

    • karol 8.1

      Some of us have strong attachments to Auckland. i’m a born and bred Aucklander and have spent over 2 decades living elsewhere. In spite of the hassles, I love being back here.

      I would relocate to the greater Auckland region, (to the north, e.g. Orewa area), if there was affordable rental accommodation there, and if public transport to and from other areas of Auckland was fairly frequent, reliable and affordable. At the moment it would also need to be accessible to my workplaces. I have been looking at the possibilities.

  9. Adrian 9

    Doesn’t the Northern Busway only become a faster better option simply because it is mostly on a motorway ? . Without that more direct route it would be very slow and inefficient.

    • karol 9.1

      No. Without the motorway, buses on existing roads, use of ferries, plus a rail services to the north would be very efficient.

      At the moment there is high land use, with car parking needed to enable many people to get to the northern bus way. (see high land use needed for parking to support car use).

      Bus services that traveled regularly along diverse routes through the northern burbs would cut down on the need for car parks near the busway. Plus, there could be increased ferries from North Harbour, an improved north western rail service.

      • greywarbler 9.1.1

        karol
        That point about getting from home to the bus routes is a good one. I wonder if taxis could be utilised for this purpose. Perhaps some could be contracted to provide a feeder service, picking up to their full capacity along the way. Volume would provide sufficient revenue to bring cost down. When there was little business they would take their normal fares. So outside peak times there would be a wait for a feeder service, and perhaps a higher cost allowing for only two people, but still less than a normal taxi fare.

        A phone call to connect to the next feeder service with expected arrival time would book it. A pre-paid multiple ride ticket would ensure efficient use, with commuter waiting at kerb and ready. There could be little groups who became friends using the same route, time and vehicle. Certainty, friendliness, affordability and efficiency. Sounds great, would work.

        • karol 9.1.1.1

          Some good suggestions, gw. I think taxi buses are the answer for that – small buses.

        • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.2

          Modern computer systems, smart phones with internet and GPS, make all of this very possible and I think even more innovations could be included.

          • wtl 9.1.1.2.1

            Modern computer systems, smart phones with internet and GPS, make all of this very possible and I think even more innovations could be included.

            “Possible” and “could” are the key words. Apparently the major bus companies in Auckland don’t even bother using algorithms to optimize their scheduling (I presume its done by hand on a semi-random basis). Apart from the odd route (e.g. the Link buses), they don’t even bother trying to do the simplest things to improve scheduling, such as enforcing timed stops or a minimum interval between buses starting the route – instead you get ridiculous things like 3-4 buses bunching together from the start of their routes, all ending up mostly empty, but then the next bus getting completely full because the preceding buses ran ahead of schedule.

            • McFlock 9.1.1.2.1.1

              lol
              Most of the bus routes in dunedin are still based around the old tram lines that were ripped up decades ago.

              I’d be surprised if the Dunedin transport coordinators even have a map showing the population density vs dwellings that are 50m or 100m walk from a bus stop (let alone accounting for slope).

              • idlegus

                im in south d, i cant figure the bus at all, least its only a 40 minute walk into town. driving in dunedin is a nightmare, no straight routes, & the car drivers are freakin lunatics!

                i saw a movie some dutch guy made about cycling in the usa, which was totally comparable to nz cyclists, he was perplexed why the americans (like us) have racing bikes, whereas in holland the bikes are more for comfort, in holland biking is for transport, whereas in the usa & like nz cycling is seen more as a recreational thing.

                i like cycling, but you are def taking your life into your hands, its so dangerous! as a biking posty for 10+ years nearly everyday i had a near miss, ppl backing out of driveways, idiots turning left into your path. car free days would be awesome! but there would be revolution in the streets, ppl like their gas guzzlers.

            • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.2.1.2

              Apparently the major bus companies in Auckland don’t even bother using algorithms to optimize their scheduling

              As I understand it, the bus companies don’t do it anymore – Auckland Transport does and then contracts the bus companies to run the routes that AK comes up with. And they’re using the real time tracking from the buses to work them out. This is a fairly new development though and it will probably take them some time to get things better. I know the buses around my way are getting a scheduling/route upgrade next year.

              Fixed price contract with AK getting all of the money from the paying passengers as well.

              instead you get ridiculous things like 3-4 buses bunching together from the start of their routes, all ending up mostly empty, but then the next bus getting completely full because the preceding buses ran ahead of schedule.

              Ahead of schedule will never happen and apparently it’s because of traffic and if the kids are at school or not.

    • Ron 9.2

      Also the busway only works if you are driving a car which you can leave all day at the Park & Ride.
      It doesn’t work for anyone that is not using a car. I live in the East Coast Bays and my public transport is a bus that takes an hour to get to the city. It winds its way in and out of suburbs at time doubling back on itself to pick up passengers. Forget the busway we don’t get near it till after Takapuna and there is no busway from then on.
      Originally I thought we would have small feeder buses travelling from each bay to the nearest busway connection but that never happened and is not going to. Go to town for a show and try to get bus home at 11.30pm at night.

  10. greywarbler 10

    Clever graphics! I was just thinking what is actually obvious but I haven’t realised. By building roads, and squeezing rail, and coastal shipping, the NACTs are privatising transport options. To further this they are running rail down so channelling people to where money is to be made by business, such as selling oil (as addictive and also revenue producing as alcohol), and selling vehicles, and all the industries supporting them. What business opportunities has rail got to offer private providers? A mechanical food dispenser? A pie cart? (And sometimes they don’t even offer these to get extra revenue.)

    So looking at roads from business viewpoint, from personal and Party advantage, from keeping our jobs in a status quo in NZ Roads? advantage, and the way that trucking is the freight du jour method, then good practice and wise considerations preparing for the future just don’t stack up. Come on, where’s the money for us the movers say shaking their heads?

    • Draco T Bastard 10.1

      By building roads, and squeezing rail, and coastal shipping, the NACTs are privatising transport options. To further this they are running rail down so channelling people to where money is to be made by business, such as selling oil (as addictive and also revenue producing as alcohol), and selling vehicles, and all the industries supporting them.

      Yep. Everything about roads is about making money but it does it in a rather murky way – It dumps the full costs directly onto the individual. Yes, that’s murky because when it’s done that way the total costs are hidden from the individual and, more importantly, they don’t get to see how much cheaper it would be, in real terms, doing things via public transport.

      and the way that trucking is the freight du jour method

      Easy way to fix that – charge them correctly. Damage done to the road is to the 4th power. This means that a two tonne vehicle does sixteen times more damage to the road than a one tonne vehicle. A fifty tonne truck is well over 100,000 times more than a one tonne vehicle. Even if you only make it 1 cent per kilometer on a one tonne vehicle, it’ll be well over $1000 per kilometer for the truck.

      Bring in RUCs for all vehicles with the price based upon maximum weight and you’ll soon see trucks disappearing from the roads.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        You’ll also see a government ending truck blockade of downtown Auckland and the Wellington CBD.

        • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1

          Just so long as people are fully informed as to why the changes I don’t think it would be government ending. Considering the complaints about trucks on the roads I think you may find it government boosting.

  11. David H 11

    As someone from outside AK and who has ‘driven’ there Where the hell would they put another Motorway? Naa move to a small town, sell the car, give up the ciggies, build/buy a couple of bicycles. Yep way healthier. :-)

    • karol 11.1

      Auckland is a great place. It needs a better transport system.

      Not all of us are capable of riding bikes. Had a dream of riding a bike to my old age. The dream was ended following an accident and permanent injury damage. So now it’s walking and public transport.

      • lprent 11.1.1

        I decided a decade ago that it was just too damn dangerous on Auckland roads after a series of near misses by dickhead drivers. These days the frigging SUV’s with their vague drivers are dangerous enough for other car users.

        If they made a dangerous driving charge mandatory for car drivers if they hit a cyclist, then things would improve immediately. But as it is there aren’t enough cycle lanes I’ll walk. It is safer.

        I enjoy Auckland. I’ve spent a decade out of the place going to university. Even spent several years living around other places inside Auckland. Always enjoy coming back to live in Ponsonby, Grey Lynn and Mt Albert

        • karol 11.1.1.1

          I’ve grew up in Mt Eden area – not the actual village part – further out. And I keep feeling drawn back to that area. I’d settle for Sandringham, Mt Albert etc. But I haven’t seen any affordable rentals in those areas these days.

          I could probably technically manage on a bike, but I now have a fragile body part, and a further accident to it would be pretty disastrous.

          A permit should be required to drive an SUV in city areas. I see no good reason for most status-motivated drivers to have them, and they are dangerous to other road/pavement users.

          • Draco T Bastard 11.1.1.1.1

            I’ve grew up in Mt Eden area – not the actual village part – further out. And I keep feeling drawn back to that area.

            I was born and raised in the West. Lived outside of it here and there but always feel at home in West Auckland – and, yes, I’ll be complaining about the heat and mugginess this year as well :twisted:

            • Ake ake ake 11.1.1.1.1.1

              It was fine biking around downtown Auckland, Ponsonby, K Road, Newmarket, Mt Eden, Balmoral, Sandringham, Kingsland and Mt Albert up until the late 1990s.

              Then the number of cars, and crazy ones at that, increased exponentially circa 2000-2002.

              When I found myself narrowly missing an accident – - – at least six times per week – - – for three consecutive weeks (!) – - – I figured that ACC wouldn’t pay that well, that I wouldn’t really like living with a disability (death is the bit I would have been ok with), and so the legs got used for more walking than cycling.

        • greywarbler 11.1.1.2

          These frigging SUVs, almost hummers. Park alongside one and it’s a wall making it hard to back out of a space. To reduce collision possibilities have to check out vehicle movements before getting in and starting to back out slowly and virtually blindly. Need periscope. Following them is again a moving wall. The rear windows are set too high for an ordinary car to gain any visibility ahead, they are too wide to see around. They tend not to indicate – they know where they’re going, stuff you. In a narrowed space they would not consider being the one to give way. On corners their height means they mask oncoming cars, and bicycles particularly.

          Once after waiting and scanning for a break in the traffic beyond a parked SUV, I moved forward and froze, some old guy on a mobility scooter was on the road in front of me, had been travelling along the side of the SUV – unnoticeable. Started again and a bicycle was in front of me. Unnerved I carefully reversed so I could get another view behind the SUV and turned left instead of right so I only had one line of transport to worry about. The SUV was parked to my right blocking the view all the time.

          The wheels are so high the tyres must be expensive. They are a blot on our roads, and a hazard. Some of them have dark-tinted windows and seem like cars for crims. And often they are painted black. Just the right thing for our depressed young people, over-large, looking pale and unfit when they are walking, joyless, with anti-social tendencies and choosing to wear black utilitarian clothing. This is what I see a lot and it is sad – the bounce and vitality and happiness has gone out of NZ. The fortress-like, over-powering mass of the SUVs seems like a retreat from community and society. A hostile, defensive resource.

          • ropata 11.1.1.2.1

            Well said. Also, SUV headlights are set at the eye level of other traffic so they can cause maximum annoyance day and night.

          • unpcnzcougar 11.1.1.2.2

            SUV’s drive me nuts. I suggest that all shopping centres have a special area for SUV’s to park – yes make them walk further – then the rest of us can enter and exit a carpark without fear of getting hit because we can’t see!

          • Murray Olsen 11.1.1.2.3

            I hate the bloody things. There are heaps of them in Brisbane, and it seems that anyone who gets behind the wheel of one instantly forgets how to drive. Over here they pay less tax on them as well, because they’re supposedly work vehicles. I’d happily ban them from cities.

      • David H 11.1.2

        Sorry to hear that Karol.

  12. Tracey 12

    David h

    and do what for a job? Its a catch 22 right now.

    • lprent 12.1

      It is where I need to work. There really isn’t anywhere else with the required business networks to do export hardware/software in NZ.

      • greywarbler 12.1.1

        lprent
        I thought Christchurch was a major cluster point for the IT industry? Is Auckland much better? Would it be relatively easy to get work up there if one wanted to move do you think? I’m not talking about myself.

        • infused 12.1.1.1

          Wellington is huge for software development. It just depends what you are developing.

          • Lanthanide 12.1.1.1.1

            Wellington’s a bit different from CHCH and Auckland though, a lot of public-sector IT there. Not surprising I guess.

        • lprent 12.1.1.2

          Christchurch is. But it simply doesn’t have the depth of software and light industry that Auckland has. Because of that it tends to lack the associated people/companies contracting and selling out services that you don’t want in-house.

          In the tech area, what you tend to get in Christchurch is a relatively few smaller export businesses or larger more vertically integrated exports businesses.

          What it lacks is the clusters of lots of similar small to medium export based businesses and arrays of skilled contractors and businesses to hire in for short periods.

          In my case I tend to specialize in green field development for exports across a wide range of potential styles of applications. Literally starting coding from nothing to little and doing the design and implement. So having a large number of companies around means that there is always some interesting new development on.

          Work is hard to get in tech areas anywhere unless you already have experience. It always has been. That is because it is such a cost to train the merely academically trained. You have to waste someone with experience to be pestered for 6 months bringing one or more people up to speed. Much of the time whoever you train will then bugger off within a year or two.

          But there tend to be more companies to try in Auckland if you don’t have friends / family / etc to introduce you. So the probabilities that you’ll find someone desperate enough for a pair of untrained hands goes up a lot.

          • ropata 12.1.1.2.1

            There are a few orgs in Christchurch running decent sized software projects: SunGard, Meridian, HP, Council, University, and dept of Statistics. But it’s nothing like the volume of stuff happening in Auckland and Wellington.

            On the hardware side, Invensys, Nightside, Trimble, and lots of small outfits are doing cool stuff.

            But the major drawback for IT workers in CHC is the abysmal pay compared to AKL and WLG.
            Good offshoring resource for the multinationals though.

          • Rogue Trooper 12.1.1.2.2

            A component of a counter-Empire Multitude producing the commons through immaterial labour.

    • David H 12.2

      Hey Tracey I never said I had ALL the answers, :-) I just fix computers and kids toys in the Garage.

  13. Bearded Git 13

    If anyone needs a single good reason to vote National out, their antedeluvian transport policy and the lies they have told around this is it.

  14. Flee 14

    I left Auckland because of its traffic and are not keen to go back. I periodically visit to remind myself why I hate it so. I suspect most people do not enjoy driving in Auckland.
    Unfortunately corporate business managers cannot see that they can locate anywhere but Auckland hence the traffic. One reason being is that they think it is easier to get staff and competition for work is higher so drive down income for workers who do not have choices. ie the poorer working class.
    The other thing I cannot understand is the sudden spending on roading infrastructure during the GFC. Perhaps they think if they build it they will come which maybe the case but it isn’t a particular good investment for a resource constrained future. (particularly oil). Oh right that is why they are drilling off Raglan…. all part of the master plan for economic growth and to hell with the environment.

    • Naturesong 14.1

      Building infrastructure during a downturn is actually a good idea. Debt is cheap and it gets people back to work.

      However, that was covered by the Christchurch rebuild, and was and excellent opportunity to train New Zealanders, sparkies, chippies, etc.
      But instead of that, we imported something like 12,000 foreign workers.
      (Was also an excellent opportunity to build a modern people-centric 21st century city that acknowledges that the oil industry now has a very limited lifespan – they’ve screwed that up as well)

      Also, if you were going to build more infrastructure, you’d look to get the biggest bang for your buck.
      In transport that would be rail, looking at trams/lightrail and bringing forward existing road repairs.
      Instead, National deferred any PT options and raided the road repairs kitty to pay for motoways, then decided that the most efficient way to do the spending was to build a big pipe from the treasury coffers directly to Fletchers back account.

      Thats why we have an uptick in the Manufacturing sector, at the same time we’ve had 40,000 manufacturing jobs go to the wall.

      • Flee 14.1.1

        Agree that building infrastructure is good during recessions, but more roading??? It was probably the easy option for the government and as pointed out the roading lobby would be friends then and it wins some simple votes. There is a readily available supply of road builders in NZ. However to invest in something like light rail… well any NZ rail infrastructure building capability has gone the way of the Moa long ago as evident from the state in which rail is now. They would need to recruit overseas expertise and develop NZ expertise. Too hard for the government, to long term as it is not likely to happen in 3 years and no responsibility in government for the future.

    • ropata 14.2

      I recently blogged about my near death experiences driving round Auckland.
      The story involves red-light runners, suicidal cyclists, stop sign runners, rush hour lane cutters, suicidal pedestrians, trucks parked on yellow lines, and mad school mums on the wrong side of the road >:(
      http://ropata.wordpress.com/2013/11/21/road-rage/

      Submitted 3 complaints to the Council, hopefully the stop sign runners will get looked at ASAP as it is causing real danger every frikkin day just outside my house. People turn left without even slowing down and nearly collect me or my family on a regular basis

  15. Rosie 15

    Saw that GIF the other day and thought the message was excellent despite going a bit swively eyed trying to follow it. Impressive array of charts too.

    It seems that anyone who is opposed the idea of building more roads for a variety of reasons, mainly because they are unnecessary and may have an environment and or heritage risk is up against the powerful road lobby backed by Nat MP’s.

    Here in Wellington the Save Kapiti group has been campaigning tirelessly against the express way, which after years of environment court activity, is still going ahead. There’s that ol’ chestnut, Transmission Gully, and of course the amazingly unnecessary Basin Reserve Flyover. But it’s you, Aucklanders, who I really feel for. Having lived there for many years and having a driving job, it was a nightmare but it’s not something more roads would solve.

    This from karol, I related to and was the reason I gave up using the buses when I was living in AK, even though I actually did want to use them and use the car less (for out of work travel)

    “It is continually frustrating for me to use public transport. My use is infrequent and irregular. So when I look on MAXX’s (strange) planner for a specific journey, I ften find the time it would take to travel from one side of Auckland to another is much longre than it would take by car: eg if going from new Lynn to the North Shore or South Auckland. This has a lot to do with bus journeys being convulted and long through infrequently used routes. And most journeys to North or South involves going through Britomart/Newmarket.”

    And finally. Warbly, those SUV’s! Well said! They are indeed hazardous to other drivers and to pedestrians and cyclists as well. It’s fraught with danger backing out of an angle park if you’re sandwiched between two of them as you mentioned and you can’t see over them at a roundabout giveway. They’re a poor design for urban driving and should be limited to farm work as they were originally intended, in the previous 4WD format.That people desire them as status vehicle says alot about their poor taste.

  16. tricledrown 16

    4wd’s are an ego trip for 90%+ of owners.
    Bullying there way around the roads.
    Fuel wasters and killers poor safety and handling.
    They should be banned from urban areas.
    On the open highway because of high centre of gravity they should be limited to 90k.
    Safety most 4WD’s are much heavier and when they impact in a crash do more damage.
    People buy them to protect themselved as the perception is that they are safer for the occupant.
    Not true most 4wds have weaker impact zones so are more likely to kill occupants.

    • Ian 16.1

      My bicycle has weaker impact zones than a fiat bambina.I get an ego trip riding my bicycle. I drive a 4 wheel drive because I need 4 wheel drive to get to the places I work and play.wanting to banning them seems a bit draconian. What is happening to common sense ?

  17. Draco T Bastard 17

    And some more thoughts on the matter: The Infernal Combustion Engine

  18. ghostrider888 18

    Gr8 Grafx

  19. Walker 19

    A cycle lane built within and along the City Rail Link would be a perfect place to put us commuter cyclists, no more cars trucks and busses to push us off the roads at intersections etc.

  20. AmaKiwi 20

    Follow the money.

    Find out who contributes to the National Party and you might discover why we have so much road building.

    And then cut it off!

    • Draco T Bastard 20.1

      IMO, the one thing that needs to be done is to ban legal organisations from donating to political parties. That would be trusts, unions, businesses, sports clubs etc. The only entity that could donate would be natural persons.

      I think then that we may be able to get rid of the buying of politicians.

      • Flee 20.1.1

        America has really screwed their democracy by allowing organisations similar constitutional rights as citizens. Agree with eliminating businesses from donating but parties would need to be funded in some way? If it was only natural persons then it would be those individuals that can afford to donate that would, effectively buying policies that favour them. We do not want to go further down that road than we already are. Which leaves some sort of state funding of political parties as far as I can see.

      • AmaKiwi 20.1.2

        Easy to do. Every contribution must be filed with the IRD number of the donor.

      • AmaKiwi 20.1.3

        America has the best politicians money can buy.

        • Flee 20.1.3.1

          So true….. They should be embarrassed to call themselves a democracy. It should be called a market democracy to give it a truer name. Democracy to the highest bidder which isn’t really democracy (unless you twist the meaning to be that it is free to join the market to bid for votes). They need to sustain their ‘American fantasy’.

      • KJT 20.1.4

        I would go further and advocate State funding on the basis of the number of paid up ‘individual’ party members. All non-state funding apart from a State set, low, membership fee, to be banned.

        The current, funding per the number of votes last election always favours the incumbents.

        As we have seen allowing funding from corporates and wealthy individuals just allows for buying the system. Something which is occurring here, and, has already happened in the USA and UK.

        Politicians who go straight to a job, after politics, in private sector corporations, which directly benefited from their policies, is also open to corruption.

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    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand
    The Ruataniwha dam decision released today has protected the Tukituki River and dashed the Government’s hope of the “one nutrient model” (TRIM) being adopted nationwide, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “It is a massive victory for those in the...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Labour turns wheels for cycling safety
    With more than a million New Zealanders now using cycling as an attractive alternative means of transport it is past time their safety was taken seriously, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Darien Fenton says. Due to speak to a cycling rally at...
    Labour | 15-04
  • SPEECH: Institute of Directors
    LEADING AND MANAGING OUR ECONOMIC FUTURE David Cunliffe MP, Labour Leader Speech to the Institute of Directors 15 April 2014, Auckland It's a privilege to be speaking here. The Institute of Directors has a proud history of developing New Zealand's...
    Labour | 15-04
  • More Oravida endorsements from John Key
    The use of a picture of John Key in an advertisement for Oravida’s scampi products in a Chinese airline magazine is further evidence of an unhealthily cosy relationship between the National Party and this company, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 15-04
  • Workers at Canterbury Yarns need redundancy support
    Workers faced with redundancy at Canterbury Yarns need a redundancy support co-ordinator, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today.Last week, Canterbury Yarns was placed in receivership. Canterbury Yarns joins a long list of New Zealand manufacturers who have...
    Greens | 14-04
  • Making the holidays easier for Kiwi drivers
    The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “There’s nothing Kiwis like more than getting on the road and going on holiday. But on...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Ae Marika! 15 April 2014
    Our MANA AGM down in Rotorua on the weekend was a sold-out affair – even the media were struggling to get in! Political conferences can be very dull, but not this one. We had a great line-up of speakers including...
    Mana | 14-04
  • Green light from Labour for cancer screening programme
    Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today committed to a national bowel screening programme, starting with extending the current service to the Southern and Waikato districts. “Around 3000 New Zealanders develop bowel cancer each year and about 1200, or 100 a month,...
    Labour | 14-04
  • Adequate resourcing needed for victims’ advocate
    The establishment of a victims’ commissioner role will only be meaningful if it is properly resourced to do the job of advocating for victims’ interests, Labour Justice spokesperson Andrew Little says. Justice Minister Judith Collins has just recently indicated her...
    Labour | 13-04
  • IPCC report shows Government ignoring climate experts
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) report into climate mitigation, just released in Berlin, shows the National Government is ignoring the pleas of the world's best climate scientists.The report says deep and fast emission cuts are vital from all...
    Greens | 13-04
  • Japan’s quick turnaround on whaling disappointing
    News that Japan plans to recommence some form of “scientific” whaling programme so quickly after the International Court of Justice’s ruling against it is very disappointing, says David Shearer, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson. “New Zealanders expected the ICJ ruling -...
    Labour | 13-04
  • Reviewable tenancies will increase risks for vulnerable children
    Instead of kicking families out of their homes if they can pay their rent, parents with young children should have the opportunity to purchase equity in a state-built home over time, the Green Party said todayFrom July, Housing New Zealand...
    Greens | 13-04
  • 48,000 New Zealanders drinking faecally contaminated water
    Some 48,000 people were provided with water that had issues with faecal contamination, 18,000 of whom were from Canterbury, the Green Party said today. The Ministry of Health's Annual Report on Drinking-Water in New Zealand for 2012/13 shows that 48,000...
    Greens | 12-04
  • Labour will move to save the Kauri
    Labour will spend $20 million over the next 10 years to stop the spread of Kauri dieback disease, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “We are facing an ecological disaster with over 11 per cent of the Kauri trees in the...
    Labour | 12-04
  • SPEECH: Saving our Kauri
    Seech notes Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today. As a West Auckland MP I am very aware the kauri is an important part of this place. The Waitakere Ranges with their thousands of kauri, are a taonga....
    Labour | 12-04
  • MANA to continue negotiations with the Internet Party
    The MANA AGM has decided unanimously tonight to continue negotiaitions with the Internet Party. Within a month further negotiations, further consultation with MANA branches and a final decision on whether to proceed with a relationship is expected....
    Mana | 12-04
  • National’s tax dodge
      National’s insistence that it is cracking down on tax dodgers is little more than a bit of election year chest beating, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Revenue Minister Todd McClay surely doesn’t believe collecting $100 million of an estimated...
    Labour | 12-04
  • Housing prices go up – Gens X & Y give up
    Today’s REINZ report shows house prices continue skyward while first home buyers are dropping out of the market, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand the national median house price has risen...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Do Key and Adams support Chorus appeal?
    John Key and Amy Adams must tell New Zealanders whether they support Chorus’ appeal of the High Court’s ruling in favour of the Commerce Commission, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. “Chorus’ appeal is a waste of time. The company is...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Is Judith Collins unapologising
    Judith Collins appears to have retracted her apology for failing to disclose her meeting with her husband’s fellow company directors and a senior Chinese border control official just weeks after being ticked off by John Key for not doing so, Labour...
    Labour | 11-04
  • Media Advisory
    There have been a few minor changes to the MANA AGM agenda. Moana Jackson is unable to attend due to family commitments. Speaking in his place on Saturday morning MANA is pleased to welcome Georgina Beyer and Willie Jackson. MANA...
    Mana | 10-04
  • Green Party requests inquiry into Peter Dunne and Trust
    Green Party MP Denise Roche today wrote to the Parliamentary Registrar of Pecuniary Interests requesting an inquiry into whether Peter Dunne should have included his involvement as chair of the Northern Wellington Festival Trust on the Register of Pecuniary Interests...
    Greens | 10-04
  • Veterans short-changed
    The Veterans’ Support Bill reported back to Parliament today rejects a key recommendation of the Law Commission Review on which it is based and ignores the submissions of veterans and the RNZRSA, says Labour’s Veterans’ Affairs Spokesperson, Phil Goff. “A...
    Labour | 10-04
  • Why Easter holidays should always be mandatory and retail free
    The moaning from retailers that they can’t open the cash registers and worship the consumer culture of consumption over Easter bores me immensely because I’ve always believed that public holidays should be mandatory. It’s not that I really care about...
    The Daily Blog | 19-04
  • Why punish the parents of the disabled?
    Parents who have adult children with disabilities saw a glimmer of hope when the promise for payment for caring for their children was given. But like most things, the complicated and relentless bureaucracy of the whole process shows a completely...
    The Daily Blog | 19-04
  • Our government: still no idea
    Happy Easter everyone, bad weather aside. A previous post of mine was called “The Government with no ideas”.  Unsurprisingly, the theme of the piece was of a current government thoroughly absent of any creative ideas or solutions to assist more...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • 12 things Forbes has to say about NZs about to burst economic bubble
    Forbes is not known for their socialist or left wing activism, so when they predict a grim economic failure, we should should collectively poo ourselves a little. National often get given this perception that somehow they are better economic mangers....
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • That Sinking Feeling: Labour’s urgent need for persuasive words and coura...
    THE LATEST ROY MORGAN POLL has Labour on 28.5 percent (down 3.5 percent) and the Greens on 11.5 percent (down 1.5 percent). At 40 percent, the combined vote of the two main centre-left parties has fallen 5 percentage points since...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Why the Labour movement should support a Universal Basic Income
    The Mana movement’s support of the idea of a universal basic income is a welcome development. It could become one of the litmus issues that define the party and prove extremely popular. If Mana are in a position to do...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Legal high and cannabis regulation
    I marched through Henderson last month with my fellow Westies to express our concern about the impact of so called “legal highs” on our community. Some people chanted loudly calling for banning, some expressing anger at the parliamentarians who voted...
    The Daily Blog | 18-04
  • Know your Tory fellow travellers and ideologues: John Bishop, Taxpayers Uni...
    . . On 19 March, I reported on the Board members of the so-called “Taxpayers Union”. With one exception, every single member of the Taxpayers Union Board was a current (or recent) card-carrying member or supporter of the National and/or...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • GUEST BLOG: Daniel Bruce – Internet Party: What Seems Ridiculous To The O...
    Imagine you’re a 18-21 year old, from a working class family. You’ve never had a landline phone at home, because your parents can’t afford the fixed monthly bills, so everyone in your familiy has a pre-pay mobile phone. Because of the same tight...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Greens to push for housing standards in MOU with Government Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release We don’t need any more official reports. We know the problem and we have the plans....
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Mighty River squanders $3.8m preparing for sale Tuesday, 28 Aug 2012 | Press Release New Zealanders do not want asset sales and they do not want the Government wasting millions of dollars on...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government’s economic agenda on shaky ground Monday, 27 Aug 2012 | Press Release Instead of betting on a boom and bust industry and selling off assets the government needs to invest in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: National’s tax cuts haven’t cut tax avoidance Sunday, 26 Aug 2012 | Press Release It is not fair that many rich New Zealanders are cheating on their tax. National’s 2010 tax cuts, that...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Waitangi Tribunal report adds to crisis in asset sales agenda Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release In its rush to sell our assets, National has found itself in a crisis of its...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Privacy across all departments needs checking
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Privacy across all departments needs checking Friday, 24 Aug 2012 | Press Release “People don’t have a choice about giving their information to the state so the Government has an absolute duty to...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Reports show Government role in driving ACC dysfunction Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Restoring public trust and confidence is an essential goal and will require very major change starting from the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government must front up on full costs of asset sales
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government must front up on full costs of asset sales Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release It’s time for the Government to front up over just how much these asset sales are...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New report: middle NZ worse off, inequality grows Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release Our society has never been as unequal as it is today. New research from the Ministry of Social...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Government to delay addressing climate change indefinitely Thursday, 23 Aug 2012 | Press Release “It would be a shock for any other Government to introduce such a self-defeatist piece of legislation but unfortunately...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney’s Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members’ ballot. “It’s...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold Thursday, 17 Apr 2014 | Press Release Christchurch cannot afford to lose this agency The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Resignation rates among cops soar The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Work visa problems need monitoring The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination...
    The Daily Blog | 17-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Brazil: Human rights under threat ahead of the World Cup     Protests in Brazil:Brazil Franciscan friar kneels in front of Brazilian riot police officers asking for calm during confrontation with Landless...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Libya: Trial of former al-Gaddafi officials by video link a farce     Saif al-Islam al-Gaddafi will face the courts on 14 April. © IMED LAMLOUM/AFP/Getty Images         Read...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights ...
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Algeria: Pre-election clampdown exposes ‘gaping holes’ in human rights record     Freedom of expression, association and assembly are under threat ahead of elections in Algeria. © FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images    ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed
    Source: Amnesty International NZ – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Viet Nam: Prisoners of conscience released but dozens remain jailed     Vietnamese activist Nguyen Tien Trung was one of the prisoners of conscience released this week. © Private      ...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    Source: Green Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today. The report...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • The issues behind the possible MANA-Internet Party Alliance
      Last weekend Kim Dotcom spoke at MANAs AGM to discuss the possibility of the Internet Party and MANA Party working together to defeat John Key this election. As someone who knows both Hone and Kim, I have a unique...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Source: Labour Party – Press Release/Statement: Headline: Manufacturing Upgrade   Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.   – The claims and opinions...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Get work on 29th and the ANZAC spirit deserts the TPPA
      Groser and co would have been spitting tacks last week as the ANZAC spirit deserted the TPPA negotiations. Australia has done a deal directly with Japan which undercuts the demand for Japan to opening all agriculture in the TPPA....
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • No fracking solution to climate change
    Some British tabloids and oil lobbyists have jumped on comments made by an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change author that fracking could play a role in addressing climate change as an argument for it here in Aotearoa, so is fracking...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    Source: First Union – Press Release/Statement: Headline: At Last: A Manufacturing Policy Date of Release:  Thursday, April 17, 2014 Body:  FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Drone murder of New Zealander “justified” by Prime Minister
    Yesterday Prime Minister John Key justified the extrajudicial killing of a New Zealander in a US drone strike in Yemen with a few cynical, callous words at a stand-up press conference. Key said he’d been briefed by our spy agencies...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Secret Policeman’s Ball
      Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Ball is back in New Zealand for one night of some of the best stand-up comedy from both national and international comics The freedom to provoke and in some cases offend is essential to the...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • So the US has assassinated a NZ citizen – what did Key know?
    A non judicial assassination by the US on a NZ citizen raises questions. Key made the idea that NZers were training with terrorists part of his farcical defence for the GCSB mass surveillance legislation. I say farcical because even if...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Something Better Than Something Worse: Why John Key could become our longes...
    IN HIS MEMORABLE holiday-home encounter with the host of Campbell Live, the Prime Minister, John Key, did not rule out running for a fourth term. Were he to be successful, the long-standing record of Sir Keith Holyoake (11 years and 2...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • GUEST BLOG: RIO TINTO WINS 2013 ROGER AWARD
      Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third  The seven finalists for the 2013 Roger Award for the Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand were: ANZ, Chorus, IAG Insurance Group, Imperial Tobacco, Rio Tinto, Sky City Casino and Talent 2. The criteria for judging are...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • National drowning in an ocean of poisoned milk
    It is becoming difficult to keep up with which National Party MP is bleeding the most at the moment. Simon Bridges is being crucified by Whaleoil almost as much as Greenpeace are attacking him, suggesting Cam is seizing the moment...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Want to get rid of synthetic cannabis? Legalize real cannabis
    Have we managed to appreciate the madness that synthetic cannabis is legal yet more harmful than organic cannabis which is illegal? I find the current moral panic over synthetic cannabis difficult to become concerned with when alcohol is FAR more...
    The Daily Blog | 16-04
  • Save our homes – stop the evictions!
    “We will keep on fighting because it frightens me to think my grandchildren could become homeless,” Tere Campbell told me. Tere is a member of Tamaki Housing Group. In September 2011, tenants in 156 state homes in Glen Innes received...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • The daily humiliation of women and the constant policing and shaming of our...
    The last few months have been particularly bad for the shaming and policing of women’s bodies in the media, both in New Zealand and globally. First we had NZ Newstalk ZB presenter Rachel Smalley referring to women weighing over 70kgs...
    The Daily Blog | 15-04
  • Tariana Turia: Labour doesn’t deserve our vote
    Maori Party Co-leader Tariana Turia told TVNZ’s Q+A programme that Labour doesn’t deserve the Maori vote. ‘I don’t believe they deserve our vote any more....
    Scoop politics | 20-04
  • Family Court Consumers Group appalled at legal rort
    Family Court Consumers Group appalled at Lawyer for Child's "1 meeting in 10 years" taxpayer funded legal rort...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Manufacturing Matters to New Zealand – 17 April
    The Labour Party announcement today recognises the simple truth that the manufacturing sector really matters to New Zealand’s economy as a whole, based on the part manufacturing plays in the growth of the added value element in the tradable sector,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Young Kiwi to Represent New Zealand at Premier Youth Forum
    Young Kiwi to Represent New Zealand at Premier Youth Forum FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Commonwealth Youth New Zealand Executive Director, Aaron Hape, has been selected to represent New Zealand at 33Fifty, the Commonwealth Youth Leadership Programme,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Lisa Owen interviews Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei
    Greens propose new ministerial disclosure regime based on British rules, requiring quarterly declarations of ministers' meetings, travel and hospitality....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Politicians Should Maintain Workers’ Easter Break
    Family First NZ is rejecting calls for any liberalisation of Easter trading laws and says that workers deserve a break to spend time with their families. “This is not an issue about choice as has been argued. For many workers,...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Lisa Owen interviews experts on Antacrtica
    Lisa Owen interviews Chuck Kennicutt and Gary Wilson on Antarctica Headlines: Top Antarctic scientists warns New Zealand "not ready" for worst as ice shelves and sea ice in Antarctica retreat and the climate changes Gary Wilson: "Can...
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Beyond the State – NZ State Houses from Modest to Modern
    As part of the our 'Active Hand of Government' series for 2014, we present Bill McKay, Senior Lecturer, School of Architecture and Planning, speaking to his new publication....
    Scoop politics | 19-04
  • Global unions applaud NZ ‘slave ships’ progress
    Global unions the ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) and IUF (International Union of Food, Agricultural and Hospitality Workers) today applauded the steps forward made in preventing often shocking abuse of crews on fishing vessels in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Families before commerce at Easter The retail workers’ union has hit back at critics of New Zealand's modest Easter trading restrictions. "Some things are more important than going to the mall, and for just three and a half days each...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Easter trading laws archaic, in need of overhaul
    Press release: ACT New Zealand Easter trading laws are outdated and in need of a major overhaul, said ACT leader Jamie Whyte today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • ALCP welcomes Campbell Live poll result
    The Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party welcomes last night's Campbell Live poll, saying it is an overdue reality check for public opinion on personal cannabis use....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Q+A This Week 20/4/14
    Q+A This Week SUNDAY 20 APRIL, 9AM ON TV ONE The latest on the US-NZ relationship from the US military’s top man in the Pacific, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear . Deputy Political Editor Michael Parkin asks him whether we’re allies,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Community detention for pokie theft
    A 67-year-old former company director, convicted of stealing pokie machine profits, was today sentenced to six months community detention, 160 hours of community work and ordered to make reparation of $6,000....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Waitangi National Trust Board Amendment Bill
    The Māori Affairs Committee is inviting public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Wednesday, 14 May 2014....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Collaboration stops drugs from crossing borders
    Collaboration between Hong Kong and New Zealand Customs has stopped millions of dollars worth of drugs coming into New Zealand this year, with a number of seizures and arrests in both countries....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Call for public enquiry into the future of farming
    Fish & Game NZ is calling for a public enquiry “to examine the future of agriculture in New Zealand”....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Comment on Labour Policy Announcement by NZMEA President
    “This policy release from the Labour Party is so important that if it becomes government policy it would define a shift in New Zealand’s culture,” says Brian Willoughby President of the NZMEA and Managing Director of Plinius Audio and Contex...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Manufacturing policy makes sense but….
    On the surface much of Labour's prescription for manufacturing is sound though questions remain over some of the detail not yet announced, the Employers and Manufacturers Association says....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Where Are The 15,000 Jobs?
    “Paula Bennett is today proudly telling New Zealand that beneficiary numbers have decreased by 15,000 in the past year. There is no proud declaration that 15,000 jobs have been created in the same period,” says Auckland Action Against Poverty spokesperson,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Change of approach to government procurement needed
    The rail engineering industry has been totally let down by National’s lack of manufacturing policy, and Labour’s measures outlined today represent a marked shift in approach to supporting domestic industries, the RMTU said today....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Depreciation Policy Shouldn’t Be Just for Pet Industries
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Labour’s announcement to beef up rates of depreciation in the manufacturing sector, but is questioning why David Cunliffe is picking winners rather than applying the policy across all sectors. Jordan Williams,...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • FIFA U-20 World Cup NZ 2015 Kick Off Times Announced
    An array of kick-off times to suit football fans of all ages has been confirmed for the FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015. With 52 matches spread across the nation, the public will be able to enjoy a collection...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • “Legitimate purpose” provides no protection under 167 form
    On Radio New Zealand today, the Privacy Commissioner indicated that ACC could only request information that was "relevant" for a "legitimate purpose". His view was therefore that the ACC167 form is not a "blank cheque" or...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • State: still keeping you safe on the road this Easter
    The long-awaited Easter/ Anzac break is nearly upon us while the weather may have taken a turn for the worse in several parts of the country, many Kiwis will still be packing up their cars to take a road trip....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Govt plan for community input into residential red zone
    Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Governor-General to visit Turkey
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    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
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    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
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  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
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  • Dunne Speaks
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  • Research announcement welcomed
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Students Welcome Engagement with StudyLink
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Public lose interest in this council, 2016 to be a watershed
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour and National join forces in new Maori confiscations
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • The FCV Bill – Flagging 30 years of failures?
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • 1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know How
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  • Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award
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    Scoop politics | 16-04
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