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Regulate this!

Written By: - Date published: 8:14 am, February 28th, 2013 - 172 comments
Categories: david parker, Privatisation - Tags: , ,

There is a lot of call in the comments here for Labour to come out and say they will buy National-sold assets back (at sale or market price, whichever lower) – or indeed take them back.  An announcement will render the assets unsellable.

The view we’ve heard from Labour is that National will have spent all the money in the kitty (highly likely) and there will be no money to buy them back. Take them back and we lose the confidence of the international community.

Now, putting aside more radical ideas of where the money to buy them back could come from (even if some of them have merit – that argument would need winning), I see a middle (but not third) way.

Even among most market believers, the New Zealand Electricity Market doesn’t work.

We’re too small for any sort of proper competition apparently.  I’m dubious that any competition truly works in something so infrastructure dependent as electricity (we don’t want 2 sets of cables everywhere…).  Ideally we’d still own the power companies and be able to scrap the whole idea.

But if we don’t own, we can still regulate.

And we can regulate these companies within an inch of their lives.  Make sure that no “excess” profit is taken (and certainly not offshore). Make sure the right amount is put back and invested into the right sorts of infrastructure renewal and renewable energy.  And a personal hobby-horse – even make sure that a good rate is paid to private households contributing energy to the grid.  A distributed power-supply will be more efficient.

If Labour comes out and advocates heavy regulation on power companies it will certainly depress the price.  Ideally down to a level that National decide to scrap the idea, but that’s unlikely.  So hopefully at least down to a level that we can buy them back piece-by-piece over time.

Max Bradford’s late-90s electricity reforms (to create the “market”) were what outraged David Parker so much that he got into politics, so surely Parker has a better plan for how to organise our electricity sector.  Let’s hear a plan to move towards it.

172 comments on “Regulate this!”

  1. vto 1

    Yep agreed. Regulate.

    For fucks sake, the free private market uses every single tool at its legal disposal (and more) to gouge as much as is humanly possible from old people trying to keep warm at night.

    We should do the same back to them. They are big boys, they can handle it.

    They push to the maximum yet you (the left) do not, and that is one of your major flaws in most everything. Stop being so bloody nice (or whatever it is, weak, dunno). Get stuck in. You owe it to the people.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      +1

      Time to stop compromising in favour of the rich and stand by the principals that will ensure that NZ will become a better place to live.

    • Tom Gould 1.2

      The artificial market the Tories built is clearly failing. With wholesale prices down 22 percent, and demand flat, the retail price goes up, along with the profits? WTF? This was bearable when we owned the generators, but with them on the block and soon to be in foreign hands, it is time to sort out this broken market once and for all. A proper regulator with real teeth is long overdue, and now it is absolutely essential.

      • Gosman 1.2.1

        I didn’t realise that a selling a 49 percent stake equated to the company being in foreign hands. How does that math work out?

        • shaz 1.2.1.1

          Umm. How I wonder? Past experience being the best predictor of future conditions perhaps.

          • McFlock 1.2.1.1.1

            you mad, rash fool, you.

            Don’t you know that the best predictor of future conditions is a 2-dimensional cartesian graph based solely on the fantasies of what would happen on Planet Tory if we were all rational robots who possessed perfect information about the economy?

            • Colonial Viper 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Is Gossie back to the “a 49% sell-off isn’t a real sell-off” spin. Gawd that was so 2011.

      • Shane 1.2.2

        The reason prices are going up is due to network businesses – Transpower and the local distributors are spending to upgrade their assets. This is an area already under price control by the Commerce Commission. Get with the plan mate and stop sprouting nonsense.

        • Colonial Viper 1.2.2.1

          Meh, the reason they have to spend up big now is because they have been sucking capital out of their networks over the last 20 years.

          Get with the plan mate.

  2. Peter 2

    Whilst I support much stronger regulation on the electricity market, this is a little bit of a cop out. We can take the assets back – it’s literally as simple as Labour (and the Greens) saying that we’ll renationalise them upon taking office next year, with people (the mythical Mum and Dad investors that Key and English love so much) getting their initial cash back:

    It works like this:

    1) David Shearer announces that the assets will be renationalised, with compo for investors at current rates (i.e. there is a loss incurred between now and then).

    2) The bottom drops out of the sale, and the sales falter.

    And thus, we keep our assets, Shearer demonstrates leadership on a critical economic matter, and Labour shows itself to be an effective opposition. Helen Clark and Michael Cullen employed this very same tactic with ACC in 1998.

    But of course, this won’t happen, and the reason for it is quite simply – a lack of leadership.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 2.1

      Another reason is that it would ‘an even worse reason than privatizing the assets’

      • ghostwhowalksnz 2.1.1

        ACC wasnt privatized, so you are incorrect in the comparison.

        • Peter 2.1.1.1

          I didn’t say it was privatised. I said that Labour spiked the nascent private insurance market that was developing, and thus, paved the way to get the scheme back in public hands and control.

          Same applies with asset sales.

          • ghostwhowalksnz 2.1.1.1.1

            Completely different situation. No ACC assets were transferred and didnt need to be bought back. Buying back assets unless the business is broken ( like Air NZ and TranzRail) is not really possible anymore. Funnily enough it would take someone like a Key on the labour side to do it. A weak leader like Shearer or Cunliffe dont have enough political capital

            • Peter 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Not really possible. Why?

              Yes, not possible with the current leadership (which you hint at)!

              But it is technically possible. Such a weapon is so powerful you only need to mention it using it.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      +1

      The only response to selling the assets was that they would be renationalised with no compensation. Every left-wing party should have said that as soon as it became obvious that the polls showed that NZers didn’t want them sold.

      • RJLC 2.2.1

        +1

        This ex Labour voter will not return to the fold until such a commitment is made, particularly in regard to the state-owned utilities. Regardless of current party leadership issues.

      • Dem Young Sconies 2.2.2

        +2

        This is the only threat that would actually derail the sale process, and stop it dead. The last thing that the rich like to do is throw their money away. If it becomes clear that this will be the outcome of buying shares, there will be no takers.

        On a side note, the parties of the left should also have companies like Contact and Nova in the line for renationalisation without compensation. Same goes for the banks, Fonterra, supermarkets etc. Monopolies and oligopolies of this side are so important that they should only exist for the benefit of the people; not as a means to milk the country for money.

        • Shane 2.2.2.1

          Wow. Lets nationalise everything and turn into a basket case that the Soviet Union turned out to be. Why stop at Fonterra and supermarkets, why not all the shoe repairers? There are not many of them around, yet they still gouge me on the price it costs to fix my shoes?

          Seriously, nationalisation is not the answer IMHO. We have the Commerce Commission to regulate monopoly type businesses. Agree, that ComCom aren’t correct always. The alternative with nationalisation is a flight of capital offshore, to the detriment of local investment.

          Also, if excessive pricing is occurring. or service is not meeting expectation the market will react with new competitors. Look at cafes coffee carts as a example.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.2.2.1.1

            The alternative with nationalisation is a flight of capital offshore, to the detriment of local investment.

            We don’t need foreign investment. That’s a lie cooked up by the banksters.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.2.2.1.2

            BTW, it’s pretty much impossible to get new competitors in electricity due to the nature of the infrastructure. It’s also far more efficient to use a state monopoly.

      • Gosman 2.2.3

        Yes! I would love it if someone serious on the left came out with that policy. It would then be a small step to predicting that your home is next on the list. The middle classes would desert the left in droves.

      • QoT 2.2.4

        You wouldn’t think it was that fucking difficult to say, would you? With back-up messages like “we’re sending a clear signal to the market” and “some things are too precious to be left to profiteering asset-strippers” and “Mums and Dads can’t afford first homes, how does this government expect them to buy shares?”

    • JonL 2.3

      ”Lose the confidence of the international community” would this be the same community that sees NZ as an easy mark, to loot, intimidate and generally treat as a retarded backwoods hick with a government all too eager to come running and obey at the snap of fingers………..

      • Draco T Bastard 2.3.1

        Yeah, that community, the one that’s been screwing NZ over for the last few decades.

      • aerobubble 2.3.2

        Labour and National have bent over to get LoR and the Hobbit movies. But Key did something far worse, when the film companies started demanding law change all Key needed to have said back, was why would you harm your market, many unionists have kids who want to see your movie.

      • Yeah I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Pillagers need not apply.

    • The Chairman 2.4

      A cop out, indeed, Peter.

      And I hope this thread is not a softening for the position.

      We won’t lose the confidence of the international community if a ‘buyer beware’ policy was announced before any listings proceed.

      However, not doing so will cost voter confidence in the Labour Party.

      A growing number of people are questioning Labour’s lack of commitment to later reverse policy they currently oppose.

      Moreover, the cost of borrowing is currently less than the rate of return.

      • Peter 2.4.1

        Honestly, if this thread is being used as a softening, or a test for a softening, it wouldn’t surprise me. But then, according to Shearer, “no one reads blogs”.

    • Well Peter have you written to David Shearer and the Caucus Have you made your well worth comments made to Labour’s Policy Council. If not start there because I believe that there is a lot of Labour support for this. If Davis Shearer and the Labour Party and opposition know it has a lot of support then your hopes may be reality.

      • The Chairman 2.5.1

        If the Labour Party is genuinely unaware of the growing public discontent for their lack of commitment to later reverse policy they currently oppose, they must be living on Planet Key.

        All talk in opposition – little action when in power – won’t secure the votes.

      • Peter 2.5.2

        He he. I’ve spent two terms on Labour Party Policy Council (elected), as well as on many policy committees, that feed policy to the Council. From my experience, they were mostly full of people a bit similar to us – good hearted, well-meaning earnest types who cared about NZ and wanted to make a difference.

        However, what tended to happen following any Policy Council process was that Party-written policy would get “lost” on a 9th floor desk. Therefore, the party was an effort-sink skilfully used by MPs to deflect a bunch of energy from activists they would otherwise have to listen to.

        So, like a lot of people at that time, I resigned from all my policy roles, and then resigned from the party, specifically because far too many MPs treated the party with disdain, and still do, from the looks of things (and the good MPs leaving, e.g. Charles Chauvel).

        I know that Jordan Carter and others have made steps to improve the policy processes, and I admire them for doing that, but they still have the same roadblock – the MPs, specifically those from the ABC, or ABP (Anyone But the Party) faction.

        So right now, I view writing to anyone in Labour as a waste of time. It may change, but for now, we must explore other avenues.

        • Skinny 2.5.2.1

          Your quite right Pete r.e. MP’s… I have a friend who is an outstanding Union official, he warned me not to mix with Politicians. I soon got to understand why. He referred to them as a bunch of undemocratic, self interested barstards. Who once elected forgot the hard workers who put them there & put themselves on a pedestal playing lip service to rank & file activists. I Agree with regard to policies going missing on the 6th floor. 
          Note: I am mainly referring to Labour but you can add a couple of arrogant Green MP too namely that little twerp from Gizzy!            

  3. vto 3

    One other thing…

    The people of NZ and the govt of NZ are as entitled to so act as described above in the free market asd much as anyone. It is a free market. It is a free world (ok, within limits). We are free to act and should make no apology for it.

    We are free market participants, with many tools at our disposal, and we should use them.

    Fuck the profiteers.

    btw, can anyone explain how having a profit component in our electricity prices is beneficial?

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      btw, can anyone explain how having a profit component in our electricity prices is beneficial?

      Well, those profits can be offset by more tax cuts for the wealthy.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1

        That only applies if the assets stay in our possession. This government is going to sell them, lose the dividends and cut taxes making the tax base smaller.

    • Tiresias 3.2

      What you refer to as “a profit component” is actually a use of money charge. Economics 101.

      Let’s say ‘New Zealand’ needs to build a new hydro dam to meet electricity demand. Howya’ gonna do it?

      1. Call for volunteers to fund themselves for three years as they wield pick and shovel in the mud to erect it?
      2. Borrow the money from somewhere? No problem if you offer enough interest to make lenders willing to give you the capital you need. But to pay that interest you have to sell the electricity you make at a ‘profit’ over day-to-day running costs in order to repay the capital borrowed plus the interest (in the form of dividends) you’re having to pay in the meantime.
      3. Print the money you need.

      Of course only Governments can do 3.

      So why does our Government prefer 2 rather than 3? Because some Governments believe as an article of faith that the private sector can run New Zealand’s power supply more efficiently than the Government can. Certainly, Governments have an impressive track record of throwing public money in large amounts at completely dotty projects (diesel from lignite anybody?) usually for reasons that have much more to do with political needs over economics, and option 2 above has the advantage that the risk of such ventures falls on private investors rather than the public purse.

      So there is certainly an argument that having a profit component in our electricity price avoids the often much higher costs of having Governments building the wrong power-stations in the wrong places and run by their kicked-upstairs buddies who usually don’t know the first thing about power reticulation – although such higher costs are usually hidden in subsidies and sleight of hand from the public purse to avoid red faces.

      Personally I think a well-run state-controlled electricity generation industry is by far the best option, but the key there is ‘well-run’ and given the third-rate quality of most of the current political class I doubt a Government of either colour today could run a church bazar very well.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.2.1

        …and option 2 above has the advantage that the risk of such ventures falls on private investors rather than the public purse.

        Did you notice the governments bailing out the banks and financial institutions? Seems to me that, no matter what process is used, the risk falls squarely on the government.

        Personally I think a well-run state-controlled electricity generation industry is by far the best option, but the key there is ‘well-run’ and given the third-rate quality of most of the current political class I doubt a Government of either colour today could run a church bazar very well.

        And did you notice the collapse of the entire global financial system that was brought about by the private companies? Yep, favoritism occurs but I’m sure that you’ll find more of it in the private sphere than you will in government and it’s possible to put in place procedures and openness that will help to prevent it in the public sector. Such openness is anathema in the private sector.

        • Joe 3.2.1.1

          That is partly true governments played a very large part in causing the financial crisis. This was due to people like Bill Clinton and many other countries allowing people to get mortgages that they could never afford. Good regulation such as making people have 20% deposit for a house and making sure banks had to have a certain amount of cash reserves at all times would have gone a long way to minimising the effect of the crisis.

    • Arfamo 3.3

      It’s only beneficial if it’s an SOE, and the (limited) profits get fed into the budget or reinvested in energy infrastructure development or maintenance, isn’t it?

      • Draco T Bastard 3.3.1

        Yep. Basically the SOE would be bringing in a surplus which would be fed back into it’s operations and there would be no dividends and thus no profit. IMO, under such a system major infrastructure would be paid for through taxes rather than through the surplus with the surplus used to fund ongoing R&D and maintenance.

        • Arfamo 3.3.1.1

          I’m learning as much as I can about the history and current operations of power generation and supply here. Max Bradford in a less tolerant and law-abiding society would have been lynched by a screaming mob. I don’t think the general populus realises just how deep in debt we are getting under the Nats, and how ideologically blindly and completely unnecessary it was. Nor how much worse it is likely to get. I can’t see big numbers of new full time well paid jobs on the horizon (from either party) and privatising, even partially, only means more user pays and increasing prices (the higher profit/higher asset revaluation spiral). And probably more indirect taxes. All of which hit low and middle incomes hardest and reduce living standards.

          But I’m equally interested to read the views of those who have any semi-rational explanation of why asset sales are a good thing, for any reason other than they shouldn’t have ever been necessary. I see it as short term gain for long term loss, same as the banks.

          • Colonial Viper 3.3.1.1.1

            I can’t see big numbers of new full time well paid jobs on the horizon (from either party)

            This is the age of environmental and resource depletion.

            Therefore, actual real economic growth (as opposed to ponzi financial bubble schemes) are going to become harder and harder to achieve.

    • Shane 3.4

      “btw, can anyone explain how having a profit component in our electricity prices is beneficial?”

      Perhaps dividend income for the shareholder who took investment risk or reinvestment by the business into productive, income earning assets. Capitalism 101.

      Solid Energy is a case in point why the state should not be an owner/shareholder!

      • Arfamo 3.4.1

        The problem is a privatised business may invest too much in unproductive income eating assets – shareholders and directors – at the expense of maintenance and new generation.

  4. johnm 4

    Here’s the U$K situation. Traitor Key selling off our Power companies is creating the same obscenity here. He’s a market ideological idiot.The artist taxi driver.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HRjyf__hJA&list=UUGThM-ZZBba1Zl9rU-XeR-A&index=2

    I forgot: The well orf section of NZ divided society are complicit with playboy Key. Prices will go up for us and big profits for them and the banks who finance them with fiat junction.

    • johnm 4.1

      Here’s the U$K situation. Traitor Key selling off our Power companies is creating the same obscenity here. He’s a market ideological idiot.The artist taxi driver.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HRjyf__hJA&list=UUGThM-ZZBba1Zl9rU-XeR-A&index=2

      I forgot: The well orf section of NZ divided society are complicit with playboy Key. Prices will go up for us and big profits for them and the banks who finance them with fiat junk money.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      He’s a market ideological idiot.

      Don’t make that mistake. Key may be ideological but he’s not an idiot. He has a specific goal, that of selling off all of NZs wealth to the worlds richest people, and he is achieving that.

      • tracey 4.2.1

        Agreed. There came with Key, to the NAT leadership, alot of money. Those who give lots of money have expectations to be met.

  5. shorts 5

    Labour the time is now to say something concrete and positive about what you’ll do
    The electorate awaits
    Seize the day – this is the game changer you need and want!

    • johnm 5.1

      Hi Shorts
      +1 However Labour are a bunch of too comfortable cosy cowards, they haven’t the balls to do sweet F all. :-( They’re part of the problem.

      • Colonial Viper 5.1.1

        Must not do or say anything which might upset or irritate the chattering property owning upper middle classes…

        • TighyRighty 5.1.1.1

          I bet you are the meekest little lamb at your remuera pool side soirées. There won’t be a peep of your online machoness.

          • Tim 5.1.1.1.1

            Whereas of course, you’re the suave man of reason and the foreskin of machismo in tighty whiteys. I think there’s a ‘t’ missing in your headline as well (just btew). God I think you’re so suave you could define the new COOL! We all need you so much I’m at a loss as to how we can reward you for your presence in any way that you might consider adequate.
            If I was to indenture my ‘kuds’ with a mission to engage eternal praise, would that suffice?
            (I always thought egoes the sizes of buses would suffice as a comparison in the new millenium, now I realise we’re talking QEII size). And we all know how Toia took a sideswipe

          • geoff 5.1.1.1.2

            Fuck off traitor.

  6. Colonial Viper 6

    Not a bad approach Ben, but I cannot see why the Government will not be able to afford to buy the assets back.

    Let the market know that you are levying a corporate super-profits tax. An extra 10c/dollar on all profits made over $100M pa.

    Then let the market know that those funds will be used to buy back shares in the companies over time.

    Also, that Government directors will sit on the boards of the power companies. And that Board documents will be released into the public arena 12 months after they occur, in order to fulfill the public good.

    A bit of imagination and what seems impossible will suddenly become very possible.

    • Lanthanide 6.1

      “Let the market know that you are levying a corporate super-profits tax. An extra 10c/dollar on all profits made over $100M pa.”

      Yeah, ’cause there’s no way anyone could evade that tax :roll:

      • Colonial Viper 6.1.1

        Lanth, of course, but then those commercial organisations become criminal organisations, and that is managed entirely differently.

        Notice how the big banks were forced to pay out to the IRD hundreds of millions in taxes they thought they were cleverly evading?

        Have a little bit more faith that loopholes can be closed and regs enforced.

    • Addison 6.2

      So that would mean goodbye to RTZ and jobs in the south. Most other big employers are not going to invest in NZ of they are going to get a worse return investing in NZ than they would sticking it in a Swiss bank.

      • Colonial Viper 6.2.1

        More economic threats and blackmail against NZ?

        You might have noticed that “big employers” are terminating hundreds of jobs a month in NZ as it is. So it’s time to change the game, not do more of the same.

        Time to put a crimp in the wealth pump going out of NZ.

        get a worse return investing in NZ than they would sticking it in a Swiss bank.

        lol mate

    • Murray Olsen 6.3

      The government could always just regulate a maximum price for power and make the companies operate within that. As private business is so efficient, about 50% of what they charge now should be more than sufficient.
      BTW, we just paid our latest electricity bill in Brisbane. $A88 for 4 weeks. Note we pay our landlord each 4 weeks rather than paying the power company every 3 months. We could probably get a 10% discount if we dealt with one of the electricity retailers directly. Max Bradford should be on trial for treason.

  7. millsy 7

    “Max Bradford’s late-90s electricity reforms (to create the “market”) were what outraged David Parker so much that he got into politics, ”

    Then when he become Energy Minister he did nothing to reverse them.

    • Peter 7.1

      None of them did really, not even Pete Hodgson (who I have a high respect for). Labour was just too damned afraid.

      But afraid of what – power is a bit of a mind trick, it exists where you think it exists. So for Labour, it lurks in private sector boardrooms, but for the private sector people, the power lurks in the minds of left-wing thinkers, and so it goes on.

      If Labour realised this, it can stop being afraid, and actually start leading again.

    • Shane 7.2

      The market was actually created under Doug Kidd in 1996. Max Bradford’s reforms included retail competition – ability to switch suppliers, the breakup of ECNZ and the anti-business separation of network lines companies and energy retailers.

  8. Melb 8

    “I’m dubious that any competition truly works in something so infrastructure dependent as electricity (we don’t want 2 sets of cables everywhere…).”

    Why would this happen? They aren’t selling Transpower.

    • Peter 8.1

      Competition in natural monopolies, like electricity, doesn’t work. Yeah, you can simulate competition, which is what we do currently with the electricity market, but that mostly involves adding complexity and costs, and calling it competition.

      All to meet the needs of the dominant ideology of the day – the idea that competition in all fields of human endeavour is somehow healthy and benefits society as a whole.

      The NZED, for all its faults, was able to deliver long term, relatively stable power prices, with a pretty small team of policy staff. Now we have hundreds of ticket clippers at the SOEs and other private generators doing the same thing.

      And guess who pays :)

  9. Matthew 9

    I agree wholeheartedly with this post. One problem i can see to this approach is the TPPA. If we sign this very dangerous agreement, any decision by future governments to buy-back or nationalize the power companies will see us the target of lawsuits.
    Thus we also need to kill the TPPA.
    New Zealand is on the verge of foreign control & most NZ’ers dont know it.

    • Wayne 9.1

      But Labour supports TPP, and if it was Govt at the relevant time would seek National votes to get it through Parliament.

      Of course the Greens and NZ First oppose TPP but on this issue they don’t count. And I do not beleive the Greens would try and pull down a Govt they were part of, on this issue. That would be over reaching, and Russell Norman would know that, even if their supporters don’t.

      More significantly if TPP is successfully negotiated between the 10 countries involved, it is inconceivable that New Zealand would not ratify it. It would be the equivalent of NZ opting out of the Asia Pacific.

      President Obama has made TPP a priority, and on this issue the Congress (Democrat and Repubilican) are generally supportive, so my sense is that TPP will be sucessfully negotiated sometime late this year or in 2014.

      • Matthew 9.1.1

        All good points, none of which address the issue that the TPPA will destroy NZ. I asked Shearer about the TPPA when i met him in Napier, & his answer did not give me any confidence. I cannot see why they, anyone, thinks it is good for NZ.

      • Bunji 9.1.2

        I think “Labour supports TPP” is far too bald a comment. While seeing that Free Trade Agreements can be a positive, they’ve expressed concerns about TPP – specifically over the secrecy of it, Pharmac and copyright issues (and possibly one or 2 others).

        And “if TPP is successfully negotiated between the 10 countries involved, it is inconceivable that New Zealand would not ratify it”? Surely the measure shouldn’t be how many other countries ratify but whether it will have a net positive effect for the NZ economy? That should be both Labour and National’s position. Australia have done the analysis on their FTA with the US and found that they are 1% worse off because of it – one has to be very careful about deals involving the US. They want to grab all the benefits of free trade to their side – and then some if they can get away with it.

        TPP will have huge issues with Congress btw – particularly with any deal that will be beneficial to NZ. If there’s one thing that unites Democrats and Republicans it’s self-interest nad protecting their constituencies. And virtually every state in the US has dairy cows…

        • Wayne 9.1.2.1

          TPP won’t have huge problems with Congress (in my view).

          Each of the 10 countries have their specific objectives. They wont all be realised, but each country is going to get something of value.

          NZ will get better dairy access to the US, but the total extent and the timeframe will be in hot contention in the negotiations. The US will get something on IP. Everyone may see some advantage in investor protection – each country is both a recipient of investment and an offshore investor.

          BTW, whats your source that Aus is 1% worse off due to the FTA with the US. I know that they think it has not been as good as hoped, but actually being worse off than they otherwise would be- who says that?

          • Colonial Viper 9.1.2.1.1

            NZ will get better dairy access to the US

            This is bullshit

            We don’t need this access

            We get penalised and our sovereignty eroded

            All for extra sales of butter we cannot even produce.

          • Bunji 9.1.2.1.2

            Dang my lack of memory for sources… I remember there being a news story on the study 2 or 3 years ago. I think the 1% was how much ordinary Australians were worse off (after increased costs, without increased benefits), but I could be wrong.

            Certainly the IMF said at the time Australia would be 0.03% worse off each year, and indeed imports from the US have boomed while exports initially declined and haven’t shown much zest since – the bilateral trade deficit has boomed instead.

            As well as the small export growth they’ve suffered significant trade diversion to other markets, and “the exclusion of sugar from the deal has cost taxpayers over $400 million in compensation, changes to the Pharmaceutical benefits scheme could cost $1.5billion a year, increased costs to farmers as quarantine laws are relaxed, and increased costs to all consumers with the extension of copyright protections for books, music, films, art, and computer software by 20 years. “

  10. Anne 10

    An announcement will render the assets unsellable.

    In the context of your first sentence Ben, do you mean that if Labour announced in unequivocal terms how they plan to start the reverse process re-the asset sales programme, then they would render the assets unsellable?

    Forgive me my naivety on this subject, but isn’t that exactly what we want to see happen?

    • Ben Clark 10.1

      In my first para I was outlining a popular theory among standardistas. Me, I’m not so optimistic: I think National would sell anyway, and just get a worse return. They’re not concerned about selling at the bottom of the market, so why would any further depression of the price stop them…

      • Anne 10.1.1

        I think I see what you mean now. Thanks for the explanation and I agree… their blind ideology means they would sell on principle whatever happened. Why doesn’t Labour/Greens toss them into the cactus anyway and watch then wriggle out scratched and bruised. Whatever happens NZ is going to be the loser now. The only difference would be the timing.

        • One Tāne Huna 10.1.1.1

          Is it blind ideology, or just the desire to get the dividends flowing into the seeing-eye trusts sooner rather than later?

          If, for example, their internal polling were telling them that time is running out that would also explain it.

          • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1.1.1

            The people like the mainstream economists it’s blind ideology but for people like Key it’s got more to do with becoming even bigger parasites on the rest of us.

  11. Draco T Bastard 11

    Take them back and we lose the confidence of the international community.

    Very few people in NZ will care. Specifically, only the RWNJs, the politicians and the CEOs will care. Everyone one else is aware of how much damage caring about what the “international community”, really just the politicians and business folk of other countries, has done to this country.

    And we can regulate these companies within an inch of their lives.

    Actually, we’d have to regulate them until they collapse and the cost of the regulation will far outweigh any benefits that the sale produces.

    And a personal hobby-horse – even make sure that a good rate is paid to private households contributing energy to the grid.

    The amount paid to private households must be the same that the household is charged. Any less and the household is, effectively, paying the electricity company to use the power that the household generates. The line charge is already separate from the electricity charge.

    A distributed power-supply will be more efficient.

    Yep, especially once we get a fully smart grid in place which is another reason why electric grid is a natural monopoly.

    Let’s hear a plan to move towards it.

    A plan to move back to an efficient state monopoly would be good.

    • Lanthanide 11.1

      “Very few people in NZ will care. ”

      Yeah, actually, I work for a company that exports goods internationally, so I very much care, because I could be out of a job if things went disastrously tits-up.

      • geoff 11.1.1

        Explain how NZ renationalising its electricity system would cause you to lose your job.

        • Lanthanide 11.1.1.1

          Draco was quoting this statement in the original post:

          “Take them back and we lose the confidence of the international community.”

          I replied to Draco’s statement.

          My point is that if we “lost the confidence of the international community” I could potentially lose my job, “if things went disastrously tits-up”.

          • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.1.1

            the confidence of the international banking cartel

            I believe this is what you meant.

            The “international community” in general will be fine with us. The people who will be pissed off will be the big banks and hedge funds.

            The main danger to NZ is an international capital strike.

            Notice how they bitch about workers having the ability to strike, but will quite freely conduct a capital strike if it suits their needs.

            • Rogue Trooper 11.1.1.1.1.1

              strike a match

            • Tiresias 11.1.1.1.1.2

              Here’s your problem:

              New Zealand’s gross external debt: $256.4 billion (125.3% of GDP). Of that private debt amounts to 83.5% of GDP. Most of that will be money borrowed by business to stay in business.

              What is currently killing Spain and Greece is the cost of borrowing – which they either have to do to refinance when loans fall due, pay out of taxes to clear, or default.

              Currently the cost of borrowing abroad for New Zealand and New Zealanders is nothing like what it is costing Greece et al, but if you’re going to start seizing/confisticating property as some on this site are advocating the risk element in New Zealand’s borrowing costs will skyrocket which means either than even more GDP will flow off-shore as interest, businesses will go bankrupt or be sold off-shore and even more of our taxes will go in funding the national debt.

              Or of course we could stick our fingers up at foreign lenders, and be like the Greeks where the pharmacies are running out of medicines as there is no money for them.

              • geoff

                Yeah a small problem with your analysis is that neither Spain nor Greece have control of their currency. We can.

                • Tiresias

                  Yeah, thought someone might say that.

                  Look at those figures again. Two-thirds of New Zealand’s overseas debt is private debt. You suggesting we roll our printing presses to pay off private debt with public money?

                  ‘Course that what the US Federal Reserve and the Bank of England did in 2008 to pay off the debts of the banks.

                  • geoff

                    You suggesting we roll our printing presses to pay off private debt with public money?

                    We may have to, it entirely depends on how the mexican standoff in the global financial system play out over the next few years. The banksters don’t look like they’re going to change their ZIRP policies anytime soon and many commentators are suggesting that this cannot go on forever. They argue that a continuation of this policy will result in the return of a gold standard. There is evidence to suggest that many central banks around the world are repatriating their gold reserves, ie shifting the physical gold from being on loan to other central banks back to their own vaults. I wonder how NZ would fare if such an upheaval were to occur
                    given that, from my understanding, NZ’s gold reserves are nix, nada, nothing 0.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Basically, yeah.

                      And forget gold – this nation has something far more valuable: productive farm land.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Look at those figures again. Two-thirds of New Zealand’s overseas debt is private debt. You suggesting we roll our printing presses to pay off private debt with public money?

                    Not More of the Same

              • Draco T Bastard

                …which means either than even more GDP will flow off-shore as interest, businesses will go bankrupt or be sold off-shore and even more of our taxes will go in funding the national debt.

                Nope, just have the government make loans available at 0% interest. The government getting the money from the simple act of creating it at 0% interest. Businesses stay in business, the NZ$ drops on the forex boosting exports and the large dollop of interest on every single purchase disappears.

                • Tiresias

                  “Nope, just have the government make loans available at 0% interest.” – Draco.

                  So you’d have the public purse take the risk of every business in the country? And the risk of every expansion plan they’d rush into with funding at 0%? And the huge salaries CEO’s would pay themselves when it costs the company nothing?

                  And of course with businesses borrow about $40 billion from the Govt. at 0% they can repay $40 billion owed to ANZ, BNZ, Westpac, ASB et al.

                  So ANZ, BNZ, Westpac, ASB et al find themselves with $40 billion cash in their vaults to get rid of. “Hey, you breathing? Want a $1 million mortage at 2% to buy your dream property?”

                  Or they’d use it to buy US Treasury Stock at a nice safe, profitable 0.5% and drive the NZ$ down to US$0.50 putting petrol in NZ up to $5/litre?

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    So you’d have the public purse take the risk of every business in the country?

                    SCF ring a bell?

                    And the risk of every expansion plan they’d rush into with funding at 0%? And the huge salaries CEO’s would pay themselves when it costs the company nothing?

                    So ANZ, BNZ, Westpac, ASB et al find themselves with $40 billion cash in their vaults to get rid of. “Hey, you breathing? Want a $1 million mortage at 2% to buy your dream property?”

                    Loans tend to have conditions such as the company/individual being able to afford to repay them.

                    Or they’d use it to buy US Treasury Stock at a nice safe, profitable 0.5% and drive the NZ$ down to US$0.50 putting petrol in NZ up to $5/litre?

                    First, I really couldn’t care less if the price of fuel hit $5/litre. In fact, I figure that’s going to happen before the end of this decade anyway (in real terms). Secondly, a condition of the loan would be that they can’t do that and if they do we take it all back plus fines and the interest earned.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    So you’d have the public purse take the risk of every business in the country? And the risk of every expansion plan they’d rush into with funding at 0%?

                    Wait. There would be checks and balances that would apply, as well as infrastructure and advice, that new businesses could take advantage of.

                    Further, anyone grossly misusing funds would be done for fraud and put away.

                    It would give a chance for small businesses to start up, and for medium sized businesses to expand their market reach.

              • Murray Olsen

                Why is it ok for a right wing government to seize our property and sell it to their mates, but not for a left government to seize it back? The whole dialogue is hopelessly skewed.

                • Colonial Viper

                  I read Tiresias comments in more detail.

                  Basically Tiresias doesn’t understand that most of NZ’s private debt was due to a mortgage fuelled property bubble (residential and farming). Instead, Tiresias assumes that the debt is being used productively to keep businesses and employment going, which is largely untrue.

                  Secondly Tiresias tries the old scare tactic. Pharmacies don’t have medicines etc. because they have no more hard currency.

                  Notice how Greece still has money to buy hundreds of millions of Euros worth of military hardware, but no money for medicines? So what Tiresias has completely missed here is that the Economic Hijacking of whole countries is deliberate, engineered and prioritised.

                  http://www.presseurop.eu/en/content/article/1383501-greece-still-splashes-out-billions-defence

      • Draco T Bastard 11.1.2

        So you’d be fine with NZ being continually screwed over if you get to keep your job?

        • Lanthanide 11.1.2.1

          No, I’m just disputing your point that “very few people would care”, because actually a lot of people would care.

          I stopped reading your comment at that point because you got off to such a bad start it didn’t seem like it would get any better. I see now that your last missive is suggesting everything should be run by the state, communist-style, so I was right.

      • Crashcart 11.1.3

        As opposed to those fantastic export conditions your company is currently operating in?

        • Colonial Viper 11.1.3.1

          don’t rock the lifeboat, we’ll be OK

          Now I know why hundreds of people were allowed to drown right beside the half empty lifeboats off the Titanic.

        • Lanthanide 11.1.3.2

          While a lower dollar would effectively keep our costs down, as our salaries are ultimately paid from $US, very little has changed for us over the last 7 years I’ve been working here. If anything we’re now in a growth phase.

    • Wayne 11.2

      Try and stand for Parliament with these views

      • Colonial Viper 11.2.1

        Comfortable relatively well-off (for now) middle class voters wouldn’t have a bar of it

  12. bad12 12

    My view, kick start the ‘Cullen Super fund’ and have the Minister direct that fund to purchase shares in all the sold off assets, this could be achieved in part by a sell down of the lesser performing tranches of shares in foreign share-markets,

    Legislate 20% of all Government surpluses be moved into the ‘Cullen super fund’…

    • alwyn 12.1

      There appears to be some confusion in this approach as to what the Cullen Fund is.
      The fund was NOT set up to be a Sovereign Wealth Fund, with assets basically being held in perpetuity.
      It was intended that it be built up prior to about 2031 and then the assets in the fund would be drawn down to help pay for National Superannuation after that date.
      This will require that the fund sells the assets it has accumulated in order to fund the drawdown.
      If this is what you mean to continue then you must be willing to sell all the interest in the SOEs, albeit at a later date. Is this what you mean?
      If you do not intend to realise the assets it is no longer the “Cullen Fund”. Is that what you mean, that these funds will never be available to fund the future superannuation needs?
      In either case, of course, you are requiring that we borrow more than we would otherwise do if we sell 49% of each of the SOEs.

      • bad12 12.1.1

        The Cullen fund would simply be the utility for holding the shares, as the Cullen fund wont need be drawn upon all at once,i assume, then Government can repurchase these shares from the Cullen Fund as the need to sell them becomes apparent…

  13. Jackal 13

    Why is it highly unlikely that there won’t be any money to repurchase those assets back Ben Clark? With the collapse of Solid Energy and an ailing market, the sale of the assets isn’t looking likely to make the government any money at all, even in the short term. Then there’s the fact of large claims to be settled on water rights.

    National has increased government debt by around 200% since 2008 and our debt to GDP ratio means it will be difficult to even service the interest on that debt they have inflicted on us to build some roads of little significance. Couple that with an extended drought period and falling export incomes because of the high dollar, both of which will have a severe impact on our economy, and it’s not hard to see that New Zealand is up shits creak without a paddle.

    In the face of such reality, blathering on about the next Labour led government simply buying back our assets is simply ludicrous! By arguing that the government should spend billions more taxpayer dollars on repurchasing our assets and fighting the litigation that will undoubtedly occur, you’re basically arguing that the government should make further cuts in other areas or borrow more than we can ever hope to repay.

    What other cuts can be made Ben Clark? Perhaps the next Labour led government could kick more people off the dole and DPB or fail to ensure there are enough houses to accommodate our growing population. Is that the New Zealand you envision, thousands more people living rough and doing whatever it takes to survive? At least there will be lots of jails available though, so I guess repurchasing those assets to the detriment of society at large could be an option… But only if you have no social conscience at all.

    • Ben Clark 13.1

      Sorry Jackal, your comment just really confuses me.

      You ask why I say that it’s highly likely that there won’t be any money left to buy back the assets, and then outline it for me. And then you say by my proposal to buy back assets I’ll be consigning people to huge social cuts… when my proposal was about how to cope with not being able to buy back the assets… (or at least not immediately)

      Perhaps you need to read my post again?

      (And I can’t work out why there would be lots of jails available?)

      • fenderviper 13.1.1

        It’s very sad that Jackal has caught mumblefuck virus, hope it can be treated.

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          It’s not looking encouraging thus far.

          • Jackal 13.1.1.1.1

            My word, fenderviper and Colonial Viper have turned into a couple of morons without any argument apart from ad hominem bullshit!

      • Jackal 13.1.2

        National is building more jail cells than is required… I notice that you’ve changed the unlikely to likely… I’m glad you agree with my argument then Ben Clark.

    • Rogue Trooper 13.2

      “is that a canoe in your pocket or just pleased to see…”

  14. DH 14

    Regulation won’t work because it can’t address the underlying problem, one of which is not enough Labour MPs appear to have sufficient knowledge of accounting and business.

    You start with the platform, which is that a business must provide shareholders with a reasonable market return on capital (or equity which is used more these days).

    Modern accounting practice permits a business to revalue it’s assets annually to reflect ‘fair market value’. Most of the dams for example are in the books today at values higher what they originally cost to build.

    There are two basic ways of valuing an asset – it’s replacement cost less depreciation and it’s earning capacity. Most big assets are valued largely by their earnings, usually as a multiple of the existing return based on prevailing market rates.

    Now, if an asset is revalued upwards then it increases the capital or equity of the business. That then creates pressure to increase the returns the business is making because the minute the asset increases in value the existing return will fall as a percentage of equity. With electricity increasing the return is as simple as putting the price of power up.

    When prices go up the returns go up. When returns go up the value of the asset goes up, because it’s valued by the return it makes. When the value goes up the return falls as a percentage of asset value, so up go the prices again. It’s a one-way ratchet and clearly price regulation can’t stop that because it’s not addressing the flawed acounting practices that have been causing this problem.

    FWIW Solid energy are in trouble largely because they value their coal & associated assets on their earning potential. When the price of coal fell the value of the coal in the ground also fell which will lead them to post another large loss on the books due to writing down the value of assets. Power companies of course don’t really have that problem, the price of electricity isn’t likely to fall.

    • Draco T Bastard 14.1

      It’s a one-way ratchet and clearly price regulation can’t stop that because it’s not addressing the flawed acounting practices that have been causing this problem.

      Well, it can because it’s regulation that’s allowing that flawed accounting problem.

      • DH 14.1.1

        Well actually it’s not anything because they haven’t said exactly how they’d regulate. But the comments from Labour up until now have been directed largely at the pushing the Commerce Commission to use their powers to regulate monopoly behaviour more. That might trim the spikes but it wouldn’t curtail the inexorable increases in the price of power.

        They could of course try putting physical price controls on power but how would they do that? Muldoon tried a wage & price freeeze back in the ’80s and it didn’t work, what makes anyone think it would work today? They’d also be subjecting the Govt to lawsuits under the WTO by Contact and Trustpower, Vector etc for breach of contract & loss of earnings.

        • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1

          They’d also be subjecting the Govt to lawsuits under the WTO by Contact and Trustpower, Vector etc for breach of contract & loss of earnings.</blockquote

          Change the law so they couldn't.

    • Colonial Viper 14.2

      You start with the platform, which is that a business must provide shareholders with a reasonable market return on capital (or equity which is used more these days).

      Nah sorry exponential growth on a finite planet doesn’t work any more.

  15. Addison 15

    Just a thought what if Labour say they will Nationalise, drive the price down and don’t get elected. Just think of the huge profits that would be made by buyers then. Even died in the wool Labour supporters don’t talk of a Labour Government but of a Labour Green government. The POlls ,like them or not, show Key and National doing well. It’s a scenario that is more than possible, so your plan could drastically backfire. Also how will you stop people buying low and making a quick buck before the election.

    • Draco T Bastard 15.1

      It’s called taking a risk, something that people need to do every now and then especially if they want to get the sociopathic capitalists off their neck.

  16. burt 16

    Labour – Prepared to bankrupt NZ again just to be popular enough to get the Treasure benches… It’s 1999/2002/2005 all over again. Go for it – waste billions of tax payers dollars so Shearer has a turn at feeling special…..

    • One Tāne Huna 16.1

      It’s time for your reality check. Does the word “surplus” mean anything to you? Does it mean anything to the parrot currently in possession of your “mind”?

    • Draco T Bastard 16.2

      You may not have noticed burt but it’s this government that’s bankrupting the country.

      • Colonial Viper 16.2.1

        English writing out IOUs at the rate of $200M – $300M per week in fact.

        Hey burt – waddya think about your heroes management of the NZ economy 5 years in eh?

  17. 27 February 2013

    MEDIA ADVISORY: : Switch Off Mercury Energy community group:

    PROTEST THURSDAY 28 FEBRUARY 2013

    The Auckland Switch Off Mercury Energy Group has organised the following:
    PROTEST!

    WHEN: Thursday 28 February 2013, from 3.30 – 5.30pm

    WHERE: Outside Mighty River Power corporate office

    ANZ building, 23 – 29 Albert St, Auckland City

    MAP: https://maps.google.co.nz/maps?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&q=mighty+river+power+auckland&fb=1&gl=nz&hq=mighty+river+power&hnear=0x6d0d47fb5a9ce6fb%3A0x500ef6143a29917%2CAuckland&cid=0%2C0%2C14661661492653781907&ei=Iu-EUM-0La6higfJyoG4Dg&ved=0CGYQ_BIwAQ

    _____________________________________________________________________________

    “The legal challenge is over – now it’s PEOPLE POWER TIME to stop the sell-off of Mighty River Power!” says a Spokesperson for the Switch Off Mercury Energy group, Penny Bright.

    “It is time for the public and all political parties opposed to asset sales to hold this minority National Government’s ‘feet to the fire’. Remember this?

    “Let me make it quite clear. If the Government doesn’t get a good price – the Government isn’t going to sell”

    (Tony Ryall, Minister of SOE’s 17/6/2012 NBR

    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/govt-wont-sell-assets-if-it-cant-get-good-price-ryall-ck-121435 )

    “How can the Government get a ‘good price’ for Mighty River Power – if it’s losing thousands of customers and it’s profits are dropping?”

    [PRECEDENT: In 2008, Contact Energy (already privatized) doubled their directors fees and raised their prices 12%.In 6 months, more than 40,000 customers switched from Contact Energy and their profits were halved.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/droughts/news/article.cfm?c_id=180&objectid=10590906&pnum=0 ]

    “It’s now time for thousands more New Zealand Mums and Dads, aunties, uncles, brothers, sisters, and grandparents (particularly those struggling to pay power bills for companies we already own) to ‘seize the moment’ and take action which cannot be ignored!

    It’s time to Switch Off Mercury Energy – 100% owned by Mighty River Power!

    The companies to whom we recommend switching are the following publicly owned companies:
    Genesis Energy http://www.genesisenergy.co.nz Ph 0800 300 400
    Meridian Energy http://www.meridianenergy.co.nz Ph 0800 496 496
    Powershop http://www.powershop.co.nz Ph 0800 1000 60
    Energy Online http://www.energyonline.co.nz Ph 0800 086 400 ”

    Penny Bright

    A Spokesperson for the Switch Off Mercury Energy community group.

    http://www.facebook.com/SwitchOffMercuryEnergy/info

    Ph (09) 8469 825
    021 211 4 127

    • Shane 17.1

      Fantastic Penny, retail competition – consumer choice and voting with your feet. Power to the Consumer. Exactly what Max Bradford’s reforms envisaged!

    • Joe 17.2

      One huge problem with your idea customers leaving for Genesis and Meridian will just make those companies look even better when it comes to sale time. Powershop and Energy online are small players so it won’t make much difference.

  18. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 18

    On why our electricity prices are going up while the cost of electricity generation is going down – Molly Melhuish on tv explains.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/breakfast-news/power-prices-rise-despite-wholesale-price-drop-video-5354707

    I searched on Radionz under electricity and got a couple of summaries:
    ‘Minister says best way to lower power bills is to use less”
    and
    The price of electricity is tipped to stay higher than inflation for the next 18 years, prompting concern that consumers will continue to struggle to pay their bills.
    From Morning Report on 30 Jan 2012 (5′50″)
    Download: Ogg Vorbis MP3 | Embed
    Gas prices to double within a decade and then double again

  19. NoseViper (The Nose knows) 19

    Still can’t edit – nothing in window.
    Radionz summaries can be found if search for Molly Melhuish.

  20. Rogue Trooper 20

    The (real) Regulators
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lincoln_County_Regulators
    Duelin’ Daltons
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dalton_Gang
    a real bunch o’ Cowboys would feel right at home here
    do do Doolin, lookin out our backdoor at a Wild Bunch of Desperados
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Doolin

  21. MrSmith 21

    If we force shareholders to sell their shares back to the Government I suspect the Government would find itself in court and lose. Regulation is fine till the Government changes and then deregulates.

    This is the perfect crime, Labour can’t appose it because National will blame them when they don’t get a good price for the assets, and shit we don’t need this money it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the 140 Billion Blinglish has borrowed so far, we could regulate with some kind of super majority clause but we would need super majority support for such regulation.

    Regulation is really the only option for later, but you would be cutting off your nose to spite your face by undermining the sale process, because National will sell these assets anyway along with your future and your mother for a few dollars, that’s what you get when you put a slimy, two faced, money trader, who moonlights as a second rate comedian in-charge of your country.

    • Draco T Bastard 21.1

      …we could regulate with some kind of super majority clause but we would need super majority support for such regulation.

      That’s what referendums are for. They tend to stop the government doing what the rich parasites want and forces them to do what the people as a whole want.

      • TheContrarian 21.1.1

        Only if binding

        • Draco T Bastard 21.1.1.1

          Well, yes, but referendums initiated by the government are binding. It’s only citizen initiated referendums that are non-binding.

          And that’s ATM as well, need some rule changes to make sure that the government initiates the referendum and/or make citizen initiated referendums binding.

          • TheContrarian 21.1.1.1.1

            “make citizen initiated referendums binding.”

            As has been pointed out here before, making CIR binding would not be a good idea at all.

            • Draco T Bastard 21.1.1.1.1.1

              I disagree with that. Of course, there would need to be changes to the rules as to how the referendum was worded as well as better access to information. The Family First referendum at the time of the s59 repeal is proof of that.

              • McFlock

                maybe with some heavy restrictions on election campaign funding and polling to go alongside efforts to prevent cruelty to the English language.

              • TheContrarian

                A CIR referendum about law and order put to the public after a particularly grisly murder could see the reintroduction of the death penalty based upon knee-jerk reactions.

                I don’t think you have thought this through

      • MrSmith 21.1.2

        Yes Draco some kind of policy where government assets could only be sold after a referendum would be fine, but really the whole fucked up system needs to be rebuilt from the bottom up as you know.

        National are driving us down a dead end street for short term profit, but hey we aren’t going to live forever, and as Cherry-Gerrard said in The worse journey in the world ‘What’s is the use?’ For we are a nation of shopkeepers, and no shopkeeper will look at Research which does not promise him a financial return within a year.” Death by a thousand cuts under National.

  22. George D 22

    I won’t ask if it’s likely.

    Do you think it’s even possible that a Labour-led Government would do this?

    • Joe 22.1

      Oh its possible, they have done it before and they will do it again. One of the reasons I think they are anti-asset sales is that in reality they wanted sell the assets when they next get into power. If you think Labour will never sell government assets you are dreaming.

  23. outofbed 23

    So people choose between eating and keeping warm.. Meanwhile..http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2013/feb/27/centrica-british-gas-increase-profit. Coming soon to a town near you

  24. Dean Reynolds 24

    To hell with regulation – we take back our power companies – issue 10 year Govt stock to the private owners at the same value they bought the companies for. When the stock matures in 10 years, they get paid out – gives us time to find the money to buy them out. We don’t leave strategic assets in private, foreign hands, FFS!

  25. swan 25

    Sounds like a recipe for for power shortages to me. No profit = no investment in new capacity.

    • Arfamo 25.1

      If they are working for private shareholders, how much profit do you think would be invested in new capacity anyway?

      • Draco T Bastard 25.1.1

        Telecom has already shown us that answer – as little as physically possible resulting in the government having to step in in a decade or so to upgrade the network bringing about even more profit for the private sector.

    • Colonial Viper 25.2

      Sounds like a recipe for for power shortages to me. No profit = no investment in new capacity.

      Funny, Clyde, Manapouri, Roxburgh and Huntly were all built during a time of zero private sector electricity profit.

      Figure it out swan, you’re a smart lad.

  26. Addison 26

    But were they not built with the aim to make a profit? I don’t think many business would invest millions with the aim to hand any profit over to the government!

    • Colonial Viper 26.1

      So, private sector corporations can stay out of it then.

    • Draco T Bastard 26.2

      But were they not built with the aim to make a profit?

      No, they weren’t. They were built pretty much as government services.

  27. Addison 27

    So under a socialist plan the power companies won’t make a profit. Ok now wasn’t the objection to selling them that it didn’t make sense because of all the lovely profit they make! Come on boys, get your story straigh, your going to have to sell it to voters soon.

    • McFlock 27.1

      so do you need drugs to blur the ideal world with current reality, or does it come natural? Along with treating all the commenters here as indistinguishable followers of a single political party, of course.

    • Draco T Bastard 27.2

      Under current conditions giving up the profit is a mistake. Changing the conditions so that electricity is run as a government service rather than a profit making exercise and the profit is no longer needed.

  28. Addison 28

    Reality! The majority of people support parties to the right of center. The further left you go the less support. Why do you think Labour makes 30% , the greens 12% and manna, the Workers party 1%. reality .

  29. Addison 29

    CV I am sure the next election like the lastntwo, will prove one of us right.

  30. Addison 30

    Reality is that most work hard ,use their initiative to better their lot. Reality is not expecting any government regardless of r or l to do that for you.

    • Colonial Viper 30.1

      Individualism cannot overcome or compensate for the flaws of a failing economic system and a government determined to act for the rich.

    • Draco T Bastard 30.2

      The reality is that we could keep our standard of living that we have now on 10 hours work per week each. The only reason why we work harder and longer is that a few sociopaths want more and more and more.

Important links

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Not all photo ops are welcomed events…
    . From Facebook… .   . Nasty. [Hat-tip: Kris] . . = fs =Filed under: Odd, Conspiracies, & Other Weird Stuff, The Body Politic Tagged: Cameron Slater, Dear Leader John Key...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-04
  • Not all photo ops are welcomed events…
    . From Facebook… .   . Nasty. [Hat-tip: Kris] . . = fs =Filed under: Odd, Conspiracies, & Other Weird Stuff, The Body Politic Tagged: Cameron Slater, Dear Leader John Key...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-04
  • Letter to the Editor: The power of the vote
    . . FROM: "f.macskasy" SUBJECT: Letters to the editor DATE: Sun, 20 Apr 2014 14:38:19 +1200 TO: "Sunday Star Times" <letters@star-times.co.nz> . The Editor SUNDAY STAR TIMES . This year, if every Labour, Green, Mana, and Internet Party supporter finds...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-04
  • Letter to the Editor: The power of the vote
    . . FROM: "f.macskasy" SUBJECT: Letters to the editor DATE: Sun, 20 Apr 2014 14:38:19 +1200 TO: "Sunday Star Times" <letters@star-times.co.nz> . The Editor SUNDAY STAR TIMES . This year, if every Labour, Green, Mana, and Internet Party supporter finds...
    Frankly Speaking | 20-04
  • High St Crossing Fixed
    You might remember a post from a while ago where Kent outlined a slightly silly situation at the top of High St. He noted pedestrians wanting to walk along Victoria St were forced to wait out a full cycle of...
    Transport Blog | 20-04
  • My name is Brian and I’m a TV addict (not in recovery).
    My name is Brian and I’m a TV addict (not in recovery). I thought it was time to let you in on some of the better  flat screen drugs currently available on the market. You’ll note that there are NO...
    Brian Edwards | 20-04
  • Drones in Yemen; policy in Wellington – ‘conflation’ or global think...
    The news on Wednesday that one of the people killed in a US drone strike over Yemen last year was a New Zealander came as sobering news. The question of how to deal with international conflict in the 21st century,...
    frogblog | 20-04
  • What to do with the Civic building
    News this week that the future of the council’s civic building is uncertain once the council move out of it later this year and move to the old ASB tower on the corner of Albert and Wellesley St. The future...
    Transport Blog | 19-04
  • 2014 SkS Weekly News Roundup #16
    6 things you need to know about reducing emissions Climate change and desertification a threat to social stability Climate concerns in a time of growing ‘climate fatigue’? Costs of climate change may prove high for future Drunken trees: dramatic signs...
    Skeptical Science | 19-04
  • Time for a local drone strike policy
    A message from Arthur McGee, founder of and spokesperson for the Commonsense Corrections Society...
    Imperator Fish | 19-04
  • AT Bouquets and Brickbats from the severe weather
    There’s a lot that Auckland Transport do that we criticise them for and I so always like being able to give them praise when they deserve it. As such this is just a quick post to say that I thought...
    Transport Blog | 19-04
  • Greens: Everywhere they look, Peters is there
    It's not bad strategy, it's not bad planning. It's not their fault at all. But unless the polls move dramatically in the next few months, the Greens are backed into an uncomfortable political corner. New Zealand First has them by the,...
    Pundit | 19-04
  • Varying explanations
    I had reason recently, in the context of discussion about a disingenuous lobby group peddling some of its “non-partisan” wares, to remember the quote: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his job depends on not...
    The Paepae | 18-04
  • Mighty River Rail: A Fresh Future?
    Looking at a number of separate but current issues got me thinking about the possibility of the return of passenger services on the existing rail lines through the Waikato. These include: The potential appeal of well connected and well designed...
    Transport Blog | 18-04
  • Global warming can’t be blamed on CFCs – another one bites the ...
    A paper published in the International Journal of Modern Physics B by the University of Waterloo's Qing-Bin Lu last year claimed that solar activity and human chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) emissions, not carbon emissions, could explain the observed global warming over the...
    Skeptical Science | 18-04
  • The Road Marking Dance
    A neat video showing two clearly experienced guys painting doing road marking. Note to AT, see how easy it is to mark a street, perhaps you could get some people doing the same thing but instead of saying BUS STOP...
    Transport Blog | 18-04
  • Boundary changes
    The new electorate boundaries which will govern the election came out yesterday, and I have now had a little time to digest the final changes. Here are my three reactions. 1. Meh One of the nice things about MMP is...
    Polity | 18-04
  • There are no human rights on a dead planet
    Yesterday I spoke at the International Association of Democratic Lawyers congress in Brussels. In the audience there were over 500 hundred progressive lawyers from over 50 countries. Many of these lawyers focus on human rights issues. I called on the...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 18-04
  • Families before commerce at Easter
    Date of Release: Friday, April 18, 2014Body:  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...
    First Union Media | 17-04
  • Could this man be Prime Minister of New Zealand?
    If you’re a regular follower of this blog, you’ll know that I have in the past written some pretty scathing posts on Labour’s Shane Jones. Not to put too fine a point on it, I’ve dismissed him not only as...
    Brian Edwards | 17-04
  • Movies, feminism and postfeminism
    So, a confession: I've never really liked biographical movies about women I otherwise admire. I'm not entirely sure why - there's something about the cliches they indulge in, the Hollywood-isation. (She lapses into total vagueness revealing, yet again, that she...
    The Hand Mirror | 17-04
  • Barabbas – An Easter Story
    "All I know is that he died and I live. Maybe it’s what lies at the heart of that day."  “YOU’RE A HARD MAN TO FIND!”, exclaimed the sharp-featured young fellow, setting a jug of wine upon the table. “I’ve...
    Bowalley Road | 17-04
  • Low Traffic Forecast For Costly Warkworth Toll Road
    This is the fourth in a series of posts based on the Campaign for Better Transport’s submission to the Puhoi to Warkworth Board of Inquiry. The full presentation is over at bettertransport.org.nz Previously I pointed out that the NZTA produced...
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • Mitigation of Climate Change – Part 3 of the new IPCC report
          Guest post by Brigitte Knopf             Global emissions continue to rise further and this is in the first place due to economic growth and to a lesser extent to population growth. To...
    Real Climate | 17-04
  • A message from Greenpeace about Simon Bridges
    I received this email today, from Greenpeace; . Hi Frank, We’ve called for Simon Bridges to be sacked over his incompetent mishandling of the Energy and Resources portfolio. The final straw was him opening the Victoria Forest Park up for...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • A message from Greenpeace about Simon Bridges
    I received this email today, from Greenpeace; . Hi Frank, We’ve called for Simon Bridges to be sacked over his incompetent mishandling of the Energy and Resources portfolio. The final straw was him opening the Victoria Forest Park up for...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • Letter to the Editor: John Key and State-sanctioned murder
    . . FROM: "f.macskasy" SUBJECT: Letters to the editor DATE: Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:56:14 +1200 TO: "Dominion Post" <letters@dompost.co.nz>  . The Editor DOMINION POST . A New Zealand citizen is killed - murdered, to be more precise - by...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • Letter to the Editor: John Key and State-sanctioned murder
    . . FROM: "f.macskasy" SUBJECT: Letters to the editor DATE: Thu, 17 Apr 2014 13:56:14 +1200 TO: "Dominion Post" <letters@dompost.co.nz>  . The Editor DOMINION POST . A New Zealand citizen is killed - murdered, to be more precise - by...
    Frankly Speaking | 17-04
  • Judith Collins explains
    Judith Collins explains what really happened at that dinner, and why it's no big deal....
    Imperator Fish | 17-04
  • Citibanker: the age of renewables is here
    Kathryn Ryan’s interview earlier this week with Michael Eckhart, Managing Director and Global Head of Environmental Finance and Sustainability at the giant investment bank Citigroup was arresting. He was in New Zealand as a keynote speaker at the Wind Energy...
    Hot Topic | 17-04
  • Media Links: Kiwi killed in drone strike.
    I did interviews on TV 3 and Radio NZ about the drone strike that killed a Kiwi dual citizen in Yemen last year. There are many questions raised by the incident, but time constraints precluded addressing all of them. The...
    Kiwipolitico | 17-04
  • Photo of the Day: Lorne St
    A quick shot of Lorne St in front of the library. It appears Brobdingnagian gardeners have dropped by with some seriously big pot plants. I love them! About the only criticism I every heard about the shared space in Lorne...
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • National: American lickspittles
    Yesterday we learned that America had murdered a New Zealand citizen in a drone strike in Yemen. Today, the government was closely quizzed about its views on this in Parliament. Steven Joyce (standing in for the PM) was very clear:...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • A $130 million gift to the rich
    When the government announced that it was selling off Genesis Energy, it deliberately underpriced it, with a discounted price, generous bonus scheme, and huge dividend. And today that has had the expected result, with Genesis shares leaping almost 20% on...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Defamation via Facebook and ‘a private website’
    This defamation case should be a shot across the bows of various internet wide-boys who think ‘defence of truth’ or ‘opinion honestly held’ is some kind of magic elixir or Get Out of Jail Free card. It’s worth noting the...
    The Paepae | 17-04
  • Water water everywhere, but not a drop to drink
    It is three years and one day since Danyl wrote this blog post about South Canterbury Finance. I was re-reading it today, and something stuck out like a sore thumb: December 2008: SCF undertakes a high risk loan strategy, losing...
    Rebuilding Christchurch | 17-04
  • Access: I Can’t See You, But You Should See Me
    Being lost for words when you’re a talkback host could hardly be considered ideal. But back in September of 1992, I was hosting an evening talkback show on a fledgling radio station in what was then a newly deregulated, highly...
    Public Address | 17-04
  • Judith Collins: guess who’s coming to dinner?
    Judith Collins, Justice Minister, is playing dumb in parliament at question time and avoiding media. Her patronising responses, or non-responses, to allegations of corrupt influence is not becoming of a Cabinet Minister.  Her abuse of the House by criticising questions...
    Tumeke | 17-04
  • Can fracking save the climate?
    Blogging is a great way MPs can communicate and engage with citizens about the issues facing us. I have joined The Daily Blog blogging team and have so far posted on Anadarko’s failure to find oil and a piece outlining...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • New Fisk
    A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A forgotten naval victory in which even Nature played a part...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Labour’s manufacturing plan
    David Cunliffe has launched Labour's policy to get more manufacturing jobs back in New Zealand: Labour leader David Cunliffe launched the policy to an Auckland business audience this morning, adding the depreciation and procurement policies to the known suite of...
    Polity | 17-04
  • Easter PT shutdown
    It’s Easter weekend and that invariably means the rail network is shut down for works. Auckland Transport advises the rail network will be closed for Easter and there are changes to timetables for buses and ferries during the holiday break....
    Transport Blog | 17-04
  • Another perspective on the postgraduate allowance cuts
    I have already shared two stories from psychology students about how the postgraduate allowance cuts have affected them. These stories demonstrate the widespread impact the changes are having. Here is yet another story I have received, this one giving the...
    frogblog | 17-04
  • Against secret "justice" in NZ
    Last year, in response to a series of court cases challenging its control orders or claiming compensation for human rights abuses by its intelligence services, the UK passed the Justice and Security Act 2013. The Act introduces a "Closed Material...
    No Right Turn | 17-04
  • Massey chancellor sets up company in opposition to university
    Massey Chancellor Chris Kelly will chair the board of a company that intends to be New Zealand’s largest private training provider (PTE)...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Gibbs, Hayek, Canterbury and the free market for degrees
    The New Zealand Herald notes that philanthropist Alan Gibbs is about to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Canterbury today. One of the many institutions Alan Gibbs has donated his money to...
    TEU | 16-04
  • Hard News: Friday Music: Record Store Day
    As readers will know, I have long embraced the internet music revolution. The ability to discover and download new things pretty much as they're being made has reinvented and refreshed my lifelong relationship with popular music. But I still really...
    Public Address | 16-04
  • Great Sorkin Parody
    Aaron Sorkin (SportsNight, The West Wing, The Newsroom) makes a very particular style of TV. Some good parts to that, some really silly parts. Amy Schumer' Comedy Central parody of Sorkin is pitch-prefect and hilarious. Enjoy: Inside Amy SchumerGet More:...
    Polity | 16-04
  • Photographic proof
    Deborah asked for a picture of my bicycle, after I wrote about it, and there is now one in existence which even includes me riding it along Mt Albert Rd, thanks to a dear friend who drove past me and...
    The Hand Mirror | 16-04
  • Our future lies in science
    This is not a column on global warming, climate change or whether humans are or aren’t having an impact....
    Pundit | 16-04
  • MP to attend progressive politics conference
    Labour MP Grant Robertson will attend the Progressive Governance conference in Amsterdam later this week. “This conference brings together Social Democratic parties from around the world to discuss how progressive politics should work in the post global financial crisis environment....
    Labour | 20-04
  • Storm fans fire service commitment
    Further damage from the huge storm that battered the West Coast was prevented by the great work of our volunteer Fire Service and locals will be extremely grateful, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “Our region has been...
    Labour | 19-04
  • Time for Ryall to fix mistakes and help families
    Families who won a long and lengthy Court battle for financial help to support their disabled daughters and sons are now facing a new battle with health system bureaucracy and need the Health Minister's help, Labour's Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Time for greater ministerial accountability
    The Green Party has today released a proposal to introduce a ministerial disclosure regime in New Zealand to improve the transparency and accountability of government.The proposal, based on the system used in the United Kingdom since 2010, would require all...
    Greens | 18-04
  • Power prices soar on the eve of winter
    On the eve of winter as New Zealanders are turning on their heaters, power prices have soared sky high, Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer says. “Energy Minster Simon Bridges claimed in Parliament that prices were estimated to rise 2.4 per...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Workers can kiss goodbye to Easter Sunday off
    The Government’s decision to “reprioritise” scarce labour inspector resources by abandoning the enforcement of Easter Sunday Shop Trading laws means workers can kiss goodbye to a guaranteed day off, says Labour’s Associate Labour Issues spokesperson Darien Fenton. “The Labour Minister...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Businesses need to respect workers this Easter
    Businesses intent on flouting Easter shopping laws should face stiff penalties, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today. This Easter, at least one major garden centre chain intends to open on Good Friday despite this being in breach...
    Greens | 17-04
  • 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 time the Government acted in the interests of families,” Sue Moroney says. “National has tried every...
    Labour | 17-04
  • 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 price for Genesis far too low in a desperate attempt to beef up demand....
    Labour | 17-04
  • 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 Darien Fenton, Labour’s Associate Immigration spokesperson. “In the past 12 months, temporary...
    Labour | 17-04
  • 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 spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Since 2009 resignation rates among sworn staff have...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand to revisit its decision to evict an essential community organisation in Christchurch with only eight weeks notice.Yesterday at the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence support services the organisation...
    Greens | 17-04
  • 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 Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Auckland Council has implemented a by-law banning the use of psychoactive...
    Labour | 17-04
  • 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 after revelations that three out of seven properties sold in Wanganui tested positive for methamphetamine,...
    Labour | 17-04
  • 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 Damien O’Connor says. “Before his departure, John Key said he would wait until all...
    Labour | 16-04
  • 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 tabled in Parliament yesterday shows that total use of ozone depleting gases in New Zealand has...
    Greens | 16-04
  • 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.  ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    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
    The Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, is to visit Turkey next week to lead New Zealand’s representation at the annual Gallipoli commemorations....
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Actions of Police prior to death in custody were justified
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority on the death of Adam Palmer while in Police custody found the actions of Police were justified during the arrest. The report also found that Police took all possible steps to try...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • New Electorate Boundaries Finalised
    New boundaries for the country’s 64 General and seven Māori electorates have been finalised – with an additional electorate created in Auckland. The 2014 Representation Commission has completed its statutory role of reviewing and redrawing electorate...
    Scoop politics | 17-04
  • Save The Children Welcomes Strengthening Children’s Rights
    Save the Children New Zealand welcomes a new treaty which allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour takes manufacturing seriously
    Labour takes manufacturing seriously Manufacturing workers and employers will all benefit from economic policies announced today by the Labour Party leader, David Cunliffe. The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union has welcomed the announcement...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Manufacturing policy welcomed
    “Today’s announcement of Labour’s manufacturing policy is very welcome,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg. “Just as many other developed countries are realising, having a strong manufacturing sector pays off in good jobs, retaining...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Operation Unite – a Blitz on Drunken Violence
    New Zealand Police are hoping to reduce the number of victims from alcohol related crime by asking the public to say ‘Yeah, Nah’ more often this holiday weekend....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Dunne Speaks
    Dunne Speaks 17 April 2014 There have been a number of harrowing cases presented this week about the impact of psychoactive substances on vulnerable young people. At one level, the tales are deeply disturbing. It is awful to see anyone...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Research announcement welcomed
    A leading Māori researcher has welcomed the announcement of the 2014 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • At Last: A Manufacturing Policy
    At Last: A Manufacturing Policy FIRST Union congratulates Labour on the release of its Manufacturing policy today. The union represents workers in the wood, food and textile manufacturing sectors. “In a week that has seen another manufacturing company,...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Republic campaigners still positive after royal visit
    "Campaigners for a New Zealand Head of State are still feeling positive after ten days of royal events" says NZ Republic Chair, Savage. "Our polling before the visit showed increased support for a kiwi head of state. We have a...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Selling homes to foreigners benefits New Zealanders
    Winston Peters has apparently convinced David Cunliffe that when foreigners buy New Zealand property they make New Zealanders worse off. Mr Cunliffe has announced his intention to adopt Winston Peters’ policy of banning foreigners from buying...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Taxpayers’ Union Welcomes Key’s Rejection of ‘Fat Tax’
    The Taxpayers’ Union is welcoming Prime Minister John Key’s rejection of fat and sugar taxes ahead of this year's election. Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Union, says:...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Law Commission Paper on a New Crown Civil Proceedings Act
    The Law Commission has released A New Crown Civil Proceedings Act for New Zealand , its Issues Paper on reforming the Crown Proceedings Act 1950. The Issues Paper proposes a new statute to replace the Crown Proceedings Act 1950....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for NZ workers
    Maritime Union says focus must now go on fishing industry jobs for New Zealand workers...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Make the choice to stay safe on the road
    With Easter and Anzac Day giving us two successive long weekends this year there will be a lot of happy families preparing for trips....
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Students Welcome Engagement with StudyLink
    The New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) has welcomed the improved performance from StudyLink in 2014. There is no doubt that getting their loans and allowances processed on time makes it easier for students to concentrate on being...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised
    Deaf And Hard of Hearing New Zealanders Marginalised Imagine if you could not access vital news and information. What would you do?...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Public lose interest in this council, 2016 to be a watershed
    The second term Auckland Council is proving to be an interesting one and very different to the inaugural 2010 – 2013 Governing Body. We are currently going through a budget round to lock in where council’s $3b expenditure is directed...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Labour and National join forces in new Maori confiscations
    Chris McKenzie, former-treaty negotiator and Te Tai Hauauru Maori party candidate, says that the Minister of Primary Industries’ plans to remove temporary exemptions for vessel operators derived from settlement negotiations is akin to confiscation...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • The FCV Bill – Flagging 30 years of failures?
    Paying seafarers at least a minimum wage under the Minimum Wage Act 1983 has applied to the New Zealand fishing industry for more than 30 years. It was, and is, a basic protection which had two universals – it was...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014
    Oxfam’s Morning Tea 2014 Kiwis across the country are getting together over a cuppa to make a difference in the lives of people living in poverty in the developing world. They’re getting involved in Oxfam’s Morning Tea, a fun and...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • 1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know How
    1 in 4 Want to Improve Financial Literacy But Don’t Know Where to Go...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
  • Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award
    Sky City Casino Second, Chorus Third - The criteria for judging are by assessing the transnational (a corporation with 25% or more foreign ownership) that has the most negative impact in each or all of the following categories: economic dominance...
    Scoop politics | 16-04
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