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Slash and burn, Key’s choice

Written By: - Date published: 10:41 pm, March 21st, 2011 - 91 comments
Categories: budget 2011, public services - Tags: ,

John Key says there is to be no new money in the Budget. The health, education, and other locked-in increases  plus the Christchurch rebuild will come from cuts elsewhere. Cuts of up to 32%. It doesn’t have to be that way. The rebuild and the shortfall from the failing economy can be easily covered if Key wanted to. If he chooses to slash and burn, it’s because he wants to.

I took the 2011 spending that is outlined in the 2010 Budget, then I took off the ‘new spending’. That “$800 million of new spending” was actually only $394 million of new money and $410 million of cuts reallocated to other areas (what the Nats call a ‘top-down adjustment). Now, the new money won’t be there and the cuts won’t be reallocated, they’ll just be cuts.

Then, I looked at the things that can’t be cut:

  • You can’t really cut welfare and superannuation spending without cutting the size of the weekly payments (something National has pledged not to do). I realise that National is talking about cutting Working for Families at the top end but that will only save a few million unless the cut is so deep as to be politically unsustainable.
  • We can’t cut financing costs because that’s the interest we’re paying on our debt.
  • We can’t cut the GSF, that’s the Government Superannuation Fund and the government is contractually-bound to meet the commitments it made. Health and education aren’t getting cut (apparently) and are getting another $800 million, which is less than inflation and population growth.
  • Another billion has to be found to fund the government’s annual contribution to the rebuilding of Christchurch. Key says the budget won’t have any increase, so presumably the Christchurch rebuilding comes out of the existing pool.

So, what’s left after all that locked in spending? And how does that compare to what the other areas of government spending need just to tread water? Yeah, it doesn’t. We’re talking $3.75 billion in real cuts (only a billion of which is due to the quake rebuilding). That means nearly 19% slashed from housing, transport, police, defence, customs, conservation, justice etc etc.

I did the same thing but assuming the Nats won’t cut transport, and then again this time assuming they also won’t cut police and defence either.

The cuts for what is left are, of course, even deeper, up to 32% in real terms. Are you happy to cut 32% from the Kiwisaver,  and bio-security budgets? No. Well the money has to come from somewhere else then. What about 32% out of state housing? Or 32% out of R&D? Each area you wouldn’t cut means deeper cuts somewhere else.

The point I’m making is that this isn’t play money. The $3.75 billion in real cuts that Key is planning to make has to come out of the public services that you and I use, directly or indirectly. There’s a reason they call it the social wage – without it we’re poorer and we have to pay money out of our other income to try to cover the costs.

And what’s sucking all this money out of the economy and firing all those workers going to do to the wider economy?

What would I do? Well, the Budget shows that tax swindle from last year is costing $1 billion over four years, despite Key claiming again yesterday that it was fiscally neutral. So, reverse the tax cuts for the rich by moving the 33% rate back to 39% and keeping the corporate rate at 30%, not cutting it to 28% on April 1 as planned (oh, yeah, despite this ‘crisis’ the corporate rate is still being cut this year). That’s $1.4 billion right there. Then, get rid of those ETS subsidies, that’s another billion this year. Lets suspend new state highway construction, apart from the projects that are already underway. Well done, we’ve covered the shortfall, except for the earthquake costs.

Now, lets add that temporary earthquake levy that the vast majority of people support, $6 a week for each taxpayer is a billion a year.  That could be a flat levy on everyone or it could be progressively, whatever floats your boat.

Simply by reversing the tax cuts for the rich, taking away subsidies for polluters, stopping waiting money on white elephant highways, and putting on a widely-supported temporary levy there’s no need for any cuts.

If Key refuses to take these options and, instead, slashes public services it’s because he wants to cut them, not because he has to.

91 comments on “Slash and burn, Key’s choice”

  1. McFlock 1

    Key’s vision is blurred,
    so he’ll cut by a third.

  2. Lanthanide 2

    “taking away subsidies for polluters”
    If you take away the subsidies, but require companies still pay for the carbon tax, all you’ve done is pushed the costs from the public purse to the private one. So you’ll be increasing inflation and lowering everyone’s real income, which will mostly be felt by those on low incomes. The increased inflation will flow through to requiring higher government expenditure in the next budget (in salary increases if nothing else).

    • Marty G 2.1

      the economy is smaller and the costs are higher. the question is what goes as a result.

      Do you prefer to cut 32% from Kiwisaver, conservation, bio-security, housing, employment initiatives, aid, Mfat, communications investment, R&D, NZ on Air, NatRad, etc etc

      or

      cut a subsidy for climate change pollution

      I’m not denying it is costless in terms of flow-on effects, just as cutting public services isn’t costless.

      I’m arguing over where the cost of the situation we’re in falls. I think you agree with me that subsidising polluters to make the ETS less effective shouldn’t be a priority.

      • Lanthanide 2.1.1

        Definitely.

        I just think you should’ve mentioned it in your post, because it’s an obvious flow-on effect that cutting public funding of ETS costs would simply require private funding to make up for it, unless you just cut the ETS all together. Not mentioning it leaves you open for criticism about “fairies at the bottom of the garden” type wishful thinking.

        • Peter 2.1.1.1

          If we are talking about flow on effects, how about the flow on effects of reducing real spending and throwing more people out of work?

          The underlying question is, what is the best way to grow the economy because that is what we are told is needed to reduce the deficit long term? Keys way appears to be reduce Government’s activity in the economy and then wait for a private sector miracle to take up the slack.

          What is Labours alternative?

          • Rosy 2.1.1.1.1

            Growth, borrow, no levies on low and middle income – no position on upper income, reprioritise e.g. missles on frigates for Christchurch…. more here from his press conference.

        • Marty G 2.1.1.2

          don’t get me wrong, I appreciate that you’re on to it enough to raise these issues but every cut and each of the alternative funding options I’ve raised has basically the same multiplier effects.

        • Oscar 2.1.1.3

          Or how about just throwing the ETS out completely and going back to the drawing board on it. Where’s my 6 months of summer the alarmists promised?

          • Marty G 2.1.1.3.1

            I would prefer a carbon tax, rather than the complexity of the ETS but we’ve got the ETS now. Going through another 3 years of policy development to get a replacement is foolish when climate change is upon us now.

          • lprent 2.1.1.3.2

            Where’s my 6 months of summer the alarmists promised?

            Simplistic nonsense. Climate change is a changed climate. It doesn’t specify what direction the change proceeds in. We’re talking about the global climate having to disperse extra retained heat because of higher concentrations of greenhouse gases.

            In any one area that could mean more clouds and a higher rainfall over summer. Why? Because climate is a heat dispersal system and a changed heat pattern causes it to shift and there are many summer climate patterns known. If you’re really unlucky your climate change could bring you the summer monsoon

            But the reality is that climate shifts take decades to reach fruition and they are masked by weather patterns. So all we’re seeing at present in the climate patterns are shifts that people tend to view as just being within the normal variation of weather. You need to use stats to find if there has been a significant change.

            Of course that would require you to learn some stats ?

            • Oscar 2.1.1.3.2.1

              Oh yes, lets keep perpetuating the money merry go round.

              Of course it shifts over decades – 4 to 5 decades if I remember you saying rightly. 40 – 50 years is about the normal cycle in any regards.
              After all, the last time we had weather events this extreme was in the 40/50′s, so its about right.

              As for the ETS – who actually benefits from any money raised? It certainly ain’t the gummint, it certainly ain’t us plebs. So who? Oh that’s right, the Goreocracy.

              • Marty G

                who is the ‘goreocracy’ and how do they benefit from the ets?

                • Oscar

                  Nice little term I picked up at Deniers Anonymous. Refers to those who jumped on Gores bandwagon and is making themselves a nice little pile of cash in “being green”

              • lprent

                Not me. There is nothing significant in the 40-50 year range at a global level. The only cycles I’m aware of that influence climate energy globally at any usable significance (nice stats term..) level are:-

                • The solar cycle (Hale cycle) of about 11 years. The current data on the effect of that on climate is showing less of an effect that was expected, and the effect appears to be being swamped by greenhouse gas effects over the last decade.
                • Whatever caused the reduction in sunspots during the Maunder minimum in 1645 to 1715 and earlier (but probably the same event) in the Spörer Minimum in 1460 until 1550 which they are still arguing about causation. Probably the internal plume ‘geology’ in the sun by the looks of recent stuff from NASA. I suspect that eventually there will be a periodic pattern found for that in the 1000-2000 year range but it is going to be hard to get solid data on it..
                • The 26000 year Milankovitch orbital cycles.

                There are a number of other climate cycles known, but these are not changes in overall energy. They are just changes in how the energy is moving around. Global climate shifts rather than global climate change.

                BTW: Since this is heading into a science lesson – it’d probably pay to carry it on in OpenMike.

            • Bob 2.1.1.3.2.2

              Try and tell that to Ken Ring , but then again many have tried .

  3. her 3

    Borrow, borrow, borrow. Well he’s got to keep in with his banker mates. He’ll need a job eventually.

    • Pete 3.1

      Leaving uneven distribution (credits) after having already taken it as tax with WFF…

      I realise that National is talking about cutting Working for Families at the top end but that will only save a few million unless the cut is so deep as to be politically unsustainable.

      should be left alone, and instead impose an across the board increase for those on higher incomes – Simply by reversing the tax cuts for the rich??

      The only reason for this is because addressing the high cost of redistribution of WFF is “politically unsustainable”? Buying a few votes is more important than being financial sustainable?

      • Marty G 3.1.1

        pete. As we’ve been through before before, http://thestandard.org.nz/english-on-working-for-families/ cutting significant money out of WFF by making families on higher income get nothing isn’t as simple as it sounds. As Zet said:

        You can have lower overall payments, which hits everyone
        You can have a steeper abatement rate, which is like a higher effective tax rate on working families
        You can have a cut off point, which means that a family might be hundreds of dollars worse off if one of the parents earns one more dollar, which is just stupid economic policy.

        If you could show a way to stop families with incomes over $100,000 getting WFF without any of the problems outlined above, then I would support it. But we went through all the numbers and permutations last time. I’ve yet to see any clever solutions come out of the Right.

        I welcome your clever suggestions

        • Pete 3.1.1.1

          I know it’s not simple to undo the anomalies and nonsensical unfairness of WFF – but that doesn’t mean it should not be addressed. However we are probably stuck with ever increasing complexities, it’s far easier to add more and more ways of taking and giving tax than to simplify it. Politicians find it easy to give more, but very difficult to redress imbalances by taking some away.

          So most of us (especially in the middle income/tax band) will probably keep paying more, to subsidise the poor who don’t have enough (and the minority of those who use other’s money to cruise) and because many of the rich keep finding ways of minimising their tax exposure.

  4. higherstandard 4

    In the current economic climate we need all of the following

    higher progressive taxes
    lower government spending
    more user pays
    capital gains tax
    increased exploitation of our mineral resources

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      An asset tax as well, similar to council rates, but which also applies to stocks and bonds.

      Yes mineral resources need to be used – eg from non schedule 4 land.

      Private high value, high employment enterprise needs to be strongly encouraged.

      • higherstandard 4.1.1

        Nah asset tax is silly – don’t tax assets which have been bought with tax paid income and which are liable for tax in relation to dividends etc, tax them once the asset has been realised for a capital gain or income.

        We can have a sensible discussion about it but unfortunately the tosspots in the major political parties won’t go near it as they are primarily interested in votes coming into November

  5. Steve Withers 5

    It would be a calculation that the flow on effects from making polluters pay would be less damaging across the board (“a little inflation”) than throwing people out of work and cutting specific services en masse….or moving them to the private sector (for tax-backed crony profits) and user pays.

    See it as flaking skin (cut a subsidy to a broad group) as opposed to cutting off your finger (savage budget cuts). Both involve a net loss in body mass. One is much less disruptive than the other.

    • Lanthanide 5.1

      Completely agree, but I think Marty should have at least acknowledged it.

      • Marty G 5.1.1

        There are flow ons from all the options. I don’t deny that not does it need to be pedanticly spelled out every time since it’s both undeniably true and obvious.

        These are 200-500 word posts to kick off debate, not theses. By fixating on minor content issues, you miss the opportunity to contribute to the wider debate.

        • Lanthanide 5.1.1.1

          Of the 4 specific options you listed, 2 of them are effectively raising taxes, so the impact is transparently obvious (and the whole point of the exercise). 1 of them is to stop construction on highways – a lot of this money goes into raw materials and specifically labour, so the actual impact will be on a particular segment of the economy.

          Changing ETS subsidies will result in petrol prices and power prices going up, at the very least, which affects everyone. This isn’t as immediately obvious as tax changes or as narrowly focussed as infrastructure changes (which is really shifting work to CHCH, not scuttling it completely).

          IMO it’s worth a mention. Yes, this is a small post to kick off debate, but that doesn’t mean you can’t throw in a sentence or two on the ETS subisides changes being “problematic, but best of the bad bunch we have to choose from”.

          “By fixating on minor content issues, you miss the opportunity to contribute to the wider debate.”
          Right-wingers are going to fixate on minor content issues and blow it out of proportion so that they can conveniently ignore the rest of your message. Better to head them off at the pass by acknowledging their point on your own terms, before they see a small chink in your argument and tune out. Unless you think the idea that any discussion is better than no discussion (and we just need to look at the abortion post to see merit in that).

          To actually debate the merit of changing ETS subsidies – it will put the price of petrol up, therefore stunting growth if not ensuring recession (by your own analysis that high petrol price = recession).

          • Bright Red 5.1.1.1.1

            the ETS subsidies just mean that taxpayers pick up the Kyoto tab compulsorily through our tax rather than as a result of voluntarily engaging in climate changing behaviour. That’s a bad thing. It weakens the price signal that the ETS is meant to provide without actually reducing the cost of Kyoto on the country.

            by your logic, it appears we should place low ETS charges ahead of everything else. We should then bin the ETS entirely, pay for all the Kyoto charges out of our taxpayer pockets and do nothing about climate change.

            You seem to think that shifting the cost of Kyoto from non-polluting activity to polluting activity and using the tax money thereby freed up to fund public services rather than cutting those services and the jobs they provide will hurt the economy I’m not sure you’ve shown how that is the case.

            • Lanthanide 5.1.1.1.1.1

              “You seem to think that shifting the cost of Kyoto from non-polluting activity to polluting activity and using the tax money thereby freed up to fund public services rather than cutting those services and the jobs they provide will hurt the economy I’m not sure you’ve shown how that is the case.”

              I’m not raising the point about shifting ETS costs because I’m saying putting the cost of it it on private people will hurt the economy compared to putting the cost of it on the government.

              I’m saying that shifting ETS costs from the government onto the private people doesn’t magically make the cost disappear, it’s still going to have to be paid. Because it’s essentially a consumption tax, like GST it is regressive, and therefore will fall hardest on those with lowest incomes, while the richest people are unlikely to change their consumption of carbon-emitting goods and services in the face of a small price rise.

              Also, as I mention briefly at the bottom of my post, getting rid of subsidies to business will result in the petrol price going up. There is strong evidence (provided by Marty) that high petrol prices stunt growth. So there already is evidence that shifting the cost of the ETS from the public to the private will in fact hurt the economy. Let alone rising electricity prices.

              captcha: classes

              • Bright Red

                “Because it’s essentially a consumption tax, like GST it is regressive, and therefore will fall hardest on those with lowest incomes”

                I’m not sure there’s any evidence that poor people consume more oil as a percentage of their income and, therefore, would face more impact from the ETS. Quite the opposite.

                “I’m saying putting the cost of it it on private people will hurt the economy compared to putting the cost of it on the government”

                How so? A tax is a tax. The question is whether the government’s Kyoto costs are covered by polluters or out of general taxation.

                • Lanthanide

                  “I’m not sure there’s any evidence that poor people consume more oil as a percentage of their income and, therefore, would face more impact from the ETS. Quite the opposite.”

                  Maybe not ‘poor people’, but certainly those in the middle class spend a bigger proportion of their income on petrol driving to and from work, school, kids sports etc than those in the upper class.

                  You’ve also ignored the price of electricity going up. ‘Poor people’ (I don’t even know who we’re talking about here) may not need any petrol at all as there are lots of alternatives, but very few of them will be going completely without electricity.

                  “How so? A tax is a tax.”
                  If “a tax is a tax” then you’d have no problem with putting GST up to 25% and reducing the top tax rates even further?

                  Clearly all taxes result in $$ in the government’s accounts, but where and from whom the money comes from can be radically different between the types of tax you introduce.

                  Either way there is going to be pain – cut ETS subsidies and so the private market must pay, or cut government services. The question is who shoulders the pain under these two scenarios. In the case of cutting government services, the brunt is borne directly by those who lose their jobs or have pay freezes for 3 years (or cuts!), but also by everyone who relies on government services, as well as making us less resilient and more vulnerable to shocks (like the earthquake) in the future. Cutting ETS subsidies spreads the pain out onto whoever uses carbon-emitting goods and services, which is every one (unless they live self-sufficiently), but some people will suffer more from the increased price on carbon than others will.

  6. Pete 6

    Slash and burn, Key’s choice

    Coincidentally “slash and burn” also seems to be Phil Goff’s choice of over the top sloganning on something that hasn’t happened yet.

    It’s hard to take seriously anything else he has to say when he fronts with meaningless electioneering rhetoric.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      Um, Pete, JK has asked the government to cut $800m from the budget which, in no uncertain terms, is slash and burn.

      • Pete 6.1.1

        Um, DTB, what is the projected total budget for this year compared to last year? I don’t think it’s $800m less.

        • Lanthanide 6.1.1.1

          In real terms, after inflation and population growth, it is. That’s the problem.

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1

            Is Pete making the assumption that the Left didn’t learn all about economics and fiscal policy after we were hoodwinked in the 80′s?

            Sorry mate, we’re more on the ball with this stuff now than ever before.

          • Pete 6.1.1.1.2

            It’s not the main problem – the main problem is income (reduced) versus expenditure (increased). Borrowing even more than we are now pushes a growing problem further into the future.

            If you haven’t learnt that CV then you’re not on the ball.

            • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.2.1

              LOL Pete when times are tough NZ families and those New Zealanders who are the most vulnerable need more help from the Government, not less.

              Do you know how you increase Government income Pete? While reducing borrowing. You got it – tax the people who can bear the burden without having to give up too much in their lifestyles.

              IE the top 5% of income and wealth holders.

              You condescending prick.

              • Pete

                You want to spend more on wages, spend more on benefits and pensions, reduce borrowing (that means paying it back, ie expenditure), presumably more on education and health, maybe a bit more on police, you’d have to keep spending more on justice and prisons.

                How many rich pricks do you think there are? After what you want there would be far fewer – on paper or in the country anyway.

                What if times stay tough after that? Who would you tax more then?

                • Colonial Viper

                  Where the hell do you think all these so-called rich pricks are going to pack up and go to?

                  Switzerland? Brunei? Belize? Somewhere else with 0% income tax rates? If that was such a big deal why aren’t they all gone already. Every time a country raises taxes on them by 5% what are they going to do? Sell up and move on again? They’d be idiots to run their lives like this. Trust me these people are so rich they won’t have to give up their Bentleys and Ferraris OK? Make you feel better?

                  By the way top 100 entries on the NBR NZ rich list control assets valued at roughly $55B. At a guess, that’s more than the bottom 2M New Zealanders control, put together.

                  I think there’s a little room to move, don’t you.

                  What if times stay tough after that? Who would you tax more then?

                  Times are going to get tougher. Western industrialised nations are at the start of a long term financial and fuel based decline.

                  No one escapes this decline, but no one should go hungry and cold in a bountiful land like NZ either.

                  • nadis

                    if all you need is 3.8 billion, it is really easy to find.

                    An 80% tax on all income over 150,000 or an 80% tax on all income between 13,000 and 15,000. Or an increase in the top marginal rate to 60%. Or an increase of 4% in GST. Or just nationalise (actually it would be labourise) 10% of the richlisters assets.

                    In reality the increase would need to be higher than all of those because of the mutiplier effect as you suck that money out of the private sector and recycle via the public.

                    Done.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      In reality the increase would need to be higher than all of those because of the mutiplier effect as you suck that money out of the private sector and recycle via the public.

                      You assumed the inverse of the multiplier effect, nadis. In reality, the increased needed would be LESS, not more.

                      The reason is because wealthy people do not spend their portfolios of assets into the economy. Those assets are held as stocks, foreign investments etc.

                      By taxing them, and then spending that Government revenue to pay wages for reconstruction etc. community economies would greatly benefit. Families would have a breadwinner and be able to pay their bills. The multiplier effect would come into force.

                      An additional $100,000 taxed on a multi millionaire may mean that millionaire has to liquidate a a fraction of his stocks from the ASX or NYSE to pay the bill. The Government then spends that money into the local economy – something that wealthy person was not going to do.

                      They don’t notice any significant fall in lifestyle. And a few families get an income to keep them going. Win win.

            • Pascal's bookie 6.1.1.1.2.2

              It’s not the main problem – the main problem is income (reduced) versus expenditure (increased). Borrowing even more than we are now pushes a growing problem further into the future.

              Pete, tell me your assumption isn’t that the recession will last forever.

              If you want to focus purely on the expenditure side, tell us what you would cut.

  7. kevyn 7

    Lets suspend new state highway construction, apart from the projects that are already underway.
    Do you mean lets suspend all the projects that are just getting restarted after Muldoon suspended them to save the economy in the 1970s, or just the two new ones that get Joycey so excited – Transmission Gully and Holiday Highway?

    I can’t see Goff going with this part of the plan, it will mean conceding that Clark/Cullen were wrong either to hypothecate the petrol tax or to introduce Government Policy Statements.

    • Marty G 7.1

      Transport funding exceeds hypothecated excise tax revenues -ie roads are being subsidised by the wider tax base.

      I would start by canning any project with a BCR under 1. That’s the holiday highway and transmission gully for starters. Then I would reassess other projects in light of realistic demand and oil prices, given that vehicle kilometres travelled on the state highway network is below 2005 levels and probably falling

      • Lanthanide 7.1.1

        I think probably the only Road of National Impotence they came up with that would be worth continuing with is the CHCH southern motorway, and ONLY because there is likely to be new suburbs springing up out west that need the connection. If it weren’t for the latest earthquake, IMO that motorway should be canned too. Bear in mind that it is a substantial way a long, with considerable actual work already done, whereas I believe those other projects are still at the planning stages?

        • Bored 7.1.1.1

          Heaven forbid Lan, I have had the pleasure of a tour of Rolleston, its predicated on oil. To live there without cheap fuel would be a nightmare. No offense to the residents as their life reflects that of most of us, tied to cars, driving miles to work or the shops with no alternative. If we are planning to move people out into automobile centric sprawl we will be misallocating funds and missing an opportunity to build a better life for urban dwellers.

          • Lanthanide 7.1.1.1.1

            Yes, it sucks, but building out west, rather than building upwards in the center of the city, is what’s going to happen in the next 5-10 years (assuming no huge oil price shocks and that something, anything, is actually built).

            But having a motorway out to the west (it isn’t going as far as Rolleston) will actually reduce fuel consumption of people driving into town. Building more homes, shops and businesses out west will mean those already in Rolleston should eventually have a shorter distance to travel to get to work/shop.

            So ultimately it is encouraging further urban sprawl, but if we accept that such sprawl is inevitable, then building the motorway has desirable benefits over not building it.

            • Bored 7.1.1.1.1.1

              See your point, but I think resisting urban sprawl needs to be a priority. High density housing does not have to be high rise, for example two storey terraces can be highly desirable if well architected. Good example here in Wellington is Thorndon Mews (Beaven of Chch) which is highly sought after, as are Walker and Athfields high density buildings of the 70s. What these places dont have are massive sections with rusting car bodies on motor mown lawns. They do have community which is what Chch needs most. Its promising that Athfield is already involved in Chch post the first quake.

              • Colonial Viper

                People need to be able to walk to their shops, their friends and family, and their work. That means complete communities of no more than ~5km radius.

                • Lanthanide

                  What about bikes?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    10km radius then? But worth bearing in mind that a lot of elderly and infirm will not be able to bike (or walk) that far. So a 4-5km radius seems more friendly to most in a community.

  8. randal 8

    most fiscal problems in our beloved country could be solved by raising taxes.
    however as we are a nation of rugged individuals who need the dosh to buy new hardly davisons and go on trip sto places where the natives dont really like us but want our money then he key cant impose new taxes in case he offends the noo noo heads.
    besides the manual from the business round table says raising taxes is an offence against the laws of the universe and key does not want to offend kerr and his mates in case they ostarcise him when he gets back to london after his sojourn in the colonies.

  9. TightyRighty 9

    apart from taking large amounts of money from a small number of people to distribute in small amounts to a larger amount of people, i.e. robbing peter (who tends to employ people) to pay for paul (who is usually employed by peter or his ilk), does labour have any other election policy?

    • Bored 9.1

      TR, have you ever considered that employers make their money from the margin they get from their staff producing something? What happens then is that the staff get some money redistributed to them from taxes on this margin / profit…..so who is robbing who? Some would contend that the original robbery is Peter (employer) robbing Paul (employee).

      • TightyRighty 9.1.1

        Others, more economically literate than you, would contend that the margin on the goods produced is the return on investement and the risk assumed with the investment. You’ve been spanked so many times on that argument, i’m surprised you are back for more. where an employer makes a margin because they have risked something to go into business and employ people, it’s profit. a benny sits on their arse all day and complains of poverty, and gets a return on their investment of nothing in the form of a benefit. on a percentage basis, who does better? benny – $0 outlayed, $256 pax per week. return of infinity on investment. business owner? lucky to see 30% a year as a return on investment, not even beginning to account for the hours worked and stress assumed. WFF recepients, they also have a much larger return on investment than the people creating the employment opportunities will achieve, say 1000-2000%.

        now who is taking supernormal profits?

        to summarise by putting it in socialist speak, supernormal profits = robbery, so benny’s ruined the economy as benny’s are highway robbers.

        In addition to admitting to admitting that labour have no other policy to be elected on except to tax the wealthy to pay for the poor, we have concluded that benny’s and their cheerleaders and creators (labour) are the ones who ruined the economy with their appropriation of super normal profits.

        • Bright Red 9.1.1.1

          TR’s vision of a brighter tomorrow, the unemployed of the great recession and their families starving in the streets.

          ‘I would help you’, he says, ‘but I can’t have you getting an infnite return on investment. It’s about priorities’

          • TightyRighty 9.1.1.1.1

            Sounds much more like your vision of the world bored. But you’ll be happy as you will all be poor together. That’s the real aim isn’t it?

            That’s a confirmation, labour has no policy other than recklessly tax the rich and spend it on vanity “progressive” projects. (More like progressively the country grows poorer under labour)

            • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Top 5% of income and asset holders should be far more heavily taxed so that we can afford services and common infrastructure for all to benefit from.

              It’s a pretty comprehensive plan for a enjoyable, equitable society, Tighty.

              Oh, and its under National that your neighbours and your extended family are getting poorer, Tighty, in case you haven’t noticed.

              That’s because Bill and John buy into the neoliberal free market bullshit which favours the top 1% of the population.

            • Bored 9.1.1.1.1.2

              Hey TR, FYI I have owned and managed companies very successfully for most of my working life. My understanding is based upon hands on making cash, no theory involved. As such I understand business and economics in a way most corporate types (and RWNJs) dont. Yes I live a contradiction, I take the profit from my workers mouths, and i dont agree with the system I play. For the record I had absolutely no need of the extra cash Shonkey gifted me. Consequently I gave it away. What did you do?

              BTW Your “risk” argument….you have to have something to risk before you can take a risk. Thats the basis of capital accumulation, dont give me the trite old crap about everybody can do it. The rich are already robbing the poor of that ability by taking the profits for ourselves.

        • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.2

          This is bullshit Tighty, you’ve tried to assess a beneficiary’s life as if it was a fucking business.

          All you are trying to justify here is that those who own the most capital in this economic system should be the ones who make the most money.

          And those who have no capital should be lucky to get fuck all. In fact, they should count their blessings to get crumbs on a cold tin plate.

          Guess what, more than a few people are tiring of this scheme at the moment.

          The wealthy are going to get taxed one way or another mate, its the only way to recut the upward wealth distribution that they have designed into this economic system, and to stop the poverty and hunger in what should be a land of plenty.

        • fraser 9.1.1.3

          TR

          what about a business where profits year on year have increased yet workers wages have seen minimal increases, stagnated or gone backwards?

          Productivity (as well as profit for the big players) has increased massively – wages no where near as much

          So, if “an employer makes a margin because they have risked something to go into business and employ people”, shouldnt that same rule apply to the employees who have risked their time and earning potential to help the employer realise his investment? (possibly to a different degree of course)

          Its a symbiotic relationship – the employer has little without the workers and vice versa. Screw one side to heavily and the whole thing tanks.

          (i think its important in the capital vs labour discussion to differentiate between SMEs and multi-nationals/huge corporates – they are completely different beasts with different dynamics at play. I think youre mainly talking about the SMEs, where much of the compliant from “the left” is directed at the other end of the sprectrum)

          also – why are you bringing up the unemployed? Stay within the goalposts you erected with your first comment

          • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.3.1

            What has happened over the last 30 years is that an ever increasing share of business revenue has gone into shareholder dividends, executive management and company profits, not wages of the ordinary workers.

            Edit: frequently small business in NZ gets screwed as well (<20 employees)

            The big cash have gone to the major multinational corporates.

            When National talks about being business friendly they mean the latter group of businesses, not the former. As evidenced by how they have managed downtown Christchurch.

        • Bored 9.1.1.4

          Others, more economically literate than you, …so TR when did you read Adam Smith, Marx, Samuelson, Keynes, Galbraith, Schumpter, Freidman? Would you like a loan of my well fingered copies? Actually for you not a loan, how about a rental? Alternatively there is the socialised alternative, the library for free.

        • RobC 9.1.1.5

          “Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.”

          A. Lincoln, 1861

      • Pete 9.1.2

        Most employees are grateful they have the opportunity to earn money. It’s simpler and usually a lot safer than being an employer – the income may be lower but the risks are much lower.

        And most employers are grateful that people will work for them.

        Most of us have to earn money, we choose whether we want to try and make our own or work for someone else.

        • Colonial Viper 9.1.2.1

          No, it’s time to move to a more democratic socialist economy.

          Workers who work for themselves in collective and co-operative enterprise, who don’t need to be managed by some fat cat at the top and who as a consequence don’t answer to a small group of shareholders who otherwise wouldn’t know the first thing about the business, because the workers ARE the shareholders.

          • Pete 9.1.2.1.1

            The option’s there if any groups of workers want to try it.

            The fact is most people are happy to draw a regular wage and not be bothered by high financial risks, and most people aren’t into the administrative discipline that is required to run a successful business or co-operative.

            The short to medium term success/survival rate of small businesses suggests most people simply aren’t management or self management type people.

            And…the more people involved in the managing of any sort of enterprise the more chance there is of disgruntlement with some not pulling their weight.

            • Colonial Viper 9.1.2.1.1.1

              Well I think you got a few things wrong with your analysis, but something I will say is that the current set up makes it quite difficult to finance co-operatives (banks prefer the traditional one company owner model for instance), and yes, we have a workforce too used to being treated like dumb do as you’re told workers, so there is some reconditioning and additional training to be done there as well.

              And…the more people involved in the managing of any sort of enterprise the more chance there is of disgruntlement with some not pulling their weight.

              Which the collective can then sort out together, as a community.

              The short to medium term success/survival rate of small businesses suggests most people simply aren’t management or self management type people.

              Most managers aren’t management type people.

              • Pete

                How much experience do you have running businesses CV?

                Banks prefer security over their financing, it doesn’t matter so much what structure the co-operative/partnership is. How much experience do you have running businesses CV?

                Banks prefer security over their financing, it doesn\’t matter so much what structure the co-operative/partnership is. One of the most common forms of security is the family home. If that is threatened it can put a lot of strain on the business and the family.

                If you have a partnership/co-operative where there is disgruntlement amongst those involved it can get very messy, often the easiest solution is to wind it up and go your own way – as sole operators or back into employment. Or it can just crash and burn.

                If you have a partnership/co-operative where there is disgruntlement amongst those involved it can get very messy, often the easiest solution is to wind it up and go your own way – as sole operators or back into employment. Or it can just crash and burn.

                • Colonial Viper

                  ?

                  Banks don’t have much experience with or understanding of collective enterprises.

                  If you have a partnership/co-operative where there is disgruntlement amongst those involved it can get very messy, often the easiest solution is to wind it up and go your own way – as sole operators or back into employment.

                  Perhaps you don’t understand how democratic socialist enterprises work – its got similarities to how the major shareholders of an enterprise operate.

                  The slight difference is that everyone gets a vote in a democratic socialist enterprise, an equal vote. And whatever the majority votes for is what happens.

                  How much experience do you have running businesses CV?

                  Oh, I’ve been here and there, you know :)

                  • Pete

                    How much experience do you have with social democratic enterprises? Where do they work successfully?

                    Are they dependent on co-operation, understanding and financing by banks?
                    Are they ever hamstrung by indecisiveness due to the time it takes to get a majority to agree?
                    Do they ever employ workers? Or is everyone a shareholder? Is remuneration always equal or dependent on how much the majority thinks everyone is worth?

                    • RobC

                      Ahhh …. you do realise NZ’s largest enterprise is a co-operative?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey Pete,

                      Enterprises set themselves up in a lot of different ways, look up Semco, also Mondragon. And as RobC suggests, Fonterra.

                      Are they dependent on co-operation, understanding and financing by banks?

                      Wow and just above you said that the banks would not pose a problem. Ideally a credit union or mutual savings bank, organisations with a common ethos, would be used, instead of a foreign owned private bank.

                    • Marty G

                      Fonterra – cooperative protected by special legislation
                      Telecom – former SOE
                      Contact – former SOE
                      Fletchers – got rich building state houses with government guarantees on its debt
                      Zespri etc – export cooperatives with protecting legislation

                      .

                      Meridian, Solid Energy, Genesis, Mighty River – SOEs that the financiers want to get their hands on because the private sector is incapable of creating large successful companies

                      .

                      face it, state capitalism and cooperatives are the model of successful business in nz

                    • Lanthanide

                      Marty – The Warehouse, Farmers are two large NZ-owned companies.

                      I’m sure there are lots of others.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Lanth – they are two large NZ owned operations.

                      But that’s a pittance compared to the number a few years ago.

                      Carter Holt Harvey, Watties, Telecom, Contact Energy, Whitcoulls, DIC, Fisher & Paykel Appliances, Glaxo, National Bank, Post Bank, ASB, BNZ, Ministry of Works and Development,…

                      All gone (or partially gone) now. Ripped out of the country, currently either bust or sending profits from NZ to offshore shareholders.

                    • Pete

                      RobC – I know Fonterra is a co-op, but it’s quite different to what CV was suggesting. It’s shareholders are it’s suppliers (who own their own businesses), who aren’t involved in the general running of the co-op, and as far as I’m aware it’s workers are just employees and not shareholders. I suspect the fat cats at the top earn a bit more cream than the tanker drivers.

                    • Pete

                      I’m generally not a fan of large off-shore owned corporations (nor franchise owners) but they are a fact of modern business life in an increasingly internationalised economy.

                      Some markets are a mix of a few large companies plus many small businesses working alongside each other, eg construction, with a range of opportunities – I saw boys drop out of school into a carpentry apprenticeship and build their way up the income ladder.

                      While there is a tendency for companies to grow and merge and grow, markets change and will sometimes reverse that. Two examples are bakeries and breweries – I’ve seen large companies take over not just the manufacture but also the distribution and retailing (breweries) with bland mass produced products but that trend has reversed and now small bakers and brewers proliferate again with a wide variety of products.

                      For CV styled co-ops to start up and thrive all it will take is for a bunch of like minded people to get them going in preference to owner operated businesses. They are out there now, I’ve been involved in three partnerships over the years.

        • Bored 9.1.2.2

          Pete, you may be right that most people find it simpler and safer to be an employee. Risk aversion comes into play. In reality I would contend it is actually safer to have the control of being the employer simply because as you say most of us have to earn money. I am grateful to have my guys working, but i dont lose sight of who gets the profit.

          • Rosy 9.1.2.2.1

            I admire people who are business owners who haven’t lost the idea of the society they operate in. It’s refreshing to know that it’s not all about the short-term money for everyone. I suspect that on average these businesses will be around for a lot longer than those who disassociate themselves from their employees lives.

            It may be safer to be an employee, but these days I’m not so sure, there is so much legal protection for the owners of businesses that go under that if you get it right you can walk away with your house and other assets in tact whereas employees walkaway with nothing.

            But also there are a lot of very, very talented people who are emplyees not because they are risk averse, but because they’ve understood risk. They’re smart enough to know they need or want to stick with that talent rather than run a business which that have no talent for or they’ll not be able to make use of the talent they have. Or else they know that to use those talents there is not enough of a market to do so by going it alone – chefs, scientists, engineers etc, etc.

            Businesses and the country cannot operate without them but are paying less and less of their share of educating them. I’m picking that NActs cuts will only increase this tendency

            People who successfully run businesses have special talents too and they may have to work their way to financial security just as employees do. I wish there were a lot of people would work out before they took other people’s money that they had no talent for business, and if they were employees they would have been sacked.

  10. Rich 10

    Legalise and tax drugs: that’d bring in tax revenues, reduced policing, justice and prison costs, income tax on drug manufacturers and sellers, tourist dollars, etc.

    • Lanthanide 10.1

      Good idea. Can’t see “we need it for the tax revenue” being a huge vote-winner though.

    • burt 10.2

      Publish the stats for how much Police & court time is taken up prosecuting people for personal use. Never assume that simply because you haven’t seen the stats that they haven’t been pondered for some time now.

  11. Pete 11

    It is very clear that the government intends to employ the shock doctrine as described by Naomi Klein.

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    The Green Party today welcomes Auckland Transport figures showing rail patronage has soared by 23 percent in June from June 2013, demonstrating both the value of electrification and the need to immediately get cracking building the Auckland City Rail link."We...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Soaring rail use in Auckland shows need for rail link now
    The Green Party today welcomes Auckland Transport figures showing rail patronage has soared by 23 percent in June from June 2013, demonstrating both the value of electrification and the need to immediately get cracking building the Auckland City Rail link."We...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Puhoi-Warkworth decision doesn’t stack up
    The Board of Inquiry decision on the Puhoi-Warkworth motorway gives the green light to a project that doesn’t stack up, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Labour would spend $320 million immediately to fix the accident black spots, put in...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Key must stand Brownlee down during investigation
    The wise thing for the Prime Minister to do is ask Gerry Brownlee to hand in his transport warrant and to stand him down for the duration of the CAA investigation, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “It’s not good enough...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Puhoi highway won’t help Northland roads
    The draft decision by the Environmental Protection Agency to grant resource consent to the proposed $1.65 billion Puhoi motorway doesn't stop it being a waste of money, the Green Party said today. "The Puhoi motorway is an unnecessary waste of...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Green Party to focus on issues not sideshows
    The Green Party has launched its creative for the 2014 election; Love New Zealand. The Green Party campaign focuses on the issues where there is concern that we do not love New Zealand enough; our increasingly polluted environment, increased poverty...
    Greens | 25-07
  • Coleman must come clean about FBI briefing
    Former Immigration Minister Jonathan Coleman must come clean about when he was told the FBI was investigating Kim Dotcom, Labour’s Associate Security and Intelligence spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Jonathan Coleman has previously said ministers were not aware of the American...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Regional economies need tailored plans
    News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional economies, Labour’s MP for Hauraki-Waikato Nanaia Mahuta says. “The Canpac site has effectively responded...
    Labour | 25-07
  • Kiwis to get the final vote on amalgamation
    New Zealanders will get the right to have a final say on any proposed local body amalgamations, says Labour’s local government spokesperson Su’a William Sio releasing Labour’s Local Government policy today....
    Labour | 24-07
  • Dr Rajen Prasad’s Valedictory Statement
    Draft Hansard Parliamentary Record. Subject to correction. Bula vinaka. Namaste, Mr Assistant Speaker. Thank you very much. Tēnā koe. I am a lucky migrant and am privileged to have received as much as I have from this country for over...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Darien Fenton’s Valedictory Statement
    Nga mihi nui - kia koutou. I acknowledge all Members of Parliament I have served with and I do so without rancour or criticism. Over nearly nine years in parliament I’ve found that despite furious debate about political difference, most...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Immigation and Kim Dotcom – Harawira
    “I just got a call from National Business Review reporter, asking whether there was any contradiction between my thoughts on immigration in 2009 and now, particularly given MANA’s newly minted relationship with Kim Dotcom” said MANA leader and Tai Tokerau...
    Mana | 24-07
  • Nats to announce 2nd crossing without rail
    Labour Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says it has been leaked to him that John Key will rule out a rail option when announcing an accelerated timeframe for Auckland’s $5 billion second harbour crossing next month. “I understand the Government’s plan...
    Labour | 24-07
  • “They put Maori centre stage” – Harawira
    “I’m sorry I can’t be at parliament for the valedictory speeches of Tariana Turia and Pita Sharples” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Tai Tokerau, ”but I’d like to add my own best wishes as they reach the end...
    Mana | 24-07
  • ACT trying to have it both ways on zoning
    ACT Party candidate David Seymour’s campaign against changes to school zones in the Epsom electorate looks hollow given his party’s commitment to the abolition of school zoning altogether, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It’s disingenuous for David Seymour to...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Interest rate rise will hit the regions
    The latest interest rate rise will hit the fragile regional economies of  New Zealand and hurt exporters by putting more upward pressure on the exchange rate, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker.  “The regions are already hit by dropping  export...
    Labour | 24-07
  • Burning the flag or accepting the evil
    Burning the Israeli flag in Auckland in protest over the murder of innocent civilians in Gaza is nothing to be ashamed of” said MANA Leader and Tai Tokerau MP, Hone Harawira. “Calling for both sides to stand down when one side...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Photo op disguises abysmal failure
    John Key’s opening of four Housing NZ units in Bexley today is nothing more than an insincere photo op designed to hide the Government’s failure to rebuild the housing stock destroyed by the earthquakes, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto...
    Labour | 23-07
  • TAXPAYER UNION “outrageously stupid”
    Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says a MANA billboard “appears to have been funded by taxpayers”, and calls it “an outrageous use of taxpayer money”. “But the only thing that is outrageous, is how outrageously stupid Jordan Williams was...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Green Party launches Solar in Schools policy
    The Green Party will help schools install solar and save money on their power bills by investing $20 million into solar PV systems in schools. The $20 million is expected to:Help around 500 schools install solar over three yearsResult in...
    Greens | 23-07
  • Extent of job losses at Invermay remain hidden
    Despite growing concern in the agriculture and science sectors, both AgResearch management and the Minister responsible are continuing to hide the true extent of job losses at AgResearch’s Invermay campus, Labour’s MP for Dunedin North David Clark says. “Science and...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Tōku reo, tōku oho oho, tōku reo, tōku mapihi maurea – MANA launches ...
    “MANA is launching its te reo Māori policy this morning ahead of the first reading of the government’s Māori Language Strategy Bill this afternoon”, saidMANA deputy leader and candidate for Waiariki, Annette Sykes. “MANA’s policy is based on a love...
    Mana | 23-07
  • Connectivity Upgrade to close digital divide
    Labour will close the digital divide with its Connectivity Upgrade to ensure all New Zealanders can be part of a growing, more connected economy and have the right to access quality broadband, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says.  “The digital revolution...
    Labour | 23-07
  • New parents deserve support – Labour will deliver
    ...
    Labour | 23-07
  • National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates
    National has refused a briefing from a group of Maui's dolphins experts, whose research shows 80 per cent of New Zealanders want greater protection for the critically endangered dolphin, the Green Party said today.Dolphin campaigner Gemma McGrath and marine scientist...
    Greens | 23-07
  • MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour
    “Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week”, said MANA candidate for Mt Albert, Joe Carolan. “A good start would be for all Labour Auckland MPs and members to join the Justice for Palestine...
    Mana | 23-07
  • We must act to save our dolphins
    A new report makes it clear for the urgent need to protect Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins while arguing  it is clear that there is no need for further research, says Labour’s Conservation spokesperson Ruth Dyson.  “Labour backs the public call...
    Labour | 23-07
  • School told to manipulate national standards data
    Parents can have little confidence in the Government’s National Standards after an Auckland school was told to manipulate its data so it added up, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Valley School in Pukekohe was advised in an email from the...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Regional economies must have tailored plans
    News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional economies, Labour’s MP for Hauraki-Waikato Nanaia Mahuta says. “The Canpac site has effectively responded...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Auditor General slams Shared Services project
    The Auditor-General’s Office could not have been more damning about the 18 months spent on the Central Agency Shared Services (CASS) project at the Finance and Expenditure Committee this morning, says Maryan Street, Labour’s State Services spokesperson.  ...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato
    The potential loss of up to 114 jobs from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton is a massive blow to the Waikato region which has already lost hundreds of jobs, Labour says. Labour’s Social Development spokesperson and Hamilton-based list MP Sue...
    Labour | 23-07
  • Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital
    The decision to reject the proposed flyover at the Basin Reserve must be taken as an opportunity to properly fund Wellington’s transport future and must not be used as an excuse to take resources away from the capital, Wellington Labour MPs...
    Labour | 22-07
  • National out of touch with the regions
    John Key is out of touch with regional New Zealand if he believes tinkering with council regulations will restore opportunities to small towns, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “While the regions are crying out for sustainable growth and job opportunities,...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Flyover rejection a victory for sustainable transport
    The rejection of the proposed Basin Reserve flyover by a Board of Inquiry is a victory for sustainable transport in Wellington and paves the way for other alternatives to be given a fair hearing, Wellington Labour MPs Grant Robertson and...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Reo Māori Policy Launch
    MANA will be launching its Reo Māori policy at 10am Thursday 24 July, at Matangireia (the old Māori Affairs Select Committee room at Parliament). We will also be addressing our concerns regarding the Minister of Māori Affairs Māori Language Strategy...
    Mana | 22-07
  • Basin Flyover decision victory for common sense
    The Green Party welcomed the Environmental Protection Authority's draft decision announced today not to allow the $90 million Basin Reserve flyover in Wellington to proceed."Both popular and expert opinion opposed the flyover. The proposal was expensive, unnecessary and would have...
    Greens | 22-07
  • Loss Leading could destroy Kiwi lamb’s reputation
    Meat companies that supply supermarkets and sell New Zealand lamb as a loss leader in the United Kingdom should lose their access to this valuable quota market, said Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor. “Our reputation as a Lamb producer...
    Labour | 22-07
  • Ae Marika! 22 July 2014
    The big storm has gone, but the damage that it did and the saturation levels that it reached meant that smaller storms quickly overwhelmed roading, and water-flow systems again in the north. And although certain individuals are talking up the...
    Mana | 21-07
  • 2014 Roger Award nominations now open
    The Roger Award is for The Worst Transnational Corporation Operating in Aotearoa/New Zealand in 2014 Nominations are now open please visit the website to nominate the worst TNC in Aotearoa. You will need to include reasons why you think your...
    Mana | 21-07
  • Labour will revive the regions with new fund
    The next Labour Government will co-develop Regional Growth Plans for every region of New Zealand and will invest at least $200 million in a fund to create breakthrough opportunities for jobs and sustainable growth, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says....
    Labour | 21-07
  • Something Fishy About Nick Smith’s Game.
    NICK SMITH’S crude intimidation of the Fish and Game Council points to the bleakest of environmental futures should National be re-elected on 20 September. It is now considerably clearer than 60 percent of New Zealand’s lakes, rivers and streams that...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Key’s odd personal hypocrisy in Epsom, his kiss of death to the Maori Par...
    Aside from tricking Colin Craig into running in an electorate National can crush him in, John Key has announced three things in his election deals that are ill thought out. The first is his deal with the Maori Party. At a time...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Why it’s all over for the Conservative Party
    Whatever flirtations were made months ago to Colin Craig by National strategists, the polling must have come back showing them too much of their soft urban vote would walk if Key was in Government with Colin Craig.  The necessary inside muscle to...
    The Daily Blog | 28-07
  • Balance in the NZ Herald and has something gone terribly wrong at the Heral...
    So the ‘balance’ in the NZ Herald this year for the election will be… Guest columnists will include the acerbic Cactus Kate from the radical right, former Labour candidate Josie Pagani and broadcaster Mark Sainsbury. Right, so that would be...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Phew – National Party hubris seals strategy
    The National Party are bot listening to Matthew Hooton. Phew. Hooton has crunched the numbers and based on past polling National always drops 6 points come election day. National aren’t listening. Barging through the need to cut deals with all...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Noam Chomsky on the TPPA
    Noam Chomsky on the TPPA...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Unacceptable secrecy around labelling people terrorists
    It’s good to see the Sunday Star-Times attempting to get more information from government agencies about Daryl Jones, the Kiwi killed in a US drone strike in Yemen.  The paper is right to complain about the government’s refusal to provide...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • A critical deconstruction of John Key – what’s behind the facade?
    Aspiring national leaders need a popular narrative of their rise to power.  Once in office, the narrative can be refined to fit the requirements of leadership and re-election.  Such is the purpose of John Roughan’s John Key: Portrait of  a...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Radio Live – off Mark
    The Top Marks lasted five weeks on Mediaworks radio station The Sound. This may have something to do with last being relevant in the mid-1980s when there were only two commercial FM licences in Auckland and they were on one...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • Wellingtonians say ‘No!’ to Israeli aggression
    .   . Wellington, NZ, 26 July – About 600 Wellingtonians, and from further afield, met at the Cuba Mall Bucket fountain under a wintery sunny sky, to protest Israel’s continuing aggression in the Gaza strip, which – at the...
    The Daily Blog | 27-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Shasha Ali – I am an indigenous person but I will never call ...
    Yesterday was indeed a politically hectic day in Aoteaora New Zealand, especially if you are an activist that cares about both human and non-human animal rights. Protest actions were organised to demand an end to factory farming from about noon, and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • Pro-Israel, Pro-Palestine or ‘Pro-Peace’?
    Latest protest for people of Gaza in Auckland In the past couple of weeks I have heard a lot of people say that they are neither Pro-Israel nor Pro-Palestine; they are pro-peace. This is a stand that I respect. Everyone...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • So we can’t feed the kids, the poor OR the sick now?
    Let me get this straight. We can borrow $10 billion in tax cuts over the last 6 years for the richest NZers, but we can not feed the kids, the poor or even the sick now? Revealed: Warning over hospital food...
    The Daily Blog | 26-07
  • Kim Dotcom has said it, Laila Harre has said it and now David fisher says i...
    Fascinating piece by David Fisher in the NZ Herald breaking down how many opportunities the Government had to listen to officials and stop KDC entering the country and concludes KDC should never have been allowed in… It prepared papers for the...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • You, Me and the GCSB Public Meetings
      The GCSB and TICS legislation rushed through Parliament by John Key represent the largest erosion of civil liberties this country has seen since the 1951 Waterfront Lockout. In the post Snowden world we now know a mass surveillance state operating...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • A feminist takedown of Whale Oil
    Whale Oil does it again. How many more times is he going to attack and discredit Tania Billingsley publicly? In a short blog published on Wednesday ‘Nothing to be sorry for‘ Whale Oil also known as Cameron Slater, is defending John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Curwen Ares Rolinson – New Zealand First – We’ll Be Back
    Earlier this week, Bomber penned a missive which set out in some detail why he thought my people, New Zealand First, wouldn’t be making it back into Parliament later this year. Being a pugnacious, vindictive sort who’d never let such an...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • The changes teachers DO want
    “Oh you teachers, you just want everything to stay the same – what’s wrong with choice?  Bloody teachers.  Typical that you don’t want testing – trying to hide that you’re all useless. What about our poor kids?  Gnash gnash rant rant...” That’s...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • A feminist take down of Whale Oil
    Whale Oil does it again. How many more times is he going to attack and discredit Tania Billingsley publicly? In a short blog published on Wednesday Nothing to be sorry for Whale Oil also known as Cameron Slater, is defending John Key...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • On so called Labour Party ‘distractions’
    The right wing of the Labour Party are constructing a narrative that Labour need to stop chasing distractions and focus on the real issues that matter and not these silly GCSB, inequality, domestic violence, media bias, TPPA issues. It is...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • Selfies: Labour’s Electorate MPs are at it again
    IT’S A LITTLE TRIANGLE of grass at the corner of Rewa Street and Mt Eden Road, ideal for election hoardings. Wandering along Mt Eden Road last Saturday morning to our weekly appointment with the brunch menu at Orvieto, my family and...
    The Daily Blog | 25-07
  • Well, well, well – Jonathan Coleman did know about FBI interest into Kim ...
    Last years GCSB Town Hall meeting in Auckland Oh dear, the cover up and lies are starting to fall over now aren’t they… Coleman knew of FBI interest in Dotcom pre-residency decisionGovernment minister Jonathan Coleman knew the FBI was interested...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Why You Must March Against Factory Farming This Saturday, 12pm
    The rally this Saturday is critical because this is the FIRST TIME IN NEW ZEALAND HISTORY that a major party has agreed to ban all intensive factory farming practices. The Labour party, the Greens, Internet-Mana, the SPCA, SAFE and other...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Astronaut tweets photo of explosions over Israel and Gaza from space
      This is what a war zone looks like from space: From aboard the International Space Station, German astronaut Alexander Gerst tweeted this image as the station passed over Israel and Gaza in what he called ‘his saddest photo yet’....
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • When Firstline are focusing on flag burning rather than dead Palestinian ch...
    The IDF are butchering children in UN schools this morning and what’s the big issue on TV3s Firstline? Flag burning. How pathetic, and what a slap in the face to Mike McRoberts who is currently risking his life in Gaza...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • ‘Victim’ vs ‘Terrorist’
    ‘Victim’ vs ‘Terrorist’...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Petition asking TVNZ to stand Hosking down as election moderator jumps to o...
    In just a day the petition calling on TVNZ to replace Hosking as the election moderator has jumped to over 2500, you can sign it here. The defence that the Right are trying to run here is that John Campbell...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • When the mainstream media go feral: the descent into sheer farce, according...
    . . It had to happen, I guess… The media pack-campaign against Labour Leader David Cunliffe has managed to  plumb new depths of absurdity. On TV3, on 24 July,  TV3/Tova O’Brien ran this report on their 6PM News bulletin, about...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Coalition for Better Broadcasting: MIKE HOSKING FOR PM?
    Yes indeed. Mike Hosking is for the PM. And now he’s able to do even more as moderator (or should that be immoderator) of TVNZ’s election debates. Here at the Coalition for Better Broadcasting we feel it’s pretty safe to say that...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • The lie that “There is no alternative” to neo-liberal economic policies
    Supporters of President Maduro in Venezuela rally   Since the 1980s we have had drubbed into our heads that there was no alternative to the economic and social policies unleashed at that time. It even had it’s own acronym – TINA. The...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • A Kanaky tale of mining skulduggery and environmental courage
    Florent Eurisouké … still campaigning against mining. Photo: Del Abcede/PMC David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific AN EXTRAORDINARY story of mining skulduggery and a courageous struggle by indigenous Kanak environmental campaigners has been captured in a poignant new documentary,...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • UNBREAKING: The list of questions Mike Hosking will use in first TVNZ leade...
    “Good evening ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the first TVNZ leaders debate being held live in the gloriously beautiful Sky City ball room. It’s such a beautiful building boys and girls, we are so blessed to have Sky City...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Internet Party Party review
      I have been to A LOT of political party functions in my time, and they tend to be dull affairs at the best of times but what is happening with Internet MANA is something quite exciting. I went to...
    The Daily Blog | 24-07
  • Dear Seven Sharp – after learning Hosking will be the leaders debate ...
    I have to be honest, I had made the decision last night  to accept Seven Sharp’s hastily offered opportunity to appear on their show after I savagely criticised the bullshit whitewash story they did on John Key’s favourite far right hate speech...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates
    MIL OSI – Source: Green Party – Headline: National refuses meeting with Maui’s advocates Wednesday, 23 Jul 2014 | Press Release This is another reminder that the National Government does not care about the survival of the Maui’s dolphin National...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Message from CTU President Helen Kelly
    MIL OSI – Source: Unite Union – Headline: Message from CTU President Helen Kelly Dear MikeThere’s only 43 days until September 3, when voting in the General Election starts. The last day to vote is September 20.Thanks heaps for signing...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour
    MIL OSI – Source: Mana Movement – Headline: MANA Tamaki send a challenge to Labour Posted on July 23, 2014 by admin in Joe Carolan, Press Releases“Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week”,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • We must act to save our dolphins
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: We must act to save our dolphins A new report makes it clear for the urgent need to protect Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins while arguing  it is clear that there is no...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • School told to manipulate national standards data
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: School told to manipulate national standards data Parents can have little confidence in the Government’s National Standards after an Auckland school was told to manipulate its data so it added up, Labour’s...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Regional economies must have tailored plans
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Regional economies must have tailored plans News that up to 114 jobs could be lost from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton reinforces the need for a government plan to build resilient regional...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Auditor General slams Shared Services project
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Auditor General slams Shared Services project The Auditor-General’s Office could not have been more damning about the 18 months spent on the Central Agency Shared Services (CASS) project at the Finance and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Fonterra job losses a massive blow to Waikato The potential loss of up to 114 jobs from Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton is a massive blow to the Waikato region which has...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital
    MIL OSI – Source: Labour Party – Headline: Basin flyover decision an opportunity for capital The decision to reject the proposed flyover at the Basin Reserve must be taken as an opportunity to properly fund Wellington’s transport future and must...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Indonesia: New President Widodo must make good on human rights pledges
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: Indonesia: New President Widodo must make good on human rights pledges Indonesia’s new President Joko Widodo must deliver on campaign promises to improve Indonesia’s dire human rights situation, Amnesty International said....
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Communities in Sierra Leone turn their backs on female genital mutilation
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: Communities in Sierra Leone turn their backs on female genital mutilation While activists gather in London to discuss strategies to tackle female genital mutilation, communities across Sierra Leone have been taking...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • The Gambia: Activists mark 20 years of iron-fisted repression
    MIL OSI – Source: Amnesty International NZ – Headline: The Gambia: Activists mark 20 years of iron-fisted repression The Gambian government must abolish the laws and iron fisted practices that have resulted in two decades of widespread human rights violations,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • A blog from the front lines of Palestine: It’s time for a new narrative
    I don’t know if I follow trouble or if trouble follows me, but somehow I seem to have found myself near one of the world’s hotspots again. The difference this time is that instead of sitting in some obscure location,...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Michael Wood – The Path Ahead
    It’s well established that Labour has had a difficult couple of weeks. Getting back on to a successful path requires our focus to shift from looking inwards to outwards, heightened discipline, and inner conviction. While my assessment of New Zealand...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Employers liquidating companies to avoid paying minimum entitlements
    Across the union movement we have seen a number of documented cases now where companies are liquidating their business in order to avoid their legal obligations, in terms of paying the minimum entitlements to their workers. The most recent example...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Carolan : Positively Controversial
    The protest in Auckland last weekend that the NZ Herald claimed was attend by only a hundred people. Labour should set the agenda and purposely do something positively controversial once a week. A good start would be for all their...
    The Daily Blog | 23-07
  • Forest & Bird supports Fish and Game’s freshwater advocacy
    The independent conservation organisation Forest & Bird is concerned over allegations the Fish & Game Council has been threatened over its advocacy for freshwater quality....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Time for Epsom to say “no deal”
    “Epsom voters will be disgusted by the deal announced today to try and once again gift their electorate to the ACT Party”, says Labour candidate for Epsom Michael Wood....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Petition for release the of seven Bah
    At the invitation of the Honourable Annette King the New Zealand Bahá'í community is presenting a petition to the House of Representatives asking the NZ government to demand the release of the seven former leaders of the Baha’i community in...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Capital gains in the capital city
    Victoria University will today be hosting a public debate on the merits of more comprehensive capital gains tax—a step which taxation expert Associate Professor Dr David White considers would be beneficial for New Zealand. Organised by student group Beta Alpha...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Te Kupenga supports efforts of anti-violence campaigner
    Te Kupenga Whakaoti Mahi Patunga – National Network of Stopping Violence Services (Te Kupenga) wholeheartedly endorses statements made by DJ, Kickboxer and Anti-Violence Campaigner Richie Hardcore this morning on TV3’s Firstline about the role of men...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • iPredict Ltd2014 Election Update #28
    The chances of a fiscal surplus in 2014/15 continue to plunge and are down to 50%, according to the combined wisdom of the 7000 registered traders on New Zealand’s online predictions market, iPredict. The forecast surplus is now just 0.22%...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • TPPA is a bad idea
    “Currently New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Brunei, Vietnam, the USA, Japan, Malaysia, Canada, and Mexico are still negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. Officially talks finished last August, but the reality is that they keep...
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Getting privacy right in our data future
    Privacy Commissioner John Edwards welcomes the release of the New Zealand Data Futures Forum’s report....
    Scoop politics | 28-07
  • Conference on Democracy, Ethics and the Public Good
    Conference on Democracy, Ethics and the Public Good A conference is to be held in Wellington on 1 and 2 August with the aim of starting a NZ-wide discussion about the quality of our democracy. The conference is hosted jointly...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Paddock to plate, and smart roads possible
    New Zealand’s international brand and exports could grow significantly with the creation of a data sharing ‘eco-system’ according to a paper released by the NZ Data Futures Forum today....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Ngapuhi wants to overthrow Maori King
    Ngapuhi is planning a hui for the end of the year – organised by iwi leader David Rankin – in which the future of the King Movement will be discussed....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Housing warrant of fitness little help for sick children
    A housing warrant of fitness has been promoted as a way of preventing sickness among children in poverty. The attached report shows that such a regime would have little impact on health outcomes but would come at a considerable cost,...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Upcoming Fabian Events in Auckland
    Sue Bradford ’s PhD thesis, 'A major left wing think tank in Aotearoa—an impossible dream or a call to action?' looked at why no major left wing think tank has developed in Aotearoa and whether the left in 2010-2013 was...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Senior Citizens, Not Senile Citizens
    The Taxpayers’ Union is questioning the merits and costs of the “ No car? No problem! Getting around your community without a car” brochure, released by the Office for Senior Citizens. The brochure’s purpose is to explain to senior citizens...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • NZ Troops Hone Their Skills in Queensland
    Around 260 New Zealand troops are on a 25-day Australian-led warfighting exercise in Townsville, Northern Queensland....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Maritime Union backs Green Party call for shipping lanes
    The Maritime Union is backing the Green Party’s policy to implement compulsory shipping lanes for coastal shipping, announced today....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Auckland Council Bypasses Public, Ditches Rodeo Ban
    Auckland Council Bypasses Public, Ditches Rodeo Ban The Auckland Council has announced that they are abandoning the rodeo ban on council land, put into place in 2008. This was done with virtually no consultation, says SAFE, the animal advocacy organisation....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Tolley and Coleman urged to meet West Papuan visitor
    Ministers Tolley and Coleman urged to meet West Papuan visitor Police Minister Anne Tolley and Defence Minister Dr Jonathan Coleman have a rare opportunity this week to gain first-hand knowledge about Indonesian police and military activities in West...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Minister Right to Give Fish & Game a Serve
    Reacting to Radio New Zealand’s report concerning allegations that Conservation Minister Nick Smith warned the Fish and Game Council that it acts like a 'rabid NGO', Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Government needs to get Fishing reform bill passed now
    The Maritime Union is urging the Government to push through a Bill reforming the fishing industry....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Ivory trade laws look set to tighten following petition
    A petition mounted by an Auckland schoolteacher has won the support of a powerful Select Committee and has moved the New Zealand closer towards a fully enforceable ivory trading ban....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Bilingual guide a demonstration of leadership
    “Waikato River Restoration: A Bilingual Guide” to the Waikato River that saw Tainui Waikato, Landcare Trust and the Waikato River Authority working together is a demonstration of rangatiratanga or leadership says Race Relations Commissioner...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Georgina Beyer to stand for MANA in Te Tai Tonga
    "It's great to have Georgie on board" said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and Te Tai Tokerau MP. "She's strong-minded, stands up to be counted, and has fought for the rights of those who haven't had any - and won. That...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Sir Bob Harvey
    SUSAN Sir Bob Harvey was behind the transformation of Norm Kirk, and one of New Zealand's most popular Prime Ministers. He also advised Bill Rowling, David Lange and Helen Clark, the latter as Labour Party President. Wild Westie a new...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Rod Drury
    Xero boss Rod Drury told TVNZ’s Q+A programme what the political parties are offering at this election is ‘all too small.’ “There's no policy, all it is a bunch of incremental stuff. “All too small. What we want to do...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Q + A: Gerry Brownlee
    Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee Rules Out Fastracking Auckland’s City Rail Loop Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee told TV1’s Q+A programme this morning that he won’t be bringing forward an Auckland City Rail loop based on new figures showing...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Owen interviews Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey
    Lisa Owen interviews Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey Headlines: Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey suggests “we can move on some” changes to welfare for New Zealanders in Australia New Zealanders “brothers and sisters” who make “a massive contribution”,...
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • Flavell and Harawira on The Nation
    Lisa Owen interviews Maori Party leader Te Ururoa Flavell and Mana leader Hone Harawira Headlines: Hone Harawira says realistically his Mana Party can take three Maori seats, Te Ururoa Flavell sticks to prediction that Maori Party will win all seven....
    Scoop politics | 27-07
  • The Nation 26,27 July: Flavell & Harawira, Joe Hockey
    On The Nation this weekend…. With the Maori seats primed to play a pivotal role this election, Torben Akel reports from the key battlegrounds and meets the top contenders. Then the Maori Party co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell and Mana Party...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Announcement of New Zealand First Candidate for Rangitīkei
    New Zealand First has endorsed Dr Romuald (‘Rom’) Rudzki as the candidate for the Rangitīkei Electorate in the 2014 General Election....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Labour Offer Len Brown a Hotel Tax
    The Taxpayers’ Union is slamming the Labour Party's plan to allow councils to levy new 'pillow taxes' and regional petrol taxes. Reacting to this afternoon’s NZ Herald report Jordan Williams, Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union ,...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Cell phone evidence a first
    Cell phone evidence a first Evidence gathered solely from a cell phone has been used for the first time to convict a Hastings man for possessing child sexual abuse pictures. Michael Lawrence Worsnop, a 29-year-old orchard worker pleaded guilty to...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • New Zealand Aid Worker Helping in Gaza
    A New Zealand Red Cross nurse working in Gaza says she has never experienced anything like the current conflict in her long aid work career....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Parking officers deserve safety at work
    The union representing the Auckland Transport parking officer severely beaten on July 17 says everyone has a right to go about their job without fear for their safety....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Caritas Aotearoa NZ to provide Gaza humanitarian aid
    Caritas Jerusalem is providing medical assistance, food and other necessities to the thousands of vulnerable people affected by the escalating conflict in Gaza, and Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand is contributing an initial $20,000 to support the humanitarian...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • ALCP challenges parties to support Charlotte’s Web
    The leader of the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party Julian Crawford is calling on all other political parties to state their position on using cannabis oil to treat pediatric epilepsy....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Oxfam accepts cheque from Pacific Corporation Foundation
    Oxfam New Zealand has accepted a cheque for almost $1000 today from the Pacific Corporation Foundation toward recovery efforts in the Solomon Islands, following April’s flash flooding that left thousands homeless....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Draft report and decision – Pūhoi to Warkworth proposal
    The Ara Tūhono – Pūhoi to Wellsford Road of National Significance: Pūhoi to Warkworth section Board of Inquiry has released its draft report and decision....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • New Zealanders willing to pay tax to protect dolphins
    A report released this week shows a large majority of New Zealanders want Maui’s and Hector’s dolphins protected and they are prepared to pay for it....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Stop Smart Meters
    “The Democrats for Social Credit Party (DSC) wholeheartedly endorses the Stop Smart Meters campaign for a moratorium on installations of smart meters until the technology is proven not be a risk to health, and until home owners are given a...
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Maori Roll Electors Urged to Vote Strategically
    Voters enrolled in the seven Maori electorates must learn to maximize their influence by voting strategically, according to the Maori Party candidate for Te Tai Tokerau, Rev Te Hira Paenga....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Politicians Ignore Families’ Concerns on Street Prostitution
    Family First NZ says that politicians are ignoring the concerns of families, lack the will to take appropriate action, and are happy to drag the ongoing problem of street prostitution into the next parliamentary term....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Plunket celebrates Te Wiki o te Reo Māori
    Plunket is proud to celebrate Te Wiki o te Reo Māori (21-27 July), with Plunket people across the country among several thousand New Zealanders taking part and increasing their kete of knowledge in te reo....
    Scoop politics | 25-07
  • Coleman must quit or be sacked over Dotcom case
    Immigration New Zealand has done the right thing in distancing itself from Jonathan Coleman’s claims that ministers were not aware of FBI involvement in Kim Dotcom’s residency application, says the Internet Party. Internet Party leader Laila Harré...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Auckland Councillors, Not Emperors
    25 JULY 2014 Responding to the NZ Herald report that Auckland Councillors have voted to keep their ratepayer-funded business class travel perks, and considered new rules that would have exempted councillors from Auckland City's parking charges, Taxpayers’...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Cunliffe Looks Dodgy Lunching with Sex Offender
    Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig says that David Cunliffe's social meeting with a known sex offender while on holiday "looks pretty dodgy."...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Taxpayers’ Union Back LGNZ Calls For Greater Transparency
    The Taxpayers’ Union is backing Local Government New Zealand’s calls for the Official Information Act to be extended to cover the Local Government Commission. Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Lecture series to provide insight into 2014 election
    Could National’s refusal to reform MMP lead to the defeat of the government? Is the media providing voters with the information they require to make an informed electoral decision? What directions might John Key’s leadership take if he secures...
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • National Rally Against Factory Farming
    Animal advocates and members of the public all over New Zealand will unite for a ‘National Day of Action Against Factory Farming’ Saturday, tomorrow 26 July in response to two recent exposés that showed horrific conditions on pig factory farms....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
  • Women in Politics Finds Support at Conference
    Women in Politics, a brand-new organisation for New Zealand women in political office, was met with overwhelming support at the 2014 Local Government New Zealand Conference held this weekend in Nelson....
    Scoop politics | 24-07
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