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The Standard

Spin update

Written By: - Date published: 7:52 am, May 28th, 2012 - 20 comments
Categories: budget2012, economy, john key, national - Tags:

Just as a quick update on my pre-budget Spin v reality about a Government that has the worst growth record of any since before Michael Joseph Savage, and has a 52% increase in unemployment despite more than 1,000 NZers leaving for Australia each week:

  • John Key had promised 4 per cent growth for the year to last quarter – he delivered 1.6% (which is great by his standards).
  • Bill English has been promising 170,000 jobs each budget – and not delivering them.  This time he cut his unfulfilled hopes by 16,000, and probably won’t make that either.
  • John Key told us in the budget that exports were rising – by the end of the week the stats showed they fell almost $800 million (17 per cent) in the last year.
  • John Key promised growth in real wages – this year we find it has been negative the past two years, will peak at just 1.6 per cent in the 2013 March year, and will then decline.

20 comments on “Spin update”

  1. Carol 1

    Gordon Campbell’s article last week on the budget makes some interesting reading, too.

    It begins with some skepticism about English’s spin, and lack of creative solutions, and goes to point out some instances where the budget fails (e.g. on R&D:

    http://gordoncampbell.scoop.co.nz/2012/05/25/gordon-campbell-on-the-budgets-spreadsheet-victories/

    Ever the Cautious Kiwi, he did his best to dress up his allegedly no frills Zero Budget as prudent management in uncertain global times. Except…it’s not really a sensible response. Not when almost every indicator you can mention – unemployment rates, GDP figures, retail spending, the trade deficit, commodity prices, manufacturing output etc etc is in dire trouble and heading south. Compared to the rest of the world, our levels of government debt leave room for creative leadership and productive investment. Yet like Bartleby the Scrivener, English prefers not to.
    […]
    (Public science is being commercialised and put at the service of business, but there was nothing in the Budget to encourage the private sector to cease its freeloading, and pay for its own r &d.)

    Campbell is also pretty damning about the lack of evidence that asset sales will bring about the planned financial/economic returns:

    So, what might be the expected rate of return from those investments, and when might the country begin to receive the returns? Uh oh. There isn’t any such figure, the helpful Treasury boffins at the Budget lock-up told me, or an estimated time frame. It’s just not like that.

    Right. So we are selling down our stakes in high performing state assets in order to spend the money on things for which we can’t estimate a return, at least not in any foreseeable time frame.

  2. the worst growth record of any since before Michael Joseph Savage

    Perhaps it isn’t a coincidence that “before Michael Joseph Savage” we had the Great Depression, and over the last few years we have had the…

    …2007–2012 global financial crisis, also known as the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), is considered by many economists to be the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007%E2%80%932012_global_financial_crisis

    Our economy was headed downhill, encumbered with significant committments, when the Clark government was still in power.

    It’s certainly true that things have been tough under the Key government, but Labour now share their return to surplus goal albeit with a different policy mix.

    • bbfloyd 2.1

      her we go again… little pete just has to leap up and make excuses just in case big pete is singed in the blow by coming from the realisation that this budget is a work of fiction by and large….

      pathetic….. and so transparent as to be pitiable…..

      the only debate that needs to be held is why the government are able to occupy the treasury benches when it is so obvious that they aren’t competent to govern….and what inducements are being offered to get reporters protecting them from the backlash that should be happening…

      wake up and smell the flowers little pete…big pete is irrelevant… he is nothing more than a convenience…. his identifying himself with, and being complicit, with this level of incompetence will ensure a shorter lifespan for his ego driven vehicle….nothing you bray will change that….

      • Pete George 2.1.1

        You seem to forget that Labour was judged more incompetent (relatively) than National. Them’s the flowers of reality.

        We get to have that debate again in two and a half years. In the meantime…

        …and what inducements are being offered to get reporters protecting them from the backlash that should be happening…

        You accused me of making excuses and being pathetic?

        • Dr Terry 2.1.1.1

          OK Pete, maybe I am just ignorant, but please remind me WHO AND ON WHAT BASIS, judged Labour more incompetent?(I suppose you mean the voters – well, the majority of voters are “relatively” stupid!Is it you, perhaps? So just what the hell is “relatively” supposed to signify?

      • sthn.jeff 2.1.2

        While you may consider Dunne to be irrelevant, he was democratically elected by the voters of Ohariu with an increased majority and thereby not irrelevant to the good people of Ohariu, unless of course, you consider their democratic right to vote and elect Dunne as their representative to also be irrelevant

        • Te Reo Putake 2.1.2.1

          The vast majority of Ohariu voters rejected Dunne, Jeff. He is merely the representative of the largest minority of the voters of that electorate. The party vote for United Follicles was only a few hundred strong, which suggests Ohariu voters know all too well that UF itself is completely irrelevent.

          • sthn.jeff 2.1.2.1.1

            What a load of tosh…. he won an election based on the electoral rules gaining from memory 1700ish more votes than nearest opponent. That makes him the elected representative. Based on your reasoning though, Charles Chauvel was rejected by even more voters

            • Te Reo Putake 2.1.2.1.1.1

              Which part of the factual statement I made do you consider to be tosh, Jeff? As you note, Chauvel was ‘rejected’ by an even larger number, but if we had a ‘top two’ run off system in electorate seats, Chauvel would be the MP, assuming the Green vote went his way.
               
              The point I was making is that Dunne may be the MP, and fairly elected under the FPP system we use in electorates, but he does not represent the majority of the voters in Ohariu. I think you are going to struggle to argue against that rather banal fact, given that it applies in just about every other electorate as well.

              • sthn.jeff

                Big assumption that Chauvel would have won assuming Green votes went to him in a two way run off. You have conveniently neglected the 6500 odd votes Shanks got. All totally immaterial. Dunne won the seat under the electoral system we have and is thereby the democratically elected representative for Ohariu. That is how democracy actually works!

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Yep, you’re probably right about Shank’s votes. I’d forgot that she even ran, but then it wasn’t like she tried too hard to win it!
                   
                  I just looked up the result and it is weird in a lot of ways. Dunne got 14000 votes, UF only 672! Shanks only got 7000 votes, but National got 49% of all the party votes cast, which suggests that it’s really a blue ribbon Tory seat in disguise.

                  • sthn.jeff

                    I think the one thing it actually shows above all else is that National and a number of other Voters were prepared to do anything (ie voting for Peter Dunne) in preference to having Charlie Chauvel be their elected representative.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Glad you recognise that voting for Peter Dunne is an unpalatable experience!

                    • sthn.jeff

                      Lol… it was far far far more palatable than voting for Charlie Shovel!

    • Ben Clark 2.2

      Yes, and Savage initiated policies to pull us out of that recession, after the previous government by National’s precursors had had the wrong policy settings and kept us stuck in it.

      It looks like it will be up to Labour again to have “a different policy mix” and make the changes to get us out of this slump too.

      If you change nothing, nothing changes – we need some different fiscal settings to help our exchange rate, and a capital gains tax to push investment towards the productive sector instead of housing bubbles. Austerity & asset sales don’t work – they’re projected to worsen our external deficit at an alarming rate.

      Our main 2 trading partners – China & Australia – didn’t enter recession at all, continuing with strong growth. So blaming macroeconomic factors is somewhat weak. 1000 people each week are leaving because of New Zealand’s problems, not Greece’s.

      And “Labour now share their return to surplus goal” – after 9 years of surplus in 9 years of government, leaving no net government debt, I don’t think the right have the mortgage on “surplus”. In fact as they rack up over $70 billion of debt in under 6 years, National really just have the mortgage…

      • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1

        If you change nothing, nothing changes – we need some different fiscal settings to help our exchange rate, and a capital gains tax to push investment towards the productive sector instead of housing bubbles.

        You suggest that something needs to change and then tell not to change.

    • Georgecom 2.3

      Pete, it is true that we had the Global financial collapse, that our economy did contract before National took office and that the Labour Govt has charted a path to surplus. Thats all true.

      The point however is that time and again English, Key and his government have failed to make good on their promises. It is never their fault however, something else is blamed.

      They were elected in 2008 and 2011. They are the government. They write the budget and deliver the forecasts. They just can’t get them right.

  3. Rob 3

    Absolutly no understanding or comprehension of any macro economic factors at all. 

    Your solution, just blunder on in and throw money around and congratulate your self for it.

    • McFlock 3.1

      Um… no.

      ps: are you saying that National actually achieved the goals outlined above? Or that they failed to achieve those goals? Or simply that they never really set those goals in the first place?

    • mike e 3.2

      seems like Nationals policy Rob just spend money where the votes are and forget about research and development income disparity borrow and hope Nationals policy.

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    New Zealanders’ rights to fresh water must be protected before commercial allocations are given, but the Government is allowing resources to be taken, says Kelvin Davis MP for Te Tai Tokerau.  “The Government needs to resolve the issue of water… ...
    7 days ago
  • Cabinet paper reveals weak case for Iraq deployment
    A heavily redacted copy of a Cabinet paper on New Zealand’s military deployment to Iraq reveals how weak the case is for military involvement in that conflict, says Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff.  The paper warns that given the failure… ...
    7 days ago
  • Malaysia’s booty is Kiwis’ lost homeownership dream
    It’s unsurprising the Auckland property market is so overheated when Malaysians are being told they can live large on Kiwi’s hard-earned rent money, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “A Malaysian property website lists nearly 4000 New Zealand houses and… ...
    7 days ago
  • Ministry’s food safety resources slashed to the bone
    The Ministry for Primary Industries’ failure to monitor toxic and illegal chemicals in red meat is a dereliction of duty, Labour’s Primary Industries and Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “MPI compliance officer Gary Orr today admitted National’s much-vaunted super… ...
    7 days ago
  • Ministry must protect organic food industry
    The Ministry for Primary Industries must take urgent action to protect New Zealand’s $150 million organic food and beverage industry by establishing a certification regime, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Despite working with Organics Aotearoa on the issue… ...
    1 week ago
  • Tony Abbott, indigenous rights, and refugees
    This week, Tony Abbott has visited Aotearoa New Zealand, bringing with him his racist policies against indigenous Australians and his appalling record on refugee detention camps. Abbott has launched a policy “to close” remote aboriginal communities, which is about as… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    1 week ago
  • PM’s housing outburst bizarre
    Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford has described the Prime Minister’s latest comments on the Auckland housing crisis as bizarre. “John Key is deep in denial. He must be one of the only people left who are not concerned about the risk… ...
    1 week ago
  • Deflation: Another economic headache linked to housing crisis
    National’s housing crisis is causing even further damage with the second consecutive quarter of deflation a genuine concern the Reserve Bank can do little about, as it focusses on Auckland house prices, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “This is… ...
    1 week ago
  • Pot calling the kettle black over fossil fuel subsidies.
    Over the weekend alongside nine other countries the New Zealand Government has endorsed a statement that supports eliminating inefficient subsidies on fossil fuels. Fossil fuel subsidies are a big driver of increasing emissions. Good on the Government for working internationally… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    1 week ago
  • At last – a common sense plan for Christchurch
    The Common Sense Plan for Christchurch released by The People’s Choice today is a welcome relief from the shallow debate about rates rises versus asset sales, Labour’s Christchurch MPs say. "Local residents – who have spent weeks trawling through the… ...
    1 week ago
  • National must lead by example on climate change
    The National Government must meet its own climate change obligations before it preaches to the rest of the world, Labour's Climate Change spokesperson Megan Woods says. "Calls today by Climate Change Minister Tim Groser for an end to fossil fuel… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Biosecurity rethink a long time
    The Government has opened New Zealand’s borders to biosecurity risks and its rethinking of bag screening at airports is an admission of failure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. Nathan Guy today announced a review of biosecurity systems in… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Chinese rail workers must be paid minimum wage
    KiwiRail must immediately stop further Chinese engineers from working here until they can guarantee they are being paid the New Zealand minimum wage, Labour’s MP for Hutt South Trevor Mallard says. The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment today released… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Better consultation needed on Christchurch asset sales
    The Christchurch City Council (CCC) should be promoting wide and genuine public consultation on its draft ten year budget and plan given the serious implications for the city’s future of its proposed asset sales, outlined in the plan. Instead, it… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage MP
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Healthy Families’ a good start but not enough to tackle obesity relate...
    Today the Government is making a the meal out of the launch of its ‘Healthy Families’ package to promote ‘healthier decisions’ and ‘changing mindsets’ over nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Great! The programme is based on a successful model from… ...
    GreensBy Kevin Hague MP
    2 weeks ago
  • No more sweet talk on obesity
    The Government should be looking at broader measures to combat obesity rather than re-hashing pre-announced initiatives, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says.  “While it is encouraging to see the Government finally waking from its slumber and restoring a focus on… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government two-faced on zero-hour contracts
    The Government should look to ban zero-hour contracts in its own back yard before getting too high and mighty about other employers using them, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Information collated by Labour shows at least three district health… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Scrutiny of battlefield deaths should continue
    As New Zealand troops head to Iraq under a shroud of secrecy, the Government is pushing ahead with legislation to remove independent scrutiny of incidents where Kiwi soldiers are killed in hostile action overseas, Labour’s Defence spokesperson Phil Goff says.… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damp-free homes a right for tenants
    Labour is urging tenants to use a little known rule which gives them the right to live in damp-free rental homes. Otago University researchers have today highlighted the Housing Improvement Regulations 1947 as a way tenants can force landlords to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National must take action on speculators
    The Government must take action on property speculators who are damaging the housing market and shutting families and young people out of the home ownership dream, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “There are a number of options the Government could… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Milk price halves: A $7b economic black hole
    Global milk prices have halved since the peak last year, creating an economic black hole of almost $7 billion that will suck in regions reliant on dairy, crucial industries and the Government’s books, says Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson. “The… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kitchen plan set to swallow up health boards’ funds
    The financial impacts of implementing a proposal to outsource hospital food, forced on them by a crown-owned company which is now facing an auditor-general’s inquiry, are being felt by district health boards across the country, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Reserve Bank scathing of Government
    The Reserve Bank’s most scathing critique to date of National’s inability to handle the housing crisis shows the Bank is sick of having to pick up the pieces, Labour Leader Andrew Little says.  “John Key continues to deny there is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Time for McDonald’s to upsize work hours
    Labour is calling on McDonald’s to have more respect for their workers and offer them more guaranteed work hours. McDonald’s is proposing to guarantee its workers 80 per cent of their rostered hours, Labour’s spokesperson for Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Brownlee misses the boat on asbestos
    Gerry Brownlee has once again missed an opportunity to improve the lives of Cantabrians post-earthquakes, Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson says. A new report from the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Adviser,… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government must come clean on troop deployment and protections
    New Zealanders deserve more than to hear about their troops’ deployment overseas from Australian media, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “News from Australia that Kiwi troops are on their way to Iraq this week is another example of the culture… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Cancer prevention calls gain momentum
    Research showing bowel cancer treatment sucks up more public health dollars than other cancers once again highlights the need for a national screening programme, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A study by Otago University, which found colon cancer is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Burger King shows zero-hour contracts not needed
    The abandonment of zero-hour contracts by Burger King is further evidence good employers do not need to use them, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues Iain Lees-Galloway says. "Congratulations to the Unite Union and Burger King for settling an employment agreement… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Kiwis deserve more than reheats
    The Government looks set to rely on regurgitated announcements for this year’s Budget if today’s speech is anything to go by, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “National has been building up to this Budget for seven long years, promising a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Landlords not cashing in on insulation schemes
    The fact so few landlords have taken up the generous taxpayer subsidy for retrofitting shows it is time to legislate minimum standards, says Labour’s Associate Housing spokesperson Poto Williams. “Many landlords aren’t using Government insulation schemes because they don’t want… ...
    2 weeks ago

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