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Taking the gap

Written By: - Date published: 12:23 pm, December 3rd, 2012 - 157 comments
Categories: greens, labour - Tags:

Russel Norman’s taken advantage of the gap in Labour’s economic skills and vague positioning to cement the Greens as the main alternative voice on economics. Labour lacks any strong economic voice now Cunliffe’s on the outer, and they don’t know where they stand – they attack National but essentially adopt their neoliberal approach. The free rein Shearer has given Jones to attack the Greens’ economic policies just shows the leadership’s instincts are rightwing, which is why their economic position comes across so weak (‘hands off vs hands on’? Really? Doesn’t that imply you’ll still drive in the same general direction?). Norman has clearly seen the opening left by Labour’s lack of leadership on the economy.

Norman’s taken advantage with his op-ed in the Herald today (not online at time of writing). He opens by doing what he knows Labour can’t do – articulating a powerful economic vision in a paragraph. He then lays out the failure of National’s management of the economy. Then, he puts it to Labour- which side are you on? The failed National side, our the smart, green side? Or, if Labour has its own alternative, what is it? By allowing Shane Jones to be spokesperson for everything, and by spending so much time attacking the alternative to National without offering their own alternative, it looks like Labour really doesn’t want to change much, it just wants to be the one in the driver’s seat.

In short, Norman’s saying ‘Labour doesn’t have the balls and/or brains to offer you a real change in direction, the Greens do’. It’s not a declaration of any split in the opposition to National but it’s a clear sign that the Greens no longer view themselves as second fiddle to Labour. It’s a sign that the Greens plan to be the leaders on the economy and take votes from both major parties in the process. So far, they’re going about it the right way.

157 comments on “Taking the gap”

  1. toad 1

    Russel Norman’s op-ed is online here.

    • It reads very similar to David Cunliffe’s speech the dolphin and the dole que

      • ad 1.1.1

        …without the strategy, metaphors, breadth, or penetration …

      • Shane Gallagher 1.1.2

        That is because he borrowed the key concepts from the Greens in the first place… just saying great minds think alike and all that… 🙂

        • lprent 1.1.2.1

          Ever study why Microsoft (and for that matter Apple, and….) always did well in the tech area?

          They were almost never first, just very good at borrowing ideas (typically by buying the companies with the ideas) and then doing it better second.

          • George D 1.1.2.1.1

            It doesn’t say much to me. Given the constraints of an editorial, there’s still more room than he used.

            Nevertheless, that he’s been given the platform to present himself speaks to the success the ptarty has had in striking its ground.

      • Jenny 1.1.3

        It reads very similar to David Cunliffe’s speech the dolphin and the dole que …

        mickysavage

        The striking difference between David Cunliffe and Russel Norman’s speech is that Norman does not, even once, manage to choke out the two words climate change, or global warming.

        Where Cunliffe gives this subject multiple paragraphs under a subject heading.

        This is not a simple mistake, or even something new, but a deliberate long term policy decision to actively ignore this issue by the Greens leader. In this he is aping the behaviour of David Shearer who is also a notorious Climate Change Ignorer. But where this policy might be seen by some to be marginally acceptable for the Labour Party leader, with that Party’s links to the trade unions as an excuse. For the Green party leader it is completely inexcusable and stinks of rank opportunism..

        • mickysavage 1.1.3.1

          Good point Jenny.  Not much room in the column but is there a bit of soft selling going on?

           

          • Jenny 1.1.3.1.1

            More than a little I’m afraid mickey. It not just a shortage of column inches. Take a look at all of Norman’s latest speeches where he is not constrained by any restrictions that might (just possibly be), imposed in writing an op-ed piece.

            http://www.greens.org.nz/advancedsearch?tid_1=174

            It is like someone took a sharp pair of scissors to each one of Norman’s speeches and deliberately cut out any mention of climate change or global warming.

            I have no trouble calling it as I see it. The co-leader of the Green Party, like David Shearer, is a Climate Change Ignorer. In the struggle against climate change Russel Norman will be worse than useless.

            • weka 1.1.3.1.1.1

              Yeah, the Green Party has never done anything good or useful when it comes to Climate Change :roll:
               
              /sarc
               
              Norman’s job is to win as many votes and seats at the next election, and to position the party so it can be part of the next govt of NZ. It’s not his job to raise awareness about CC, nor champion solutions. There are others in the party to do that. In fact it makes sense to let Labour do it, if you think about it.
               
              Looking at the GP’s website, there are 14,600 hits for climate change.
              Number 6 is Kennedy Graham’s speech in parliament on CC and the Kyoto protocol, dated 25/11/12.
               
              http://www.greens.org.nz/speeches/kennedy-grahams-general-debate-speech-climate-change-and-kyoto-protocol
               
              Here’s their CC policy summary
               
              http://www.greens.org.nz/policysummary/climate-change-policy-summary-kicking-carbon-habit
               
               
               

              • Colonial Viper

                Smart analysis weka. Labour needs to prove its CC and peak oil credentials – Cunliffe was doing this. The Greens need to prove ther “sensible economic” credentials – Norman was doing this.

              • Socialist Paddy

                But it is a slippery slope Weka. You start off by failing to mention climate change then you are chipping at non existent sickness beneficiaries who fix their roof and then you are saying that the South Pole’s fishing stock has to be plundered for the economic benefit of some all.

                • weka

                  That’s one possible interpretation SP. Another is that the GP did the hard yards on CC for years when no-one else wanted to talk about it. They put it on the public agenda and kept it there. They deserve to focus on other things IMO.
                   
                  It’s fairly inevitable that when the GP gets some actual power in govt that they will need to compromise more. If NZ was ready for real sustainability politics (environmental, social, economic) it would have given the GP enough votes to form govt with Helen Clark’s Labour. NZ demonstrated very clearly that it wasn’t ready for that, so the GP have taken the time to position themselves where they can do some good. I don’t agree with alot of their policy shifts, but I support what they are doing because I think it will work. Once they become mainstream, and the mainstream adjusts to accommodate them, other parties will come along to keep them honest. That’s the beauty of MMP.

                  • Jenny

                    “It’s fairly inevitable that when the GP gets some actual power in govt that they will need to compromise more.”

                    weka

                    All political parties hoping to win public office come eventually to a crossroads where they have to choose, do we compromise principle for power?

                    It may work for some parties, and they can stagger on for decades bearing no resemblance to their original principled beginnings.

                    Unfortunately for the Greens, this section of the political spectrum is already over filled.

                    And for the Greens this sort of opportunism will end badly. The Greens vote in 2014 will be their biggest ever. But swapping principle for power will come at a cost. When voters see that the Greens in government behave just like any other mainstream political party, voters will realise they might as well vote for one or the other of the major parties. Green support will never recover from their first term in government and their vote will drop off. In my opinion this will be a terrible tragedy, not just for the Greens but for the climate and the planet, just at the time when we need a Green Party in parliament that doesn’t compromise on principle.

                    “Voters do not want a subservient and compliant Green Party in any future coalition, if that was the case they would just vote Labour”

                    http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2012/12/greens-want-more-disciplined-labour.html

                    • weka

                      hi Jenny,
                      yes, there is the risk that the GP will compromise too far, although I don’t see the particular risk that you name – getting enough support for only one term and then losing it (the shift in NZ towards green politics is more substantial than that). They’re still on the ascendency and once in parliament will have a steep learning curve, but I think by then that NZers will be more aware of how crucial those issues are that the GP has been talking about all along. It’s possible that the timing will work very well for NZ, we will have strong green representation in govt just at the time it is needed most.
                       
                      I don’t see the GP as becoming subservient, on the contrary I see them maturing and being able to stand their ground. But in a realistic way that allows them access to power. Were they to stay truer to their original values, they wouldn’t be part of govt, at least not in a meaningful way, and IMO that would be worse for NZ than the path they are on now (they would essentially be glorified lobbyists). As I said, as they become more mainstream, it opens a space for others to fill.

                    • You assume that pragmatism and principle must always be opposed.

                      When your goal is to implement your principles, pragmatism means sacrificing group or individual gain towards that end when it’s important, but it also means working together on areas of common interest with both opponents and friends in order to build credibility in a wide array of areas, and eventually towards meeting your larger goals.

                      The Greens have performed admirably on both of those fronts in their time in parliament but out of government- what makes you think they would be pushovers in coalition talks? Certainly the reality of government is different, but I don’t see them pulling a Maori Party to Labour’s National, even if it introduces a different set of constraints to the cross-benches and opposition.

                    • Skinny

                      Having once attended a local GP meeting I can assure you punters their barking mad. Ask M Wilson, they chose caged chickens over humans for Christ sake & Labour formed a Government with NZ First instead.

                       On the surface they may  ‘appear’ to have changed but I doubt that very much. Putting that aside & excepting they are needed to form a Government.
                      The question still remains who in Labour has the goods to negotiate the deal. Laila Harre is probably the Greens go to person & I know GR reckons he’s it! still be hear a name or two?
                       
                      I wonder if the above pair can pin down tricky Peter’s getting him on board of a L/G coalition? I just can’t see those 2 parties ( G & NZF ) excepting each other, which is my biggest concern. Peters playing 3rd fiddle would be too much for his ego, as would stomaching some of the Green’s policies.
                          

                    • Jenny

                      Weka never underestimate the power of lobbyists

                      Were they to stay truer to their original values, they wouldn’t be part of govt, at least not in a meaningful way, and IMO that would be worse for NZ than the path they are on now (they would essentially be glorified lobbyists).

                      weka

                      I disagree. The Values Party were never in Government but they made New Zealand nuclear free.

                      Would the country had been better off if the Values Party had compromised their anti-nuclear principles to be in government?

                      The members of RAM could have met in a phone box yet they mounted a lobby to take GST off food. Phil Goff responded to RAM’s campaign by saying, over my dead body. But RAM collected tens of thousands of names to their petition to take GST off food. Which they handed over to parliament where it was accepted and tabled by the Maori Party. Who then put it up their own private members bill. Labour was in quandary. Vote with ACT and National, or vote for the bill. Despite reservations they voted for the Maori Party private members bill to remove GST from fresh fruit and vegetables. From there it became Labour Party policy. (a position Shearer has said he would like to revisit. Need I say more.)

                      And for an example of the power of lobbying you don’t have to look much past the example of the Right. The Business Roundtable and the banksters lobby seem to continually get whatever they ask for and haven’t got a single seat in parliament.

                      Politics is all about pressure. You don’t have to be in government to exercise this pressure.

                      The Greens need to make their bottom line for coalition with Labour on principle, not pragmatism. So what if the Labour Party balks. More can be achieved outside of parliament. Especially if the Greens use the public pulpit provided by having seats in parliament to call for a mass campaign to stop Deep Sea Oil Drilling or Fracking or open cast coal mining for export.

                      This will achieve real change where going with the flow will not.

                    • Jenny

                      All politics is about pressure.

                      Let me put it another way.

                      Do you think that there is a powerful fossil fuel and roading lobby?

                      Of course there is.

                      But is there a powerful opposing lobby?

                      No there isn’t.

                      With out this counter pressure even if the Greens dominated parliament I don’t believe they would be able to achieve a fraction of the things what they would like to. The pressure of the fossil fuel lobby is too great.

                      A counter posing lobby needs to be built.

                      So how could this counter lobby be built?

                      Not compromising for one thing would be a start.

                      I often use the example of Winston Churchill who uncompromisingly thundered away from the backbenchers about the dangers of fascism.

                      He was appealing over the heads of parliament to the country.

                      He was building a lobby.

                    • weka

                      Not sure how much you know about how the GP works Jenny, but where you are concerned about their voters, I am thinking about members. Members have much more say in what happens than in other parties. I’m not concerned at this stage that Norman will end up in the pocket of big oil. He is not the party (as much as he is being portrayed as such at the moment), and as far as I can tell, there is still alot of integrity within the party as a whole.
                       
                       

                  • weka

                    Citations needed for all those claims Jenny (@9.11pm)
                     
                    eg the GP position on Deep Seal drilling, both from the last 6 months –
                     
                    http://www.greens.org.nz/oralquestions/russel-norman-questions-prime-minister-about-dangerous-deep-sea-oil-drilling
                     
                    http://www.greens.org.nz/press-releases/deep-sea-drilling-not-worth-risk

                • The Greens will mention Climate Change, don’t worry.

                  What you can’t expect reasonably is for it to be mentioned in every speech or every policy just because it has some relevance. It will obviously be omitted from things that don’t connect at all, but just because you’re Green (or green) doesn’t mean that every topic related to climate change rates a mention, especially not when you still have to convince the portion of the country that has its heads up its bums that being Green is about more than climate or the environment. 🙂

                • Jenny

                  Already the Greens have agreed not to challenge Deep Sea Oil drilling, or the opening of the Deniston plateau for strip mining coal for export.

                  Not to mention the Green’s continuing support for the notorious Pollution Trading Scheme. Which right from the very beginning protected polluters rights to keep on polluting. And has overseen a big increase in CO2 emissions.

                  And for what? So their leader can prove that he is a pair of responsible hands with the country’s finances?

                    • Jenny

                      I have no doubt Weka that the Green are opposed to deep sea oil drilling. The point is not whether the Green Party are opposed to deep sea oil drilling, or open cast strip mining of coal to be burnt in China. Of course they are. The point is whether the Green Party is prepared trade off these principled positions to get a coalition deal with Labour. All indications are not good.

                  • weka

                    “Already the Greens have agreed not to challenge Deep Sea Oil drilling,”
                     
                    Your words. Citation needed.

                    • Jenny

                      Au Contraire weka. It is you who has to show any statement that says that the Greens will not agree to accept Deep Sea Oil drilling as a condition of being in government with Labour.

                      It is very hard to prove an issue when it is not even discussed openly.

                      The Greens should be stating loud and clear that they will not accept Deep Sea Oil Drilling by any government that they will be a part of.

                      Anyhow your rebuttal is specious.

                      You very noticeably left out challenging my assertion about the opening of the Deniston plateau for strip mining coal for export.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Here’s what you said jenny:

                      “Already the Greens have agreed not to challenge Deep Sea Oil drilling, or the opening of the Deniston plateau for strip mining coal for export.”

                      Where is this agreement, that you claim already exists?

                      You claim it is something that has already happened, something that exists. So it really is on you to provide some evidence for this agreement, that you claimed exists.

                    • Jenny

                      Here’s what you said jenny:

                      “Already the Greens have agreed not to challenge Deep Sea Oil drilling, or the opening of the Deniston plateau for strip mining coal for export.”

                      Where is this agreement, that you claim already exists?

                      You claim it is something that has already happened, something that exists. So it really is on you to provide some evidence for this agreement, that you claimed exists.

                      I ask you to provide evidence that it doesn’t.

                      weka

                      I take your point, weka. Maybe I was a bit in haste in not qualifying my statement properly.

                      How’s this?

                      “Already the Greens have agreed not to challenge Deep Sea Oil drilling, or the opening of the Deniston plateau for strip mining coal for export. As a condition of entering into coalition with the Labour Party.”

                      I ask you, Will the Green Party will let these two things stand, to get into government?

                      I and all those concerned about climate change await your answer.

                      All the evidence is that to secure cabinet positions, serious action against climate change is off the table.

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      I assume you are talking to me, but again, you are still claiming that this has already happened.

                      What are you basing that on?

                      It’s nonsense from beginning to end Jenny, and while we are at it, what mandate do you have to claim to speak on behalf of everyone who cares about climate change?

              • Jenny

                Yes Kennedy’s speech is good and he doesn’t have an aversion to the mention of the words “climate change”. But his speech is not a patch on Cunliffe on climate change.

                Also Kennedy is not the leader. (not even number 2)

                The Green Party is being outclassed on the biggest environmental issue of all time, by a parliamentarian, not even a member of their party.

                You gotta worry when the leading parliamentarian on climate change is not their party leader, in fact is not even a member of the Green Party.

            • karol 1.1.3.1.1.2

              I have heard Norman talk about climate change in the House recently, in Question Time and in the general debate.  I think the danger with Norman is, not that he might ignore climate change, but that he might go for weak, compromise, neoliberal solutions like the ETS.  He also has talked about it in the last couple of years.  And he has submitted at least one question for written answer on it.

              • toad

                The Greens’ preference is and always has been for a carbon tax and a regulatory regime rather than an ETS. There was a strong internal debate within the Greens over whether to support Labour’s ETS legislation or not – many Green MPs and activists considered it far too weak a response to climate change, but eventually the decision was made that it was better to support some response than oppose Labour’s ETS and have no response at all, given that the ETS was the only response on the table.

                The strength of the response to climate change post-2014 really comes down to how the numbers stack up in a Labour-Green Government. If Labour have twice the number of MPs as the Greens, we probably won’t get much stronger response than Labour’s 2008 ETS legislation, as the Greens simply won’t have the bargaining power. If the numbers are closer to equal, expect a much stronger response

                • Jackal

                  I’m hopeful that the Greens will be in a position after the next election to not have to compromise on such issues. As I’m sure many Green MP’s agree there should be no further compromise in the future if it can be avoided at all costs. Documented recent events show that drastic political action is now required to avert global disaster, and every little county like New Zealand counts.

                  Labour’s ETS could have worked if it was more focused on penalties when industry failed to meet its reduction obligations. A market placed solution based on financial incentives or disincentives is always going to be the best answer to addressing the interests of private businesses, especially when those interests impact on and contradict the interests of the environment.

                  The reason the ETS hasn’t worked properly is because it has been undermined by industrialized countries, including our own under a deluded National government. As far as I can tell John Key is still a climate change denier, meaning that he doesn’t represent the majority of Kiwis who want New Zealand to live up to that clean and green branding.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    A market placed solution based on financial incentives or disincentives is always going to be the best answer to addressing the interests of private businesses,

                    :roll:

                    • Jackal

                      They only care about money in other words Colonial Viper… Why do you find such an argument so hard to comprehend?

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      Business isn’t the reason for the existence of society nor, in fact, is it the reason for the existence of the economy.

                  • Jenny

                    John Key is not a climate change denier.

                    He openly admits it is a problem. However Key has said that the economy and growth and jobs take precedent over addressing climate change.

                    John Key is a Climate Change Apologist.

              • Jenny

                Even in a question about the corrupt and rotten Pollution Trading Scheme, Russel Norman still manages to avoid saying the words “climate change” (except when the two words “climate change” are in the title of the bill and in the title of the Minister.

                http://www.parliament.nz/NR/rdonlyres/D9129EE3-74C4-4B4E-9194-C11BFCF2EF1C/244666/QWA_06946_2012.pdf

                He also omitted the words “climate change” from his written submission.

                http://www.parliament.nz/NR/rdonlyres/D9129EE3-74C4-4B4E-9194-C11BFCF2EF1C/244666/QWA_06946_2012.pdf

                This is a truly remarkable achievement.

                It seems that Russel Norman has developed an unconscious aversion to the term climate change.

                And why not, Norman is trying to seek an accomodation with a political party that is committed to overseeing a huge expansion in coal mining. Especially massive opencast strip mining for export which sneakily avoids being accounted for under our international commitments to cut back our CO2 emissions.

                Any meeting with Hansen can only be about climate change.

                Russel Norman as leader of the Green Party could not have avoided meeting with James Hansen, when Hansen toured here in 2011.

                In his quest for a cabinet position, to not to offend the Labour Party, Norman has chosen to ignore Hansen’s key message about coal being the number 1 cause of green house gas emissions. And instead of being expanded as the Labour Party insist, must be phased out. This is why it is easier for Norman to just ignore the issue. If he has to talk about it, then he will have to take a stand on it. Russel Norman is walking a tight rope, either offend Labour, or offend the Green grass roots. Far easier not to mention climate change at all.

                • Jackal

                  More rubbish from you Jenny… Not only does Russel Norman often talk about climate change, coal is not the biggest contributor to GHG emissions in New Zealand as you claim, Agriculture is, providing around half of all New Zealands emissions.

                  I also don’t see any evidence that supports your claim that Labour wants a huge expansion in coal mining or open cast strip mining.

                  I think you’ve got the future Labour led government under David Shearer confused with a defunct and failure of a National government under John Key… Idiot!

            • alex 1.1.3.1.1.3

              Yes, the phrase climate change doesn’t appear, but he talks repeatedly about environmental degradation, the need to avoid growth based on wanton resource exploitation and how our environment is crucial to our global brand.

              In short, this is still a very Green article.

  2. Lanthanide 2

    Seriously considering party vote Greens in 2014, especially if Mr Bumbles stays in the hotseat.

    • Galeandra 2.1

      +1

      What reason to change the habit of years, having recently signed up to oppose the ABC’s notwithstanding?

  3. xtasy 3

    Shane Jones keeps popping up with unhelpful comments, and it is justified for Norman raising this.

    I continue to be flabbergasted about Shearers rushed, almost “dictatorial” style demotion of Cunliffe. If he (Shearer) was a smart, competent and skilful leader, he would never have done this, certainly not in the manner he did.

    There goes the probably best qualified “economic” spokesperson Labour has, who did a tour of Europe, to see how Denmark and other countries do better than NZ, and he gets sent into the wilderness, without any spokesperson area at all. And all mainly due to media speculations and hype, distracting from what matters.

    That is plain desperate and/or dumb, to “discipline” a suspected contender for the top job. The front bench has been substantially weakened, for sure.

    While Shearer dares to state to the media that HE will “lead” Labour into the 2014 election, he seems to forget what the members voted for on their last major conference. It is not good, what I see and hear from him.

    I am still waiting for more details of their Kiwi Build policy, as what I see so far is not sufficiently convincing.

    It seems that the Greens are making headway in support, so far in the shadow of Labour. But with more of that going on, what we have seen the last few weeks and months, I still believe, that given they also come out with some solid, well thought through and soundly calculated policy measures in the economic, financial and social areas, complementing what they stand for in regards to the environment, the Greens will catch up with Labour, while I cannot – presently – see Labour gain very much more support.

    Recent polls seem to indicate the government is now performing so poorly, that even a weak Labour alternative becomes more appealing to voters. My fear is that the increased support comes from former Nat voters, more so than the non-voters. But others surely will see this differently.

    Interesting times lie ahead for NZ.

    • Craig Glen Eden 3.1

      +1 the problem now for Shearer is the only way for him is down. The Greens really just have to keep working away doing what they are doin and it will reap rewards for them.

      Labours problem is their Caucus with so many just clinging on for power, Shearer was the willing fall guy and he has badly miscalculated. Shearer was never ready for the leadership of Labour let alone being a Prime Minister. It takes about 6-9 years in my opinion in that place to understand just how Parliament works.

      The fact that Shearer agreed to run to be the leader of Labour after less than a term is quite unbelievable, what the hell was he thinking.

      Labour need a big clean out but Shearer cant do it cos the ones who need to be cleared out are the ones who gave him the job.
      Until we have a leader who is voted in by the members Labour are stuffed. Democracy in Feb is our last chance I think. As an a side.
      I thought Materia did well on Q and A getting that message across about “valuing our young” its a message that will ring in many socialists ears as we draw closer to election day.

    • Anne 3.2

      I continue to be flabbergasted about Shearers rushed, almost “dictatorial” style demotion of Cunliffe.

      Me too. Somebody or some persons got to Shearer before the Labour Conference and then circumstantial evidence (during the conference) of a supposed imminent coup attempt by Cunliffe finished him off.

      I am waiting for an outcome to the New Lynn LEC’s formal complaint. I understand it was on the agenda at last weekend’s Labour Council meeting. There are 3 possible outcomes:

      1) the Council agrees that a set of circumstances at the conference was misinterpreted by some Caucus members, and that Mr Cunliffe should be reinstated to his former position.

      2) the Council recognises there was an injustice but – at the request of the Labour parliamentary leadership – agrees to keep the matter under wraps and decides to take no action.

      3) the Council was/is itself implicated in the conspiracy to discredit Cunliffe, and attempts to silence the New Lynn LEC (long term) by issuing a threat of some sort. A caveat perhaps? Not unheard of in these sorts of situations both in the political arena and the Public Service.

      My money is on No.2.

  4. Saarbo 4

    The Greens are so lucky, they have a clear articulate Leader (in fact they have two!). I wish we could have one of those (we’d settle for one). I think he is sitting on the back bench somewhere.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      The Greens are so lucky

      Of course luck plays some part. But more importantly: the Greens have a membership which values ability and skill, and they have a democratic process for that membership to select those leaders who can best represent their views.

      Yes the process is still highly political, but in the end it allows a meritocracy to function.

      So some of it is luck, but a lot of it is good design and leadership.

      • Saarbo 4.1.1

        Yes, they have good process. Also Norman’s timing is impecable. He knows voters are now searching for an alternative to National (having finally relised that they are hopeless). Voters still feel that the NZ is vulnerable, particularly if we dont have a government strong in the economic area. So Norman is selling his party in an area that he knows he can win some of the swinging voters. I reckon ultimately it will be the party that can best sell its economic vision which will win over the swing voters in 2014. Putting Shearer’s shortcomings around his inability to put across a coherent message, he simply does not have experience in this complex and technical area…that’s my worry.

        However I do think that Labour have better policy in the economic area…they just dont have the ability to communicate it and sell it!

  5. ad 5

    If Norman would never get Finance, could he reasonably ask for MoBIE?
    Nice shiny new machine with large levers attached, Russell.

    • King Kong 5.1

      Whatever Ministerial portfolio he gets hopefully he will use the pay rise to buy a suit that actually fits him.

      Always be wary of people who don’t know how to dress properly.

      • ad 5.1.1

        Absolutely agree. Needs to pop down to the Parliamentary gym for 6 months and then head down to Zegna or Working Style. Generally take the concrete pill. And harden up.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.1.2

        I’m more wary of people who judge people by what they wear.

        • Murray Olsen 5.1.2.1

          I’m wary of people whose jacket sleeves need to be longer than their trouser legs.

          • George D 5.1.2.1.1

            I’d recommend Crane Brothers; he can afford it. Gareth also could do with a slightly better fit. Nevertheless, their projection of sensibility and authority over their subject is working for them.

            People are superficial, and also respond to cues which are on the edge of their consciousness. Dress plays an important part of this. If you’re not dressing well, you should have an important reason to do so – and some MPs do, such as dressing in a way that resonates with their constituency.

  6. The Fan Club 6

    This post betrays a fundamental misapprehension about the nature of neo-liberalism. Neo-liberalism is a political ideology premised on the dogma of the hands-off state (or rather, on the fiction of the hands-off state.) By repudiating hands-off, you repudiate neo-liberalism, in the same way that by repudiating the incarnation you repudiate Christianity.

    In practice, Labour’s broken with two key neo-liberal planks by promising reform of the Reserve Bank Act, and large scale intervention in a market. (This, of course, follows a series of breaks undertaken by the Clark government.)

    You might say that Labour’s looking insufficiently redistributionist, or insufficiently committed to reducing inequality, or whatever, but saying they are neo-liberal is just misusing the word.

    In practice, the Greens aren’t offering a concrete set of proposals. There’s no attempt to cost, no attempt at fiscal credibility. The numbers don’t add up. Of course it’s trivial for Norman to come across well — he’s not constrained by the reality of making the sums work. (And he knows he never will be.)

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      Neoliberalism isn’t hands-off at all. That’s a bullshit definition.

      For instance, Margaret Thatcher put daily attention and planning into breaking the coal miners in the UK. That was hands on with meticulous detail and intervention using every lever of government against the workers.

      For a better definition read about the Washington Consensus.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washington_Consensus

      • The Fan Club 6.1.1

        `the fiction of the hands-off state’, you fucking clown. Now of course the Washington Consensus isn’t about neo-liberalism as practised in New Zealand or the UK or etc, because the Washington Consensus is about development economics. (It is the application of neo-liberalism to development economics.)

        • mickysavage 6.1.1.1

          Um Fan Club as soon as I hit your expletive my brain turned off.  You should  try a more reasonable discursive tone.  It does wonders for the persuasive ability of your comments.

          • The Fan Club 6.1.1.1.1

            Yes yes very cute, but really, if people can’t bother reading things properly, and use expletives themselves, they will be responded to in a like tone.

            • quartz 6.1.1.1.1.1

              You’ve got a little anger problem going on. Hope you don’t behave like that in real life.

              • Murray Olsen

                I doubt very much if that behaviour would be visible in real life, at least until he/she gets rewarded with cabinet rank. People who are vicious attack dogs behind their keyboards are usually fairly shy and retiring when out on their own. But yeah, this behaviour provides a good example of those who put party loyalty above all else. I don’t want to be part of a fan club, although it’s the most some can hope for. I want to be a participant in a democracy.

    • ad 6.2

      FanClub you are dead right on being challenged – Norman has had as big a free ride as Key did in his first term.
      In practise, as you say, he isn’t being asked for concrete proposals, nor their costings.

      It’s not really a new point, but one of the reasons for this is that their policy detail is substituted by consistent and now ambient narrative. Greens and National get away with it because they have superior smoke and mirrors; narrative penetration.

      So while it feels unfair for Labour to be required to answer policy detail, it is in some part because Labour are in the public mind neither one thing nor the other; being Oppositional is not enough. Superior storytelling covers it……

      …. at least until the first TV Leaders’ debate. 2 years away. That’s quite a long free ride to puff his polls.

      • The Fan Club 6.2.1

        Yeah — no point whinging about it, we just have to deal with it. But it does mean we should be wary of claims about how awesome the Greens are; they are playing a different game.

    • weka 6.3

      “In practice, the Greens aren’t offering a concrete set of proposals. There’s no attempt to cost, no attempt at fiscal credibility. The numbers don’t add up. Of course it’s trivial for Norman to come across well — he’s not constrained by the reality of making the sums work. (And he knows he never will be.)”

      Really?
       
      http://www.greens.org.nz/greenjobs
       
      http://www.greens.org.nz/sites/default/files/green_jobs_initiative_one-pager.pdf
       
      http://www.greens.org.nz/sites/default/files/gp_jobsbooklet_20final.pdf
       
      http://www.greens.org.nz/sites/default/files/fiscal_implications_november_6_2011_0.pdf

      • The Fan Club 6.3.1

        Yeah. Really. For instance, the Greens haven’t priced into that any of their educational policies. The figures on the cap gains tax are optimistic and scanty — compare to Labour’s costings.

        • aerobubble 6.3.1.1

          I think the notion that unquantifiable costings of policies is a neo-liberal propaganda.
          How much does a child cost the economy, how much does your grandparents health,
          to you its immeasurable, to the state its fungible since the state doesn’t control value
          it merely turns up or down the flows of money.

          Up to now government loosen the leveraging sluice gates, tax payers took their tax cuts and borrowed heavily, and now the flood of future value is here, so much so that just like Japan, now the US, has no problem printing money to tied themselves over. This is why selling assets to the world, directly or indirectly by kiwis renegotiation their debt is utterly stupid.

          Nz is badly governed as it has funneled money into housing by not taxing capital gains,
          among other policies mistakes.

        • No thanks, I’ll compare to National’s costings, which are outright fictitious.

    • Ennui in Requiem 6.4

      Here in Purgatory we see the souls of sentient beings come and stand on the viewing platform from whence Heaven and Hell can be viewed. These are “dreams” and in this state “dreamers” can see where their actions will take them…some are having nightmares, others visions.

      The most disturbing of views is that of the First Ring of Hell….Limbo, a sort of low grade Heaven reserved for those who are basically good but don’t have sufficient faith or belief to proceed to Heaven. There are many Green voters and politicians aimlessly driving around Limbo in SUVs, using I-Phones and wearing corporate ties. They all say they “were right”, and that “they meant well”. To get to Heaven however a greater degree of faith and commitment is required.

    • HatBat 6.5

      By the same token Neo-Liberalism is also a political ideology premised on the promotion of inequality. Given that the Labour party only has a weak commitment to doing anything about inequality, at least part of their policy seems to be rooted in Neo-Liberal ideas. In short, I wonder if you are working with a too narrow definition of NL.

      By the way I don’t think Neo-Liberalism it is just an ideology, instead it relates to fundamental shifts in the balances of class forces. In the same way that repudiating the incarnation does not repudiate the objective social institutions of Christianity, repudiating one part of the NL ideology does not repudiate the objective class based economic structures of NL. But thats another point….

      • The Fan Club 6.5.1

        The thing is, the base problem there is bourgeois capitalism: that is to say, with the ordering and structuring of society around certain relationships to power and wealth.

        But neoliberalism isn’t the same thing as bourgeois capitalism. It has a more precise technical meaning. Lots of political ideologies are premised on inequality: feudalism, fascism, technocracy and so-on. Socialism is pretty much unique in advocating equality. So yes, the Labour Party isn’t going far enough to fight inequality. But that’s not because it’s a neo-liberal party; it is because it is not, at this juncture, a socialist party.

        That might be because it’s still got a Third Way hangover. It might be because fundamentally parliamentary reformism never goes far enough (you can smell the stinking corpse.) But it isn’t enough to just say it is neoliberalism. Because the Kirk government didn’t go far enough. Fraser didn’t. Savage didn’t. And that wasn’t neoliberalism.

  7. karol 7

    Good on Norman for taking on Labour over Shane Jones out-bursts, and some of its policies.  He does point to some better directions for economic and employment policies.

    However, Norman is still into the “growth” meme, rather than focusing on a steady-state economy.  I don’t see fully repudiating the neoliberal scam.  I think other Green MPs, including Metiria Turei, may be more focused on a new direction: one where people, community and the unacceptable level of inequality is put centre stage.

     

    • Saarbo 7.1

      “However, Norman is still into the “growth” meme, rather than focusing on a steady-state economy.”

      Given that Karol, how do we stop our kids heading to Aus?

    • weka 7.2

      I agree Karol. I think this is what they have to do to get into power. They will pull NZ back to the left somewhat, and start us in the right direction, but won’t scare the horses. It will be easier to move from that to steady-state, than from where we are now. Peak oil, CC. GFC etc may be enough for the GP, once they have some power, to make the shift, or it may require a different party.

  8. The Fan Club 8

    Oh joy, steady-state economics. Your kids will never be better off than you are, you will never enjoy rising standards of living, this is as good as it gets.

    Have fun convincing voters, and have fun convincing the economy.

    • But our political leaders should be brave and say it the way things are.  And if there is a looming crisis or crises then they should be acting now.

      I hate to say it TFC but our kids will never be better off than us and everyone has to consume less.

      Otherwise we will completely and utterly trash the place in a few generations.

      Principled leadership ought to be raising this as an issue and parties should stand on principles. 

      • The Fan Club 8.1.1

        Yes! It is impossible for us to build a better future for our children! Decline and fall await! Here, us, at the end of history…

        Like I say, good luck with that.

        • mickysavage 8.1.1.1

          It can be better.  Just less consumerist.  And more respectful of the environment.

          There you go, a perfectly good line for our political gods to “sell” to the masses. 

        • Colonial Viper 8.1.1.2

          The end of the ancient Greeks, the end of ancient Rome, and the end of Great Britain wasn’t the end of history. Just the end of their respective empires.

          Read more John Michael Greer

          Yes! It is impossible for us to build a better future for our children! Decline and fall await!

          We’ve already done this to NZ children since the 1980’s. Why are you acting so surprised when asked to face reality?

    • quartz 8.2

      Not happy where you are now, fan club?

    • Lanthanide 8.3

      It is quite possible for many many people to improve their quality of life in a steady state economy, compared to where they are now.

      All it means is that those at the very top, with most of the wealth, will have to give a lot of it up.

      Pretty simple.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.4

      Your kids will never be better off than you are, you will never enjoy rising standards of living, this is as good as it gets.

      Steady state economics provides a higher standard of living than the growth meme which just enriches a few and impoverishes the many.

  9. infused 9

    Russel Norman and economic skills made me lol.

  10. Ramlea 10

    Methinks the Greens would loooooove to have Cunliffe on board.

    Cunliffe has articulated the Global Warming issues better than any current Green leaders.
    Cunliffe has always had very good relations with Green in the west adn in Wellington.
    Cunliffe fits the Green’s Liberal values.
    Cunliffe would give the Greens the dept they need to overcome their flakey reputation.
    And we would win them an actual seat.

    The only fly in the ointment is that Cunlifffe is deeply committed to Labour and would turn the Greens into an alternative Labour party.

    • lprent 10.1

      The only fly in the ointment is that Cunlifffe is deeply committed to Labour and would turn the Greens into an alternative Labour party.

      Which is exactly the same reason I’m not that interested in joining the Greens. I value the ecodiversity. 😈

    • Jenny 10.2

      Cunliffe fits the Green’s Liberal values.

      Ramlea

      Just as Norman fits Shearer’s Climate Change Ignoring values.

  11. gobsmacked 11

    @Fan Club (various comments)

    You’re willing to debate the issues. But your leader can’t. That’s Labour’s problem, right there. And economic policy is pretty basic stuff for a would-be Prime Minister.

    It would be great if Shearer could go beyond wanting to “make a difference” and actually articulate what he believes, and how it would work. Doesn’t need full costings, just some indication that he’s saying what he thinks, not what some seal-trainer has told him to remember and repeat.

    Until he can do that, you popping up on blogs to do it for him isn’t going to help. Ironically it does the opposite – it just further reminds us that he can’t do it for himself.

    I don’t believe Shearer is a “neo-liberal”, but then I don’t really have any evidence to believe he’s anything at all. It would be good if he could provide some. (In person, not a staffer’s press release).

    • The Fan Club 11.1

      Actually, no, I think the Leader’s job is firstly to be Prime Minister after the next election, and secondly to preside over a successful Labour-led government. If he does that, I don’t care at all about how little he’s willing to “debate the issues”. So there’s no mileage for Shearer in going around talking about his views on the capital account controversy and export-led growth.

      What I want from Shearer is competent political management backed up by top notch policy development. That’s what we’re getting. From what I saw at conference, I’d back the draft Labour platform for depth, breadth, and coherence against any other party’s policy in New Zealand. And it’s social democratic policy.

      • lprent 11.1.1

        Not what I saw. I saw someone badly in need a few years of rapid political training, and someone so insecure that his minions manufactured an artificial crisis to get rid of a potential competitor. The lobbying was somewhat pathetic.

        • The Fan Club 11.1.1.1

          (a) ffs look this is why you guys keep losing. Either Shearer’s a dastardly genius who managed to knife Cunliffe while convincing the vast majority of observers Cunliffe did it to himself, or else he’s reasonably competent manager who didn’t handle a situation brilliantly but got away with it.

          (b) I never said I observed political management at conference: I observed the platform there.

          • lprent 11.1.1.1.1

            ffs look this is why you guys keep losing.

            Why I can remember only a few weeks ago when you were portraying yourself as a loyal Labour supporter/member. I guess your mask is slipping and your language kind of betrays you. Not that many really seemed to believe you anyway.

            I just think that Shearer is politically incompetent. If he’d had even another couple of terms, and ideally some time as a minister then he’d have been quite competent. But jumping him in too fast with inadequate support looks more like an act of desperation than intelligence.

            And this current caucus has been looking increasingly like a clusterfuck all year because it is so incoherent, and that reflects directly back to their leader. They’ve been looking less and less capable of growing the vote from the low base it has been for the last 4 years, and that is completely irritating for any activist. Each time some traction gets generated, sure as hell some caucus ego goes off and screws up destroying the momentum. Frustrating doesn’t quite describe it – especially when you’re involved in a site like this.

            BTW: I didn’t have to observe the lobbying, in fact most people wouldn’t have needed to. You just talk to the people around and they will usually tell you what is on their mind. As I was being a good wee media representative for The Standard I wasn’t wandering around too much and didn’t go to the social events just because there were too many eyes on me after my post of the previous week.

            However I did have rather a lot of people telling me about what was happening via cell txts, emails, and facebook conversations during conference, and a lot more after conference from both sides. There was a pretty concerted and almost brutal lobbying campaign against the 60% leadership vote mostly by MP’s, and a complete lack of anything similar from the other side. The nearest thing to it was in the affiliates meeting where there was a clear and obvious intent by many to push for it which kind of overwhelmed the people against.

            It was similar with the Shearer / Cunliffe stories. Most of the people I heard claiming a Cunliffe campaign seemed to start by claiming there was a conspiracy. Most of those claimed that this site was part of it as well as across other blogs. That is something that I know was completely false.

            The bullshit wound up irritating a lot of people, me included. Finally gave me the push to stop supporting our incompetent caucus and decide to put my party vote to someone who looked like they could use it.

            • The Fan Club 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah imagine having to put up with incompetent, ego driven clowns spoiling moments of traction… It’s the kind of thing that’d drive a Whip to distraction.

              (“You” here refers to the tendency of the activist left in NZ to get played at. every. single. opportunity.)

          • felix 11.1.1.1.2

            “you guys”

            Yep, it was pretty obvious all along that you were never one of us.

            • The Fan Club 11.1.1.1.2.1

              Yes, clearly a National plant. (Unless I’m a brainwashed acolyte of Robertson.) Or whatever the next irrational slur is.

              • felix

                I was just thinking you’re a dick who tells lies on the internet.

                But yeah, your explanations sound way more exciting.

  12. AmaKiwi 12

    A Green’s version of Shearer’s housing speech would have emphasized the enormous improvements we must make towards eco-friendly sustainable communities.

    We don’t need 10,000 crap Fletcher designed cheap houses. We need socially and environmentally designed communities which are, in fact, less expensive in the long term.

    We are 50 years behind the northern Europeans and many Asians (as Cunliffe probably knows from his recent European study trip). The Greens know it, too.

  13. Binders full of women 13

    The Labour MP currently talking the most economic sense is also busy bagging the Greens & Greenpeace. Please don’t go to NZ First Shane.

  14. karol 14

    Norman has tonight staked his claim for the finance portfolio – a Lab-Green government, plus election-result proportion of ministries for Green MPs.

    • George D 14.1

      I’m not sure that’s wise, especially as it brings the media closer to attacking the Greens. However, the testy response from Shearer isn’t a great one.

      • karol 14.1.1

        I’m not keen on Norman acting/talking like he’s the sole party leader.  Also, in spite of Shearer’s snappy response, he and Norman look a little too cosy…. stitching up a deal between them?

    • Socialist Paddy 14.2

      Interesting that 43% of all voters thought Shearer would be the best leader of the Labour Party. That is almost the exact same proportion of voters that voted National.

      • xtasy 14.2.1

        Strange this, is it not?

      • Don’t make the mistake of assuming only Nats like Shearer. There is a strong authoritarian presence among the Labour party, which could euphemistically be called its centre wing, and many of them are no doubt thrilled with his performance. (not the ones that want a benevolent dictator, but the rest are probably quite well behind)

        Remember, while we have a large coalition, that also means we can’t blame all of our problems on right-wingers. Almost always the implosion of left-wing governments is internally-oriented, Helen Clark’s Labour was more of an exception than a rule. The trick won’t be wresting shearer out of the labour party, it will be coming up with a coalition that works at all, whether Shearer is at its head, still present, or gone entirely.

    • weka 14.3

      Wow, could Gower’s bias and spin be any more obvious?

      • Socialist Paddy 14.3.1

        Aye it was really bad, designed to stroke people’s prejudices.

        Gower should have said Genter for Transport and most of the thinking population would have thought “good idea”.

        • Ad 14.3.1.1

          She’s a fox.

          But weak.

          Perfect for those in local government.

          Therefore ideal minister material.

          • outofbed 14.3.1.1.1

            You think Julie Anne weak?
            You obviously have not met her 🙂
            Gower is a joke btw

          • Socialist Paddy 14.3.1.1.2

            AD

            Everything I have seen her say was coherent and principle based.

            She would be extraordinary.  Labour’s transport spokesperson (is it Twyford or Jones?) are not cutting it.

            Tamihere may agree with your comments but I am not sure lefties would do the same. 

          • toad 14.3.1.1.3

            Huh? Haven’t you seen her tearing Gerry Brownlee to shreds at Question Time.

    • Bright Red 14.4

      All Norman said was it would be up for negotiation like a whole number of portfolios and Gower beats that up into ‘Norman makes claim for Finance!!!!!!’

      • Jackal 14.4.1

        Am I naive in asking is there any reason they both couldn’t hold the portfolio? Finance is a huge job and made all the more difficult because of the mess National has mismanaged us into. Having Labour and the Greens working together from the get go might reduce any division on financial issues and help to find the best way forward.

        I don’t think Labour will really want Russel Norman in the job as some of them, like the right wing, will view him as a radical (he’s not of course, and often professes policy that most other countries are currently following).

        It will be interesting to see how this one plays out because the Green party co-leader is infinitely qualified for the job and knows it. Let’s hope they can sort it out sooner rather than later as public squabbling does them no favours at all.

        • The Fan Club 14.4.1.1

          I hate to say it, but Finance is not going to the Greens, and if it was offered I’d advise them to turn it down anyway.

          If Norman’s at Finance, he will be forced to just stick to the Cabinet line, and Parker will likely run Finance similar to the way Birch used to. At best he’s going to have to front essentially Labour policy, and will be forced to break with important Green promises. At worst, he’ll be a figure-head for Parker. It’s asking for Clegg-style pain.

          • Jackal 14.4.1.1.1

            Unfortunately you haven’t really answered my question apart from making a rather weak argument against Russel Norman as finance minister.

            I also disagree that Parker would emulate any National party financial policy (currently neo-liberal bullshit) and the different fiscal beliefs of Birch and Parker are clearly apparent. Birch was a somewhat rehabilitated Keynesian if you like due to the failure derived from mismanagement of think big and was then ideologically blinded to only provide conservatism and laissez-faire policies at a time the economy needed further government investment to repair the social damage caused by Piggy Muldoon. Birch effectively went against the reason Bolger appointed him in the first place. There is no comparison between Norman and Birch.

            Parker is perhaps more like Michael Cullen in that he will do what is right but is a bit staid and will not react as quickly as someone like Russel Norman could to financial changes and opportunities for New Zealand. Parker would plan ahead and potentially gift National another large nest egg to flit away on tax cuts for the rich, which has been of no benefit to New Zealand at all. Parker and Norman aren’t really all that diametrically opposed in terms of financial beliefs as far as I can tell, which is why I ask whether a joint portfolio might be more advantageous for New Zealand?

            Of course the government would probably need to review the current hierarchical system in order for such a system to be implemented.

            • The Fan Club 14.4.1.1.1.1

              I mean, Parker will exercise real power, in the same fashion that Birch used to run Finance when Peters was installed there. (Not that they will share policy goals!) Cabinet collective responsibility would be excruciating for Norman in that role, because he would have to front for policies determined by a Labour majority.

    • Bill 14.5

      Not sure he ‘staked his claim’ at all. Seemed to me his response to Gower was that everything would be on the table (normal negotiating scenario). And then Gower follows with a specific about finance – edits and spins accordingly. (Before running to Shearer with another ‘he’s out to get you’ line) Well, the finance position anyway. And tough toilet paper man – he say ‘No’.

      • xtasy 14.5.1

        That was just another prime example of a “Gower shower” (or “spun together” “tv media vomit shower”) coming from the television screens.

        Any politician would be well advised to not talk to that unprofessional journo at all, or deliver a Winston Peters style media treatment to that idiot.

        I am getting totally sick of that guy being given so much airtime on 3News, it is almost, as if he is leading a kind of vendetta war against certain politicians, presently the ones from the left spectrum.

        Norman did not claim anything, all he did was state, that such portfolios like finance would certainly be up for discussion in any likely coalition deal, noting more or less.

        Then “gutter Gower” comes with wild presumptions about who from the Greens could or would perhaps get whatever ministerial job.

        That’s not “journalism”, that is playing political poker at a fictitious “political casino”, or playing an “act” in a theatrical performance, nothing better.

      • karol 14.5.2

        Yes, Bill.  On second look, I agree. Norman;’s response did indicate Norman might be interested in Finance, but he wasn’t making a bid for the role. Gower has a tendency to make a mountain out of a mole hill, then call it the discovery of a new planet.

        And he was certainly spinning hard about Shearer’s leadership and potential role as PM.

        Gower’s spin was reinforced as “reality” by the studio anchors stating, as if it were uncontested fact, that Norman had made a strong claim for the finance portfolio.

        • Jenny 14.5.2.1

          That Russel Norman coverts the finance portfolio, has been an open secret for some time now.

          What he hopes to achieve in this portfolio however, is a much greater secret.

          • Jackal 14.5.2.1.1

            Fuck that! It hasn’t ever been a secret that Russel Norman has the credentials to manage the financial portfolio. What he wants to achieve has been well documented and promoted by the Greens on numerous occasions. But hey, arguing from a position of ignorance seems to be your forte recently Jenny… Don’t let me stop you from developing your ignorance into a habit.

            • Jenny 14.5.2.1.1.1

              Maybe you would like to enlighten my ignorance Jackal.

              So what is it, that Russel Norman “wants to achieve” with the finance portfolio, different to what Labour politicians would or could?

              • Jenny

                Still waiting to be enlightened. Please save me from my ignorance. What are you talking about?

                What documents? Which occasions? C’mon Jackal, help me out here. How’s about some links?

                • weka

                  It’s hard to do a direct comparison between Labour and the Greens, because Labour don’t publish policy on their website.
                   
                  However, is this what you were meaning?
                   

                  1. Taxes come from a broad base to avoid excessive reliance on income tax and in particular the tax base should include:

                  Personal and business income taxes that reward sustainable human activity and enterprise;
                  Consumption and expenditure taxes that discourage wasteful use of energy and resources;
                  Targeted environmental taxes designed to reduce and eliminate behaviours that are not sustainable in a finite world;

                  Taxes that acknowledge the value of common property through resource rentals, and which encourage long-term sustainable business practices.

                  2. Investment income from different sources is treated equally for tax purposes.

                  3. Tax policy contributes to the overall quality of life of New Zealanders and the sustainable development of New Zealand, and to this end:

                  Productive and sustainable work and enterprise should be encouraged and speculative investment in non-productive assets should be discouraged.
                  The taxation burden should be reallocated away from income and towards resource use, waste, and pollution.
                  Resource rentals and related eco-taxes should be extended to promote more responsible management of the planet’s finite resources.
                  Those in society who have the least ability to pay tax should face the least burden, while those who have a greater ability to contribute to the welfare of society actually do so.
                  Concentration of income and wealth should be discouraged and the gap between rich and poor narrowed.
                  New Zealand’s local economy should be strengthened and foreign purchases of local assets should be limited.
                  The tax system should be consistent, fair, transparent and simple, and avoid unintended consequences.

                  4. Monetary policy assists people and businesses to plan their lives with a degree of certainty.

                  5. Monetary policy contributes to the overall quality of life of New Zealanders and the sustainable development of New Zealand;
                   

                   
                  You can see the specifics here
                   
                  http://www.greens.org.nz/policy/green-taxation-and-monetary-policy

  15. Colin 15

    Thank goodness Shearer said no Lets hope he holds to that
    The Greens are a joke and have never produced an alternative budget
    If they ever did it would greatly advantage Labour as it would recover lost votes

    • Jackal 15.1

      The Greens have never produced an alternative budget? Clearly you fit the profile of a National voter Colin, being that you’re deluded by your own bullshit!

      The Green Budget Paper 2011 (PDF).

      • Colin 15.1.1

        Thats not a budget just a wish lisy

        • Jackal 15.1.1.1

          A wish lisy list based on budgeting ie a budget. I can assure you that all those numbers in that budget are based on actual real world projections for what is able to be achieved. When the Greens say they will create 100,000 jobs through green initiatives they will, which is more than can be said for National promising to create 170,000 jobs. I know the greens numbers are achievable because I double checked, which is obviously something you never bother to do eh Colin. I know Nationals numbers are not achievable through their neo-liberal agenda because they have proven it with a 7.3% unemployment rate. Oh well… Ignorance seems to define National supporters these days.

  16. lurgee 16

    “Green development and green jobs provide a clear vision and economic direction for our nation. We can have good jobs without destroying the environment, and we can take advantage of the huge green economic opportunities overseas to supply exports with a premium. That’s what smart green economics is all about.”

    Can’t help thinking if the above was published in one of Shearer’s newsletters, it would immediately be dismissed as vacuous, pretty words with no meaning … by the same people who are proclaiming Norman so wise and brave and forthright here.

  17. You reap what you sow 17

    RN needs to put his dialogue into the context of some real hard core economic analysis. A Smart Green Utopia is not a hard to sell to any New Zealander, but the reality is we need a strong economy, to minimise poverty and provide the investment to move towards that Goal. It doesn’t happen overnight and (unfortunately) fairies don’t exist. Greece is a real example of what you get if you ignor the economic numbers and to selectively kneecap industries. RN would probably turn NZ into the Greece of the south. The problem then is bankers will control your future poverty abounds and the Smart Green Utpoia wont be on the agenda.

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    April is starting to come down off the shockingly high anomalies of the first couple of months of this year. GISS is clocking in a still strong warm anomaly of 1.11°C. This is by far the hottest April in the… ...
    16 hours ago
  • Fanshawe St Bus Stop improvements
    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    17 hours ago
  • Fanshawe St Bus Stop improvements
    Occasionally it is small projects that can have a lot of impact on people’s PT experience. With the ever growing number of people working near Victoria Park, an upgrade to the bus stops on Fanshawe St along with improvements to the… ...
    17 hours ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    18 hours ago
  • An abuse of the Speaker’s chair
    Last week NewsHub revealed leaked MPI reports which showed that MPI had been turning a blind eye to widespread criminal behaviour in the fishing industry. Today was the first day of Parliament since those revelations, and given their seriousness, it… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    18 hours ago
  • Punakaiki Fund invests in Populate
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    Lance WiggsBy Lance Wiggs
    18 hours ago
  • A piece of gratis media advice for Hilary Clinton
      Here’s some free media advice for Hilary Clinton now just trailing Donald Trump in the polls: Stop smiling and waving to “people you recognise” in the crowd. It’s insulting to everyone else, looks (and may well be) dishonest… ...
    19 hours ago
  • A piece of gratis media advice for Hilary Clinton
      Here’s some free media advice for Hilary Clinton now just trailing Donald Trump in the polls: Stop smiling and waving to “people you recognise” in the crowd. It’s insulting to everyone else, looks (and may well be) dishonest… ...
    19 hours ago
  • The Nuit Debout revolt in France: let the gems sparkle. . .
    by Denis Godard The movement of occupation of squares in France is [over] two weeks old. [1] Its evolution is difficult to predict, because it is open to many unforeseen events, even though its roots are deep. At this point… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    19 hours ago
  • Open Government: Unilateral
    Back in April, State Services Minister Paula Bennett announced in an answer to a Parlaimentary written question that we were consulting the Open Government Secretariat about an extension to the deadline for submitting our action plan:While New Zealand's second Open… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    19 hours ago
  • Open Government: Unilateral
    Back in April, State Services Minister Paula Bennett announced in an answer to a Parlaimentary written question that we were consulting the Open Government Secretariat about an extension to the deadline for submitting our action plan:While New Zealand's second Open… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    19 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    frogblogBy Marama Davidson
    19 hours ago
  • Free the Wicklow 2
    Protests around the imprisonment of these two activists are taking place around Ireland and also in Britain.  Anyone fancy organising something at the Irish embassy in Wellington  There is also an Irish consulate in Auckland. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    19 hours ago
  • DIY Touring The World: New Zealand
    New Zealand has a small population, few places to play and not much money for touring bands - but you can’t beat the beautiful landscapes, hidden gem venues and fantastic audiences. Music impresario Ian Jorgensen has been touring bands… ...
    19 hours ago
  • We are all socialists now
    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    19 hours ago
  • We are all socialists now
    A mass government house-building programme is a favourite policy of the left for solving the Auckland housing crisis. Use cheap government capital, build affordable, energy-efficient homes, mass produce them to get efficiencies of scale, and get people back into owning… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    19 hours ago
  • Protected: Tributes to Dame Margaret Sparrow
    This post is password protected. You must visit the website and enter the password to continue reading.Filed under: Uncategorized ...
    ALRANZBy ALRANZ
    19 hours ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    20 hours ago
  • New Zealand and New Zealand
    There’s a 2009 sci-fi novel by China Miéville called The City and the City. The action takes place in two separate cities which overlap each other geographically, but the denizens of each city is compelled to ‘Unsee’ things they see happening in… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    20 hours ago
  • Breaking free from fossil fuels – the risk we take is not taking action
    Last week, #BreakFree2016 wrapped up across the globe. Greenpeace joined with many inspiring organisations in a global wave of peaceful actions that lasted for 12 days and took place across six continents to target the world’s most dangerous fossil fuel projects.In places… ...
    20 hours ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    20 hours ago
  • More odious debt
    The media over the last few days has been full of stories about WINZ and odious debt. But the worst one is this:A woman with eight children living in emergency housing is facing a debt to Work and Income of… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    20 hours ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    22 hours ago
  • Additional Harbour Crossing ill-considered and over-rushed.
    We are increasingly concerned that Auckland is in the middle of very poor process where by far the nation’s biggest ever infrastructure project is being forced along and at ill-considered speed without anything like the level of public participation nor detailed… ...
    Transport BlogBy Patrick Reynolds
    22 hours ago
  • Tinder and 3nder are officially at war
    Your right to swipe for threesomes is under threat.    Some clean-cut millennials enjoying the 3nder afterglow. 1232RF Those for whom three is the magic sex-number should know that one's right to swipe one's way into a six-limb circus is… ...
    22 hours ago
  • Some big news, for me
    Two pieces of news that are kind of a big deal, for me. Firstly, I’m ditching my landline! I’m not a student and I’m not in a low income band, so make of that what you will. Secondly, after 10… ...
    GrumpollieBy Andrew
    22 hours ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    22 hours ago
  • Start as you mean to go on
    The GCSB has a new director: His family tease him by calling him Johnny English. He has a 3000-strong record collection – not classical, but some “out there” 1980s indie rock. Andrew Hampton is also a government fix-it man –… ...
    DimPostBy danylmc
    22 hours ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Polity: Mike’s minute: Mike’s maths!
    Today, media ubiquity Mike Hosking took to nzherald.co.nz to vent his frustration at Labour for suggesting that it would re-convene the same Tax Working Group first used by National. He was clearly very upset.For Mike, Auckland’s housing crisis is a… ...
    23 hours ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    frogblogBy Denise Roche
    23 hours ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    1 day ago
  • Helter smelter deja vu: Tiwai Point uncertainty stalls NZ renewables
    Simon Johnson looks at how New Zealand Aluminium Smelter Limited is behind the Meridian/Genesis deal keeping the Huntly Thermal Power Station burning coal as the threat of closing the Tiwai Point smelter is stalling the construction of consented renewable energy… ...
    Hot TopicBy Mr February
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    frogblogBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    1 day ago
  • Hard News: This. Is. Crazy.
    It's eight days since the Prime Minister airily assured Guyon Espiner on Morning Report that "in my experience with Work and Income", homeless people could go along to their local office and get sorted with some emergency housing.We now know… ...
    1 day ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    frogblogBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 day ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    frogblogBy Gareth Hughes
    1 day ago
  • What we are expected to believe
    In recent months I have become increasingly concerned at the state of bullshit in this country. Bullshit, as Harry Frankfurt famously wrote, is distinguished not by its intentionally negative truth value (those are lies) but its absence of intentional truth… ...
    1 day ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    1 day ago
  • The end of Auckland’s old growth model
    The New Zealand Council for Infrastructure Development’s public shark-jumping exercise the other week got me thinking. While their flagship policy of a new megabillion eastern tunnel project is a bit mad, their report does a reasonable job of diagnosing one… ...
    Transport BlogBy Peter Nunns
    1 day ago
  • Why are whistleblowers being prosecuted as spies?
    Whistleblowers are a ‘check’ on government, corporate or organisational secrecy and malfeasance. I recently read Tim Shipman’s preview of the Chilcot report into the origins of the Tony Blair-led UK engagement in the US’s invasion of Iraq, which looked at… ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 day ago
  • Spend and Tax
    As a general rule, New Zealanders want more public spending. Surveys (such as the 2014 Election Survey) show consistent support for increases in spending, particularly in the areas of health, education, housing, law enforcement, public transport and the environment (in… ...
    Briefing PapersBy Brian Easton
    1 day ago
  • The birth place of the artist
    It may not be the best reason to fund the arts. It’s certainly not the only one. But travelling to the small city of Rovereto, at the feet of the Italian dolomites, reminded me of the lasting influence that a… ...
    Bat bean beamBy Giovanni Tiso
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the rise of the far right, and battle bots
    In his victory speech at the Cannes film festival this week, the British film director Ken Loach warned that the rise of far right parties in Europe was being fuelled by the economic policies of austerity, and manifested in a… ...
    1 day ago
  • Why Corrections prevented Tony Robertson from getting treatment in prison
    Tony Robertson was sentenced to eight years in prison for indecently assaulting a five year old girl in 2005. He was considered a high risk prisoner and the parole board declined to release him on four separate occasions.  He was… ...
    PunditBy Roger Brooking
    2 days ago
  • Have We a Housing Policy?
    The Prime Minister’s announcement that there is nothing new about homelessness is both an example of his strengths in reassuring the public that there is never really a problem and the weaknesses of the government’s policy approach..read more ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • Have We a Housing Policy?
    The Prime Minister’s announcement that there is nothing new about homelessness is both an example of his strengths in reassuring the public that there is never really a problem and the weaknesses of the government’s policy approach..read more ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • Climate denial arguments fail a blind test
    As we saw in the recent legal ruling against Peabody coal, arguments and myths that are based in denial of the reality of human-caused global warming rarely withstand scientific scrutiny. In a new study published in Global Environmental Change, a team led by Stephen Lewandowsky… ...
    2 days ago
  • Palmerston North librarians gather to support UCOL colleagues
    At 5pm today at the UCOL Library, representatives of library staff from the City Library, Massey, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa, and local schools will meet in a show of support for UCOL Library staff whose jobs are threatened. “We all… ...
    2 days ago
  • Accountability for Iraq?
    Six years after it was established, the Chilcot Inquiry into the UK's involvement in the Iraq war is finally about to report back. And from the sound of it, its going to pin the blame squarely where it belongs: on… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Accountability for Iraq?
    Six years after it was established, the Chilcot Inquiry into the UK's involvement in the Iraq war is finally about to report back. And from the sound of it, its going to pin the blame squarely where it belongs: on… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Not Quite But Getting There
    It seems that Labour might have finally gotten the memo about getting it’s A into G but perhaps not quite digested the content. Still it’s a start. The last month has seen a steady stream of both Labour and Little… ...
    2 days ago
  • Climate change: The latest inventory
    The annual inventory report [PDF] of our greenhouse gas emissions was released on Friday. The headline data: emissions are still increasing: There's been another "recalculation" in the last 12 months, making year-to-year comparisons difficult. Naurally, this seems to have shifted… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate change: The latest inventory
    The annual inventory report [PDF] of our greenhouse gas emissions was released on Friday. The headline data: emissions are still increasing: There's been another "recalculation" in the last 12 months, making year-to-year comparisons difficult. Naurally, this seems to have shifted… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Australia lets kiwi detainees literally rot
    What are our "closest friends" Australia doing to kiwis awaiting deportation? Letting them literally rot away in prison due to substandard medical care:A New Zealander held at an Australian immigration detention centre will find out today if his leg has… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Australia lets kiwi detainees literally rot
    What are our "closest friends" Australia doing to kiwis awaiting deportation? Letting them literally rot away in prison due to substandard medical care:A New Zealander held at an Australian immigration detention centre will find out today if his leg has… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • CRL already impacting land use on city fringe
    The City Rail Link will be one of the most transformational projects Auckland has ever seen. Perhaps nowhere else will see experience that transformation more than the inner west of the isthmus which effectively gets picked up and moved much closer to… ...
    2 days ago
  • CRL already impacting land use on city fringe
    The City Rail Link will be one of the most transformational projects Auckland has ever seen. Perhaps nowhere else will see experience that transformation more than the inner west of the isthmus which effectively gets picked up and moved much closer to… ...
    2 days ago
  • National should give us our $13,000 back
    We all know that National works for the rich and screw over ordinary New Zealanders to funnel wealth upwards into the pockets of its rich mates. But how bad have they been? $13,000 bad:Yesterday, Mr Little said that since National… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • National should give us our $13,000 back
    We all know that National works for the rich and screw over ordinary New Zealanders to funnel wealth upwards into the pockets of its rich mates. But how bad have they been? $13,000 bad:Yesterday, Mr Little said that since National… ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Access: The Universal Basic Income and its implications for citizenship
    The suggestion about a possible Universal Basic Income (UBI) was only one of numerous suggestions to come out of Labour’s Future of Work initiative. This a wide-ranging policy discussion that the Party’s economic development spokesman, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Access: The Universal Basic Income and its implications for citizenship
    The suggestion about a possible Universal Basic Income (UBI) was only one of numerous suggestions to come out of Labour’s Future of Work initiative. This a wide-ranging policy discussion that the Party’s economic development spokesman, Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson,… ...
    2 days ago
  • Review: The Block Party
    Did New Zealand’s 'premier urban music' event live up to the hype?   Photo: Nicole Semitara Hunt ‘Old school’ was the name of the game on Friday night at The Block Party, where several thousand converged on ASB… ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: The media awards are dead – long live the media awards!
    Friday's Canon Media Awards was the most interesting instance of the long-running national ceremony in a long time, maybe ever. There were notable insurgencies – The SpinOff took two awards from 11 first-time nominations, Radio NZ's The Wireless won Website… ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: The media awards are dead – long live the media awards!
    Friday's Canon Media Awards was the most interesting instance of the long-running national ceremony in a long time, maybe ever. There were notable insurgencies – The SpinOff took two awards from 11 first-time nominations, Radio NZ's The Wireless won Website… ...
    2 days ago
  • New research confirms water fluoridation does not cause bone cancers
    The most common type of bone cancer is Osteosarcoma. Image credit:  Osteosarcoma This time for Texas. A new study confirms what other researchers have found elsewhere. It is reported in this recent paper: Archer, N. P., Napier, T. S., & Villanacci, J. F. (2016).… ...
    2 days ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested… ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Selfie-takers think they’re the greatest
    Science says otherwise.  “People often perceive themselves as more attractive and likable than others [perceive them to be].” This is the cutting conclusion from a new study that has found you're probably not as great as you think you… ...
    2 days ago
  • UCOL cutting the staff who lifted student results
    UCOL needs to halt its proposed cuts to student support services now that it knows those services are improving student outcomes. On Friday, in an email to all staff, UCOL released its provisional 2015 Educational Performance Indicator (EPI) results which… ...
    2 days ago
  • Another Road Only Harbour Crossing on the Cards?
    The absence of rail as well as walking and cycling options to the North Shore has been considered an oversight by many probably ever since the Harbour Bridge was first approved for construction over 60 years ago. While Skypath will… ...
    2 days ago

  • Key’s “brain fart” on tax cuts news to English
    John Key didn’t tell his own Finance Minister he was about to go on radio and announce he wanted $3b of tax cuts, just days after Bill English ruled them out, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “In Parliament today… ...
    18 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    19 hours ago
  • What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 – A better start for our tamariki
    Ensuring the best start for our tamariki is a priority for me in everything I do. And so in Budget 2016, my first budget as an MP, I looking for the Government to make a real investment in the wellbeing… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    19 hours ago
  • Denise Roche: What I’m looking for in Budget 2016 Pt II
    Aotearoa’s new New Zealanders,  come to our country in vulnerable position: – often away from the culture, communities and families they know, sometimes in neighbourhoods without familiar faces and often encountering barriers to employment. With net migration at 50,000+ a… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    23 hours ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • Equal Pay and Budget 2016
    The last few years we’ve seen equal pay for women flagged as an undefined risk in the budget. This year we should expect to see this, as well as budgeted money to deliver equal pay to caregivers and funding for,… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 day ago
  • A great Budget would
    A great Budget would embrace the challenge of our polluted rivers and move the money away from justifying the status quo water rules into cleaning up waterways. A great Budget would take the Ministry for the Environment freshwater budget and… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 day ago
  • Budget building materials policy backfires
    On the eve of this year’s Budget official figures show Nick Smith’s Budget 2014 centrepiece to reduce the cost of building materials has backfired, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment officials have spent the… ...
    1 day ago
  • Smarter, Better, Cleaner, Stronger
    This Thursday Bill English will deliver his eighth Budget. Will it continue the trend of previous National budgets, making tertiary education less affordable, putting only token funds into innovation, and subsidising polluters? Budgets aren’t what they used to be. Once… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 day ago
  • Govt must come clean on tax cuts in Budget
    National is making a mockery of the Budget process by dangling the promise of tax cuts but failing to include them in the Budget, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “National’s tax cut promises have turned into a farce. One… ...
    2 days ago
  • Grant Robertson Pre-Budget Speech
    Today I want to talk about success. As we know success can come in many different forms, from the fact you all made it here at such an early hour on a Monday, for which I am very grateful, to… ...
    2 days ago
  • Budget must deliver for middle New Zealand
    The Government must ensure next week’s Budget stops the squeeze on middle New Zealand and delivers shared prosperity for all New Zealanders, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. The call follows new research commissioned by Labour that shows working… ...
    3 days ago
  • Our housing emergency – why we have to act
    Marama and Metiria at Homes Not Cars launch On Thursday, Metiria Turei announced the Green Party’s plan to start addressing the emergency housing crisis facing our country. Too many people are without homes right now – homeless. It is the… ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    4 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Will funding boost for sexual violence services go to the right places?
    This week the Government announced $46million for sexual violence services. This announcement was a result of decades of work by advocates and everyone who submitted to the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence services that I initiated with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Denise Roche – What I’m looking for in this year’s Budget
    Two of the things I’ll be looking for in the Budget next week are more funding for refugees and for our arts and culture sector. More funding for refugees I’m a strong supporter of the #DoubleTheQuota campaign and its goals… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    5 days ago
  • Car rego victims must get a refund
    Motorists who have been overcharged for their car registration should get a refund, says Labour’s Transport spokesperson Sue Moroney.  “Minister Nikki Kaye’s ‘faulty risk’ rating scheme has blown up in her face with over 170 different models of car having… ...
    5 days ago
  • Council statement shows they just don’t get it
    The Auckland Council’s statement today shows they don’t understand the problems created by the urban growth boundary, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.  “I have been the first to defend the Auckland City Council when Bill English has been blaming… ...
    5 days ago
  • Inspecting electronic devices a potential privacy threat
    Labour is expressing concern for New Zealanders’ privacy rights as the Government signals Customs will have the power to inspect electronic devices coming across the border, says Labour’s Customs Spokesperson Rino Tirikatene. “We agree that customs officers should have the… ...
    5 days ago
  • The Price of Water
    This week I hosted a public meeting at EIT in Hawkes Bay to discuss how we might put a price on the commercial use of water, so that water may be valued and treated more sustainably. I invited a… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    5 days ago
  • Caption It NZ!
    Today I received a petition from the NZ Captioning Working Group urging the government to legislate for accessibility via closed captioning for deaf and hard of hearing New Zealanders. It was timely because today is the fifth Global Accessibility Awareness… ...
    GreensBy Mojo Mathers
    6 days ago
  • Older Kiwis to miss out on electives
    The Government is not doing enough elective surgery to keep up with New Zealand’s ageing population, says Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King.  “It’s damning that the targeted national intervention rate for cataract and knee and hip surgery is the same… ...
    6 days ago
  • Most principals say their college is underfunded
    The Government must substantially increase funding for secondary schools in next week’s Budget after a new survey found 86 per cent of principals consider their college under-resourced, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Just 14 per cent of secondary principals… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bill English and Nick Smith on different pages
    The Government’s support for Labour’s policy to remove the Auckland urban growth boundary is good news, but National needs to clarify its position, Labour’s Housing and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “The Acting Prime Minister has acknowledged our position… ...
    6 days ago
  • Labour calls for independent inquiry into illegal fish dumping
    The Labour Party is reiterating its call for an independent inquiry into New Zealand’s fishing industry after two reports revealed the Ministry for Primary Industries turned a blind eye to widespread fish dumping in New Zealand waters, says Labour’s Fisheries… ...
    6 days ago
  • Mt Karangahake and Newcrest Mining
    On Wednesday and Sunday of last week the local residents of the Karangahake mountain in the Karangahake gorge of Hauraki/Coromandel peacefully protested against a gold mining drill rig on private land adjacent to the DOC land. The drilling rig was… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    7 days ago
  • Robbing Aucklanders to pay Rio Tinto
    New Zealand’s national electricity grid stretches the length of the country and contains some 11,803 kilometres of high-voltage lines and 178 substations. It wouldn’t make sense for competing power companies to duplicate and build their own expensive electricity transmission system… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    7 days ago
  • Government should abolish Auckland urban growth boundary
    The Government should rule out any possibility of an urban growth boundary in Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan if it is serious about fixing the housing crisis, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “Over 25 years the urban growth boundary hasn’t… ...
    7 days ago
  • Kiwis don’t want iPads for Land deals
     It is outrageous that schools are relying on money and iPads from foreign land investors to meet the learning needs of their students, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins.  “Several OIO land applications by offshore investors have claimed that without… ...
    7 days ago
  • Homelessness – National has failed all of us
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    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    1 week ago
  • Moko case should never have been manslaughter deal
    Confirmation again yesterday that the manslaughter charge in the Moko Rangitoheriri case was a deal done by the Crown Prosecution Service is justifiably the cause of outrage, says Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Ardern.“This should never have been a case where… ...
    1 week ago
  • Overseas investor funds school’s digital devices
    The Government must address the inequality laptops and tablets in classrooms are causing after a Queenstown school was forced to use a donation from an overseas investor to get their students digital devices, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “Documents obtained… ...
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
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    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Child Youth and Family Review and Domestic Violence
    This Government has consistently failed to recognise the links between Child Youth and Family Services (CYFS) and intimate partner violence. For me, the recent review of CYFS has highlighted this misunderstanding of the dynamics of domestic violence and its impacts… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Canterbury rebuild: How wood is a better choice for the new city
    It was interesting to attend the ForestWood Conference in Auckland recently and learn about the extent of innovation in the wood processing and manufacturing sector. The forestry sector may be New Zealand’s third largest export earner, but raw logs make… ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    1 week ago
  • Key plucks $3b out of thin air – reckless and irresponsible
    John Key refuses to give up on his dream of tax cuts to the wealthy, despite being shot down by Bill English, and is resorting to plucking numbers out of thin air, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. “On radio… ...
    1 week ago
  • John Key woefully out of touch on homelessness
    John Key is completely out of touch if he thinks desperate South Auckland families forced to live in cars can simply go to Work and Income for help, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “Many of these families are working and… ...
    1 week ago
  • Under-reporting shows need to review quota system
    The Government must launch an independent review into New Zealand’s 30-year-old Quota Management System following a new report suggesting gross under-reporting of catch in the New Zealand fishing industry, Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker says.  “The Auckland University report found… ...
    1 week ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Investigations into tertiary institutions overdue
    A Tertiary Education Commission investigation into the Tai Poutini Polytechnic is overdue and should have been launched last year, Labour’s Associate Education (Tertiary) spokesperson David Cunliffe says. “Labour has been calling for an inquiry into potential rorts at Tai Poutini… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where is the fair share for most New Zealanders?
    Most New Zealanders reading the news that chief executive pay has risen 12 per cent in the last year will be wondering when they are going to get their fair share, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “More and more… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
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    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • Mega media merger is bad news
    Some people call newspapers “tomorrow’s fish and chips” but this week’s news around a mega media merger is not an issue we should discard. Media giants Fairfax and APN News & Media announced they were in discussions to merge their… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • National puts Easter trading in the too hard basket
    All Labour MPs will vote against National’s move to leave Easter trading laws up to councils, Labour’s Workplace Relations spokesperson Iain-Lees Galloway says.  “Despite this being a conscience vote, Labour MPs are united in their opposition to the Government’s moves… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Law Commission speaks up for domestic violence survivors
    I want to give kudos to the Minister for Justice for getting the Law Commission to review options for how our justice system responds when victims of domestic violence kill their partners. This is a relatively discrete piece of work… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    2 weeks ago

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