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The best country money can buy

Written By: - Date published: 12:35 pm, October 28th, 2010 - 95 comments
Categories: democracy under attack, national, workers' rights - Tags: , ,

The Supercity legislation imposed on Auckland without referendum, ECan abolished, the 90-day law imposed on workers without a select committee process, CERRA slammed through making Gerry Brownlee dictator, The Rugby World Cup Empowering Act, and, now, the Hobbit Enabling Act to be rushed through today because a foreign corporate (supposedly) demanded it. National does not care about democracy, our political and economic rights are just inconveniences in their eyes.

John Armstong gets it:

“The obvious relief that the two Hobbit movies will be made in New Zealand will be somewhat tempered by the fact that the Government has buckled and increased tax write-offs for large-budget films, benefiting Warner Bros by up to $20 million.

On top of that, the company walks away from what insiders say were tough negotiations with another $13.4 million to offset the films’ marketing costs.

Far more unseemly, however, is the Government’s kowtowing to Warner Bros and agreeing to put legislation before Parliament as soon as today to clarify the distinction between “independent contractors” and “employees” as it relates to the local film industry.

Not only that. The legislation will be passed straight through all its stages, which means no select committee scrutiny.

What kind of a country, however, sells its democratic soul for 30 pieces of silver?”

The answer is a craven one run by a snivelling little money man who has no loyalty to New Zealand and the rights we have fought so hard to win. Whether Key has sold our sovereignty to foreign big business, or National is just exploiting this situation to attack workers, the result is the same: workers lose, big business wins, and democracy is overridden by those with the cheque books.

Let us not forget that an old mate of Key’s was in the Warners negotiating team.

A great comment coming off Armstrong’s article sums up what kind of country National is turning us into:

“FOR SALE, cheap: New Zealand. No offer (or demand) refused. Need an inconvenient law changed? Want some tax breaks? Mr Key is your man. Want to buy some land? How much do you want?”

95 comments on “The best country money can buy”

  1. Ari 1

    Another bill skipped through select committee? This is beyond ridiculous.

  2. tsmithfield 2

    1. At least the movies will now be made in NZ, so there actually will be jobs. 50% of something is better than 100% of nothing.

    2. Whats wrong with being a contractor anyway? They tend to get paid better than employees and they can claim their expenses against tax. So there is plenty of compensation for any loss of rights.

    • vidiot 2.1

      What’s wrong with contracting/being self employed ?

      a) You can claim a home office as an expense
      b) You can claim travel costs
      c) You can claim communication expenses
      d) You can split the income between you & your partner, thus reducing your tax bill.

      Replace Actor with Builder, funny how most of the teams that have contracts for large developers aren’t wanting to be classed as employees.

      With the announcement now of Avatar 2 & 3, sure looks like Weta & Co are going to be busy for a few years. Actually, I wonder if the announcement of those 2 projects was delayed due to this industrial action.

      • Bunji 2.1.1

        It depends whether you want to be a contractor, and whether you’re compensated for loss of holidays, sick pay, potential redundancy, ACC costs, etc etc, or whether it’s imposed on you without extra money.
        You need to earn almost twice as much as a contractor as you get as an employee to cover your additional costs. Yes, it does open many tax loopholes and ruses to you, but that doesn’t always add up to much for the scrupulous.

        • Dylan 2.1.1.1

          The vast majority of people working in film and TV (from producers on down) are already contractors. They were hired as independent contractors before this, and will continue to be after this. That is the norm in the industry and it makes sense given the nature of it.

          No one was going to be an employee before and will now be a contractor. The only issue this is addressing is avoiding a repetition of a single case where a contractor claimed, after his contract was terminated, that he was an employee and won. It was a very confusing case for other film industry workers, as they understand their working conditions and situation.

          If actors and other film and TV workers were employees it would be incredibly complicated for them. Grips, for example, may work on hundreds of jobs a year for different companies, some will overlap – as an employee that’s almost impossible. The same is true of actors – they are frequently working on multiple projects, which is generally incompatible with the employer/employee relationship.

          • Bunji 2.1.1.1.1

            Yes, it won’t make a difference to a lot of film workers, as they are already contracting.

            I don’t know about your argument that a grip will have hundreds of jobs – particularly in this country – or that you couldn’t be an employee with multiple jobs. Both are quite possible, and indeed done (I had about 4 part-time jobs at university as I recall, without conflict).

            The difference will not be for actors, or others who are flitting between projects, and have accepted being contractors. It will be for people who were employed by 1 production company, working on multiple jobs for them. Programmers and artists creating special effects. Roadies who set up sites. And model-makers, who work on project after project.
            These people may want job security (they may have families and mortgages), and now there’s no chance they’ll get it. They may well get screwed down on pay and conditions, as they don’t realise their extra expenses. Employee protections were fought for and put in place for a reason.

            • Dylan 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Maybe hundreds was a bit optimistic – a hundred is possible though, and certainly is the case for some.

              And while it’s possible to be an employee with multiple jobs it becomes very difficult when the employers are all in the same business. Typical employment contracts have non-competition and conflict-of-interest clauses and a variety of other provisions that aren’t very practical.

              The majority of our ‘film’ industry is devoted to quite short term work too – a few days to a few weeks, which it rather impractical for a typical employee relationship. For actors that’s even more pronounced, as even on a longer-term project an non-core cast may only be required for a small portion of the production period. For the core cast of Hobbit or a show like Shortland St an employee position might be viable, but for the majority of productions it really wouldn’t.

              • Bright Red

                “The majority of our ‘film’ industry is devoted to quite short term work too – a few days to a few weeks, which it rather impractical for a typical employee relationship. For actors that’s even more pronounced, as even on a longer-term project an non-core cast may only be required for a small portion of the production period. ”

                and those people can be contractors if they like.

                but if someone is actually working as an employee they should be able to get the rights of an employee if they so desire, no matter what the boss put in the contract

                • Dylan

                  You can hardly be a contractor and not know it. The employment relationship is different – you have to submit invoices, there are a whole range of tax things to consider.

                  It’s not as if employers are sneaking a secret clause in page 6 of the contract that says “oh, BTW, you’re a contractor”

        • vidiot 2.1.1.2

          ok, so you are contracted for 25 weeks work @ a fix price of $50K. Out of that $50K, you take off $4K for ‘Home Office’, $2.5K for transportation, $1K for communications – you end up with $42.5K. Split that between you & your partner, gross wages is $21.5K each.

          As an employee $50K = $1473 per week take home
          As a contractor $50K split as above = $1420 per week take home.
          Difference over 25 weeks = $1325 which is still $6K better off being a contractor

          Egro – twice as much, my arse.

          • Armchair Critic 2.1.1.2.1

            Except there would be GST at 15% on that $50k, which amounts to $7.5k and wipes out your $6k better off pretty quickly.
            Off the top of my head there’s also ACC and a whole lot of miscellaneous costs around administering the company.

            • AndyB 2.1.1.2.1.1

              GST would be on top of the 50k, not included. Then you get the write off expenses against GST and keep some of that as well. I’ve been a contractor for years, here and overseas.

              Much better off being a contractor thanks very much.

              • Armchair Critic

                I’ve been a contractor for years too. Before that I managed contractors for more than a decade.
                Saying the $50k must have GST paid out of it (i.e. includes GST) if it is paid under an employment contract, but excludes GST if paid to an independent contractor is not comparing apples with apples.

            • Zaphod Beeblebrox 2.1.1.2.1.2

              Not to mention the grief IRD may give you, they have pretty tight re claiming for these things and you can’t work more than 75% (I think) for one employer. You also don’t get paid for your holidays and sick leave (or kiwisaver employer subdsidy). Good accountants don’t come cheap if you want to do it prperly.

          • Bunji 2.1.1.2.2

            Most contractors charge per hour, rather than get a fixed price. Indeed your calculation doesn’t make much sense to me. You seem to be just throwing numbers around.

            Why do you get to split it between you and your partner? They are not doing the work.
            Even if you somehow go for that ruse and could get away with it (there are a lack of tax inspectors after all), what if you don’t have a partner, or they work?

            What if you want to take a holiday during that half-year? You don’t get paid.
            What if you are sick? You don’t get paid.
            On your $50K you’ll have to pay ACC instead of the employer paying for you.
            Odds are you can be dismissed a lot more easily – usually termination is on the employer’s terms. There’s no unfair dismissal recourse if you believe it to be unfair.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.2.2.1

              And the ACC is twice as much because, as a contractor, you have to pay both the employers and the employees part.

              That said, I’m actually in favour of everyone becoming a contractor as everyone should be operating under the same rules so that the pricing signal is accurate rather than irrational. Of course, it would only work if we also had a Universal Income. It would also help if we had an IRD administered version of MYOB Live so that people would have immediate access to the necessary accounting tools.

              One thing I noticed about contract work is that when the contracts dry up you have a very large chance of losing everything. This means either that contractors need to be paid a hell of a lot more (my nephew in 2k8 was bringing in ~$150k, had saved up quite a bit but it didn’t last through the first year of the recession even though he had work and building work is still going down) so that when there’s no work each person can get by on their savings or that society must make up the difference.

            • vidiot 2.1.1.2.2.2

              “Most contractors charge per hour” – nope, most labourers (plumbers, sparkies, jibbers, etc) charge by the hour. Construction, Tenders, etc – contracts are ‘turn key’ fixed price / fixed time with measured deliverables.

              “On your $50K you’ll have to pay ACC instead of the employer paying for you.”
              Are you out of touch with reality ? When you get paid as an employee, factored in to the PAYE tables is your own personal ACC levy – which is iirc 2% of your gross. Yes the employer also has to pay an additional ACC levy (calculated against the risk of the job that company works within).

              Why do you get to split your income ?
              a) Because it’s done 95% of the times with ma & pa small businesses.

              • kirbya

                If it helps, for the current financial year a self-employed’ (contractors are considered as ‘self-employed’) builder earning $50 000 net would be looking at ACC levies totalling $3 250. Of this, $889 (before GST) is related to Earners Levies, the portion that the employer would usually pay.

    • Lazy Susan 2.2

      Nice try at distraction ts but the post is about National’s repeated disregard for democratic process. How about addressing the post rather than repeating the spin,

      • Jaghut 2.2.1

        I hope you realise the staggering amount of irony in your post, distracting from two very coherent posts, with great points… by saying it’s “distracting”.
        Lols.

    • freedom 2.3

      two things
      first, not everyone wants to be a contractor, some wierdos are actually happy and even prefer being employees and having rights

      secondly your “50% of something is better than 100% of nothing” comment only shows you are the sort who gives up their liberty for freedom

      • Bunji 2.3.1

        Indeed, some people like job security, knowing that they’ll have work in 6 months, that will pay the mortgage and feed the children. Contracting works much better for the single and highly mobile.

  3. Fisiani 3

    Keep up these unpatriotic slanders and watch the Leftist vote slip further into oblivion. If you are against the so called Hobbit Enabling Bill then you are against New Zealand. So be your fate.

    • You know I am sure that similar trolls said comparable things about Nazi Germany in the 30’s, you know something like if you are against the gassing of jews and trade unionists then you are against Germany …

      • Jaghut 3.1.1

        A little early in the debate for Godwins Law, isn’t it?

        • mickysavage 3.1.1.1

          Not really. Fisi’s comments smacked of naziism.

          • wasi 3.1.1.1.1

            “Fisi’s comments smacked of naziism….”

            Fisiani Bainimarama?

          • Fisiani 3.1.1.1.2

            Now you’ve really lost the plot Micky and any vestige of respect.

            • mickysavage 3.1.1.1.2.1

              Fisi

              Your uncritical reference to patriotism was the problem.

              A couple of sayings for you:

              Samuel Johnson – “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel”.
              Oscar Wilde – “Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious.”

              • Jaghut

                Because a couple of famous people said patriotism is bad, is must be so, right?

                I don’t consider patriotism inherently bad, because it is merely the love of this country, and the aspects that make it great.

                “Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” – Mark Twain

          • The Baron 3.1.1.1.3

            You are such a hysterical mess when people disagree with you Greg – pretty much a fail for a lawyer I would have thought.

            And come to think of it, where has this “naziism” line been every time CV utters “Why aren’t you supporting the noble workers of NZ” line? Oh no, principles only apply when they suit your side, right? You’re gonna make an awesome parliamentarian, Greg – just do what Phil tells you, that’s exactly what we need more of.

    • wasi 3.2

      “Keep up these unpatriotic slanders”

      i was born in NZ…i`ll say what i fucking well like…

      • Fisiani 3.2.1

        Who told you to shut up? Not me. Feel free to say…………………….like.
        It’s like watching people queue up to shoot Bambi’s mother.

    • Luxated 3.3

      Unpatriotic? Grow up, this is New Zealand not the ‘U S of A’.

    • Vicky32 3.4

      You’re having a laugh, right, Fisiani? Your statement is completely mental..
      Deb

  4. Roflcopter 4

    Send the bill to the CTU or AE or MEAA… perhaps split it 3 ways.

  5. Carol 5

    It’s going to be a lively session in Parliament today;

    http://parliamenttoday.co.nz/2010/10/questions-for-oral-answer-oct-28/

    .Questions to Ministers

    1. Hon TREVOR MALLARD to the Minister for Economic Development: What factors did he take into account when he agreed with Warner Brothers executives to change employment legislation in New Zealand?

    8. KEITH LOCKE to the Minister for Economic Development: Why is his Government intending to change industrial relations law under urgency instead of through the normal parliamentary process?

    And some people thought Key’s deal with Warners was the end of the issue, and the left would just roll over.

    • Lanthanide 5.1

      Pretty pedestrian questions, really.

      • toad 5.1.1

        The primary question almost always is. The guts of it is usually in the supplementaries. Don’t you ever watch how Trevor Mallard plays Anne Tolley like a cat with a mouse in question time Lanth?

        • Lanthanide 5.1.1.1

          I’ve only seen a little of Trevor’s games, I don’t want parliamentary TV much (doesn’t help not having freeview where I am).

          Point is, what is presented here wasn’t that interesting, and the supplementaries could easily fall-flat depending on their wording and how the minister wriggles out of it.

  6. wasi 6

    so…where`s the money coming from?

    “20 hours of free care to be reviewed, says Tolley…”

    …ohhh..i know…we`ll slash and burn some more social policy…those whose jobs have been saved by JK and who are working on the Hobbit will be able to pay for their own childcare won`t they?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10683588

  7. What is the definition of a contract? The two essential elements are OFFER and ACCEPTANCE. If the production company offers a contract to a person to work as a contractor, and the recipient accepts it, we have a legally enforceable contract between the parties; what the heck is wrong with that?

    • Bright Red 7.1

      Because the employment relationship is not equal. People need to work and nearly everyone takes the terms that are offered to them. People don’t shop around or bargain because there are fewer jobs than job-seekers (250,000 jobless, remember?).

      If you get offered work as a ‘contractor’ but you want to be an employee and the work is actually in the nature of employment, are you going to turn it down and remain unemployed? No, you can’t afford that luxury. But that doesn’t mean you sacrifice your work rights.

      Employment law has recognised for a very, very long time that employment is a matter of fact, not just what is stated on a piece of paper.

      • Bob Stanforth 7.1.1

        Dork, nice try.

        http://www.dol.govt.nz/lmr/lmr-hlfs.asp as of August. Try 160,000 unemployed and seeking work. Being on a benefit doesn’t mean you are jobless, and including all beneficiaries in your inflated total to support your weak argument makes it even weaker.

        Oh, and as a contractor who has a young family, wife etc, the crap spouted here about it being fine for young and mobile, further crap. Im 46, love contracting and the freedom it brings.

        • Bright Red 7.1.1.1

          Bob. I’m not adding beneficiaries to the unemployed. dumbarse.

          Joblessness is a wider measure than unemployment, people on the unemployment benefit are a subset.

          I am talking about the jobless, not just the unemployed.

          Joblessness is people who want work but can’t find it. Check here, table 8: http://stats.govt.nz/~/media/Statistics/Browse%20for%20stats/HouseholdLabourForceSurvey/HOTPJun10qtr/hlfs-jun10qtr-tables.ashx

          255,700 jobless.

          dumbarse

          It’s great if you want to be a cotnractor but others shouldn’t have employment rights denied when they are working as employees, depiste what the cotnract claims.

        • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.2

          Im 46, love contracting and the freedom it brings.

          I take it you’re not working for less than minimum wage for the hours you do then? I take it that you get to pick and choose the work you take on, which clients, and how many hours a week you want to work?

          Well guess what, for a lot of the so-called ‘contractors’ on Jackson’s sets, none of that applied because they were contractors in name only, and expected to turn up and behave/be managed as employees.

          Its wrong, and the Govt should not be selling out the rights of our workers to a foreign multinational.

          • Bob Stanforth 7.1.1.2.1

            Minimum wage? No, generally $1200 a day, average, plus expenses. Ive gone back into it after a few years off because we have just built two rooms onto our house for the kids :)
            Pick and chose the work? Not even – the work I do is highly specialised, and there are maybe 100 companies in NZ where I can do it – and Ive done it in around 40 of those, and get repeat work
            Hours? Vary between 8 on a good day and 24 on a bad day. Flexibility required :)

            And its funny, where are the contractors who were on Jacksons sets? They dont seem to be complaining much?

            Its not wrong, its called freedom of choice – just as I chose the right to contract, I dont begrudge anyone else the ability to join a company or a union.

            • Bright Red 7.1.1.2.1.1

              do you understand the difference between being jobless and unemployed Mr $1200 a dollar a day?

              In my experience the people who try to skite about money on these sites are just making it up.

              • Bob Stanforth

                And I was skiting where you knob? Since when is a statement of fact skiting? $1,200 is fuck all for what I do, and the reason I charge so little is because I dont work offshore anymore. Do take your head out of your arse, its most unbecoming.

                Oh, and I had my fair share of jobless over the years – and not once claimed a benefit. Always found work doing something – anything, including moving boxes around a warehouse for 3 months – because I could and because I know that sitting on my fat arse helps no one – least of all me.

                • Vicky32

                  “Oh, and I had my fair share of jobless over the years – and not once claimed a benefit. ”
                  Well, all I can say is you’ve been bloody lucky mate! I have been prepared to do the small woman’s equivalent of labouring work, but believe it or not, bosses want experience even for hotel maids!
                  As for telemarketing at midnight, they want teenagers, (and good luck getting them, teens have better things to do) because teens don’t necessarily have to be self-supporting and are happy to take minimum wage on the promise of a commission…
                  Deb

            • Lanthanide 7.1.1.2.1.2

              My ex was running a contracting business, making about the same sort of money you are. Up until the earthquake. All of his clients (including University of Canterbury) have put their projects on hold for 6+ months, so he has absolutely no work now. He’s shutting the business now and moving back to the US.

              Don’t assume that you’re somehow ‘better’ than the unemployed – something you have no control over could easily come along and screw you out of your job.

              • Bob Stanforth

                Dont believe anywhere I have stated or implied that I am better than the unemployed, that is your construct alone, but nice try.

              • Dylan

                And that’s the nature of contracting. When the going is good it can be very lucrative. But you’re at the whim of the industry. I know heaps of people who do the same work I do for a lot more money, but they don’t always know where their next paycheck is coming from – usually they’re busy, but sometimes not. I’ve chosen to seek salaried employment instead as the stability is very important to me – but that is a choice I’ve made.

          • Dylan 7.1.1.2.2

            I take it you’re not working for less than minimum wage for the hours you do then? I take it that you get to pick and choose the work you take on, which clients, and how many hours a week you want to work?

            Well guess what, for a lot of the so-called ‘contractors’ on Jackson’s sets, none of that applied because they were contractors in name only, and expected to turn up and behave/be managed as employees.

            The contractors on Jackson’s sets (and all the other film and TV sets) are sure as well paid above minimum wage, they can pick and choose their work, and the number of hours they want to work.

            They can choose to take a longer-term contract on the film, or they can choose not to and take work on other productions instead.

            They take contracts to fulfill their roles in the productions, which does indeed require turning up when they are told (their call time), otherwise the production is held up. These people choose to work in this industry and their contracts are incredibly variable, from a half-day on a commercial set to 4-9 months on a film set. In accepting a contract on a feature they are agreeing to deliver a service to the production – the industry guidelines that outline how those services should be practically managed are contained in the Blue Book (for technical crew) and the Pink Book (for cast). They outline hours, breaks, notice periods, penalty rates, downtime, and a massive range of other things. And these guidelines are followed by the vast majority of productions, and deviations are discussed with affected crew and cast – despite what Equity might say.

            Contractors in the film industry have a much better working environment that contractors in many environments who have no industry working guidelines or anything else.

  8. ghostwhowalksnz 8

    How much will Sacha Baron-Cohen get to NOT make his next Borat/Bruno character about Kiwis

  9. bobo 9

    There was no mass of cases regarding contractor / employee definition before the employment courts before this hobbit beat up? Just like there was no crisis and need for the 90 day fire at will law. Just opportunistic ideology from Nact as per usual.

    “20 hours of free care to be reviewed, says Tolley…”
    The Hobbit beatup has been a great diversion for National. I guess parents could always leave their kids home alone watching the Lotr / hobbit full box set instead , probably around 20 hours run time all up..

    • Lanthanide 9.1

      “There was no mass of cases regarding contractor / employee definition before the employment courts before this hobbit beat up?”

      Did you know about this particular court case before the hobbit beat up? How many other people do you think didn’t know about the court case now? How many other people will now be thinking “hmm, I wonder if I could sue my employer”…

  10. Bright Red 10

    Brownlee says the Maori Party will be voting to take away film workers’ rights.

    Those fucken cunts.

    The last bloody straw.

    • The Baron 10.1

      Wah wah wah maybe if your beloved union wasn’t such incompetent, destructive lairs then you wouldn’t have this problem.

      The only people you have to blame for this is Robyn Malcolm, Helen Kelly, Jennifer Ward-Lealand and Simon Whipp. I suggest you vent your rage on them, princess.

  11. djp 11

    you missed the next line in your quote EDDIE:

    “The answer is a small one. And one where the economy shows little sign of recovery in the short term.”

    • Bright red 11.1

      so you support national selling our sovereignty because we’re small and the economy is bad under National? Next you’ll be saying we should just sign over the coutnry to China because they’re big and growing fast

      • The Baron 11.1.1

        Quick Greg, another Nazi!

      • djp 11.1.2

        It doesnt really matter what I support. I am just saying that adding the context to the quote changes the slant of the opinion piece (funnily enough on the front page of the Herald they quote it the same way, possibly to draw the reader in to the full text on page 2).

        But if you really want to know I do support removing trade barriers for all companies and individuals in NZ. If the balance of power is shifted slightly from sovereignty over the subjects of NZ to individuals then hooray.

  12. Francisco Hernandez 12

    I support the Hobbit staying here.

    This employment change stuff is frightening though.

    • Colonial Viper 12.1

      We all support the Hobbit staying here. Being shafted as a tax payer in the process and having Jackson turn on working NZ’ers, not so much.

      • Draco T Bastard 12.1.1

        We all support the Hobbit staying here.

        No we don’t. Now, if we were putting in all the resources and getting all the returns I might be but that’s not happening. We’re putting in a fairly significant amount money (20% to 25%) and, from what I can make out, Warner Bros. are getting the all of the returns (the actual profits).

        • Lanthanide 12.1.1.1

          “Warner Bros. are getting the all of the direct returns (the actual profits).”
          Fixed that for you.

          Tourism from LotR was apparently a big money spinner, and I expect that The Hobbit will probably be even more so. Key’s gimmicky ad for NZ on the DVD might actually make quite a difference in the long run, too.

    • Bright Red 12.2

      yeah, well this is what you get for letting yourself get fooled into thinking that the Hobbit was ever going to leave. Screwed by Warners, screwed by National

  13. tc 13

    This issue typifies this gov’t approach on so many issues:
    a) whip up an emotional debate using the MSM’s 20 second attention span and inability to check/verify anything you say.
    b) fan those flames with more dis-information so the original issue is long buried in emotional baggage and unrelated tangents, see point (a) for tips on how.
    c) Resolve the issue as you expected however this will be so much better then expected under (b) the great unwashed will be grateful and believe you need (d).
    d) Use urgency to bypass the annoying select committe process remembering to rope in the MP, if they want something go see the baldy man as he’s easily blackmailed err I mean aligned.
    e) smile and wave and avoid question time unless lockwood has given you a ‘Don’t Answer’ card.
    f) repeat (d) should further issues arise.

  14. Even Trademe is getting in on the action …

    http://www.trademe.co.nz/327783119

  15. ianmac 15

    Does this mean that if a Union is big enough the NActs will be willing to “cave in” in a similar way to caving to Warners? Go the PPTA!

  16. Draco T Bastard 16

    Hobbit Enabling Bill

    So, that’s the cost of The Hobbit: the entire film and video game industry gets to be slaves. I hope all you people at Weta are happy with yourselves, arseholes.

    That’s it in a nutshell.

    • Dylan 16.1

      What I don’t get about this is how did people think it should work before?

      I take work as a contractor with a film company, including all the benefits that entails (expenses, tax write offs, etc etc etc) until such time as I want to gain some of the benefits of being an employee (sick pay, holiday pay) – then I just go to the Employment Court and claim them?

      This doesn’t make EMPLOYEES (people with an employment contract) who work in these industries into contractors. All it does it make it clear that contractors aren’t employees (although not very well, but then the ERA seems confusing on that issue to start with).

      I am an employee in the film/tv industry and I have no concern about suddenly losing the benefits of my employment. Nor do any of the contractors I know (many of my co-workers) seem concerned about not suddenly being able to make employment court claims later on.

      • Draco T Bastard 16.1.1

        I agree with contract work (see upthread). What I don’t agree with is the lack of enforceable minimum conditions and this is where contractors generally get screwed.

        • Dylan 16.1.1.1

          The difficulty I see with enforcable conditions is that the nature of contracted work can be quite different to an employee relationship. It would be difficult to draft minimum terms that would be clear enough in the variety of conditions they may cover – just thinking about the variety of contract jobs I know about in the film industry.

  17. tc 17

    yeah but the PPTA isn’t likely to have any of Sideshows mates he can buddy up to in negotiations nor can it offer him some photo or union bashing opportunities however if they commissioned Spielberg and got some gov’t dosh to make a movie…..now we’re talking.

    • bobo 17.1

      So we can expect John Key to intervene in the PPTA dispute and chuck cash at teachers to stop them from going overseas, It’s not like the teacher strikes are any urgent pressing crisis… the show must go on.

  18. Murray 18

    Rosemary Mcleod has a good article on the issue over at The Dominion
    says it all really.
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/opinion/4280040/Union-vision-dimmer-than-a-Hobbits-burrow

      • Armchair Critic 18.1.1

        Conclusion – Patrick Gower is a twit.
        The unions did not give Warners or Jackosn a cent. John Key dipped into the taxpayer’s purse instead. Don’t beat around the bush – it was John Key that gave them the money. Let him take responsibility. A little union forced his hand? Yeah, right.
        I must answer this bit of Gower’s exceptional piece of rubbish:
        But the conspiracy theory advanced by unions that Jackson and Warners set this all up to get some cash out of the government is just ridiculous.
        I have no doubt that if this opportunity had not arisen another excuse would have been found to try to get a bigger subsidy. Do you really believe that Warners would have carried on without a whimper if the financials were the same and the only difference was a compliant workforce? Their job is to make money (preferably by making movies) and they have plenty of experience.

    • ianmac 18.2

      Funny how we colour our reactions to people like McLeod. I had read the same piece and thought it to be a very inept piece of careless writing full of bias and prejudice. I think that she is well past her sell by date.

  19. Carol 19

    NACT trying to implicate Labour is involved with all those nasty unions to undermine the Hobbit. But also slamming Labour and The Greens for being quiet on Labour Day – eg Hidney did a song & dance about that.

    Labour has been hammering that they have seen an email dated 18 Oct that shows Warners agreed that union action was over.

    Opposition parties referred to Jackson’s report asking for increase in subsidies a few months back, as well as strongly repeating criticisms about issues of sovereignty, the government shaming NZ by acting like a banana republic bowing to an overseas corporate, and the lack of process in rushing through the law change, thus undermining our democracy.

    Mallard targetted Brownlee’s lack of attention to the issue, (eg as highlighted in Jackson’s report, and references to how Mallard kept up relations with with Warners, so they would act as soon as an issue came up, tweaking things). Consequently he said Brownlee allowed the whole issue to get out of hand.

    Also opposition MPs asked why Wilkinson/Minister of Labour was not at the negotiations with Warners, when Warners were asking for a change in NZ law.

  20. Carol 20

    In Question Time, Locke asked Brownlee about use of urgency that meant that the public and people employed in the industry don’t get the opportunity to make submissions. Brownlee replied that there was an online digipoll that told him everything he needed to know about what the public supported.

    And maybe this says everything we need to know about how this government operates.

    • ianmac 20.1

      The Close Up poll tonight showed surprisingly that only 55% approved of Key’s actions and 44% thought that Key had sold us out. (Not the exact words.) Bit surprising given the time and effort to “sell” Key’s cleverness.
      Brownlie seemed to be saying that Warners did not demand a law change. Therefore Key must have offered it.

  21. Its also a law that ordinary kiwis support, imagine being an extra and getting to work with martin Freeman, imagine being a resturant owner and and having 500 to 1 1000 cast and crew walking past your business, imgaine being a worjker and wanting more hours and getting it, imgaine when this movie sells millions of dvds and people want the speical features, this is win, win, and if Helen Clark was still prime minster you guys will be saying how great it is.

    • Vicky32 21.1

      “Its also a law that ordinary kiwis support, imagine being an extra and getting to work with martin Freeman, … imgaine when this movie sells millions of dvds and people want the speical features, this is win, win, and if Helen Clark was still prime minster you guys will be saying how great it is.”
      I am leaving your spelling as it is, Sean…
      But with your first sentence, you are saying that NZ actors are adolescents? “Wow, I don’t care if I get screwed, I am gonna work with a *star*!”
      I will not be buying DVDs and I couldn’t give a toss about the special features. Probably I will rent the DVDs (if I can). Thanks to NACT I am unemployed, and DVDs are a luxury to we unemployed people…

      • Dylan 21.1.1

        Where’d the ‘actors getting screwed’ idea come from? There’s no suggestion that The Hobbit was ripping anyone off, and nothing that’s happened here will make any difference to any other productions.

  22. Vicky:

    Its not about working with a star, Martin Freeman isnt Britney or Keanu, he has his history in therate and is best known for his work on the english verison of the office, any young actor would love to learn from him, its not about being star struck, its about learning from the best and he is the best. He is also a heck of a nice guy.

  23. Logie97 23

    Welcome to New Warnerland as the DVD’s will advertise it. And in Hobbitville playing Smorg will be Jonkey. You can watch him reveling in guarding the jewelry in his cave.

    When does filming commence?
    Wouldn’t be in Warnerland aka Nuzilnd sometime in 2011 would it?) Given that Nuzilnd’s parliamentary sovereignty is being traded away by this “Jodrell Banker” there may be some suddenly-available actors around the beehive.

    How would we find out what blind trusts had connections with the filming industry.

  24. Hi Eddie,

    What was the name of John Key’s mate in the Warner team

  25. Adrian 25

    Anybody seen Bill English this week? Is he sitting somewhere seething and sharpening knives? He’s a Treasury man and they are diametricly opposed to these sort of tax breaks and winner-picking and I would imagine that he does not like being stiched up.

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    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Solid Energy decision delay sensible
    Today’s announcement by the Board of Solid Energy that it will delay making a final decision on re-entering the Pike River mine is a sensible move, Labour’s MP for  West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “It has been clear for some...
    Labour | 28-10
  • New York Green Bank off to a $1B start
    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced late last week the New York Green Bank’s first NZD$1 billion tranche of green energy investments. The projects, which are difficult for the private sector to finance, are now possible by New York Green...
    Greens | 28-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Review: Perfect Place
    I went to a Perfect Place on Tuesday night, and what a delight it was. The marshmallows sweetly (and forcefully) handed out pre-show, set the tone for the next hour. Walking up the stairs at The Basement was a complete...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • 5AA Australia – NZ on UN Security Council + Dirty Politics Lingers On
    5AA Australia: Selwyn Manning and Peter Godfrey deliver their weekly bulletin Across The Ditch. General round up of over night talkback issues: Thongs, Jandals and flip-flops… ISSUE 1: New Zealand has been successful in its campaign to become a non...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • When I mean me, I mean my office & when I call whaleoil I mean not as m...
    This. Is. Ludicrous. Green Party co-leader Russel Norman put the first of what are likely to be many questions about Mr Key’s relationship with Slater, asking him how many times he had phoned or texted the blogger since 2008. “None...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • A brief word on describing the Government as ‘boring and bland’
    The narrative being sown is that this Government will be a boring and bland third term. Boring and bland. Since the election, Key has announced he is privatising 30% of state houses without reinvesting any of that money back into housing society’s most...
    The Daily Blog | 22-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • False birth registration brings home detention
    A Whangarei woman who attempted to register the birth of a fictitious child to claim a sole parent benefit was sentenced to six months home detention in the Whangarei District Court today....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Family of Robert Ellis demand a proper investigation
    The family of a New Zealander killed in Indonesia are growing increasingly concerned at the lack of information they’ve received, and the handling of the investigation into his murder....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Minister of Health must account for aged care workers’ pay
    The New Zealand Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW NZ) congratulates rest-home worker Kristine Bartlett on her landmark claim for equal pay from her employer and successfully pursuing this to the Court of Appeal....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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