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The Domino recessions

Written By: - Date published: 11:21 am, February 25th, 2011 - 67 comments
Categories: energy - Tags: , ,

I read a book a while back that was set in the near future after what it called the ‘Domino recessions’ – successive oil shocks had created a series of economic and political crises, each one before the world had recovered from the previous recession. As the second oil shock in three years hits, that scenario looks to be coming to true.

In 2005, oil production more or less peaked. Having grown at an average of 2.4% a year for 40 years, oil output has hovered around the same level for the last six. This lack of additional supply resulted in the market tightening and tightening, and the price rising and rising until a full price shock broke out in late 2007. This put household budgets under immediate pressure – particularly American families in exurbs with ‘sub-prime’ mortgages on houses they couldn’t really afford. Over-indebted families couldn’t pay their bills and afford the petrol their lifestyles were built around. Mortgage defaults grew, banks failed and the value of mortgage-backed securities plummeted. Investors fled to the one thing on the up – oil. The fundamentals of supply and demand led to a speculative bubble that didn’t burst until oil hit US$147 a barrel and the world entered recession.

Now, it’s happening again. Global oil demand fell just 2.6% between 2008 and 2009 but that buffer of extra supply was enough to let the price fall back to US$35 a barrel. Then demand started to rise again, at twice the rate expected, mainly thanks to China. The supply buffer shrunk. Oil prices started to rise, dragging up the price of food (roughly, for every 6 calories in food, a calorie of oil is used in producing and transporting it). Food production has also been hit by climatic disasters associated with climate change. Oil was already flirting with the economically dangerous US$100 a barrel amount at the end of last year.

Whereas the previous oil shock caused a crisis in the financial system, this one has sparked a crisis in the political system of the Middle East (anyone who thinks it’s just a coincidence that governments are falling during an oil and food price shock, or thinks its a coincidence the financial system went into meltdown during the last one is a fool).

Two governments have fallen, another is on its way, up to half a dozen could follow. Libya is the first of the countries severely affected to be a large oil producer. It only produces 2% of the world’s supply and only about half has been affected by the revolution so far but, with global supply so tight, that has been enough to push oil up 20% to nearly US$120 a barrel in the past few days.

Now, OPEC has said ‘don’t worry Saudi Arabia can supply extra oil to make up for any lost from Libya’. And, if you believe the officials, it can because the world has about 5 million barrels a day of spare production capacity and nearly all of that is in Saudi Arabia. However, there’s fears that unrest among the Shi’ites in Bahrain could spread across the causeway to the Shi’ite minority in Saudi Arabia, who live atop the oil fields and make up most of the workforce. And, more fundamentally, no-one quite believes that the Saudis have as much spare production as they claim.

You’re familiar with the classic supply and demand graph – higher price means higher supply. You probably also know that OPEC has a target oil price that it says it can target by altering how much oil its members produce. Well, look at how Saudi oil production actually responded to the last oil shock.

It didn’t increase, it hit a wall at about 11 million barrels per day. Indeed, even in 2008 when Saudi Arabia could sell its oil for a record price it didn’t match production in 2005, when the price was half that level. Which suggests Saudi Arabia doesn’t have 4 million spare barrels per day of production up its sleeve, or it won’t pump it because the Saudis know its worth more in the long-run if its left in the ground for now.

What’s behind the dramatic increase in oil prices in the last few days is investors (yes, speculators) betting that turmoil in the Middle East will continue to affect oil supply and Saudi Arabia won’t be able to make up any shortfalls. They’re betting that the ‘spare 5 million barrels’ doesn’t really exist.

Analysts are saying oil could hit US$200 a barrel if more oil producers have revolts. But I think a global recession would be triggered long before that level. Indeed, with the UK, Australia, and New Zealand already in recession, I think that if the price stays where it is for long, the whole developed world will quickly double-dip.

Every extra dollar on the oil price represents an outflow from New Zealand of $100,000 a day (we have net oil imports of 100,000 barrels a day). The $20 increase we’ve just seen is $2 million a day, or 0.3% of daily GDP. Every other net oil importer is experiencing the same thing. Governments’ books are already strained, as the all households’, except for the rich elite.

We’re in a far worse position to handle this oil shock than we were the last one. It looks like the next domino is falling.

67 comments on “The Domino recessions”

  1. Chilling.

    I can see the possibility of a number of countries rioting against their governments. When the expense of food gets beyond the ability of the masses and they can no longer afford petrol then the social structure we have created is bound to break down.

    New Zealand should be immune from this but recent controversy about the price of milk shows that a purely market driven model will cause ructions. Why milk should be so expensive is beyond me.

    And an increasing group of unemployed and dispossessed will increase the prospects of something happening here.

    We really need leadership that will plan for the next 20 or 30 years. Shame smile and wave cannot see past a week after the next election.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      I’m not even sure he can see to the next election. The problem with living in an ideology, as National, Act and the MP do, is that you tend to base decisions upon what you want to happen and ignore the facts especially when the facts show that your decisions were wrong.

    • Colonial Viper 1.2

      We really need leadership that will plan for the next 20 or 30 years. Shame smile and wave cannot see past a week after the next election.

      Its been a long time since NZ had a crop of politicians who had a 20 year vision and plan to make NZ a better place for everyone to live and prosper in.

      Tim Jackson’s report Prosperity without Growth just became much more important, even more than it was before.

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    Analysts are saying oil could hit US$200 a barrel if more oil producers have revolts. But I think a global recession would be triggered long before that level.

    Yeah, I can’t see it hitting US$150/barrel again. When it did that we were in boom times but now we’re pretty much stuck in recession and there just isn’t any vitality in the economy available to push it higher.

    Oil price hits fresh 29-month high

    The price of Singapore’s Tapis Crude, which dictates the price at Australian bowsers, was at $US120.4 a barrel at 7.30am AEDT.

    It is a $US24 premium on the price at 1 January 2011, but it is not near the record price of $US158 it reached in July 2008.

    West Texas Crude oil was at $US97 a barrel, after spiking to $US103.

    London’s Brent Crude was down to fetching $US114 a barrel, after hitting an intra-day high of $US120.

    /shrug

    It’s not the End of Times yet but the economy isn’t going to grow any more and that means we need to be looking at a better distribution of the wealth (The actual physical resources as defined by the Renewable Resource Base) that the country has. We cannot afford the rich as they are nothing more than parasites.

  3. Draco T Bastard 3

    AA Petrolwatch

    Petrol & diesel price review 25 February 2011

    Since the pump price rise on 16 February, oil prices have spiked following the political crisis in Libya. The price of Brent oil has risen over US$10 a barrel in the past week, to over US$114/barrel. Expect the retail price of fuel to increase very soon as a result – by at least 8 cents per litre and as much as 13 cents/litre in the next week.

    Wonder how many people will be able to afford to go to work next week? It’ll certainly be hitting the retail sector hard as people cut back spending even more.

  4. Afewknowthetruth 4

    This is one of the best items I’ve seen on TS. It is connected with reality -unlike most of the political nonsense that gets posted.

    Oil cannot go to $200 a barrel in the short term; that would terminate globalisation, tourism and most of the industrial economy and a lot of the food supply. But it is very likely to go to $200 longer term, as the money in out pockets gets devalued by the bankers’ Ponzi scheme.

    It is not wise to think of the predicament we are in as a series of recessions: we are in the early phase of the Second Great Depression -the one that never ends- and have nearly hit the end of the road as far as operating a globalised consumer society is concerned. Desperation measures, such as deep water drilling and ripping up a huge area of Canada to extract oil from tar sands (ata very poor EROEI), will allow the world economy to stagger along a bit longer, but the situation is absolutely terminal ……. and best evidence indicates collapse of the world economy some time between 2012 and 2015, though a few are flagging collaspe later this year.

    The ironic aspect is, of course, the longer present economic and social arrangements prevail, the worse it will be for eveyone still alive a decade from now.

    Those who are afflicted with industrial fundamentalism reject scientific analysis of the predicament we are in and insist that someone somewhere is going to come up with some kind of magic bullet that will save current economic and social arrangements. They’ll learn the hard way.

    It is far too late for ‘solutions’. They needed to have been implemented when the writing first appeared on the wall 40 years ago. Far too late now. We are like Wile E Cyote, off the cliff and suspended in mid air via the frantic whirring of feet.

    Presumably the clowns who lead all mainstream political parties will conveniently retire to their bolt holes the moment the going starts to get tough.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Oil cannot go to $200 a barrel in the short term; that would terminate globalisation, tourism and most of the industrial economy and a lot of the food supply.

      There is every chance oil will hit US$200/b in the next 6-12 months.

    • M 4.2

      Yep, Afewknowthetruth GD2 for sure coming at us with breakneck speed.

      Just been on Ruppert’s Collapsenet for his latest video update (it’s behind a pay wall that my brother shouted me) and Mike was listing all the shit gaining momentum:

      Rioting in Greece, ME and North Africa

      The threat of war between major powers over the Kuril Islands of Japan: either Japan v Russia or the US v Russia (if that’s the case time to bend over and kiss your own arse goodbye)

      Japan is the equivalent of the dead carcass the major powers will be scrapping over.

      Mike has a contingency plan of using a yacht to keep Collapsenet going as he reckons that the US can only last three to four months longer before civil unrest makes it completely unworkable and emphasised it was a generational revolution.

      Preparedness measures included:

      FM handheld handset
      Go packs
      Consolidating personal effects
      Three months’ food
      Clubbing together with people near by

      Makes me think of the Titanic on its final death plunge.

      • Colonial Viper 4.2.1

        Makes me think of the Titanic on its final death plunge.

        Except the Carpathia, the Baltic and the Olympic were all on hand within hours to rescue the survivors of the Titanic. Who will rescue us?

        • M 4.2.1.1

          CV, I don’t think anyone can rescue us. In much the same vein as the men of Jarrow were told to go home and work out their own salvation.

  5. Zac 5

    Noted Comments on Smile and wave should learn to no when to shut there mouths. If you were to look at all comments By Keys smile and wave are at 0, However Phil is at 8, Someone need to till Phil to look away from the Camera when he gets the urge to smile.

  6. tsmithfield 6

    Actually, it looks like the world’s largest oil consumer, the US, might have plenty of oil. Also, they have enormous natural gas supplies that have been identified as a ready oil substitute.

    On the other hand, it looks like the greens are causing hunger with the preoccupation on biofuels.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      ts, the world is not running out of oil. The Canadian tar sands hold 150 bb worth. There are over 500 bb worth in the Venzuelan tar sands.

      However the world IS running out of oil which you can buy for under US$200/b. Cheap easily extractable oil.

      And how do we know that? Because everywhere you see countries turning to sources of oil they have known about for years, but which were completely uneconomic at US$40/b. Seriously, why drill for oil in water over a kilometre deep, when there are easier, cheaper places to extract it from? Well, when there isn’t, that’s why. And that happens to be right now.

      So yeah, you will have unleaded 91 you can put in your car for years to come. At $4/L, $5/L, $6/L.

      Enjoy.

      • tsmithfield 6.1.1

        The circuit breaker is the natural gas though. The yanks have enormous quantities of that, and it is easy to substitute natural gas for petrol, heating etc.

        • mickysavage 6.1.1.1

          There is this wee problem that you need heat to extract the oil from the tar sands. You can use natural gas but the amount required to completely extract the oil equates to most of the remaining reserves in the world.

          And you can use natural gas to replace oil but there is the small problem of there being no adequate distribution system. You will need to build a few trillion kilometers of pipeline to do this, not to mention the need to build thousands and thousands of depots.

          And the climate change implications are horrendous.

          We really do need a better way.

        • Marty G 6.1.1.2

          natural gas is no curcuit breaker. Ask it to replace oil in any quantities and it, too, will become scarce. There’s a glut now but if you use that glut it disappears.

          Re the US having plenty of oil – US/Canada does have oil for decades, expensive, hard to get at oil. This does not equal a supply of oil that can be pumped in sufficient quantities at low enough prices.

          Re your comment on biofuels – Green groups have been raising concerns about biofuels for years. It was the Bush Administration that kick-started biofuels as a sop to farmers. I’ve never supported them because they have poor Energy Returned on Energy Invested and they mean rich people are burning in their cars what could be food for the poor.

          • tsmithfield 6.1.1.2.1

            “And you can use natural gas to replace oil but there is the small problem of there being no adequate distribution system.”

            Same with any technology to substitute oil. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it though. At least there is already technology for natural gas in vehicles and at least some infrastructure. So its not like starting from zero.

            “Ask it to replace oil in any quantities and it, too, will become scarce. There’s a glut now but if you use that glut it disappears.”

            I didn’t say replace. What I meant was to further augment oil. By using natural gas alongside oil more, the oil supply will spin out for longer allowing more time to find new technologies.

            • Draco T Bastard 6.1.1.2.1.1

              Same with any technology to substitute oil. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it though.

              The lack of resources, most notably oil, means that we can’t do it.

              • Colonial Viper

                By using natural gas alongside oil more, the oil supply will spin out for longer allowing more time to find new technologies.

                The US uses 20mb of oil per day.

                Reducing that by just 10% and using natural gas instead will require an investment in infrastructure across the country valued in the tens of billions of dollars.

                It is an investment which Big Oil will not support politically.

                Prediction: natural gas will not reduce US oil consumption by 10% in the next 5 years. And probably not the next 10 years. And it will certainly not stop oil going to US$200/b in the next 12-24 months.

    • RedLogix 6.2

      On the other hand, it looks like the greens are causing hunger with the preoccupation on biofuels.

      Flat out bullshit that’s just a tired repetition of a line you read from some other especially ignorant RWNJ …most Greens were among the first to warn of the dangers of biofuels competing with food sources.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      There’s a problem with Natural Gas – it doesn’t have the same energy density as oil. This means you need more of it to achieve the same effect.

      Hmmmm…. Actually, the article you link to tells you it’s not the silver bullet you’re looking for.

      That’s good for about a 100-year supply (less if natural gas consumption increases).

      100 years unless use is increased which is what you’re suggesting happen so not 100 years. To replace oil usage in any meaningful way I’d be surprised if it those resources didn’t peak before 2030.

      • Rosy 6.3.1

        There is another problem with natural gas – the fracking process contaminates water supplies. This is a big issue in the U.S with the process being exempt from safe drinking water legislation

    • Afewknowthetruth 6.4

      ts I suggest you look at Energy Return On Enegy Invested before getting excited about so-called alternatives.

  7. tsmithfield 7

    “Flat out bullshit that’s just a tired repetition of a line you read from some other especially ignorant RWNJ”

    I thought the BBC was quite authoritative actually.

    “…most Greens were among the first to warn of the dangers of biofuels competing with food sources.”

    Of course, you would have a link to support that assertion?

  8. exit lane 8

    a few energy savvy pundits like Jeff Rubin (a major source in a prescient article in the NZ Herald 18 months ago by NZ peak oil bogger Denis Tegg)….
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/economy/news/article.cfm?c_id=34&objectid=10590384
    predicted that that as soon as the global economy began to recover, oil prices would rise over US$100 a barrel, and the world, and NZ would be back into recession. Brent crude was already over US$100 per barrel before the uprisings in the Middle East.

    “Despite warnings from a New Zealand Parliamentary report, Lloyd’s Of London, the International Energy Agency, the US military and a host of other credible groups, our mainstream media has failed to report this looming crisis.

    Likewise our politicians avoid this issue like the plague, and no risk management planning has been done. We are no better prepared than we were in 2008 when prices last spiked. They need to be held to account. In an election year hard questions need to be asked as to why these clear and urgent warnings have been ignored and not shared with the public, and what policies BOTH main parties have to urgently lower our oil dependency, and to plan for an imminent oil-induced recession.”
    http://oilshockhorrorprobe.blogspot.com/2011/02/starting-to-join-dots-finally.html

  9. tsmithfield 9

    Actually, fair enough. I accept the Greens weren’t the ogre on this one.

    I think we both agree that biofuels from crops are very inefficient and disadvantage the poor.

    • I personally think that biofuels have a certain if limited role to play. In New Zealand we would be able to augment diesel consumption to a limited extent without too much difficulty. The problem is if we think that we are going to be able to continue to drive the way that we do now and augment petroleum with alternative supplies.

      Biofuels do have the advantage that they collect the carbon before releasing it.

      But starving the third world so that someone can keep driving their V8 is not the way to go.

      • tsmithfield 9.1.1

        I actually like the idea of technology that turns sewage into biofuel etc. Much better.

        • RedLogix 9.1.1.1

          Or something harvested off marginal land that was never going to be much use for food production. Problem is that all of these caveats need to be regulated … if you leave it to the market then the fuel tanks of the rich will out-compete the stomachs of the poor every time.

  10. fermionic_interference 10

    ok I’ve been bated into commenting:
    To paraphrase my university Physics professor (Sorry no names I don’t think I have the right).

    “The volume of oil isn’t the problem, the fact that prices are increasing, is due to the fact
    that we are reaching the point at which we can no longer stick a straw in the ground and
    oil spurts forth, but it doesn’t really matter what new techniques we think up for extraction
    because if we use all that oil we will already have destroyed the earth”.

    This related to a discussion on the implications of climate change and humanities fossil fuel use.

    • Afewknowthetruth 10.1

      There is already abundant evidence we have pushed the Earth’s positive feedback systems close to the tipping point for abrupt climate change, i.e. a largely uninhabitable planet a few decades hence.

      Continuing to burn fossils fuels, as per the BAU plan, is guaranteed to rob every young person of a future.

      I cannot understand why young people are not marching in the streets demanding change.

      • Colonial Viper 10.1.1

        9B humans by 2050. Yeah I agree that would be a disaster initself.

      • fermionic_interference 10.1.2

        Unfortunately the majority of the “young people” I know fall into the authoritarian New Zealanders category and see the NZ media as portraying unbiased information which they class as equivalent to peer reviewed scientific papers. This means that they don’t differentiate between opinion pieces by laymen, oil company data and opinion, political spin as different to balanced research. Actually in NZ this is the biggest problem I have seen over all age groups, as a culture we seem to evaluate all information as equal in the majority of cases. Whereas we need to evaluate the strength of the info provided.
        I also run into a few who are of the opinion that god wouldn’t allow such a calamity to occur.
        Or even those that don’t understand scientific method in the slightest and think we have to have 100% proof before they will take any notice.

        • Afewknowthetruth 10.1.2.1

          Oh well, within 2 years they will get the 100% proof they need to understand have been continuously lied to by politicians and the mass media.

          As for God, if they have any understanding of the Bible or spitituality at all, they will recognise God is not at all pleased with the way humans have been trashing the Earth.

          • Colonial Viper 10.1.2.1.1

            God gave dominion of the Earth to man, man has the God given right to trash it, is that not so?

          • fermionic_interference 10.1.2.1.2

            I thought people would’ve started to figure this out by now 3-4 years ago but it’s almost as though we’re just spinning our wheels.

            100% proof in scientific terms is non existent.
            using the theory of gravity as an example
            We came to the theory (or Newton did) with use of empirical data and this empirical data brought about the theory which will stand unless we find a counter example so with regard to science there is never a 100% proof just evidence and the strength thereof. Giving strong evidence for the theory of gravitation because we haven’t found a counter example in 150+- years.
            When we look at this with regard to CO2 emission and CO2 equivalents, we look at ice core and other sources of atmospheric CO2 concentrations and temperature in past epochs which doesn’t give us real time data as well as results so it’s difficult to see what is cause and what is effect. Although there is strong evidence to suggest that increasing CO2 concentrations increases the global temperatures but there are so many complicating factors with regard to the climate and being a theory we can’t say this is the case we can only test for a case which disproves it. Which is a big issue with politicians and most people wanting definitive guaranteed answers. Before hand we can only give probabilities or estimates of what might occur and what has strong evidence of occurring or what has strong evidence of causing more damage.

            • Afewknowthetruth 10.1.2.1.2.1

              Tyndall discovered that CO2 absorbs and re-raditates IR radiation in 1859. CO2 levels are up 40% on the historic norm. It’s very easy logic for those who want to see the truth.

      • Armchair Critic 10.1.3

        I cannot understand why young people are not marching in the streets demanding change.
        Easy. Because there is money to be made from distracting them from doing so.

  11. M 11

    SA to supply needed oil? Don’t think so!

    ‘The problem of the diminishing returns of the new technology comes into play. Horizontal drilling or injecting nitrogen or seawater into rock to goose the oil out of the rock just depletes the oil fields more. The Saudis have depleted their fields that way. They’re no longer the world’s No. 1 producer of oil. Russia is.’

    Comment by JHK in AOL article:

    http://www.aolnews.com/2011/02/24/how-will-the-libyan-crisis-and-rising-oil-prices-affect-the-us/

  12. Colonial Viper 12

    UK Economy Contracts 0.6% Q4 2010

    Or over 2%, annualised. Record bad weather blamed.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011/feb/25/uk-economy-contracted-by-0-point-6-percent

    No mention of the role of mass Council and public servant layoffs as a factor.

    I hear the sound of dominoes falling…

  13. ak 13

    They’re no longer the world’s No. 1 producer of oil. Russia is.

    Good lord. Literally. And shit a BRIC, you filthy Anglo-fascisti rapists of our world.

    Yet rejoice ye little ones: for the dawn of a glorious new age is upon us. Prepare, precious meek, to inherit, and forgive.

    • Afewknowthetruth 13.1

      The ‘glorious new age’ won’t come until after the most horrendous transition period imaginable. And it may not come at all if the environmental collapse continues to accelerate.

  14. Colonial Viper 14

    It’s starting: Spain Literally Slowing Down Because of Oil Price

    This will damage Spain’s already fragile economy further.

    Spain will lower motorway speed limits, cut train ticket prices and use more biofuel under an emergency energy-saving initiative because of soaring oil prices brought on by unrest in Libya, an official said Friday.

    The Libya crisis has sharply reduced exports from the oil-rich nation, and about 13% of the oil Spain consumes comes from Libya.

    Deputy prime minister, Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba, said Spain’s energy supply is not in danger, despite shutdowns by oil companies operating in Libya, but the national energy bill will rise significantly because of the sharply higher petroleum prices.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/feb/25/spain-speed-limit-oil-prices

    • Afewknowthetruth 14.1

      That’s what happens when you construct an economy on tourism and shopping, and are dependent on oil imports..

      Where Spain goes, NZ follows a little later.

      There is a fair chance the meltdown will occur before the election, and the present gang of criminals and clowns will get left holding their baby.

      • Colonial Viper 14.1.1

        LAB doesn’t always lend a sympathetic ear to peak oil theorists. But I know NAT never ever does. Bill and John will not take have taken into account oil instability at all in their calculations for this year, and still will not have.

        • Afewknowthetruth 14.1.1.1

          I don’t think it makes any diffference which party is in power: policy is driven by ideologues in Treasury and MED -and they won’t have a bar of anything connected with reality, especially anything that challenges the dogma of perpetual growth.

          Treasury and MED will keep promoting utter nonsense until they can’t.

          • Jenny 14.1.1.1.1

            “I don’t think it makes any diffference which party is in power”

            Afewknowthetruth

            Maybe, Maybe not.

            In the current situation of Market collapse and impending climate collapse, can it still be business as usual?

            Or something completely different?

            At the start of this post Marty G describes a science fiction novel set in a future in which “Market Forces” have free reign and where the only players are corporate executives.

            This is obviously an extrapolation of the current state of the world.

            The people’s revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Jordan and Libya show that the people themselves are not just dumb clay to be manipulated by “leaders” but might have some say in events as well.

            It is still hard to say at this stage where these revolutions will end up, but with their calls for reform, it is possible that they will launch an experiment in new form of equitable democracy in these countries that could be an example to the world, where no longer will all the say be just in the hands of the elites.

            In Wisconsin 70,000 people have marched against austerity measures.
            As well as the tens of thousands on the streets, hundreds have occupied the Wisconsin State Senate chanting “This is what democracy looks like”.

            Outside some people are flying Egyptian flags and one protester has a sign saying walk like an Egyptian.

            Minority democratic senators have fled the state to deprive the senate of a quorum.

            Business as usual?

            I don’t think so.

            Republican senators have accused the democrats and the protesters of being undemocratic.

            Are they?

            Or as the protesters claim “This is what democracy looks like”.

            Is this form of direct democracy an answer to the failure of the two party democratic rule experienced in the US, UK, Aus. and NZ?

            • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1.1.1

              The people’s revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Jordan and Libya show that the people themselves are not just dumb clay to be manipulated by “leaders” but might have some say in events as well.

              I daresay that some powerbrokers in OECD countries are paying very close attention to the effect of “people power” on old established state/commercial (i.e. Fascist) power structures.

            • Afewknowthetruth 14.1.1.1.1.2

              It is worth noting that people only revolt when they are driven to desperation, when they have virtually nothing left to lose.

              Most people in NZ are still quite comfortable, and a few are doing very nicely. Therefore, Treasuty and MED can get away with promoting nonsense, and all maintream parties go along with the game. Nobody want to rock the boat.

              The only difference between National and Labour is the size of the bread crumbs that fall off the table the elites eat at.

              • Jenny

                “It is worth noting that people only revolt when they are driven to desperation, when they have virtually nothing left to lose.”

                Afewknowthetruth

                Brain, This is not the full story. As someone once said, if poverty were the cause of revolution then they would be occurring everywhere.

                The mass protests in Wisconsin, (which have name checked the Egyptian revolt) is a sign that this is not just about having nothing left to lose.

                What is happening is something different.

                As Martin Luther King once said, (it is) “A time to break the silence

                In the past revolts in a country like Tunisia would have except for a few rare voices like King, would have been isolated and misrepresented in the international media, with labels “violent” and “extremist” and “fundamentalist”. The Western powers under cover of this propaganda would then send in military aid and even advisers to quell the protests).

                However, with face book and twitter, people all over the Middle East and indeed the world were able to see the true nature of the revolt and identify with it.

                It doesn’t pay to overstate it, but with the help of the new media, the old power structures are losing their legitimacy.
                The revolts in Tunisia, Egypt etc. were initially labeled by some of their leaders as the electronic intifada.

                Here in the West there is often talk of the electronic commons.

                This represents two things;

                1# The ability to cut through the big business dominated main stream, or state dominated media.

                2# The ability of people of like mind to network like never before.

                3# The ability of like minded people to immediately issue wide announcement of protests, which if representative of the popular mood, can grow at a speed and to a size which by sheer weight of numbers can defy curfews and crackdowns and peacefully overwhelm even a professionally armed and trained para military police force and even the military, who may under difference circumstances follow their orders to violently suppress the protests, but when confronted with the spectacle of huge numbers of their own citizens in the streets are confounded and over run.

                The electronic commons has become so threatening to the old power structures that as well as banning any search of the word “Egypt” , this week the Chinese communist government has tagged such words as “today” and “tomorrow” and even had them removed as searchable words on search engines.

                These extraordinary measures are necessary because the two words “today” and “tomorrow” are being used to swiftly call huge demonstrations before the regime has time to react and crackdown.

                From John Pilger:

                “The uprising in Egypt has discredited every Western media stereotype about the Arabs. The courage, determination, eloquence, and grace of those in Liberation Square contrast with “our” specious fear-mongering with its al-Qaeda and Iran bogeys and iron-clad assumptions, bereft of irony, of the “moral leadership of the West”. It is not surprising that the recent source of truth about the imperial abuse of the Middle East, WikiLeaks, is itself subjected to craven, petty abuse in those self-congratulating newspapers that set the limits of elite liberal debate on both sides of the Atlantic. Perhaps they are worried. Across the world, public awareness is rising and bypassing them.”

                captcha – “involves”

                • Jenny

                  L is the last letter in the word PERIL

                  From the P.E.R.I.L theses

                  With Market collapse and runaway climate change the Global loss of Legitimacy may also be approaching a peak.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Major problems occur when those in power stop honouring their social bargains with the many, in favour of their social bargains with the elite few and wealthy.

                • Carol

                  I have seen some commentary that says the focus on the Internet social networking, is people claiming a US technology as the trigger for the rebellions in the MiddleEast & Nth Africa – ie a Western view that doesn’t fully grasp what is happening in the Middle East. The threats to food etc are far greater than before. Also, in many ME countries there is a high proportion of young people who have a significant amount of formal education, but there are few jobs for them and little money. This is more than poverty as usual.

                  In the US, Republican moves in Wisconsin is theatening the security of many middleclass people, who previously had felt that if they worked hard, paid their mortgages etc, all would be well. Now that is coming under threat in ways not felt for a long time in the US.

                  • Jenny

                    Hi Carol, the essay by Yousef Munayyer, carried on the Kia Ora Gaza website, gives one of the most thoughtful expositions I have seen on the revolts in the Middle East.

                    Click here

                  • Jenny

                    “I have seen some commentary that says the focus on the Internet social networking, is people claiming a US technology as the trigger for the rebellions in the MiddleEast & Nth Africa….”

                    Carol

                    Hi Carol, I agree with you that the power of the internet and social networking can be overstated as a causative factor in these revolts, though, I would argue that this technology does speed up a process that has been going on for some time. Namely, the undermining of the colonisation of the public mind, which has led to crisis of legitimacy.

                    A world wide crisis of legitimacy?

                    “We Shall Not Be Moved”

                    Hundreds of Wisconsin protesters currently occupying the state senate building defy police requests to leave – receive words of support from Egyptian protesters.

                    The Colonisation of the public mind: (from the Peril theses)

                    “And that brings us to the final exitential crisis: Legitimacy.

                    The exercise of power in capitalist society ultimately rests on popular legitimacy much more than state force. That goes for every type of capitalist nation, whether rich, poor or in-between, whether democratic, authoritarian or theocratic.

                    If the masses can no longer be convinced by an elite that their rule expresses common values and promotes common progress, then it is doomed to social corrosion and eventual overthrow.

                    Calling up state force to save a regime whose legitimacy is ebbing away merely worsens the crisis…..

                    Only colonisation of the public mind can secure a broad social base for elite rule”

                    Grant Morgan

                    The P.E.R.I.L. theses:

                    Today, for the first time since its birth 500 years ago, global capitalism is facing the convergence of five system-level crises embracing nature as well as society:
                    Profitability crisis.
                    Ecological crisis.
                    Resource crisis.
                    Imperial crisis.
                    Legitimacy crisis.

                    As these five crises converge into a perfect storm they will tip global capitalism towards collapse amidst international revolutions and counter-revolutions.

                    Grant Morgan

                    A Good Call?
                    In light of the recent and ongoing revolts in the Middle East, in my opinion, this was rather a good call.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Except I do not think that there is a profitability crisis. The large corporations and banks are more profitable than ever, and their earnings per share are doing just fine, thank you very much.

                      Otherwise pretty much spot on.

  15. Jenny 15

    “Most people in NZ are still quite comfortable, and a few are doing very nicely. Therefore, Treasuty and MED can get away with promoting nonsense, and all maintream parties go along with the game. Nobody want to rock the boat.”

    Afewknowthetruth

    Brain, at the risk of stating the obvious, I would like to point out to you, that to claim that “Nobody want to rock the boat”, is demonstrably untrue, especially for New Zealand. You only have had to lived though the 1981 Springbok Tour protests to see, that though “Most people in NZ are still quite comfortable, and a few are doing very nicely.” They are very prepared “to rock the boat.”

    To ignore this fact is to give yourself over to cynicism, which pardon me for mentioning it, but which I feel is your error. The recent massive protests against schedule 4 mining show that Kiwis are still very prepared “to rock the boat”.

    Giving yourself over to cynicism is an excuse to do nothing.

    Given your knowledge of the serious nature of the crisis humanity is facing, it is very important that people like yourself don’t give into cynicism. Instead with your knowledge you have a responsibility working with other people to take a leading role in agitating and informing and organising the wider public to get involved in doing something about it.

    Instead of a few knowing the truth, Everyone should know the truth.

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    Labour | 10-11
  • Report must spur Government into action
    The soaring cost of domestic violence and child abuse highlight the need for the Government to prioritise and act on the issue, says Labour's spokesperson for Social Development, Sue Moroney.“Findings from the Glenn Inquiry that show the problem is estimated...
    Labour | 10-11
  • Family safety paramount, then urgent review
    Corrections Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has some serious questions to answer over why a dangerous prison escapee, convicted of further crimes while in jail, managed to abscond while he was on approved temporary release, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“Phillip...
    Labour | 09-11
  • LVRs a failed experiment from Bill English
    Loan to value mortgage restrictions are a failed experiment from Bill English to tame Auckland house prices, that have caused collateral damage to first home buyers and other regions, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The possible end of LVR...
    Labour | 09-11
  • Govt books getting worse as economy slows
    National’s economic credibility is under serious scrutiny with its search for surplus becoming harder due to an economy far too reliant on the dairy industry, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “National promised New Zealanders would get into surplus by...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Kiwis in pain because of Government underfunding
    New research showing one in three people needing elective surgery are being denied publicly-funded operations shows the Government must properly fund the health sector, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “For almost two years Labour has been warning about the...
    Labour | 06-11
  • National’s promised surplus looking doubtful
    Budget figures for the first quarter of the financial year released today by Treasury show the Government's goal of achieving a budget surplus is looking doubtful, the Green Party said today."National has staked its credibility on achieving a budget surplus...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour | 06-11
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour | 06-11
  • The Block NZ doing a better job than Nick Smith
    Nick Smith should consider calling in producers of The Block NZ with participants in the TV series completing more houses in two seasons than the Government’s failed Special Housing Area policy, says Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “The Block NZ...
    Labour | 06-11
  • Meridian moves to kill competition from solar homes
    Big electricity companies are using their power to make it harder for families and businesses wanting to go solar and the National Government is doing nothing to help them, the Green Party said today. Meridian Energy announced today a 60-72...
    Greens | 06-11
  • Has John Key done all he could for Pike families?
    It will be forever on the conscience of John Key whether he did all he could to recover the remains of the 29 miners who died in Pike River, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says.  “The Prime Minister...
    Labour | 05-11
  • National further dashes hopes of new parents
    The National Government has once again shown its disdain for working parents by voting down proposals to extend paid parental leave, Labour MP Sue Moroney says.  “The Government vetoed an amended proposal that substantially reduced the cost of extending PPL...
    Labour | 05-11
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog | 23-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog | 22-11
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog | 21-11
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog | 20-11
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog | 19-11
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog | 18-11
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog | 17-11
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog | 16-11
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • A brief word on Phillip Smith
    We can arrest student loan & fine defaulters at the airport – but not convicted child molesting killers? Before we ban manufactured ISIS ‘terrorists’ from having passports, how about we just manage to stop child molesting killers from fleeing first?...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Free Me From Religion
          The meeting begins – or at least it’s supposed to begin – but someone interrupts proceedings. She wants everyone to pray with their heads bowed while she can “thank our Father who art in Heaven.” I close...
    The Daily Blog | 14-11
  • Key capitulates on TPPA while big money NZ set up propaganda fund
    So Key has capitulated on the ‘gold standard’ of free trade deals… The primary objective for New Zealand at Apec was to see some urgency injected into the TPP talks and to keep leaders aiming for a high quality deal....
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Why Phillip Smith is the least of our worries
    Well, it turns out Phillip Smith wasn’t half as clever as he thought he was, and he’s been arrested within a week. If the Prime Minister is through with making tasteless jokes, perhaps we can ramp down the media hysteria...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Constraining Credibility
      Most economists and members of the public – on both the right and the left – believe that economies are constrained by resource scarcity most of the time. In this view, economies are supply-constrained, and that the economic problem...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Migrant Labour, exploitation and free markets
    Once more we read about a horror story of virtual slavery for a migrant worker in a restaurant in Christchurch. The silver lining that in this case compensation should be paid is not assured. Often in situations like this the employer winds up...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • On baby boomers who give my generation unhelpful advice: JUST DON’T
    One of my mum’s colleagues recently told her that there is no money in what her daughter was doing; volunteering at a women’s refuge and writing on politics. This guy, dispensing all his pearls of wisdom, told my mother that...
    The Daily Blog | 13-11
  • Morbid Symptoms: Can Labour Be Born Anew?
    THE CHAIRS in the final meeting venue have been stacked away. All that expensive signage, commissioned for the benefit of the television cameras, no longer has a purpose. For the second time in just 14 months, Labour’s Leadership Contest is...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • What’s Small, White, and Having Trouble Attracting New People?
    If your answer was something intimately connected to the person of Peter Dunne … then you’d be right. Last night, P-Dunney decided to bring his comedy and/or hair stylings to the twitterverse; penning a potentially somewhat ill-advised tweet in which he compared...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • LATE at the Auckland Museum review – Slacktivisim: Its not just for Slack...
    Monday night is my yoga night. I’m not really very good it, I don’t really have the bendy, but I made a New Years resolution. This Monday however, I decided to put the yoga on prone and attend a gig...
    The Daily Blog | 12-11
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics | 23-11
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics | 22-11
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics | 21-11
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics | 20-11
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Newcore Looks Pretty Rotten for Ratepayers
    Responding to the NZ Herald report that the IT system commissioned by Auckland Council to consolidate the eight systems the Super City inherited from its precursor councils could be facing a budget blowout of $100 million, Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Ben...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Accountability following quake response inquiry not achieved
    Lessons still need to be learned from the search and rescue efforts following the February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch, a leading New Zealand lawyer, Nigel Hampton QC, says....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them
    Our kids say: We are failing in our duty to protect them More than a quarter of Kiwi kids say children’s right to be safe and protected isn’t being upheld in New Zealand, identifying protection from violence, abuse and murder...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • PARS & Turuki Health Care collaborate on health and services
    Auckland-based PARS (People at Risk Solutions) have partnered with the Turuki Health Care Trust, to offer improved healthcare services to those in need. PARS works closely with former prisoners, providing mentoring, housing, and social services to ensure...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Children’s Plea
    A plea has been sent to all Members of Parliament, regardless of party affiliation, to accord urgency and priority to children's issues. These issues include vulnerability, safety and childhood poverty....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Treasury off track in search for sound policies
    Treasury is unlikely to find the ideas it is looking for to improve outcomes for children while its primary driver is cost-cutting, says Child Poverty Action Group....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Commission calls for answers on handling of CERA harassment
    EEO Commissioner Dr Jackie Blue is deeply concerned about the way in which the State Services Commission has handled sexual allegations made against CERA chief executive Roger Sutton this week and is calling for answers....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Ashley Dwayne Guy v The Queen: Appeal Upheld
    The appellant, Mr Guy, was found guilty by a jury of a charge of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection. After the verdict it was discovered that, by error, the jury had been provided in the jury room with two...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • Zonta Club to Take a Stand Against Gender-Based Violence
    During the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence (25 November – 10 December), the Zonta Club of Wellington, along with members of the local community, will join nearly 1,200 Zonta clubs in 67 countries for the Zonta Says NO...
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • New UNFPA report links progress and power to young people
    A UN report launched today calls for investment in young people as they are essential to social and economic progress....
    Scoop politics | 19-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says: "Only in the public sector do you receive a payout for ‘resigning’....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ must not turn a blind eye to China’s human rights record
    Amnesty International is calling on New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key to raise China’s shameful human rights record during President Xi Jinping’s visit to New Zealand this week....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • The Resignation with the Golden Handshake?
    Commenting on the settlement the State Services Commission has reached with former CERA CEO Roger Sutton, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Treasury’s covert & extremely odd welfare consultation
    A report this morning that Treasury is ‘crowd sourcing’ ideas on welfare policy is news to Auckland Action Against Poverty, even though we are currently one of the most active groups in the area....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • NZ invites Pacific peers to review development cooperation
    New Zealand has volunteered to be the first development partner in the Pacific region to undergo a review of its aid programme by Pacific island peers. The review will focus on New Zealand’s development cooperation and will give greater insight...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • EPMU joins Pike River families to mark fourth anniversary
    Representatives of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union are proud to stand with the Pike River families to mark four years since 29 men lost their lives. “This is a particularly solemn day given the recent announcements of Solid Energy...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • 2013 Assessment of New Zealand’s National Integrity Systems
    SPEAKER TUILOMA NERONI SLADE: Former Judge, International Criminal Court in the Hague, former legal counsel at the Commonwealth Secretariat, Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum 2008-2014. Introduced by Helen Sutch, Victoria University Council,...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Green Party ignoring Waimea’s environmental benefits
    Green Party MP Catherine Delahunty has overlooked the environmental benefits the proposed Waimea Community Dam will bring the Tasman community, says IrrigationNZ Chairperson Nicky Hyslop....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Women’s use of violence in violent relationships
    More than 80 percent of women who live with a physically violent partner will not initiate violence when they are not being hit, according to new research....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health
    Poor credit rating linked to poor cardiovascular health A credit score doesn’t only boil down a person’s entire financial history to a single number and somehow predict their credit-worthiness, it might also be saying something about a person’s...
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • State Services Commissioner on Roger Sutton Investigation
    State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie today said the investigation into Roger Sutton’s conduct was robust. Roger Sutton chose to resign as Chief Executive of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA) yesterday....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
  • Predator Free NZ project welcomed
    Federated Farmers and the conservation organisation Forest & Bird are welcoming the Predator Free New Zealand initiative as an ambitious but achievable project that will have real benefits for conservation and the economy....
    Scoop politics | 18-11
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