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The National government’s divided society

Written By: - Date published: 7:56 am, June 2nd, 2013 - 14 comments
Categories: class war, democracy under attack, grant robertson, greens, human rights, jobs, john key, labour, national/act government, poverty, russel norman, slippery, unemployment - Tags: ,

Fairfax Ipsos pollster, Duncan Stuart, is surprised to have discovered evidence of a highly divided NZ: divided by income inequalities and political allegiance.  It’s surprising that the pollster is surprised by this, but perhaps this shows where his political allegiance lies.  As many on this site know, many on the left in NZ have been aware of these divisions for a long time.  Russel Norman’s speech yesterday was outstanding in the way it directly challenged the anti-democratic cronyism of John Key’s government.  This government has increased the division that already existed as the result of decades of the “neoliberal” scam.

As reported by Vernon Small on Stuff today (in an article in need of a proof read):

Almost of Kiwis are affected by unemployment, but National supporters are far less likely than other voters to have someone out of work in their inner circle of friends and family.

The data, collected as part of the latest Fairfax-Ipsos poll, has emerged as a key fault line in society and between the Government and the opposition.

It is reported that the poll shows 21% of respondents knew unemployed people.  57% of Pacific and Maori people knew several people who are unemployed, and 67% of people in these groups knew one or two people out of work.

As well as showing up a country divided by gaps in wealth and income, the poll exposed a related political division in the country. Small reports,

The figures showed New Zealanders occupied quite different strata aligned with political views.

However, National voters were also the most confident that the current Government would make a better fist of reducing unemployment than the opposition.

Asked if the main opposition parties would do a better job of reducing unemployment, 34 per cent of those surveyed said yes and 31 per cent said no.

Maori and Pacific people had the strongest expectation the opposition could improve things – 55 per cent and 59 per cent respectively.

Not surprisingly, those backing Labour (66 per cent), Green (62 per cent) and NZ First (46 per cent) felt a change of Government would help, against just 7.7 per cent of National voters.

Council of Trade Unions economist Bill Rosenberg said the poll showed the impact of unemployment was far greater than the official statistics suggest.

Among the “precariat” there is a high amount of underemployment, as well as alternating periods of employment and unemployment.  This is masked in the way Key and Bill English talk up the official employment statistics ,and their cronyist “job creating” deals.

But Stuart said one surprise finding in the data was that those with unemployed in their social circle – who might have been expected to back the SkyCity deal because it would create jobs – were less in favour of the deal than others.

“This suggests [Labour leader David] Shearer or [Prime Minister John] Key won’t be able to dress up any old policy mutton and justify it on the ‘it’s all about job creation’ plank.”

Labour deputy leader Grant Robertson said the survey showed National voters could too easily live in a bubble and were buying the Government’s rhetoric.

The country needed a more hands-on approach, “pulling all the levers big and small” including monetary policy, a capital gains tax and skills training. And he said that jobs would be a priority election battleground for Labour.

A centrepiece of its policy is likely to be an idea borrowed from Denmark to keep people who lose their jobs in the workforce through a type of “employment guarantee” scheme.

The article then goes on to provide examples of individuals and a community (living examples of the “precariat”), showing how unemployment, and underemployment are life-sapping and far from being a ‘life-style’ choice for idle bludgers.

22war-on-the-poor

With Russel’s speech yesterday, and the blockupy demonstrations against the bankster-benefiting, poverty-inducing, inegalitarian austerity measures in Europe, perhaps a change is finally coming. Let’s hope it’s not just another false spring and that more people are starting to notice of, and stand up to, the divided world brought about by the callous and individualism of the “neoliberal” revolution.

14 comments on “The National government’s divided society”

  1. Olwyn 1

    I think you have a typo in your final paragraph – “egalitarian austerity measures.” Yes, if people do wake up to what is happening and do make their presence felt it should hopefully push the putative left further to the actual left. I too took cautious hope from Norman’s speech.

    • karol 1.1

      Thanks, Olwyn,. Fixed. The browser’s auto-spell check red lines “inegalitarian”. I clicked on it for “fix” without looking too closely at the result.

      And agree on the “cautious hope” response.

    • JK 1.2

      Me too – cautious hope, and a wake-up call to Labour …… maybe. And Labour pigs might fly ?

      • Mary 1.2.1

        Labour’s silence is treachery. They don’t deserve to be the opposition let alone the government. I’ve reached a point where I’m completely sickened by the sight of anything Labour. Even if a Labour MP happens to say something I think is vaguely accurate I cannot take them seriously because I cannot get over what Labour currently represents. Key and his mates are destroying NZ and Shearer and his mates are letting it happen. For this Shearer and Labour must never be forgiven.

  2. Jimmie 2

    Chicken or the egg?

    This poll more likely reflects the long held reality that poor and unemployed folks vote left and middle class and self employed folks vote right.

    And as is often the case that birds of a feather flock together it is fairly obvious that labour/green voters would associate with other folks of a similar social standing to themselves.

    (Especially amongst school leavers and uni students who tend to be both poor and left wing as they start out – or don’t – on their working lives)

    The same with middle class & self employed folks – associate with those with whom you have a lot in common – this has always been the case.

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 2.1

      …labour/green voters would associate with other folks of a similar social standing to themselves.

      Reality check: it’s the Right that has “low levels of contact with out-groups” (“Bright Minds and Dark Attitudes“) – it’s one of the main drivers of the prejudice and racism that typifies conservatism.

  3. North 3

    ” But Stuart said one surprise finding in the data was that those with unemployed in their social circle – who might have been expected to back the SkyCity deal because it would create jobs – were less in favour of the deal than others. ”

    Doesn’t that say it all about the attitudes of those who are not the victims ?

    The unemployed and poor must endorse or at least say nothing about whatever top-dog serving/enriching scam is served up as “job creation” by the top-dogs (ShonKey Python and SkyCity in this case). To question is temeritous and ungrateful, signifying intent to bludge off and rort we “decent folk”. At best, being charitable, it is unco-operative and careless of this nation’s interests.

    The unemployed and poor, whom by their ugly existence are an affront to we “decent folk”, are rightly suspended from full engagement in our democratic society while they insolently maintain their culpable indolence. Who the fuck do they think they are ?

    This is the corrupt attitudinal backdrop which sanitises dirty deals and crony capitalism engaged by the already filthy rich, thus hastening New Zealand’s slide into deeper and deeper inequality.

    Whom amongst the “decent folk” so opining will be entitled to clutch their pearls with horror when civil unrest combusts this country ?

    Boss Hogg Bennett-like you define your “dog”, you then defame and demonise your “dog” to all and sundry, you then kick and kick and kick your “dog”……..sooner or later.

    “We” will have only ourselves to blame.

  4. irascible 4

    It would be interesting and informative if the framing and wording of the Fairfax questions about the Casino deal and other attitude / position issues like the PowerNZ proposal put up by Shearer & Norman were designed to allow the respondents a reasoned response?

    The questions about the ethical rights or wrongs of the decisions may not have been factored into the poll and may, therefore, have produced the result being commented on.

  5. David H 5

    “Almost of Kiwis are affected by unemployment, but National supporters are far less likely than other voters to have someone out of work in their inner circle of friends and family.”

    Now my question would be.

    How many National supporters know, or have in their circle of friends, someone who has been convicted of, or is being investigated for a blue collar crime?

    • Dv 5.1

      >>How many National supporters know, or have in their circle of friends, someone who has been convicted of, or is being investigated for a blue collar crime?

      Reply

      Should that not be white collar crime?

  6. Neither National or Labour are responsible for NZ’s ‘divided society’.

    NZ has always been class divided. The only time when that became less obvious was during the post-war boom. But that was an artificially extended boom in the regular flow of minor booms and major busts.

    NZ Governments have little influence over these cycles. The Liberal Govt of the 1890s settled thousands of landless on farms but at the expense of the biggest Maori land grab of all time. How’s that for class?

    Labour insulated the economy after 36 following the US New Deal, but it was the extreme regulation of the wartime economy that produced the post war boom in the US and NZ.

    We expect the NATS to push their ruling class agenda more or less openly, but Labour bears the main responsibility for NZ workers being drafted like cattle to the meat works.

    Labour does ‘treachery’ well. 1916 in midst of wartime jingoism wrote last rites for the Red Fed. Invoking of Public Safety Conservation Act during WW2. Sitting out the 51 lockout. Nordmeyer’s Black Budget. The Fourth Labour Government. Blairite Fifth Labour Government.

    What’s more to do? Shearer forming a grand coalition with Key against the ‘extreme right’ and ‘extreme left’. Crazy? What is the difference in policy between the Labour centrists and National centrists? Who gets to p on whom in the PPPs.

  7. xtasy 7

    We could certainly do with more observant, more astute, more focused, honest and better informed, as well as generally better qualified media personalities, as again, a program and interview on Q+A showed yesterday morning.

    I sense a bit of a personal bias in Jessica Mutch’s way of asking questions, and apart from that the interview she conducted with Minister for Social Development Paula Bennett was somewhat mediocre, I must say. She let Bennett “jump about” and deliver in part contradicting or no clear answers, saying one thing, then qualifying what she said in the next sentence, or even contradicting it fully in yet another sentence.

    A good interviewer would not let Paula get away with such stuff. See some excerpts – and a link to the whole interview further below:

    “JESSICA Isn’t it the role of parents, though, Minister?

    PAULA Well, there’s no doubt about it that it is, yeah. We have a very generous welfare system when you compare it internationally. We have Working for Families. We put significant amounts of money into low-income and beneficiary families. They should be able to feed their children on that. But circumstances sometimes mean they can’t, and as a consequence, we want to put the children first and make sure that they’re being fed.”

    (Really, I ask, “very generous welfare system”, well maybe costly, but not effective and not really assisting all those sufficiently that need a fair go, I’d say to that. Also where are the thousands of jobs paying a living wage to employ the unemployed, and soon those few sick and disabled that may be able to do a few hours a week?)

    Another part:

    “JESSICA Why is that? I mean, it seems very simple, from an outside point of view. If you can’t measure poverty, how can you understand whether you’re succeeding or not? I mean, in fact this was the very first recommendation in that report. Why aren’t you considering that?

    PAULA But we do measure poverty, so it’s wrong to say we don’t. What we don’t have is one-

    JESSICA But one universal way.

    PAULA Yeah, what we don’t have is one agreed “this is what we’ll measure every year”, but actually it’s a bit more complex than that, so there’s about four or five different measurements, and we agree with them and that they are what we are measured on. So there are measurements. I just don’t think it’s a statistical argument, which is what it would very quickly turn into over a long period of time as to what that measurement should be, which actually it’s real world, on the ground-

    JESSICA In some ways, though, how can it not be a statistical argument? Because, I mean, the report is saying children in poverty – we need to reduce that in New Zealand by 30% to 40%. How can we do that or know whether your government and policies are succeeding if we can’t see the exact numbers that are getting into poverty or not?

    PAULA But we can see them. That’s my point. So you’ve got two measures-

    JESSICA But a universal measure for that.

    PAULA Well, you’ve got two measures, and they are universal. We just haven’t got one agreed one. That’s all it is. So they are measures. We can compare now-

    JESSICA But don’t you need that?

    PAULA Well, no. We can compare now to 2007 if we want to. So, projected-

    JESSICA So why not? Because, I mean, that seems really simple.

    PAULA Well, projected 240,000 children in 2007, and they say that there’s around 270,000 now. So if you take that measurement, then that’s where it lies, and it tells us exactly where we are and we’ll be able to compare that in three years and we’ll be able to compare that in another five. But that is exactly it. It’s a statistical argument. These kids need action, and I think that’s where the country’s attention should be, and that’s certainly what government should be doing. So, you know, academics and others can wring their hands and want this one measure. We’ve already got measures. We can compare ourselves. We can know where we are now compared to a few years ago and we can look back in the future and see what we’ve done. What we need is actions.”

    http://tvnz.co.nz/q-and-a-news/paula-bennett-interview-5453934

    Yes, Paula, “what we need is action”?! I cannot wait to have you sacked, as you are truly incompetent and in the wrong job! Go back washing dishes in the take-away or whatever you once ran in Taupo!

    X

    • i agree with yr assesments on mutch..

      ..but i went further..

      http://whoar.co.nz/2013/qa-a-mini-review-yes-jessica-mutch-has-snatched-the-worst-interviewer-since-forever-award-from-her-colleague-susan-wood/

      (excerpt..)

      “….bennett then trots out the the key/boag-line..calling the audience to compare with 2007..(at the height of labours shameful/’look-at-us-we’re-as-big-a-bunch-of-uncaring-pricks as national!’ ignoring of the poorest..eh..?)

      ..the interviewer..mutch..once again..has neither the intelligence nor wit to call bennett on that..and to point back to when poverty actually took off..

      ..under the national govt/richardson ‘mother-of-all-budgets..when she gutted support for those most in need..”

      phillip ure..

      • xtasy 7.1.1

        Entertaining, quite fitting take on what I saw and heard, you are right! Yes, it may be funny in some ways, but it is really all so serious, and we know this.

        As for that interview, Bennett left the viewers and listeners even less informed as they may have been prior to this “interview”, saying basically nothing neither here, nor there, re what the government will do to address child and general poverty:

        Excerpt:
        “JESSICA When will we see action on that? What’s the next step now?

        PAULA Oh, look, we’ve got the Ministerial Committee on Poverty, which is made up of Bill English and Tariana Turia and numbers of us, so we’re all sort of saying, “Well, should we look a bit deeper and get some work done?” And I think we might do that over time.

        JESSICA So just to clarify, you’re saying that you’re looking into extending those tax credits for families?

        PAULA No, we’re just looking into all of the recommendations, and that is one of them.

        JESSICA But specifically on those tax credits?

        PAULA No, well, we haven’t made that decision yet, but we just haven’t completely ruled it out.

        JESSICA Great, so it’s still an option on the table for later in the year?

        PAULA Well, it’s still there, and the committee have decided that they’ll look deeper at a few other options, and that might be one of them. But that’s yet to be decided. We’ve been doing a lot of work to get us to this point, and that might be on the next tranche of work that we might decide to look at.”

        I repeat:
        “PAULA Oh, look, we’ve got the Ministerial Committee on Poverty, which is made up of Bill English and Tariana Turia and numbers of us, so we’re all sort of saying, “Well, should we look a bit deeper and get some work done?” And I think we might do that over time.”

        Yeah, wonderful, Bill English (a very “caring” man, yeah right) and “numbers of us”, and Turia who is on her way into retirement, that will really get things moving, and the Nat ones on that “committee” will all be such ones as I saw and heard on the Social Services Committee, when they heard submissions on the “Social Security (Benefit Categories and Work Focus) Amendment Bill, I suppose. They are all lackeys supporting the bash the beneficiary agenda, for sure!

        Forget it, dear poor, you are done, left down there, hung out to dry, as the beggars for a few weet-bix (cereal briquettes) and a cup of milk for your kids at school. Do not forget to supply the spoons and bowls though, as they are not included!

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    The Government's failure to deal with problems in the wood processing industry has resulted in more needless job losses, Green Party forestry spokesperson Steffan Browning said today.Southern Cross Forest Products announcement of another sawmill closure brings the tally of closures...
    Greens | 24-04
  • Humiliation for Government in Chinese dictat
    New Zealand’s food safety systems should be respected by our trading partners, but instead the Government has been humiliated with the Chinese dictating the terms of our infant formula production, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.   “The Government...
    Labour | 24-04
  • Honouring our Pacific soldiers
    Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson and MP for Mangere, Su’a William Sio, will pay a special tribute to the many Pacific Islanders who fought in the New Zealand Armed Forces during the First World War in a speech he is giving...
    Labour | 24-04
  • Government inaction on power and housing to blame for latest rate rise
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei says today's interest rate rise, that will hit home owners and businesses, is a consequence of the government's failure to get a grip on electricity prices and the property market, particularly in Auckland."The Green Party...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Rate rise not needed if Government was doing its job
    Today’s interest rate rise wouldn’t have been necessary if the Government had been doing its job properly and targeting the sources of inflation, Labour says. “New Zealand interest rates are among the highest in the world, putting more and more...
    Labour | 23-04
  • Real independence needed in food safety
    The Green Party are calling for a truly independent body to regulate our food safety.Food safety Minister Nikki Kaye has announced the establishment of a Food Safety and Assurance Advisory Council as part of the Government's response to last year's...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Another report won’t help the East Coast
    The Government has a critical role to play in regional development on the East Coast says Gisborne-based Labour MP Moana Mackey “The release of the East Coast Regional Economic Potential Study highlights a number of areas of strength and weakness...
    Labour | 23-04
  • Another interest rate hike will punish mortgage holders
    Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei says another interest rate hike on Thursday will cost home owners an extra $25 a month on a $250,000 mortgage, on top of the $25 dollars a month from the previous rates rise, and she...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Green Party launches Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill
    The Green Party has today launched the Internet Rights and Freedoms Bill, New Zealand's first ever Bill crowdsourced by a political party.Members of the public will be invited to shape the proposed law, which will protect ten basic rights and...
    Greens | 23-04
  • Sanil Kumar has to leave New Zealand tomorrow
    The Associate Minister of Immigration Nikki Kaye’s decision not to intervene means kidney transplant patient Sanil Kumar must leave New Zealand by tomorrow, says Labour’s Immigration spokesperson Rajen Prasad. “Kumar, a plumber and sheet metal worker, was on a work visa...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Time to do the right thing for our veterans
    A Labour government will adopt the Law Commission’s recommendation to ensure all war veterans are eligible for a Veteran’s Pension, Labour Leader David Cunliffe says. “Veterans are only eligible for the pension if they are considered ‘significantly’ disabled, or more...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Public servant is owed an apology
    Nigel Fyfe is owed an apology from the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie and Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully, says Labour's State Services spokesperson, Maryan Street. “The former MFAT official has now been restored to a position in the Ministry...
    Labour | 22-04
  • Laws for enforcing not trading off
    The idea that a Government department can give a nod and a wink to traders that it won’t enforce shop trading laws and for a Government MP to then claim it as grounds for a review of the law is...
    Labour | 21-04
  • Kiwis still paying too much for ACC
    Kiwis are still paying too much for ACC so that the National Government can balance its books, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “ACC Minister Judith Collins told Cabinet levies were too high but ACC’s proposed cuts would impact the...
    Labour | 21-04
  • Collins’ memory recovery raises further concerns
    Judith Collins sudden memory of briefing the New Zealand Ambassador to China about her dinner with a Chinese border official and her husband's fellow Oravida directors raises further concerns about exactly what was discussed, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. "This...
    Labour | 21-04
  • MP to attend progressive politics conference
    Labour MP Grant Robertson will attend the Progressive Governance conference in Amsterdam later this week. “This conference brings together Social Democratic parties from around the world to discuss how progressive politics should work in the post global financial crisis environment....
    Labour | 20-04
  • Storm fans fire service commitment
    Further damage from the huge storm that battered the West Coast was prevented by the great work of our volunteer Fire Service and locals will be extremely grateful, Labour’s MP for West Coast-Tasman Damien O’Connor says. “Our region has been...
    Labour | 19-04
  • Time for Ryall to fix mistakes and help families
    Families who won a long and lengthy Court battle for financial help to support their disabled daughters and sons are now facing a new battle with health system bureaucracy and need the Health Minister's help, Labour's Disability Issues spokesperson Ruth...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Time for greater ministerial accountability
    The Green Party has today released a proposal to introduce a ministerial disclosure regime in New Zealand to improve the transparency and accountability of government.The proposal, based on the system used in the United Kingdom since 2010, would require all...
    Greens | 18-04
  • Power prices soar on the eve of winter
    On the eve of winter as New Zealanders are turning on their heaters, power prices have soared sky high, Labour’s Energy spokesperson David Shearer says. “Energy Minster Simon Bridges claimed in Parliament that prices were estimated to rise 2.4 per...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Workers can kiss goodbye to Easter Sunday off
    The Government’s decision to “reprioritise” scarce labour inspector resources by abandoning the enforcement of Easter Sunday Shop Trading laws means workers can kiss goodbye to a guaranteed day off, says Labour’s Associate Labour Issues spokesperson Darien Fenton. “The Labour Minister...
    Labour | 18-04
  • Businesses need to respect workers this Easter
    Businesses intent on flouting Easter shopping laws should face stiff penalties, Green Party industrial relations spokesperson Denise Roche said today. This Easter, at least one major garden centre chain intends to open on Good Friday despite this being in breach...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Time to deliver on 26 weeks Paid Parental Leave
    Today marks two years since Labour MP Sue Moroney's Bill extending paid parental leave to 26 weeks was drawn from the members' ballot. “It’s time the Government acted in the interests of families,” Sue Moroney says. “National has tried every...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Taxpayers robbed of $130m in Genesis sale
    Kiwi taxpayers have been robbed of $130 million by the Government in its final failed asset sale, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “National set the price for Genesis far too low in a desperate attempt to beef up demand....
    Labour | 17-04
  • Work visa problems need monitoring
    The Government is handing out temporary work visas to migrants to work in jobs that could easily be filled by unemployed Kiwi workers in the Christchurch rebuild, says Darien Fenton, Labour’s Associate Immigration spokesperson. “In the past 12 months, temporary...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Resignation rates among cops soar
    The number of frontline officers quitting the police force is at a four-year high, with more than 350 walking off the job in the past year, Labour’s Police spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says. “Since 2009 resignation rates among sworn staff have...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Service for victims of sexual violence pushed out in cold
    The Green Party is calling on Housing New Zealand to revisit its decision to evict an essential community organisation in Christchurch with only eight weeks notice.Yesterday at the Select Committee inquiry into funding for sexual violence support services the organisation...
    Greens | 17-04
  • Legal high ban worthy of wider pick-up
    Auckland Council’s ban on using legal highs in a public place is an excellent idea that should be replicated around New Zealand, says Labour’s Associate Health Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Auckland Council has implemented a by-law banning the use of psychoactive...
    Labour | 17-04
  • Smith sells state P-houses to first home buyers
    Nick Smith must reassure worried first home buyers that any Housing NZ houses sold under his First Home policy will be tested for P contamination after revelations that three out of seven properties sold in Wanganui tested positive for methamphetamine,...
    Labour | 17-04
  • PM’s China visit assisted Oravida, not Fonterra
    Questions must now be asked whether it was Fonterra or Oravida who really benefited from the Prime Minister’s recent visit to China, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says. “Before his departure, John Key said he would wait until all...
    Labour | 16-04
  • New Zealand’s use of ozone depleting gases increases
    A new Government report highlights that the amount of ozone depleting gases New Zealand is using is increasing, the Green Party said today.The report tabled in Parliament yesterday shows that total use of ozone depleting gases in New Zealand has...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Manufacturing Upgrade
    Labour is determined to support and grow our manufacturing sector. These policies grew out of the findings of the 2013 Parliamentary Inquiry into Manufacturing.  ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Collins must admit misleading Parliament
    ACC Minister Judith Collins must front up and admit she has misled Parliament over ACC’s policy to stop paying compensation to clients who refused to fill in its privacy form, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says. “Judith Collins claimed Labour...
    Labour | 16-04
  • English confirms he has no plan to raise wages
    Finance Minister Bill English has confirmed he has absolutely no plans to lift wages, Labour’s spokesperson on Labour Issues, Andrew Little says. “Bill English told the Chamber of Commerce yesterday that workers could expect a rise in average income of...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Govt careless and callous about threatened birds
    The National Government is increasing the threat to two of the world's most threatened and unique birds by opening up Victoria Forest Park to petroleum drilling, the Green Party said today.Scientists have recently published a ranking of the 100 most...
    Greens | 16-04
  • Genesis: The biggest fire sale of them all
    National has finished its asset sales with a massive bonfire of a fire sale, showing once and for all how much of a disaster this programme was, says Labour’s SOEs spokesperson Clayton Cosgrove. “Just 68,000 Kiwis bought shares in Genesis,...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Interest rates rise but only smokes increasing
    Mortgage rate rises are making life harder for homeowners, and many of them will be surprised the latest CPI figures show inflation would be zero were it not for tobacco tax hikes, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson David Parker. “New Zealanders...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Term One Report Card for Hekia Parata
    Assignment Teacher’s Comments Grade      ...
    Labour | 16-04
  • Hekia Parata kept exam book errors from schools
    Schools will be appalled to learn Education Minister Hekia Parata knew since January that hundreds of exam booklets had been returned to the wrong students but said nothing about it, Labour’s Education Spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “Exams are stressful enough...
    Labour | 15-04
  • What has ACC Minister been doing?
    The ACC Minister needs to front up and explain what, if any, changes she has made to the broken culture of ACC rather than denying that she has any part to play in the dysfunction of her Ministry, the Green...
    Greens | 15-04
  • Promise of jam tomorrow takes the cake
    A claim by Minister of Finance Bill English that average wages will climb by $7,500 over the next four years is a cynical promise of jam tomorrow by a government whose record on wage growth is atrocious, Labour spokesperson on...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Judith Collins has to fess up on ACC blunder
    ACC Minster Judith Collins must front up and tell New Zealand how many people who refused to hand over their private details to ACC have been denied cover, says Labour’s ACC Spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “The legality of ACC’s privacy waver,...
    Labour | 15-04
  • Board of Inquiry conditions will save rivers in New Zealand