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The over-sold Budget

Written By: - Date published: 8:20 am, May 16th, 2014 - 82 comments
Categories: budget 2014 - Tags:

You could tell it was coming.

When, about two days out from the Budget, English started trying to downplay expectations, you knew there wasn’t enough in it.

He had realised that people expect too much politically from National. He had wanted this Budget to be about one thing and one thing only – the surplus. But the pre-Budget leaking by Key had suggesting big things for kids and housing. They were expecting a masterful undercutting of Labour by guzzumping its key policies.

But English knew he didn’t have it. Extending Paid Parental Leave by 4 weeks doesn’t undercut Labour’s plan to extend it by 12. It just highlights how much more significant Labour’s plan is.

They needed to go to at least 20 weeks to make Labour’s 26 weeks look insignificant. That’s why English started trying to downplay expectations.

But he had other problems. The thing voters wanted most (far more than PPL, it turns out) was assistance to first home buyers. All English had was $3,500 less tax per new build house on imported building materials (can’t we even make nails and plasterboard here?). That’s about 3 weeks inflation in the Auckland housing market.

And then Key – who has always been proof that you don’t need to be good when you’re lucky and has had the luck to have had budgets defined for him in the past by recession, disaster, and deficit – pops up suggesting tax cuts are on the way. But English knows there’s no tax cuts in this budget apart from the joke of removing cheque duty and no room for meaningful tax cuts in the outyears.

And that’s before you get to the fudging of disguising spending as a loan and keeping ACC levies higher than needed to get back to surplus.

People expected a lot from this budget, both political panache and a policy uppercut to the Left. All it delivered was half assed policy that moves Labour’s policies into the middle of the Overton window and shady accounting that undercuts National’s reliable managers brand.

Oh and, with the increase in the operating allowance, they gave the opposition parties half a billion dollars each year in new spending that they can put into policies before National can accuse them of being spendthrift.

I bet English had more than one of those Old Dark Speights last night.

82 comments on “The over-sold Budget”

  1. Gosman 1

    Where is your evidence that the thing voters want most is assistance to first home buyers?

  2. fisiani 2

    This post is surely satire. Rather than over promising and underdelivering as you claim it was a masterful production of a bigger surplus than expected, free doctors visits and prescriptions not just to to preschoolers but now to all primary children. Raising parental leave and crucially extending it to women who would have missed out under the Labour wishlist. Reducing building costs , reducing motoring costs and helping start up firms and tax breaks for R and D. Take off the red blinkers and listen to the people who finally see the brighter future.

    • framu 2.1

      “production of a bigger surplus than expected,”

      just in time for an election – how convenient. Just how gullible are you?

    • Naturesong 2.2

      If we’re now “in the black”, how come we will be borrowing $75 million every single week during the next year?
      And borrowing forecast to continue until the 2016-17 financial year?

      Is it because National, after failing to meet their promises of generating 170,000 jobs, failing to ensure Kiwis do not become tenants in their own country, and have raised taxes on a plurality of New Zealanders (GST, Petrol Tax, ACC) have failed in achieving their last remaining promise of a budget surplus, just lie to the New Zealand public confidant that the press, TV and radio news won’t call them on it?

      When’s a budget surplus not a budget surplus?
      When it’s a National Government Budget

    • McFlock 2.3

      Fizzer,

      The trace-element “surplus” is well within the margin for error of even competent economic predictions, not just Treasury’s. A little less tax revenue than expected, a cost blowout somewhere else (like ACC), bam! there goes your “surplus”.

      And how did they achieve this “surplus”? By continuing to run-down government services. The crumbs you list are as nothing compared to the corrosion the nats have applied across the public sector.

      If you refuse to pay your rent this week, you’re not suddenly “in surplus”: you’re a shit financial manager. So is blinglish.

    • Tracey 2.4

      by calling its grant to auckland transport a loan, contrary to normal practice it has manipulated a predicted surplus… meanwhile each kiwi owes 16,000 on behalf of the national govt and yearly interest is 3.7 billion.

      debt 76 billion
      interest on debt 3.8 billion per year
      imaginary surplus 370 million

      with each post you show yourself as a dupe…

    • KJT 2.5

      Meanwhile National run around like a bunch of rats in the foundations of New Zealand’s economy.
      Cutting out as much as they can of the countries infrastructure, manufacturing, and essential services to pay for their unaffordable tax cuts, cosseting an over extended and over indebted farming sector waiting for the inevitable bubble to burst, and increasing profits for lenders and carpet baggers.

      Pump priming with an increased exchange rate, to drop some prices, and a few election lollies to make sure they can carry on with their devastation, and making themselves rich at our expense, after the election

  3. karol 3

    It certainly does very little for those struggling the most to get by. Som help for parents of children. But the aim is to lessen the stress on middle income families – bugger those really in need of help. It’s all about which voters to the Nats need to bribe the most to stay in power.

    Auckland Action Against poverty spells it out.

    “Extending paid parental leave, free GP visits for under 13 year olds and increased Parental Tax Credit is the sum total of an election year Family Bribe. But true to form, the increased Parental Tax Credit excludes beneficiaries.

    “Mr English proudly cited a reduction in the numbers of people receiving benefits with no information as to where they have gone. Unemployment remains static at 6%. If the unemployment rate has not lowered, then where are the unemployed now getting their income from?” asks Mr Russell.

    “$20 million for an additional 6000 apprenticeships is the sum total of National’s ‘unrelenting focus on work’ and is simply inadequate.

    “The only other cursory references to addressing unemployment are an incentive to move to Christchurch for 1000 beneficiaries, and an additional 8000 places in Work Readiness Programmes.
    […]
    “The disconnect between English’s talked-up ‘rock star’ economy and the reality experienced by low-income New Zealanders is startling. We work with people every day who face the choice between feeding the kids or paying the power bill. This Budget provides very little meaningful relief for those at the very bottom,” says Mr Russell.

    AAAP will be hosting a protest outside John Key’s post-Budget address to the Transtasman Business Circle from 11.45am tomorrow outside the Sky City Conference Centre in Federal Street.

    And this analyis on RNZ by two of it’s jounros pretty much says it’s all about the middle income people.

    Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

  4. vto 4

    zet “can’t we even make nails and plasterboard here? ”

    Yes, and it is made here. The problem of course is the cartel behaviour of carters and fletchers which results in, for example, plasterboard being kept at 3-4 times the international price.

    This is the rort. English has diverted attention away from the structures which keep their rich mates in such good business, and new home buyers out of a home.

    • Gosman 4.1

      Here’s a little suggestion for you. Get together with a few lefty mates and start making the stuff yourself. Then undercut Fletchers and make a pile of cash at the same time. Is that too difficult for you?

      • vto 4.1.1

        This has been looked at countless times by me and lefty/mostlyrighty mates gosman. And yes, it is too difficult for me as the effort involved is enormous. Don’t know if you have ever tried taking on construction monsters but you need very deep pockets and long timeframes and gnarled knuckles. There are many people looking at exactly this right now. Some people are in fact making progress – the cartel will get busted soon dontcha worry, but assistance from the govt under for example the commerce act would be useful, instead of tacit approval from English and Key and their types.

        It is like trying to break the duopoly in the supermarkets gosman, so while your simplistic one-liner there may sound good, it is far from the reality.

        edit: other parts of the build supply sector are well and truly busted open now gosman. It don’t mean that cartel behaviour has been rife, and ignored by various government.

        • cricklewood 4.1.1.1

          Not only that, due to the fact that fletchers also have huge vertical integration. To go into competition would require developing your own supply chains for the raw materials.
          Otherwise you are left to buy your materials from the company you are trying to undercut and thats not going to end well…

          • vto 4.1.1.1.1

            That’s it.

            Look at the concrete sector. Sure you can get sand and gravel and water from most anywhere but what about the cement? And port facilities for the cement imported? The gates are locked man, locked.

          • Tracey 4.1.1.1.2

            nice way to silence gosman

        • Tracey 4.1.1.2

          gosman strikes me as working in someone else’s business vto. ignore him.

        • KJT 4.1.1.3

          At one stage several of us were getting timber packs from a local sawmill at about a third of the price from the local outlets of the building supply cartels. Better quality also.

          The saw mill was told to stop supplying us, or the cartels would no longer buy from them.

          There is a lot of explaining to do, from the big building suppliers how they can supply building materials, especially timber from New Zealand, cheaper in Australia. It is cheaper to build a house in Australia despite builders getting nearly double the pay.

          All that Nationals removal of tariffs on some building supplies will do, is increase the cartel profits, while putting yet more local manufacturing , wall board, nails, etc, out of business.
          While importing substandard materials from offshore.

          Another leaky homes, anyone?

          House prices could be stopped from rising tomorrow. Restrict foreign buying, build plenty of State houses and put a CGT on housing. That would stop the gravy train for speculators in Auckland housing however, and be political suicide for National.

      • mikesh 4.1.2

        A better suggestion would be to regulate firms large enough to have market power, as Galbraith suggested.

  5. Hayden 5

    …free doctors visits and prescriptions not just to to preschoolers but now to all primary children.

    From July next year.

    reducing motoring costs

    Next year

    Raising parental leave and crucially extending it to women who would have missed out under the Labour wishlist.

    From 1 April next year

    Also, surplus? From the Herald

    The Government is still borrowing money but it is now down to $75 million a week, less than the $110 million a week last year.

    Net Government debt is expected to peak at $66 billion in 2016-17, or 26 per cent of GDP.

    Let’s not get too carried away until we’re not borrowing any extra money.

    the people who finally see the brighter future.

    Yep, it’s still there, in the future.

    • And hinted-at tax cuts in 2018 … as long as we’re very good and re-elect National two more times.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.2

      +1

    • freedom 5.3

      “Raising parental leave and crucially extending it to women who would have missed out under the Labour wishlist.”

      Listening to English yesterday, I am sure I heard him say they are removing or heavily reducing paid parental leave for couples earning over $99k.

  6. vto 6

    Watch house values continue to roar in the populated areas, with the immigration taps being opened wide by Key and English. They know rising house values are a dead cert for re-election, and you only need net immigration to be over about 15-20,000 per annum to get a boom going. Clark did it as well. The left is hard up against it methinks, which is unfortunate in the extreme because the right’s policies are crap and shit all over the vast bulk of people.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      Watch house values continue to roar in the populated areas, with the immigration taps being opened wide by Key and English.

      And that is how National are planning on paying for keeping Super where it is – a massive influx of young people to carry the old as well, as you point out, keeping house prices high. In other words, they’re working hard to maintain the unsustainable bubble that the NZ economy has become.

  7. billy 7

    I didn’t expect a lot of this budget. Who over sold it? The top of my wishlist would not have been assistance to first home buyers. Where is your evidence to back up your claims?

  8. just saying 8

    I think this budget was a work of machiavellian and misinformation genius.

    Looking like another term of National. I agree with Lew over at Politico, in the sense that the only solution for Labour is to stand for Labour values “full cream”, and even if they lose anyway, at least they would have a platform and the beginnings of an alternative narrative to build on.

    The third way inevitably leads to a lethal cliff because it makes absolutely no sense in the circumstances we find ourselves in. All third-way proponents are left with is the fairy-tale logic and rhetoric of the right.

    • Disraeli Gladstone 8.1

      The third way worked for its time. And if anything, if you look at Lew and Danyl’s posts together, you can see that. Heck, National are almost playing a right-wing third way role.

      I think a lot of people get turned off about chasing the centre because they regard it as a rigid, unshifting place. It’s far more attractive to chase these non-voters who already agree with us. But that’s a misunderstanding of the centre itself. The centre is moving. As Danyl pointed out, last election National campaigned on asset sales, now they’re campaigning on free doctor visits. That’s a moving centre to the left. Left-wing arguments are winning, Labour just seems too incompetent to govern.

      When Thatcher/Regan/Douglas undertook their reforms, they shifted the centre right. So Third Way Labour/Democrat was the only way to win and to govern. What we’re seeing now is a shifting back to the left. National can sees this and is moving with the tides to try and shore up support.

      Which means Labour no longer has to tack right to appeal for the centre, the centre is more left-wing and liberal. They just have to offer up credible, realistic left-wing policy with a credible team. Cunliffe is getting there, but he’s still not quite getting it right. The retirement age and the monetary policy, for instance, isn’t particularly brilliant left-wing policy. Other left-wing policy, as Lew said, are in fact just National-lite. The centre moved, they can be a bit more daring. The several own goals from Cunliffe and his team are hindering being seen as competent managers. But he’s improving, certainly better than Shearer and Goff.

      But I feel like this is all too late. Labour needed to see this in 2011. A few months is an awfully short time to form a narrative.

      But we’ll see.

      • Draco T Bastard 8.1.1

        The retirement age and the monetary policy, for instance, isn’t particularly brilliant left-wing policy.

        But it is brilliant right-wing policy and most people know that. People understand that Labour are still firmly in the neo-liberal mindset and don’t seem to be changing no matter what Cunliffe says.

        The centre moved, they can be a bit more daring.

        I’m not sure I’d say that the centre has moved. The peoples opinions of the neo-liberal paradigm, which they never really liked anyway, has. They didn’t like them when they were implemented in the 1980s and the collapse of the economy in 2k8 proved that they were right not to like them. This forces governments to shift away from that failed ideology. National has shifted a little while still being hard-right. Labour haven’t woken up to the fact that they could take a running jump to the left and win in a landslide.

        Labour needed to see this in 2011. A few months is an awfully short time to form a narrative.

        If they shout loud enough with enough conviction and passion then, perhaps, the people will hear them. Other than that, it’s up to the Greens and Mana.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.2

      National Lite

      t’s too late, now, to change this ahead of the election. The die is cast. Labour has — again — decided to rely on political meta-strategy like syllogising failures of judgement or conduct by individual MPs out to the wider government, and it might have worked had they any sort of foundation to build upon. But they don’t. Far from full-cream Labour, Labour itself is Labour lite. Light-blue, even; 98% Ideology-free. If they’re going to play the National-lite game, they at least need to get good at it.

      I don’t think it’s too late for Labour to start being Labour but they certainly have to stop trying to be National lite.

  9. Disraeli Gladstone 9

    I’m not seeing this budget as being a failure or underwhelming. I don’t like it, personally, except for a few bits and pieces. Overall, it does nothing to fix the damage done in the first six years. Tertiary funding is still ruined. R&D is far too light. They haven’t rowed back to help adult learners. The housing market’s still harsh. Not a lot of help for low-income budgets. It’s not a budget I particularly like.

    But I can isolate my own opinion and see that it’s not a “bad/evil” budget. Thrown into clearer light with the lucky timing (from English’s perspective) of being right after the Australian Slash and Burn Budget.

    A lot of people here seem to be ignoring that the budget has been generally accepted as “good/solid” by the media. Not that surprising considering their own bias but still important. To a large section of society, media bias is hardly something they think about.

    And the headline of the under 13 free doctor visit is striking a chord with some people. It’s not an inspiring budget but it puts National in a decent position for the election. Bill English was almost beaming at times yesterday, so to say he was nursing a drink seems a bit out there. English can hardly smile at the best of times convincingly so you know when he’s actually feeling good about something.

  10. unpccougar 10

    I was really pleased to see free doctors visits extended to under 13 year olds. This will take a lot of strain off hospitals as people tend to take their children there due to not being able to afford a visit to the GP.
    Also Rhuematic Fever clinics – many may not be aware but this is just about an epidemic in some towns – Thames to name one. My daughter has had it and it is not pleasant.

    And I can say I am thrilled at having the cost of registering my car from next year go down.

    So while many can poke criticisms at what wasn’t delivered there was certainly enough there for the average kiwi that directly effects them.

    • Hayden 10.1

      This will take a lot of strain off hospitals as people tend to take their children there due to not being able to afford a visit to the GP.

      I like this too, but have you tried getting an appointment with a GP lately? We have our usual one and the one that’s actually close to where we live, and last time I tried the earliest I could get (a child) in was something like a couple of days away. I don’t know what the answer is though…

      Actually, when my daughter hurt her leg (turned out to be a fractured fibula) we didn’t even attempt the hospital and went to the After Hours Medical Centre.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.1.1

        We have our usual one and the one that’s actually close to where we live, and last time I tried the earliest I could get (a child) in was something like a couple of days away.

        Whereas I just wander in, sign on to the queue and then wait to be served. They don’t accept bookings.

        Actually, when my daughter hurt her leg (turned out to be a fractured fibula) we didn’t even attempt the hospital and went to the After Hours Medical Centre.

        That was your choice but the hospital would have been fine.

        • Hayden 10.1.1.1

          Whereas I just wander in, sign on to the queue and then wait to be served. They don’t accept bookings.

          That’s an interesting approach, I wonder why more clinics don’t do it. Certainly any doctor appointment can be relied upon to be at any time other than that at which it was booked (recipreversexclusion). Our clinic will let you come in to see a nurse who will then consult a GP if there’s a need to, so there’s an avenue for urgent cases.

          the hospital would have been fine.

          Well, obviously, but we decided to pay and cut some time. Our GP works there anyway, so it was entirely possible we’d end up seeing her there. The hospital was fine when I went a month prior with suspected DVT, but they don’t muck around with that (it did still take 6 hours, but I was seen quickly).

    • Tracey 10.2

      how old are you? what job do you do? does your wife work? what is her job?

    • felix 10.3

      “And I can say I am thrilled at having the cost of registering my car from next year go down.”

      Yet amazingly it hasn’t bothered you that the cost has damn near doubled under this govt.

      Funny eh? It’s like someone slapped you and slapped you and slapped you and slapped you and then today they didn’t, and you say “Oh look, that nice man has stopped slapping me”.

  11. james 11

    “The thing voters wanted most (far more than PPL, it turns out) was assistance to first home buyers.”

    Yeah – got a source for that. Of course not.

    The only people that wanted that are some first home buyers. Which is not most of the voting public.

    Generally – I think that this will be a fairly well received as a “sensible” budget. Next Poll results will be interesting. I predict a lift for National after this.

    I may well be wrong – only time will tell.

    Will also cause a problem for Labour / Greens as they will have to present alternatives that are seen as sensible to the majority of the voters – and that is going to be a hard ask.

  12. Mr Interest 12

    How did they pay for some of this budget?

    Anyone remember Asset Sales:
    Asset Sale Price
    ($ million)”
    Mighty River Power $1,686.11
    Meridian Energy $1,883.81
    Air New Zealan $ 365.21
    Genesis Energy $ 733.48
    $4,668.60 Total Value of Assets Sold ($4.7Billion)

    Not impressed National….. oh thats right we are 60 Billion in debt, building a 500 Million Dollar Stadium in CHCH….. awesome, you guys rock. Apparently most of the population are housed in them these days.

    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/government/assets/saleshistory

  13. Draco T Bastard 13

    All English had was $3,500 less tax per new build house on imported building materials (can’t we even make nails and plasterboard here?).

    Ban the export of raw materials and watch the price of a hell of a lot of building materials come down.

    But English knows there’s no tax cuts in this budget apart from the joke of removing cheque duty and no room for meaningful tax cuts in the outyears.

    I’m sure that Blinglish understands that his tax cuts to the rich need to be reversed but there’s no way that he’ll do so. He’ll continue cutting government services instead.

    • Lanthanide 13.1

      Ban the export of raw materials and watch the price of a hell of a lot of building materials come down.

      And unemployment go up. Genius.

      • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1

        I would expect employment to go up as it would mean that those materials will now have to be processed in NZ.

        • Lanthanide 13.1.1.1

          There would be a surplus of materials that would not be able to be used because of a lack of capacity and demand. The people previously harvesting the resources would lose their jobs, the people exporting the resources would lose their jobs.

          Now, if you’re talking about a slow phase out over a period of years, then yeah, that might work. But banning something overnight certainly will not.

          • Draco T Bastard 13.1.1.1.1

            There’s actually a lot of capacity that’s off line ATM because things like sawmills have been closing down as all the logs get shipped out raw to China. How much else gets gets shipped out raw I don’t know but as houses in NZ are primarily made from wood I suspect that that would probably be the major source of price drop.

          • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1.2

            There would be a surplus of materials that would not be able to be used because of a lack of capacity and demand. The people previously harvesting the resources would lose their jobs, the people exporting the resources would lose their jobs.

            How do you know this? Are you putting in for the job of Oracle of Omaha?

            Have you forgotten that there is a drastic shortage of affordable housing in NZ? Don’t you think that there is significant pent up demand for quality housing to be built in NZ if only were the price point were more affordable?

            • cricklewood 13.1.1.1.2.1

              The logs go offshore and then come back as timber for a similir or lower price than what it can be milled for here.
              Banning that process may well cause timber prices to rise…

            • Lanthanide 13.1.1.1.2.2

              Economies gradually reach a steady-state and can only grow so fast at any given time.

              I don’t care how much timber you have sitting around, if you simply do not have the skilled labour available to turn that timber into housing, it won’t happen.

              And, if you try to force the transition, you’ll have cheap materials but a limited, therefore scarce, supply of labour. As it is in CHCH construction costs are going way up because of demand (my brother in law’s father got a $40k pay rise to work for EQC as an inspector in his trade). You may ultimately find that any savings from the cheap materials are eaten up by the cost of labour.

  14. philj 14

    xox
    Anything in this for the poor, working poor or beneficiaries? Help for doctors visits is Labour lite. Room for the left to step up with some powerful ideas to benefit all Kiwis. Population increase seems to be the sleeper issue of the election. Is this the growth policy from National? This will only result in other problems.

  15. NZJester 15

    All the good stuff in this budget looks like hastily prepared policy stolen from Labour in an attempt to shoot down the good press Labour has been getting over their policies leading up to the budget. But to me it looks a little like national might have pulled the trigger before they got their gun out of its holster and shot off their own toe!

  16. Colonial Viper 16

    Without radical mass movements like those the Federation of Labour, the Wobblies and the Christian Womens Temperance Movement represented, our mainstream political parties are going to keep delivering exactly that which they believe they can get away with. The hidden pressure from the banking cartel, international investors and big corporates can easily overwhelm any initial good intentions when taking office.

    • Draco T Bastard 16.1

      +1

    • Tracey 16.2

      plus 1

      • greywarbler 16.2.1

        For those who don’t know about the Wobblies they’re ” Industrial Workers of the World (known as Wobblies).
        During and immediately after the First World War, the actions of Wobblies were heavily scrutinised by the governments of the day, leading to sedition charges, jail time, or deportation from the country. “

        • Colonial Viper 16.2.1.1

          :)

          During and immediately after the First World War, the actions of Wobblies were heavily scrutinised by the governments of the day, leading to sedition charges, jail time, or deportation from the country

          Yes, that is what you get for challenging the cosy status quo of the power elite; it’s a nasty business and it’s good that people like yourself remember enough to pass on the lore to the next generation.

  17. Enough is Enough 17

    Cullen delivered 11 billion dollars in surplus
    English celebrates a few million as a success.

    What a chump. Can’t he count.

    Cullen made this country rich.
    English is personally responsible for making us poor. So poor he celebrates his tiny surplus/profit as a success.

    • Colonial Viper 17.1

      Cullen delivered 11 billion dollars in surplus

      Cullen did this by swapping a decrease in government/public debt for a massive increase in private household and farming debt.

      Households and farms went into hock big time during the last Labour Government, pushing a huge amount of money into the general economy. The so-called ‘wealth effect’ as everyone’s homes climbed in value thanks to bigger and bigger mortgages.

      Cullen then taxed that mortgage provided private money back into the Treasury coffers in order to pay off government debt.

      Why anyone would think this is a good thing, or that a government running a surplus by forcing the private sector and households into a deficit is a good thing, is beyond me.

      Please don’t reinforce the myth further.

      Cullen made this country rich.

      Oh FFS. See above. As long as this country still depends on loans from foreigners to fund itself, and on a debt based system to create money, we’re screwed. We won’t be able to deal with the real demands of climate change nor of energy and resource depletion.

      • Draco T Bastard 17.1.1

        Cullen then taxed that mortgage provided private money back into the Treasury coffers in order to pay off government debt.

        Why anyone would think this is a good thing, or that a government running a surplus by forcing the private sector and households into a deficit is a good thing, is beyond me.

        And that is a major reason why we need government to create our money and have strict controls of monetary movement into and out of the country.

      • Enough is Enough 17.1.2

        English is a chump. End of story. Don’t over-complicate the matter boss.

        • Colonial Viper 17.1.2.1

          I’m not a big sports team fan and I’m not a good cheerleader.

          English and Key suck bad, Cunliffe and Parker would be superior in every single way as PM and DPM.

          Nevertheless I am very clear on one thing – NZ is also damn lucky to have Key and English in charge right now as opposed to the other over-privileged Tory asshats ruling the Five Eyes nations, Abbott, Cameron, Harper. And that’s a fact.

          By the way Lefties…notice how all the Anglo countries have gone with Right Wing governments? It seems like the Left are consistently not delivering a message that the people want to hear.

          • Naturesong 17.1.2.1.1

            It seems like the media are consistently not delivering the lefts message.

            FIFY

            Quick point though, I can’t see Labour as anything other than a centrist party – they are not the “left”.
            The Greens, with a social democratic focus come in as centre left.
            National ostensibly centre right but happy to use ACT as their rightwing cats paw.

            • Colonial Viper 17.1.2.1.1.1

              It seems like the media are consistently not delivering the lefts message.

              well yes, this is also true, and it is one reason that the original The Standard was started by the NZ Labour movement so it is not a new or novel problem.

              If I were to rephrase the issue then: other than rare exceptions like The Standard 2.0 the Left has not invested in independent media channels and infrastructure of its own, and relying on the corporate media to take a set against their own interests is not very realistic.

              • Draco T Bastard

                And the reason for that is that they seem to have forgotten why a mass membership party/parties is essential. With just a little bit of effort from everyone Labour and the Greens should be able to out spend National.

          • cricklewood 17.1.2.1.2

            I agree with those sentiments Key and English are oft criticized for the level of borrowing and sure it could have been spent better.

            But that has been far better than an Abbot style slash and burn. Imagine the mess and inequality we would have now if the they had gone down that path with someone like Brash.

            For a right wing government they could have been far worse…

            • Tracey 17.1.2.1.2.1

              you realise that alot of the so called new spending was a drop, in real terms. this is why some on the left arent congratulating them.

              • cricklewood

                I’m not congratulating anyone just pointing out that they haven’t taken the big stick to spending compared to say Abbott… For that I am somewhat grateful.

                • Tracey

                  did australia have a douglas, richardson, shipley slash and burn? it could be the right here did more earlier? dunno, just thinking out loud.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Yes NZ went faster and harder with neoliberal reforms than Australia and Canada did. The UK under Thatcher and the US under Reagan/Bush/Clinton went the furthest, earliest.

                    From what I hear, if the Australian unions don’t get militant fast, they will end up like the toothless NZ ones.

                  • cricklewood

                    Its fair to say aussie didn’t have the first act govt that set up and allowed the likes of Richardson into power…
                    You’ll struggle to convince me that a Brash led govt would have been as pragmatic as Key obviously Key through pragmatism has stayed longer in power than Brash would have but I would argue has done less damage. In terms of right wing govts this one could have been much worse.

          • Tracey 17.1.2.1.3

            yup… and a vote for labour will only prolong the lack of voice

    • Stuart Munro 17.2

      I don’t know about making NZ rich – more like government coffers, not the same thing at all – but he made it work to some degree. English made a complete f**k of it – found his tax cuts failed but was too hidebound to reverse them and then compounded his error with GST, sending NZ further into recession.

      If by some stupendous miracle, (an end-run gerrymander of epic proportions, or maybe martial law), the Gnats somehow scrape enough votes and waka-jumpers to form a government, someone should take Treasury off Bill before he hurts himself any more.

  18. Tracey 18

    More Debt Less Jobs
    brought to you by the National Party

    Lying to you since 2008…

    • Draco T Bastard 18.1

      Well, under the previous Labour led government we had more debt and more jobs – until the whole lot fell over. Of course, that was private debt rather than public but it did result in the same effect – a few people got richer, a lot of people got poorer and then it crashed.

  19. lurgee 19

    But English knew he didn’t have it. Extending Paid Parental Leave by 4 weeks doesn’t undercut Labour’s plan to extend it by 12. It just highlights how much more significant Labour’s plan is.

    Problem is, most people will look at the different plans and think, “National’s plan seems a bit more sensible. Labour seem to be a bit wild on this. Let’s not rush into things.”

    People will instinctively opt for the less radical option on most occasions as they are inherently risk adverse and conservative.

    • Colonial Viper 19.1

      Key and English understand this aspect of the Kiwi psyche very well; Labour less so.

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    How easy is it to con the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind? Very. The despicable means by which this corrupt dirty politics Government have gone about trying to use the fear and anger caused by the Sydney hostage situation...
    The Daily Blog
  • A tale of two gunmen – how the media spins
    A tale of two gunmen – how the media spins...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Jill Ovens – Auckland Hospital worker cuts – Democracy the ...
    Auckland Hospital kitchen workers tell CEO Ailsa Claire (far right) a week ago that they did not want to be contracted out. Such was the arrogance that no contingency plans were made in the event that these workers would be...
    The Daily Blog
  • Political opportunists out in force over Sydney hostage crisis
    It hasn’t taken long for supporters of New Zealand’s so-called “anti-terror” legislation passed last week through parliament to try and justify it in the wake of the Sydney hostage crisis. Before we even knew much about the gunman or hostage...
    The Daily Blog
  • NZs new hobby – hating the poor
    Last week people queued at the doors of the Auckland City Mission. They are people that are living without enough income to afford the basics let alone the extras we as a society have come to expect at Christmas. Extras...
    The Daily Blog
  • The only people who believed National’s surplus illusion were voters
    Sigh – the sleepy hobbits of muddle Nu Zilind are pretty easy to con aren’t they? National’s surplus was always a joke that would never happen, but in every single focus group, voters believed by overwhelming numbers that National were...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key’s crocodile tears over dirty politics
    John Key: Bloggers ‘not big part of my day’ Prime Minister John Key says bloggers are not a “big part of his day” but he lives in a world where he can’t ignore them. Speaking on TVNZ’s Breakfast programme today,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why we are in inequality denial and climate change denial
        We are a country in denial over our inequality and climate change. Both issues have the same thread that runs through them. 30 years of neoliberalism has generated its own cultural narratives and myths. We have been taught that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of ...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Why proclaiming Key as the Politician of the Year is ethically bankrupt...
    The Daily Blog
  • Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety
    Media Release: Rail and Maritime Transport Union   Britomart violence raises questions over rail staff safety   The Rail and Maritime Transport Union is raising serious questions over the safety of the staff on Auckland’s train network after violent incidents on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Australia stares down Siege – National Party politicise tragedy
    The Sydney siege has finished, from the reports that are breaking the gunman, Man Haron Monis is dead and one of the hostages has also been killed. The Australian Police seem to have acted incredibly professionally and the real Australian...
    The Daily Blog
  • The termination of the Internet Mana alliance
    Last week the Mana Movement and Internet Party wrote to the Electoral Commission to cancel the registration of the Internet-Mana political party. It was a decision which brought the arrangement between the parties to a natural end after failing to...
    The Daily Blog
  • Peace breaks out between Greens and Labour
    Finally some good news for the Left. Peace has broken out between the Greens and Labour. One of the greatest barriers to a real relationship between the Greens and Labour has been the uncompromising arrogance of the Labour Party Caucus...
    The Daily Blog
  • Little keeps it stupid, simple
    Labour MP drops euthanasia billA bill which would legalise voluntary euthanasia has been dropped by Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway at the request of his leader Andrew Little. Mr Lees-Galloway had been canvassing support for his End of Life Choice Bill...
    The Daily Blog
  • Dear Ministry for Social Development,
    Dear Ministry for Social Development, I realise you probably already know this, but just a wee reminder of REALITY. You know – the reality of the vast majority of us who aren’t making ends meet and are struggling to live...
    The Daily Blog
  • Social Policy still in the dark ages when it comes to relationships
    Two years ago I became aware of the work of two very able barristers who defend low income women accused of relationship fraud. CPAG then began collecting cases and stories of horrendous misery and victimisation. Then penny was slow to...
    The Daily Blog
  • The truth about inequality
      The truth about inequality...
    The Daily Blog
  • Rather Than Sending Troops To Iraq … Brownlee May Wish To Consider Better...
    There’s something a little unsettling going on at the moment. Ok, many somethings. Of particular concern is the fact that right now, New Zealand troops are training at Waiouru for deployment to Iraq – and, assumedly, the ongoing war against ISIS. Brownlee,...
    The Daily Blog
  • West Papua’s Saralana Declaration most vital unity development for 52 yea...
    Newly elected spokesman for the unified West Papuan movement Benny Wenda is treated to a chiefly welcome at the opening ceremony of the “unity” meeting in Port Vila. Photo: © Ben Bohane/wakaphotos.com David Robie also blogs at Café Pacific. A...
    The Daily Blog
  • Helen says it all
    Helen says it all...
    The Daily Blog
  • When Fran O’Sullivan, John Armstrong and Cameron Slater are singing Andre...
    The mainstream media of NZ will never allow a Labour leader who threatens the bastions of neoliberalism from ever taking power. David Cunliffe found that out. So when the mainstream media establishment from Fran O’Sullivan to John Armstrong to even...
    The Daily Blog
  • Wisdom’s Mirror: Can Grant Robertson Slay the Neoliberal Gorgon?
    HOW TO ELIMINATE one’s rival without getting one’s hands dirty? It’s a problem with a prodigious political pedigree. King David’s lust for Bathsheba drove him to order Uriah, her unfortunate husband, placed in the front line of battle – where...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Miriam Pierard – Sweet Sixteen and able to vote?
    The level of voter participation in elections is an indication of the health of a democracy. Declining turnout across the democratic world, particularly among young people, has led to questions about the legitimacy of our governing institutions. It is time...
    The Daily Blog
  • Public Equity and Progressive Politics
    We heard from the OECD on Wednesday morning (10 Dec) [Focus on Inequality and Growth] that inequality suppresses economic growth. (Here are Radio New Zealand’s morning reports on this.) This is hardly a surprise to many economists and non-economists alike. The key point in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Analysis: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us!
    Analysis (Text & Audio): Across The Ditch – Selwyn Manning & Peter Godfrey Headline: Final Across The Ditch Bulletin for 2014 – Lorde Help Us! 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.FiveAA’s Peter Godfrey and MIL’s Selwyn Manning present their last...
    The Daily Blog
  • Sharing intelligence with CIA torturers
    New Zealand’s spy agencies have long presented intelligence sharing with their US counterparts as mutually beneficial and benign. That stance has always lacked credibility and is now its impossible to justify. The just-released US Senate Intelligence Committee report shows that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour votes for Surveillance State. NZ First Opposes!
    A few weeks before the election, the New Zealand Labour Party decided to cash in on simmering popular discontent with the state of the surveillance state that National’s set up. Never mind their own previous and well-publicized brushes with egregious state-surveillance … they wanted people to know that...
    The Daily Blog
  • Economic ideology destroys us all
    The OECD’s latest report says “The biggest factor for the impact of inequality on growth is the gap between lower income households and the rest of the population. The negative effect is not just for the poorest income decile but...
    The Daily Blog
  • 3 simple words for the Labour Party
    I have 3 very simple words for all those Labour Party apologists who are trying to rinse Labour clean here. Get. A. Warrant. You can all try and spin this any way you want, but Labour voted for 24 hour...
    The Daily Blog
  • 2014 – Year of the angry white knuckle
    I knew Internet/MANA would have to fight National, ACT, Conservative Party, United Future, Maori Party and the mainstream media. I didn’t think they would also have to fight Labour, the Greens and NZ First as well. Apparently feeding hungry kids in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Chris Rock on cop shootings
    Chris Rock on cop shootings...
    The Daily Blog
  • Bank Lending: Restrictions and Favourites
    An important story in 2014 has been the Reserve Bank’s ‘loan-to-value ratio’ restrictions, which have made it extremely hard for first-time house buyers to get sufficient finance to buy a house. Corran Dann in TVNZ’s  Q+A (7 Dec) suggested that...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – How should Waitangi Tribunal ruling on S...
      This weeks Waatea news column - How should  Waitangi Tribunal ruling on Sovereignty be implemented?...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour sell us out on warrantless surveillance
    Isn’t it depressing that Labour are selling us out by voting for warrantless spying by an agency caught out smearing them? Last night Labour do what they always do, over compensate on Security issues. So terrified are Labour at being...
    The Daily Blog
  • This Is The Headline For Test Post
    This Is The Headline For Test Post Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut eget neque facilisis sapien laoreet volutpat. Nulla vel nisl nec purus interdum tincidunt. Phasellus orci sapien, vestibulum et pulvinar non, pellentesque eget leo. Sed...
    The Daily Blog
  • Question Time in Parliament Today – National Party MPs cheer graph that s...
    This is the graph the National Party were shown by Russel Norman in Parliament today and they all cheered…     …they cheered?!?!?!? That’s beyond denial, that’s just gleefully suicidal....
    The Daily Blog
  • NZ Pastor Prays For Homosexual Author To Kill Himself
    By Jayden Jameson and Jessie Hume If we ever needed a reminder that homophobia is alive and kicking in New Zealand we have Pastor Logan Robertson from the Westcity Baptist Church. The Westcity Baptist ministry could apparently be described as New...
    The Daily Blog
  • Political Journalism in the South-Pacific – a new direction for NZ influe...
    Last week, the incredible Pacific Journalism Review celebrated 20 years of promoting and supporting and standing up for Journalism in the South-Pacific. The conference at AUT featured journalists from around the pacific who have battled and fought and been punished...
    The Daily Blog
  • Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future
    Antarctica minus the ice – welcome to your future...
    The Daily Blog
  • REAL LIFE GUEST BLOG: Lou – 15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homel...
    This is Key’s real life – other NZers aren’t so privileged    15 shifts in 12 months……permanently homeless since May. I went to the Salvation Army yesterday on advice for emergency housing as my temporary accomodation had turned volatile. Just...
    The Daily Blog
  • Labour Party Members should be furious at reviews findings
    Let’s see The Standard use this image Well, well, well… Labour’s election review: What went wrongLabour’s review panel has reported its findings back about the party’s election campaign and the reasons for the low 25 per cent result, identifying problems...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins joins the Sunday Star Times and cements the Rights dominance...
    “I am not a Monster”, hissed Judith Collins   I don’t read the Sunday Star Times, so had no idea that they had just decided to make Judith Collins of all people a new columnist. Her appointment cements into place...
    The Daily Blog
  • Grey Lynn Festival – very Grey – Art in the Dark – very Dark
    The battle of Helm’s Deep from the Two Towers would have had better OSH conditions than Art in the Dark   Grey Lynn Festival – 2 stars So the Grey Lynn Festival happened last weekend. It’s a day where the good liberal...
    The Daily Blog
  • ‘Stalking’ Ede
      Tau Henare accuses TV3 of stalkingA former National MP has accused TV3 of stalking after one of its journalists attempted to question a former Beehive spin doctor. Today’s episode of The Nation featured an unsuccessful attempt to question former...
    The Daily Blog
  • Taxpayer Union, the NZ Herald and Len Brown’s secret hidden love den
    I love the way the NZ Herald introduced the discredited Taxpayer Union in their bullshit story about Len Brown’s secret hidden love den… ‘Secret room’ spending shows need for recall electionsA lobby group says revelations Auckland Council spent $30,000 on...
    The Daily Blog
  • Eric Garner killed by NYPD original footage
    The horror of a ultra militarised and racist American Police Force who can kill with impunity. Obama claims cameras on every office would stop this type of brutality, these cops knew they were being filmed and killed him anyway. In...
    The Daily Blog
  • Unjust to imprison us for crimes we haven’t yet committed
    Once again National and Labour have succumbed to the “law and order” brigade enabling the passage of a Bill imprisoning people for crimes they might commit in the future. The Public Safety (Public Protection Orders) Bill allows the Court to...
    The Daily Blog
  • SPCA welcomes glueboard traps ban
    The Royal New Zealand SPCA applauds the ban on the sale and use ofglueboard traps in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • Mediation Between Lyttelton Port and Union Fails
    The Rail and Maritime Union (RMTU) has opted to continue its overtime ban indefinitely after mediation with the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch (LPC) failed to progress collective bargaining. “There was no substantial shift in LPC’s position today...
    Scoop politics
  • Review into Phillip Smith’s escape submitted to Government
    A multi-agency review on the escape of Phillip Smith to South America has submitted its initial report to the Government today....
    Scoop politics
  • Len Brown gets haybales from giant chicken and Ms. Santa Cla
    Today at 10.30am, Ms. Santa Claus and a giant chicken delivered haybales to Len Brown’s office, urging Auckland City Council to decline a resource consent application sought by cage egg producer Craddock Farms....
    Scoop politics
  • Increased Abuse of Parents A Predicted Outcome
    Family First NZ says that the increasing level of parental abuse , especially towards mothers, is an unfortunate but expected outcome of the rise of children’s ‘rights’ and the undermining of parental authority....
    Scoop politics
  • Brownlee’s Misplaced War on Acronyms
    The beleaguered Minister of Defence who reportedly cannot tell an RFL (required fitness level) from an AWQ (annual weapons qualification) has declared war on military acronyms while proving the proverb about those in glass houses....
    Scoop politics
  • Fluoride risks whitewashed in rushed consultation
    Ministry of Health propose to exempt toxic industrial waste products used in water fluoridation from the Medicines Act 1981...
    Scoop politics
  • Practical Tips on Working and Living in New Zealand
    JUANderful Juan” in 7-Minute Migrante Video Project Shares Practical Tips on Working and Living in New Zealand...
    Scoop politics
  • Christmas Day in Prison
    Christmas Day in prison this year will involve swapping the main meal of the day, so that dinner will be served at lunchtime, leaving the evening meal to be sandwiches. This is standard practice for this day....
    Scoop politics
  • Alcohol advertising bans need stronger evidence
    Wellington (18 December 2014): The New Zealand Initiative’s Head of Research, Dr Eric Crampton, today urged Cabinet to look to the evidence before banning alcohol advertising and sponsorship. The Ministerial Forum on Advertising and Sponsorship...
    Scoop politics
  • EPA grants marine consent to OMV NZ Ltd
    The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has granted a marine consent to OMV NZ Ltd to continue its development drilling programme in the Maari oil field in the South Taranaki Bight....
    Scoop politics
  • DHB puts staff and patients at risk in order to save money
    The Public Service Association (PSA) is alarmed that the Waikato District Health Board (WDHB) is proposing to cut the 4 and 2 roster system, established nationally, for mental health nurses. The PSA represents more than 210 mental health nurses working...
    Scoop politics
  • Ambivilence about alcohol marketing recommendations
    Ministers Adams and Dunn issued a media release yesterday nearly two months after receiving a final report from their Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship, and four years following an original announcement to review alcohol...
    Scoop politics
  • Alcohol forum recommendations: a step in the right direction
    The Forum has stated clearly that that it accepts alcohol marketing plays a role in heavy alcohol consumption and subsequent harm, and that young people need to be protected from it by regulation....
    Scoop politics
  • Court Judgment: Nicky Hager v Police on Dirty Politics Raids
    Mr Hager alleges that steps taken by the second respondent (the Police): first, in deciding to apply for a search warrant in respect of Mr Hager’s premises; secondly, in applying for the warrant; and thirdly, executing the warrant at his...
    Scoop politics
  • Holiday home hazards revealed
    Common sense ways to look after your property this summer Auckland, 18 December 2014 – Burglars aren’t the only threat to your home during the holiday season, says AA Insurance. It’s more likely to be broken water pipes, burst hot...
    Scoop politics
  • Grieving families should be able to scatter ashes in peace
    Grieving families should be able to scatter ashes in peace 18 December 2014 Funeral directors are relieved that Wellington City Council has finally dropped plans to charge families for permits to scatter ashes in public places. Funeral Directors...
    Scoop politics
  • RSA Offers Condolences To Victims Of Sydney Siege
    As an organisation representing over 100,000 New Zealanders, the RSA has today condemned the actions taken by Man Haron Monis during his siege in a Sydney café, and offered their deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Tori Johnson...
    Scoop politics
  • Kiwi activists crowdfund billboard for Simon Bridges
    Almost seven thousand New Zealanders have taken part in a crowdfunding campaign, and have raised enough money to put a billboard up in Tauranga that is directed at Simon Bridges, the Minister of Energy and Resources....
    Scoop politics
  • Leaked TISA text exposes US threat to privacy, data security
    ‘The US is demanding that New Zealand and other countries accept sweeping rules that would override privacy protections for digitised personal and other data’, according to Professor Jane Kelsey from the University of Auckland....
    Scoop politics
  • Lyttelton Port workers begin overtime ban
    Workers of Christchurch Rail and Lyttelton Port have begun an indefinite ban on overtime, according to the Rail and Maritime Transport Union. The ban was announced at a mass meeting at the Port after negotiations between Lyttelton Port of Christchurch...
    Scoop politics
  • Ban on Alcohol Advertising Could Cost Taxpayer
    Responding to yesterday's release of the report of the Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship, Jordan Williams, the Executive Director of the Taxpayers’ Union says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Farm safety isn’t helped by punitive fines
    Federated Farmers Health and Safety spokesperson, Katie Milne says she is concerned about the impact of the $40,000 fine for a Marlborough farm couple, who weren’t wearing helmets and carrying children as passengers. The Court case, and subsequent...
    Scoop politics
  • New online guide to NZ’s environment goes live
    The Environment Foundation* has launched a new web-based guide to the management of New Zealand’s natural environment....
    Scoop politics
  • Ban On Alcohol Advertising Just One Step
    Family First NZ says that a proposed ban on alcohol advertising at sports events as recommended by a ministerial forum is an important move, but will not solve the binge drinking and alcohol abuse issue on its own....
    Scoop politics
  • CLANZ scholarship winner to examine legal services to Crown
    Wellington in-house lawyer Tania Warburton is the inaugural winner of the research scholarship established by the Corporate Lawyers Association of New Zealand (CLANZ)....
    Scoop politics
  • Joint Australasian operation dismantles drug syndicate
    The Joint Organised Crime Task Force (JOCTF), leading a multi-agency team, has smashed a multi-million dollar international organised crime network following raids across Melbourne this morning....
    Scoop politics
  • Video: Meet Mark Gilbert, U.S. Ambassador-Designate to NZ
    Join us in welcoming Ambassador-Designate Mark Gilbert and his wife Nancy. They are arriving in New Zealand shortly and wanted to introduce themselves. Watch this video to learn about his connections with Aotearoa, and why he thinks the partnership between...
    Scoop politics
  • MIA Welcomes Review Findings
    The MIA welcomes the findings of the Health Quality & Safety Commission into child and youth mortality arising from the use of motorcycles, quads and other agricultural vehicles....
    Scoop politics
  • Quads Bikes Not for Under 16s
    Safekids Aotearoa strongly supports recommendations made in a report released today highlighting the dangers posed by quad bikes when ridden or controlled by children who are under 16 years of age....
    Scoop politics
  • Inquiry on Parliament’s legislative response to emergencies
    Public submissions are being invited on Regulations Review Committee’s Inquiry into Parliament’s legislative response to future national emergencies. The closing date for submissions is Sunday, 1 March 2015....
    Scoop politics
  • Switch off on the beach NOT at level crossings
    KiwiRail and TrackSAFE NZ have launched a new summer rail safety campaign with a message to motorists to stay focused and always look for trains at level crossings over the holidays. December is known as the month for family, festivity...
    Scoop politics
  • Report on child and youth deaths from vehicle use
    Quad bike and other off-road vehicle accidents second largest cause of child recreational deaths...
    Scoop politics
  • Inspector-General accepts apology for leak of report
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August...
    Scoop politics
  • Santa’s naughty list shows NZPork in trouble
    Santa has provided animal advocacy organisation SAFE with an early copy of this year’s naughty list , as it prominently features many animal-abusing industries and businesses, with NZPork topping the list....
    Scoop politics
  • WWI veterans had persisting higher risk of early death
    New research on the impact of the First World War on participating New Zealand soldiers shows they typically lost around eight years of life and had an increased risk of early death in the post-war period....
    Scoop politics
  • Rainbow Wellington urges further change from Blood Service
    This week the New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) announced the implementation of the agreed changes to blood donor deferral. For men who have sex with men (MSM) this primarily involves a reduction of the deferral period from five years to...
    Scoop politics
  • New Zealand Government signals reversal of fortune
    The Government’s robust $372 million forecast surplus from Budget 2014 will turn into a $572 million deficit, according to the 2015 Half-Yearly Economic and Fiscal Update and the Budget Policy Statement. Imports are cheaper and good export prices...
    Scoop politics
  • Time for Jobs that Count in the Meat Industry
    The NZ Meat Workers Union will launch a new national campaign to highlight job insecurity in the Meat Industry this afternoon in Palmerston North....
    Scoop politics
  • Protest at killing of schoolboys – Vigil 17/12/14
    A peaceful vigil will be held in Downtown Square opposite Britomart station – cnr of Queen and Customs St from 11-45 am: Wednesday 17 December 2014....
    Scoop politics
  • Social housing provider opens development in Johnsonvillle
    Social housing provider, Accessible Properties, will be opening eight new social housing units in a new housing development in Johnsonville tomorrow....
    Scoop politics
  • NCWNZ Wins Court Case
    ComVoices welcomes and celebrates the news that the National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) has won its High Court case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
  • Cut Taxes + Cut Waste = Surplus
    Responding to the Treasury's Half Year Fiscal and Economic Update, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director, Jordan Williams, says:...
    Scoop politics
  • Cuts in public services likely fromBudget Policy Statement
    The horizon for workers looks gloomy with the release today of the Budget Policy statement. “Continuing real cuts in Government funding of public services are inevitable as a result of today’s Budget Policy Statement. The policy ignores the social,...
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2014
    The Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) 2014 provides the Treasury's latest economic forecasts and the forecast financial statements of the Government, including the implications of Government financial decisions....
    Scoop politics
  • Chief Ombudsman launches major review of OIA practices
    The Chief Ombudsman, Dame Beverley Wakem, has today begun a wide ranging review of Official Information Act (OIA) practices in the public sector....
    Scoop politics
  • The Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning
    “Our hearts and minds are with the people of Sydney: the Tasman Sea got a little smaller this morning,” said Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy....
    Scoop politics
  • A safety message for the festive season from Housing NZ
    Batteries may be required for some of the best toys under the tree this year, but they are just as essential to enjoying the greatest gift of all, says Housing New Zealand General Manager of Property Services, Marcus Bosch. “Smoke...
    Scoop politics
  • Charity Wins in the High Court
    The National Council of Women of New Zealand (NCWNZ) is delighted that the High Court has found in its favour in its case against Inland Revenue and the Charities Registration Board....
    Scoop politics
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