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