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Trends

Written By: - Date published: 7:59 am, May 29th, 2013 - 175 comments
Categories: election 2014, polls - Tags:

So, the latest Fairfax poll isn’t flash for Labour and it’s the same old story of leadership. But don’t get too excited there’s no ‘trend’ in the Fairfax – they’ve polled just three times since the election. We also know that most pollsters have been over polling National for years. Instead, lets ask what the polls show now compared to the immediate pre-election poll.

polls vs pre-election polls

Hmm. So, National – which won a one seat majority for the Right in 2011 has lost support since the election in every poll.

Also, with a single exception (Roy Morgan in 2008) every pre-election poll has overpolled National in the past two elections. When you correct for that, you get a surprisingly tight spread between the polls. The raw results have a 5% spread, the corrected ones just a 2.2% spread, centred around 45%.

Halfway through their second (and, if you believe Lusk/Slater last) Key’s National have lost an average of 3.4% in the polls.

45% is the danger zone for National. In this position, they might govern if they can cut a deal with Winston (if he gets back in). If they continue to lose support and end up in the low 40s, then even that won’t save them.

Of course, it’s far from a done deal. Shearer is the, um, the key. If the Left is to govern, people have to see him as a PM. He’s got better in recent months. Here’s hoping he gets a lot better in the next 18.

Bonus for poll-lovers. Everyone knows that only the Roy Morgan is regular enough to talk about trends (RM is also the most accurate on average in its pre-election polls). Here’s how that trend is looking:

roy morgans to May 2013

175 comments on “Trends”

  1. DrakeNZ 1

    I’m not sure if you can compare a pre-election poll (when attention is focused fully on party policies and their leaders) to a mid-way poll. Just wait until John Key goes on TV and debates head to head with Shearer.
    PS – when is the next roy morgan out – tomorrow?

    • bad12 1.1

      Tell me something, after Phill Goff got so comprehensively dealt to by Slippery John Key in the 2011 television debates, (according to the pundits and the idiots that think someone yelling repeatedly ”show me the money” is a comprehensive victory that is), how many % points did National leap up in the following polls,

      Zilch actually, nada, zero, none, most of the polling was of a National Government not needing coalition partners, so if we are to take anything from the polls vis a vis the television debates in 2011 we can only conclude that had the election campaign not been of an abbreviated nature National would surely have been in the position of actually ‘needing’ the Maori Party to govern as opposed to having that particular party as mere lap-dogs consigning themselves to electoral oblivion for the baubles of Ministerial office,

      Given that at November 2014 the Maori Party are to be given an unkind message from the electorate i would dare suggest that 2014 will be an election of a % point either way and National gaining a third term will rely on NZFirst regaining seats in the Parliament and being willing to support a third term National Government, (neither of those propositions being guaranteed),

      Labour/Green need only go into the 2014 election showing a clear intention to restructure the minimum wage into the guaranteed living wage in it’s first term of Government, (a rise of $1.50 an hour over a 3 year period), and the rout of National back to the opposition benches where they belong should be a given…

      • mickysavage 1.1.1

        I would disagree with you about the debates Bad12. Apart from the theatrics surrounding the “show me the money” I thought Goff performed very well in the debates.

        The failure in the campaign was in part the failure to back Goff up. He did not appear on the billboards and the message given by this was that even the party did not think he was going to succeed.

        Of course those who made this decision should have been the subject of a rigorous review but this did not happen.

        • bad12 1.1.1.1

          Have a closer read micky and you will find that you are not disagreeing with me at all….

          • mickysavage 1.1.1.1.1

            Yep right you are.

            You may also be right about the super policy. It was a hell of a stretch of a policy and there is a virtue in these times of unemployment in letting the elderly retire a bit earlier so that a young person can then get a job.

            It is frustrating that labour is trying to have decisions made today about something that will only become important in a decade’s time. National’s approach of not giving a toss gives them a political advantage.

            • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1.1.1

              An extra couple of % of top tax rate and corporate tax would allow the super age to be lowered, in addition to funnelling all KiwiSaver funds into the Cullen Fund.

              For some reason that sounds more like a “Labour Party” stance to me, than trying to make older people work longer and staying in jobs that young people would be better off doing.

              • TheContrarian

                “An extra couple of % of top tax rate”

                I’m on the top rate and paying a few % more would be fine by me.

                • Lanthanide

                  I’d like to see it at 35% @ $80k an a higher rate introduced around $120-150k, like Australia.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Hey guys your comments mean a lot as I know that you will be personally affected by these suggestions.

                    And potentially a higher rate again at 10x the median working income, so at $410,000 pa. or thereabouts.

                    Alternatively, you have a generous tax free protion of your income, and then get taxed more heavily above that at a flat rate, to prevent people gaming the system with their accountants.

                • north

                  Contrary One. Good man/woman !

        • bad12 1.1.1.2

          My view on what cost Labour in 2011 was having Phill Goff open the election campaign promising to raise the age of eligibility for NZ Super, convincing the electorate of such a necessity would best be left in my opinion to a third term Government after a very long conversation with the electorate…

        • DrakeNZ 1.1.1.3

          I agree – Phil Goff is a seasoned debater and generally performed well against Key. He only stumbled in the initial debate which (I think) was not fully televised and there was time for damage control. I think Shearer vs Key might be an entirely different story.

        • TheContrarian 1.1.1.4

          “He did not appear on the billboards and the message given by this was that even the party did not think he was going to succeed.”

          I agree – it also made it about personalities when Labour were desperately trying to not make it about personalities given Key was so high in preferred PM.

      • futurama 1.1.2

        It would appear that if you want to be the govt have the party 100% behind the leader because it doesnt seem to matter how many lies you tell after the election you still got 3yrs to sell some more and the polls seem to reflect that so basically the system hasnt got much integrity

  2. Of course, it’s far from a done deal. Shearer is the, um, the key. If the Left is to govern, people have to see him as a PM. He’s got better in recent months. Here’s hoping he gets a lot better in the next 18.

    I think people get too worried over leader popularity polls. Shearer has another year to become more of a leader figure, and the most popular leader doesn’t determine who wins an election (NZ isn’t a Presidential system -even though the MSM want it to be). A much more likely scenario is that Mana, the Greens, NZ First, and I have to say it (since Peter Dunne is a political survivor) United Future will make up the extra seats; while the Labour party will a slight lead or National will have a slight lead.

    • bad12 2.1

      Aha, given the anti-Labour stance of the Maori Party and for a moment putting aside the fact that they hold 3 electoral seats Phill Goff who nobody really wanted to be the Prime Minister came within a whisker of beating the most popular, (spit), Prime Minister for many years…

      • kiwicommie 2.1.1

        The Maori party is dying a slow death, they would be lucky to keep two seats, let alone their third. However I wouldn’t rely on the Maori party keeping with National, they can switch parties like they did when Labour lost out last time.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.2

        bad12 – that’s why I was amazed when the Labour caucus seemed so determined to replace Goff as Leader asap. Goff had literally lost the election by just one or two seats to a first term tory Government (traditionally impossible to unseat), and a huge part of that could be pinned on Labour campaign strategists (Ducky and co.) not coping with a true MMP campaign, and not pushing back against the prevalent media meme of “it’s a foregone conclusion”.

        So Labour’s next move? Push Goff aside and put in place a rookie with 5% of the experience and political ability.

        Also speaking of trends, shit the trend was looking upwards and good for Labour between Aug 2009 and Oct 2010. How did that go for Labour in 2011?

        • Tim 2.1.2.1

          Just curious ….. does anyone know where Tony Timms stands on the current state of the Labour Party?
          I’m just interested because I’ve watched so many trad ‘stalwart’ LP people relinquish their principles once positions of comfort have been attained, and I’m well familiar with TT since ‘post Onslow College’ days.
          It’s interesting too when one listens to “from the Right & from the Right” to see how sacrificing basic principles are put down to airy fairy things like ‘modernisation’ and ‘economic reality’.

  3. Winston Smith 3

    Mid way through the 2nd term and even after the smears thrown about by the Greens and National (and John Key) are still massively popular

    But whatever you do don’t get rid of Shearer because hes your best chance of winning the next election ;)

    • It isn’t even election year, it is like claiming Helen Clark would be out of a job in mid 2007. If you want to be objective about polling, you won’t know who will likely win till the few months or weeks before election day; and then you have the coalition talks that can go anywhere.

    • RedBlooded 3.2

      Awh Winston, you’re such a Hoot. Yawn

  4. Blue 4

    It’s quite obvious that National has lost support – all the Key brainfades and dodgy casino deals have damaged him.

    But people are still left with that awful decision – Key vs. Shearer. In such a situation, they prefer to go with the dodgy liar over the incompetent fool.

    It’s time to face facts – National is not going to lose enough support while Shearer remains Labour’s leader.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      To rephrase your point, yes National will lose support over this term and all their dodgy deals – but they may not lose any votes, and certainly those votes may go over to the Greens and not Labour.

      • kiwicommie 4.1.1

        Yep Labour would win through a coalition arrangement. I wouldn’t say the loss in 2008, and again in 2011 was a good thing, but at least it evened out the votes among the center-left, so that a blow to a single party won’t bring the house of cards crashing down like it did in 2008; when center-left or left wing voters lost enthusiasm, and given no alternative party to Labour (as they saw it) stopped voting. Fortunately now they do have alternatives to vote for, and there are multiple center-left parties that can win votes and electorates in 2014, whereas in 2008 only Labour really had the capacity to fight for seats in a big way. Edit: But that isn’t to say that Labour can’t win back votes, and bring the center-left over the line if it works hard enough in 2014.

        • Colonial Viper 4.1.1.1

          I would underline the fact that Labour is a socially liberal but economically centrist capitalist party. They are not a left wing party in anyway except for some historical echoes. For instance there is no suggestion that they would significantly increase benefit levels to above the poverty line, bring back penal rates for overtime, restore free education for all etc.

          As a centrist party they will certainly take some actions to curb extremes of corporate profiteering and worker exploitation, etc. But that’s merely a moderate/centrist thing to do.

          • kiwicommie 4.1.1.1.1

            Labour has done things that at times can be called center-right and dead center, but it doesn’t change the fact that the Greens, and the rest can only really have a say with Labour; as National is far too center-right or right wing to even listen. I would agree that Labour is an economically centrist capitalist party, but it still has a center-left wing to the party; and it depends on the electorate – some are more conservative than others.

      • BM 4.1.2

        National voters will not vote green.
        They may vote for Winston first though.

        • Gareth 4.1.2.1

          As a matter of fact, my father in law who has been a National voter his whole life has become so disgusted with the Nanny State policies of National that he announced about a month ago that he’s switching his vote over to the Left next year. He can’t stomach voting Labour though so he’s going to vote Green. He and his conservative mates think Winston is a great laugh, but they wouldn’t vote for him.

          • BM 4.1.2.1.1

            I find that hard to believe.
            He’s voting green because National is too nanny state? to vote for a party that wants to control the size of your shower head or what type of light bulb you’re allowed to have.

            Either you’re making it up or your father in law is a complete idiot.

            • Gareth 4.1.2.1.1.1

              Neither. He is more concerned about taking away the right to go to court, railroading the Christchurch plan through and ignoring the high dollar (he runs an export business) than worrying about trivia like shower heads and light bulbs. Seriously, we turned off analogue tv and went digital. What’s the issue with upgrading to more efficient light bulbs??

              • Tim

                Maybe your father in law has had the same experiences as I have with NZ’s ‘right of centre’ parties over the years:
                a bunch of crass young Nats (a la Aaron Gilmore) learning how to become gauche old NActs (a la Tony Ryall). The only ones I ever had any time for did the smart thing and got the hell out.

            • Gareth 4.1.2.1.1.2

              Neither. He is more concerned about taking away the right to go to court, railroading the Christchurch plan through and ignoring the high dollar (he runs an export business) than worrying about trivia like shower heads and light bulbs. Seriously, we turned off analogue tv and went digital. What’s the issue with upgrading to more efficient light bulbs?

            • Gareth 4.1.2.1.1.3

              Apologies for the double post. The website said my first one was rejected.

              He also worries about the current account deficit and recognises that it’s mostly profits going overseas, and so thinks that selling state owned assets is a stupid idea. He acknowledges that he was in favour of it last time it happened, but unlike some he learns from his mistakes.

              He still likes all the labour law changes and has no problem with the WINZ stuff that’s happened. He’s still a conservative and we have great arguments about all that. But he’s pissed off enough at National about the bigger issues and thinks that Russell Norman has made enough sense that small manufacturer/exporters can give him a go.

              [lprent: moderated? spam? server message? browser message? Moderation queues the message for a moderator to look at. Spam may do that as well for me to look at or it just flushes it as being from a bot (happens incredibly seldom for humans). It could also be a server message saying that your message has failed - easy to see and it would say "lprent@primary.geek.nz". It could also be your browser telling you that it was unable to send it - usually because of connectivity problems.

              But there is no "rejected". There are just queues or errors. ]

              • felix

                Sounds like your father in law is a damn sight smarter than BM.

              • Gareth

                I’m not sure what was giving me the error I’m sorry. I put it down to my second post being written from Chrome on an iPhone.

                • lprent

                  Most likely the connection in that case. I never had much luck with iPhones on posts with large numbers of comments.

                  • I found that the iphone/ipod updates by Apple over the years have made accessing the web a lot harder, rather than easier. It usually just randomly quits after you finish reading a few posts on wordpress or blogger.

          • Pete 4.1.2.1.2

            My father, who grew up a rural, South Island pakeha and is in his 70s, used to be a staunch National supporter. Then he switched to Labour. He now intends to vote for Mana next year as he thinks Hone is the only one in Parliament who really seems to give a damn about the marginalised.

            • Colonial Viper 4.1.2.1.2.1

              Wow. Just wow.

            • kiwicommie 4.1.2.1.2.2

              he now intends to vote for Mana next year as he thinks Hone is the only one in Parliament who really seems to give a damn about the marginalised.

              Well that’s true, he does actually care. He might be an MP but he hasn’t allowed that to disconnect him from the community, nor has he become an elitist like a lot of National party MP’s.

  5. tsmithfield 5

    Its a wierd world when righties are more supportive of the Labour leader than lefties.

    • tarkwin 5.1

      At least Labour has a proud history. it would be a real shame if the Greens destoy them.

      • AmaKiwi 5.1.1

        “At least Labour has a proud history. it would be a real shame if the Greens destroy them.”

        Proud history! Since the last election their behavior has been disgraceful.

    • Clockie 5.2

      It’s called concern trolling..

    • lprent 5.3

      That has been a pretty consistent pattern for David Shearer.. Perhaps you could speculate why? :twisted:

      Personally I think it has to do with left-wing activists who have been volunteering for decades having more experience with the requirements of on-the-ground left wing campaigning politics than either right wingers, political media commentators, or even inexperienced left-wing candidates parachuted in from the parliamentary staff.

  6. Sanctuary 6

    There has to be some disquiet at the failure of Labour to make a clean poll breakthough in the face of a series of scandals that should have seriously dented National’s poll lead.

    Looking back, I think most people wanted Goff gone because they thought it would achieve two outcomes: Firstly, it would signal a clean break with the Clark era, and help unhook Labour from the baggage of nine years of government – like the way Clark herself drew a line under the the Douglas years and repudiated radical reform as part of rebuilding trust with the electorate. Secondly, a new leader would give people who had switched votes to National a face-saving reason to switch back to Labour.

    Labour has perhaps achieved the first, but not the second. Everyone knew Shearer was unprepared, but I think people probably thought he might prove another Lange, like Athena leaping from Zeus’s head, fully grown and armed. He has been a slow learner. He is still basically an inarticulate and bumbling communicator in the media. He comes across on TV like3 he doesn’t really have much idea what he is talking about. Cunliffe or Robertson would both be far more articulate. A leader coup engineered by Robertson now, with Cunliffe as co-conspirator and elevated to the deputy leadership to ensure the new leadership team enjoyed 100% support under the new voting system, would energize the party base and provide an articulate new set of faces at the top.

    I thhink also that the Shearer/Cunliffe leadership battle itself has proven to have done more long term damage to the relationship between the party membership and the caucus old guard than was assumed at the time, reinforcing the need to rehabilitate Cunliffe in some way.

    Finally, much as Shearer has proved to be a major disappointment, I think a fair whack of the blame for Labours failure to make a poll breakthrough can be sheeted home to the senior caucus, which seems to me to be to complacent and self-serving to be an effective opposition. To use a rugby analogy, there are to many Ali Williams, Andrew Hores and Brad Thornes in Labour’s caucus whose best political days are in the past and they simply lack the energy and desperation a hungrier – and younger – caucus would bring to opposition.

    Plenty of voters are now looking for a reason to swtch votes to Labour. The party needs to provide an energetic and articulate leader to give them that reason and to snsure the sort of accoutability in his or her caucus that will see the underperformers quietly moved on – Mallard to be proomised the role of high commissioner in London, King to run an SOE, that sort of thing.

    • BM 6.1

      No you guys only represent minority groups and have no interest in middle NZ.
      That’s why you poll so slow.

    • If any change in leadership is to happen, it is best to wait till after the 2014 election, making any moves now would be too unsettling. Shearer might not have overwhelming trust behind him, but he isn’t a bad leader, even if you could have a better one.

      • David H 6.2.1

        And when the Debates start…….. Yeah Not a bad leader will not cut it. Labour need someone who can call Shonkey on every lie, every brain fade, and have the facts, and the ability to explain them in Proper English not political doubletalk! But Shearer??? The election will be over before he finishes a sentence.

        • kiwicommie 6.2.1.1

          *shrug* You mean another one those two party debates, that basically shut out the rest of the opposition, and ask one sided questions, that always put the government in a good light? Not sure whether participating in such a debate is a good idea, but even if he did terrible in a debate, the entire election isn’t resting on a single party – however there is no evidence that debates so far have made Shearer any better (or worse off), so it won’t influence polls.

    • There has to be some disquiet at the failure of Labour to make a clean poll breakthough in the face of a series of scandals that should have seriously dented National’s poll lead.

      It just has made a clean poll breakthrough, and this shouldn’t be the last of bad polls for National: http://www.roymorgan.com/findings/new-zealand-voting-intention-may29-201305290604

  7. King Kong 7

    Merging with the Greens has been a terrible idea for Labour. Why would you cede control of your policy to a party with who are three times less popular than you?

    I have said it before, but if Labour wants to become more popular then they need to go to the mattresses against the Greens in a real way. By pointing out that the Greens are incompetent losers, they will drag back some of the naive lefties who have started to believe the Greens twaddle plus it will calm the horses with the centre who already know that the Greens are nuts and will be relieved to know that Labour realises this too.

    When it comes to coalition building, even if Labour has been giving them a kicking, where the hell else will the Greens go?

    • The Green movement is growing in terms of political voice, this is happening in Europe and Australia, and will only continue to grow. For Labour to ignore the Greens would make them as foolish as National and Act is to ignore or deny climate change, Labour and the Greens co-operate on some policies because they have merit. Labour as a centrist party will always have the issue of either appearing too center-left or as just staying too much in the center, however if the Labour party turned center-right (like the MSM want it to) it runs a far greater risk of losing support (as then voters see Labour as no different from National – thus don’t bother to vote).

      • King Kong 7.1.1

        From my understanding, support for the Greens around the world is seriously contracting.

        I am not suggesting that Labour ignore the Greens, in fact quite the opposite.

        They should be drawing attention to every bit of stupidity the Greens spout rather than giving them an easy ride.

        This is a war that Labour will win (because the Greens are total fags once you give them a bloody nose) and it will make Shearer and Labour look like competent winners. These are very sexy traits to the electorate.

        • infused 7.1.1.1

          You are correct that Greens are losing support around the world.

        • kiwicommie 7.1.1.2

          From my understanding, support for the Greens around the world is seriously contracting.

          Even the UK (which has a stronger center-right political system) has a growing Green party, so does Australia, and Germany has had a strong one for a while, as for trying to attack the Greens a lot, that is a waste of time. Green economics and such is a growing popular fad (like the peace movement was in the 1960s onwards), it might make you popular to some, but to the mainstream it just makes you look just as bad as the fringe of the green movement i.e. the climate change denier.

          Nor has attacking the Greens won Labour any favours in the polls, attacking the Greens is the best strategy for National, but it is a double edged sword – on one hand you show the electorate you ‘aren’t a crazy greenie’, but on the other you show you are out of touch with popular issues like climate change and lose votes of people that don’t so much care about green policies, as keeping up with the changing political climate.

          • BM 7.1.1.2.1

            Climate change is not a popular issue.
            Most believe it to be a pile of horse shit and a sneaky way to grab taxes and instill lefty policy.

            • Dv 7.1.1.2.1.1

              Many believed you would sail of the edge of the world too.

            • kiwicommie 7.1.1.2.1.2

              If you are talking about the carbon tax, I don’t agree with it – the carbon credit system has far too many loopholes. How you can’t think climate change is a popular issue I have no idea, even China that has to be one of the worlds biggest polluters is introducing policies about climate change.

              • BM

                I take it you’re quite young.
                Young people,yes very important issue, it’s been drummed into you all the way through your schooling, so it would be hard not to be passionate about climate change.
                Once you leave that school setup and gain a bit of experience you’ll realize not is all as it seems.

                When I was younger, the big thing was nuclear war,nuclear pollution we’re all going to die, ban nukes etc, down with nuclear anything.

                • tracey

                  It was nuclear war and nuclear accidents (which you call pollution) and while that was going on you were at a Springbok rugby match BM?

                  As classified documents have come out from the US relating tot he 50′s, 60′s and 70′s, and more recently Reagan’s years people were right to be scared of nuclear war given the ideologies of both the USA and Russian leadership.

                  I find your brand of blithe acceptance of things at face value (if it is from MR key et al) kind of scary. I shudder to think you are recommending that to young people as the result of “experience”. It sounds to me like you may well be the poster-boy for the modern propaganda. Feed the people sound bites, rely on their apathy to look no deeper and quietly roger them while they dream of being int he 1%. Politics by PR( read manipulation). I wonder, do you really believe, and can back with solid evidence, that NZ is a better place today (economically) or otherwise than 5 years ago?

                  • BM

                    Is anywhere in the world a better place today (economically) or otherwise than 5 years ago?
                    From what I’ve read, we’re doing really well compared to others.
                    Thank goodness we had National at the helm.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Anywhere? You mean like our two closest trading partners, for example, who grew throughout the whole period?

                      From what I’ve read of what you’ve written, your opinions have a serious problem with reality, which, if your continual use of weasel words is anything to go by, you appear to be aware of at some subconscious level.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 7.1.1.2.1.3

              “Most”.

              It’s safe to ignore this innumerate garbage. 3% (Scientists) is not “most”. Neither is 12% (US citizens).

              The good thing about Climatology, though, is that it isn’t founded on belief.

            • tracey 7.1.1.2.1.4

              LOLOLOL @ “most believe”. Evidence?? is yMr key ying when he says he believes climate change is happening?

              • BM

                Key’s a politician.
                His support base will vote for him no matter what, he’s just trying to appeal to a wider audience, grab a few more voters in the center left.

                • tracey

                  Agree. I know someone who says she would vote for father Christmas if he were the leader of the national party. God forbid he ever do something like sign a painting for chairty… THAT is a big no-no amongst his suppoprt base.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  Would that be the “wider audience”, “most” of whom believe Climatology “to be a pile of horseshit”?

                  Your lies are falling off.

                  • BM

                    There’s two types of climate change.
                    Natural climate change and Man made climate change.

                    Everyone knows the climate is always changing, it’s the man made climate change movement that people are finding a bit whiffy.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      “People” – yes, 3% of scientists publishing in the field and 12% of US citizens, for example.

                      You lack a cogent, intelligent argument, you see. Also evidence, credibility, integrity and cognitive ability.

                    • McFlock

                      OAK – bm might lack those things, but other than that their statements are 100% reliable :)

            • JonL 7.1.1.2.1.5

              “The 5 characteristics of global warming consensus denial
              All movements that reject an overwhelming scientific consensus show 5 inevitable characteristics. They celebrate fake experts, cherry pick the data, argue using misrepresentation and logical fallacies, indulge in conspiracy theories, and demand impossible expectations of what research can deliver.

              http://skepticalscience.com/5-characteristics-consensus-denial.html

        • tracey 7.1.1.3

          if it is contracting it may corrolate to an increase in green policies by mainstream parties.

          I can see why Key smears the Greens, they are calling English’s increasing deficit and increasing borrowing what it is and not pretending it isn’t, as English and Key do.

  8. Enough is Enough 8

    My concern is Labour has laid out there major policies (Kiwi Build, NZ Power, CGT) and gained next to no traction. There is not a lot of room in the coffers for them to lay down any other big ticket items and if they do, they will get the juvenile response from Key “show us the money”.

    Where does that leave us?

    If things stay the same we are going to sleep walk to defeat.

    • I find that political parties still haven’t adequately attacked ‘austerity economics’, as a result many voters till believe that ‘government debt’ is more of an issue than weak economic growth, high unemployment, rising poverty, high household debt, low salaries, and low wage growth. Actually taking on debt, in order to put in place stimulus measures, build vital infrastructure (like rail and a new internet cable) and create jobs, is better than just borrowing to get a surplus, that might not even happen.

      • Ennui 8.1.1

        In a world where “growth” was possible your argument would have merit. In our real world where the creation of credit (and hence the ability to take on and pay debt) is curtailed (forever as a general trend) neither stimulation policies or austerity will suffice. Both are dead ends.

        The unfortunate aspect of the above is that the electorate is conditioned to “delivery” based upon future payment of debt. They are conditioned to the concept of perpetual growth. In the mind of the electorate supply is perpetual and infinite, all they squabble over is who gets what, and who profits from this. This is the general tenet on this blog.

        What I am indicating is that Shearer versus Key, Left versus Right is of absolutely no consequence as the delivery will have the same result (no joy, it wont work for either). The REAL question that the electorate and the politicians do not want to hear and face, is how to manage contraction? How to allocate pain and dislocation?

        National of course don’t care, their sponsors own pretty much everything so they can sit on top of a shrinking mountain and be the last fat people on the whole pyramid. Labour conversely neither recognise the new reality, or have a clue how to sell it to the electorate.

        • kiwicommie 8.1.1.1

          neither stimulation policies or austerity will suffice. Both are dead ends.

          I disagree there, stimulus and the bailout worked in the United States, and don’t confuse stimulus with just ‘printing money’, it means putting money into R&D as well as growing small businesses. Austerity doesn’t work as it just eliminates the welfare state, and cuts government budgets in all the areas that generate growth such as in education, healthcare, and unemployment measures i.e. up-skilling. I am not saying that you can borrow all the time, as National is finding out you can only so far in terms of borrowing till you reach a point where the government can’t run a surplus.

          In New Zealand’s case, government reached 240% of GDP in debt in the 1920s or 1930s, and it has reached 50% as well, so government debt really isn’t the issue here, the issue is actually the high household debt, and weakness in terms of small business growth, as well as low salaries and low wages not keeping pace with costs such as electricity, housing, childcare; to the point that households have very little money to save, and the poor are kept in poverty (with very few breaking out of it) – thus adding to a decline in tax revenue.

          No one really knows what to do, it is a mid-point in economics. Neo-liberalism has failed, and so has Keynesianism in many areas, but just because Keynesianism failed is no reason to run after backers of austerity that ignore the government directed economic boom from the 1950s to the 1960s and mid 1970s in Europe, and elsewhere. ;)

          • Ennui 8.1.1.1.1

            KC, nothing you say above is untrue in the conventional sense. The issue is that they are predicated by growth and resource availability: these can and will go in reverse effectively stuffing up all you suggest.

            Rather than me argue the validity of my statement (I am off to lunch yippee) please have a read of Nicole Foss on theautomaticearth.com (or if you are in Wellington she is talking tomorrow night)…she is a very good starting point for the issues of peak resources and financial impacts.

            • kiwicommie 8.1.1.1.1.1

              Don’t live in New Zealand, but I am going to stick with Krugman. I never said growth or resources are infinite, and I really don’t see how that has anything do with austerity economics, nor anything I have said. As far as population, it is declining in the first world, and rising in the third world, if you are arguing that there will be a struggle for resources in the future, that seems to be ignoring that most economic growth is turning away from factory production and into the information age, that means that in the future most growth will be driven by technology in robotics, medicine, as well as publishing and media; a lot of people are losing their jobs in the transition – as people did with the industrial revolution. As long as space travel reaches a point within this century where asteroids can be mined, scarcity will no longer be the issue it is today. Edit: I do support genetic engineering, so I generally do feel that crop yields will increase once we fully understand how to use it.

              • Ennui

                Back from lunch: we may have to agree to disagree. As an exercise though, if you accept that consumption requires energy / resources (even PCs use energy…..) go to a spreadsheet. In column A add years downward. In B1 place the number 1. The calculation for B2 = B1*1.03 (this will equate to growth of 3% per annum). Set it up as a recurrent number in column B…..watch the compound effect and realise that after not too many years the number compounding becomes astronomical.

                Next part of the exercise, come to grips with the now well proven and accepted models of Hubbert (his model of resource extraction for oil works for all energy resources). Consider that we have passed peak for oil and are close with coal and gas (despite what the market says to pump share prices). Now consider the linkage between energy and growth (and consequently the ability to take on future debt via credit creation). Go back to the spreadsheet, look at the exponential growth scenario and ask “what resources can underpin these growth numbers”?

    • Rich the other 8.2

      Labours going to get what it deserves.

      A REAL THUMPING.
      They continue to demonstrate a complete lack of judgment on several issues .

      Parliament yesterday.
      An example , labours position on mining showed a real split in the party.

      The green party disciples , shearer, parker, dyson, etc are determined to continue backing the greens against all REASONED evidence .

      They are turning their back on employment and the $1 billion boost to our economy.
      Labour is giving many people NO choice.

      Next election ,A Landslide win for National.

      • tracey 8.2.1

        Do you consider “reasoned” evidence is based on financial outcome only?

        • Rich the other 8.2.1.1

          Tracey,
          Reasoned = the complete picture.
          This is an environmental issue .
          Ample evidence that this venture will be very positive for the environment and a welcome financial boost for the west coast and the country as a whole.

          What’s really puzzling is the fact that the proposed mining site has been mined in the past and has no special environmental protections.

      • kiwicommie 8.2.2

        Next election ,A Landslide win for National.

        On what evidence (at best National will hold what it has)? You realize that voters can vote someone out on a whim i.e. they are sick of having the same guy in power. It can be the best government in the world, but all you need is apathetic or bored voters.

    • CJA 8.3

      To be perfectly honest I think the policies they have released are unrealistic and unworkable. The classic example of this is the Kiwibuild policy. 100,000 house over ten years equates to building approximately 27 new houses per day (just basing it on simple numbers and not including apartment blocks of course), which in my mind is next to impossible just using logic. Sure if they said 30,000 or so I may have said that is reasonable. The NZ Power announcement won’t gain any traction for the swing voters in the middle where $300 really won’t make a hell a lot of difference and they are entering into an already complex industry by adding more complexity. Doesn’t make sense.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 8.3.1

        Date of state housing programme included in Walter Nash’s budget: 1936.

        State houses built by 1949: 30,000.

        “…between 1972 and 1974, the number of residential buildings completed per year increased by 10,000…” Source.

        “Logic” :lol:

        • CJA 8.3.1.1

          Sorry don’t quite understand what you’re meaning here? 100,000 new houses is logical or not? Using a Labour pamphlet as a source as well doesn’t really prove anything either.

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 8.3.1.1.1

            In fact, if you go and check their figures and they’re lying, you’ll have scored an actual point. It also points out that in 2004 there were 32,000 building consents. Perhaps that’s a lie too, and so easy for even a wingnut to check!

            This sum has been done before. We’ve covered the house building record (two hours), the fact that the number of houses that can be built depends very much on the number of people available to build them (well duh!), costs, economies of scale, the works.

            One hundred thousand houses in ten years is ambitious but do-able.

            • CJA 8.3.1.1.1.1

              Don’t doubt figures that there were 32,000 building consents but would be interesting to know how many of those houses were built and completed in a years timeframe.

              • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                It would be less tiresome if you could Google the answers to your own questions – might help move the debate along a bit, eh.

                An example, Stonewood Homes, who’ve built about 4,000 houses since 1987 say: ” …in total somewhere between 30 to 44 weeks…”

                Not that that makes a blind bit of difference: if you start 27 houses in one day, some time later, you will finish 27 houses in one day. Do that every day, you get the picture?

                • CJA

                  Wasn’t actually a question which I needed/wanted an answer for.

                  • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                    First you’re “interested” in the answer, then you neither want nor need it. Is that because you’ve realised the answer makes you look a bit foolish or were you just arguing in bad faith from the start?

                    • CJA

                      Lol seriously? You wanted to come back on a simple statement? You’ll note that my reply above doesn’t contain a question mark hence forth I’m not asking a question simply musing.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      basically CJA is an idiot who doesn’t believe in the power of NZ workers to build things.

                      Like shit, building 5 houses a day in Greater Auckland, 5 in Greater Wellington, 5 in Christchurch, and 5 more spread out around the rest of the country,

                      Shit that’s like 20 houses built a day already! Impossible! Unrealistic! Can’t be done!

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Here’s how you build a 30 story hotel in 15 days.

                      If it was an apartment block that’s 20-30 apartments completed per day on average.

                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hdpf-MQM9vY

                    • CJA

                      I like how I can’t reply to Colonial Viper. So I’m assuming you’re a builder since you think it’s possible to complete 20 houses a day in addition to completing all other building projects around the country. It’s bollocks mate and you know it. It’s just another bribe that is believed will bring votes. Guess we’ll see at the next election on which side of the fence people sit.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Poor wee little old NZ

                      Can’t put together 20 houses a day

                      Even though there are 2000-3000 master builders right here right now

                      20 houses a day too much for little poor lazy Keeeeweeeees

                      Pathetic little country

                      Can it even put together 20 big macs a day? One has to wonder

                      Maybe we might have to pay this outdated thing called “over time”

                      Better import the kitsets from Indonesia

                      Maybe we can do it then?

                    • CJA

                      Good to see you agree with me.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      little ol’ NZ produces 300,000 cubic metres of lumbar a month but cannot build 20 extra houses a day!

                      Poor KeeeeWeeeeees what will they do???

                      20 houses a day too much for KeeeWeeees to comprehende!!!

                      How can little struggling KeeeeWeeees manage to produce 300,000 cubic metres of lumbar a month?

                      Surely poor KeeeeeWeeees would struggle just to put through 3,000 cubic metres of lumbar a month, that’s sooooooo much wooooooood but so few houses!!!

                    • CJA

                      Don’t forget that we all wear grass skirts and have no electricity either lol.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      well, it’s you who doesn’t have faith in your country or your countrymen, so fuck off to Australia you disloyal loser.

                    • CJA

                      Sticks and stones CV. Sticks and stones. Anyway where did I say anything about no faith in our country or countrymen? Anyway enough playtime. I’ll pick this up tomorrow. Ciao for now.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Yeah I figured that you consider the future of this country a kiddies game.

                      Anyway where did I say anything about no faith in our country or countrymen?

                      In everyone of your weasel worded defeat monkey sentences.

                    • CJA

                      Lol “stupid making sense weasel words”. God damn using logic to make sense of things, must come up with more pie in the sky type thinking to convince people of stupid schemes. Oh well.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      “Logic”

                      We covered this already, surrender monkey.

                    • CJA

                      Lol and now I’m french. Drawing a long bow there fellas.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Not French: a defeatist, possessed of a “can’t do” attitude.

                    • CJA

                      Ever heard the phrase “Under promise and over deliver”? If Labour were smart that’s what they would be doing or promising. Instead we get schemes that aren’t achievable and unrealistic. It will come back to bite them and only time will tell.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Yeah, like promising 170,000 jobs and delivering higher unemployment instead.

                    • CJA

                      Yep totally agree with you. Stupid comment to make and it’s brought up often. The only difference is they’re still in government and based on 3 out of the 4 polls will probably remain in government next year. Labour have to stop being lead by the Greens. It’s a shame as some of the Greens are truly loopy.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      Have you got anything substantive to contribute, or is this vacuous drivel the best you can do?

                    • CJA

                      Lol you seem to keep replying.

  9. Head in the sand stuff here as usual.

    Maybe you will like to do a similar graph for the greens, you know the party that sometimes is up to
    15% in the polls but ends up around 9-10% at every election.

    • Next election could go either way for the Greens, but that is a matter for 2014, even keeping what they have would be a change for the greens (as in the past they haven’t been able to keep their gains for long).

      • BM 9.1.1

        I remember the last election, the greens were dead and buried, the talk was that they’d struggle to make the 5% threshold.
        Then those fuckwits put the Rena on the rocks, the greens were thrown a life line and were back in the game.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 9.1.1.1

          Reality check: Fairfax media poll – so we know it must be accurate ;) – support for Greens at September 2011 – 10%.

          Rena demonstrated everything the National Party represents in October.

          BM found wanting on the ol’ perceptions of the real world front again.

          We need better wingnuts. BM needs better lies.

        • Lanthanide 9.1.1.2

          Funny, I don’t remember that first bit at all. Maybe you made it up.

    • lprent 9.2

      ..do a similar graph for the greens..

      It has been done before and for that matter has been repeatedly pointed out over the years.

      But for your edification… Across all of the polls, they will usually well over-represent National, Act and the Greens compared to the eventual vote. Labour, UF, and the Maori party are usually pretty close to actual results with a tendency to slight under representation. NZ First is usually well under represented. The non-vote is always massively under represented.

      This is a pattern that has been pretty consistent for quite a few election cycles so far.

  10. Matthew Hooton 10

    James, you raise an important point here. National won 47.31% in the last election, on a low turnout. I find it extremely difficult to believe that, even with the big upswing in the economy since 2011, that now has more support than it did then. Yet that’s what most of the polls are saying, just as most had National above 50% for much of the 2008-11 period. And this risks distorting voting behaviour – both lazy Labour people thinking it is not worth voting because their party is doomed, and also lazy National people thinking it is not worth voting because their party is a shoe in.

  11. Chooky 11

    Brand Image:

    Goff did not win His election ( not because he was associated with Helen Clark , who was a winner, or because he was unable) but because he was associated with Roger Douglas and it was a contradictory message he was giving out…ie “Stop Asset Sales!” .His brand image was irredeemably damaged.

    Brand Image Questions:

    1.) Does Shearer appeal to young voters as a dynamic ,articulate, youthful Opposition leader in waiting?
    2.) Does Shearer look like the dynamic leader of a future Left coalition.?
    3.) Can Shearer go effectively head to head with the John Key brand?( successful ,dynamic , youngish, multimillionaire trader)
    4.) What sort of brand image does Shearer give the Labour Party?

    Answer: Should be obvious… ( ask any professional advertising agency )

    Question: Who would create the best brand for Labour in media debates? ( ask an advertising agency)

    Question: Does Labour want to win the next election with a Left coalition?

    • kiwicommie 11.1

      Question: Does every government in the world need a popular leader?
      Answer: Not under a multi party system.

      • One Anonymous Knucklehead 11.1.1

        Popularity? Pfft. I’d settle for an effective communicator.

        • Tim 11.1.1.1

          On an unrelated matter, and with due regard to the MSM’s preoccupation(s), and C.V.’s observation re the NZ Hero and his recent acquisition of jet power, I notice Tony Ryall’s ‘wifey’ has managed to run up another little number (on the Elna) in pink gingham AND what’s more, provide a tie that has a matching pattern.
          Those unsolicited missives from various ‘fashionistas’ I receive – directed to people that are now in line for Solicitor’s General, Crown Prosecutors, ‘decision makers’, prospective politicians (when their various ‘eksents’ become acceptable to the masses), are becoming increasingly irrelevant – not unlike the over-bombardment of ads with increased volume.

          It must have been a struggle for Ryall’s wifey I know, but even so – checks and stripes (and dots) don’t go that well – unless you’re struggling for kitsch (KITSCH being a baby boomer’s description of a New NActional) – albeit a kitsch that comes about when you’re not ekshly looking for a kitsch – it js happins.

          AGAIN…. I’ll expect a Populuxicle to come along shortly and protest (not yet sure on what grounds) – possibly homophobia, racism even, perhaps any – most other/any ‘ism’ yet to be discovered.

      • McFlock 11.1.2

        ooo snap :)

        • McFlock 11.1.2.1

          sorry – that was to kc :)

          • kiwicommie 11.1.2.1.1

            Well look at it this hypothetically:
            RWL (Right Wing Leader) has 35%
            C-CLPL’s (Center-Center Left party Leaders):
            X has 20%
            Y has 10%
            Z has 5%
            One party leader can have 35%, but collectively the other parties can have a percentage each for their party leaders, it is possible to have a popular right wing leader; but that doesn’t mean he is much more popular the collective popularity of the left wing leaders. Maybe you can’t enjoy your lunch without your Shearer burger, Norman salad, and your Harawira milkshake.

  12. McFlock 12

    Nice chart :)

  13. aerobubble 13

    Polls aren’t accurate since many many people turn off between elections and do not engage until they need to, so there is a built in inertia to them. Key in the last too elections lost 3% of the vote from the pre-election polling to the actual election result. Remember the polls predicting the first governing alone MMP govt of John Key as ACT vote had collapsed.

  14. Bearded Git 14

    National got in last time partly on their competent handling of the earthquakes. This benefit has now largely gone-neutralised by the slow building/planning progress and awful Brownlee and this combined with the schools debacle means Chch is back with Labour (see the chch poll today-Labour at 40%). Hillside has done for Nats in Dunedin. Saying that Wellington is dying and there is no solution means Nats are in trouble in Wellington.

    If Labour/Greens can get some more of the south Auckland vote out a drover’s dog could win this election-so even Shearer should win it. I am confident.

    • kiwicommie 14.1

      Well I have always been proud of Wellington, it has to be one of the most progressive cities in New Zealand. National have never been liked much there, hence why Labour, Greens and other center and center-left parties do so well in Wellington. If John Key wants to lose more votes in Wellington, he is welcome to. ;)

  15. Jimmie 15

    I think Shearer’s best ally is Mr Uncertainty.

    The two main contenders Cunliffe and Robertson cannot just run some sneaky numbers in the backroom as in yesteryear.

    Under the new rules if Shearer gets the boot then it goes to the party and the unions (and caucus) for voting – what would the outcome be?

    I think this more than anything will keep Shearer in his job through until 2014.

    Is this the best thing for the party? Time will tell.

    Perhaps it was the membership voting for a long term victory (to get their preferred candidate) while conceding a short term (2014) defeat.

  16. Shearer will be breathing a big sigh of relief at the latest Roy Morgan. National down to 41%, Labour up to 35% and the Greens on 12% …

    Of course what the reality is is something that we can only speculate on.

    http://www.roymorgan.com/findings/new-zealand-voting-intention-may29-201305290604

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      Just saw that. A decent showing for Labour and an ebbing away for National. Roy Morgan chose to present the result as voters unimpressed with English’s budget. I wonder what respondants said to his phone bank team…

      Greens unchanged on 12%

      • Olwyn 16.1.1

        I have to say it. Whenever I get my hopes up that there is going to be a shift toward something, almost anything, heartening, in the Labour Party, the good old polls cry 35%, which has become the new 45%, and other people click their heels and I just sigh.

        • Colonial Viper 16.1.1.1

          Beggars and choosers I’m afraid.

          Labour, a party who claims to represent the 99%, elated at hitting 35%. Where’s the disconnect?

    • Sanctuary 16.2

      So let me get this right… There is an EIGHT percentage point difference between Roymorgan and Fairfax/TVNZs level of support for National? That is an insane amount, and calls into question the accuracy of all of the polls.

      • Colonial Viper 16.2.1

        It’s simply the difference between doing all your polling in Mt Wellington and all your polling in Ellerslie

  17. irascible 17

    Interestingly, when respondents were polled on Key’s truthfulness and trustworthiness regardless of political persuasion the respondents took some time to answer. The report in the paper indicates considerable disquiet developing around Key’s trustworthiness and truthfulness.

  18. Cliff 18

    Agree that the polls need to be seen as trends rather than taken in isolation, but the trends are that Labour is not delivering the king hits they should be. We know that there is a whole soft centre core of voters in there that will swing around like mad come campaign season – they are the fodder for NZ First, Act and the Conservatives – and Labour, if we could get our act together.

    I am so disappointed by the showing of our Labour MPs on the Budget. Only a few of them – Ian Lees Galloway, David Clark and David Cunliffe – actually delivered any kind of robust analysis of the smoke and mirrors that constitutes this Budget – and it wasn’t pulled through into this week’s performance at all. Why not let those boys at it rather than relegating them to the cheap seats because of petty factionalism? And where is the strategy – Not even a Finance question in the House today? Let alone a question that would deliver an attack on Hekia on Education today – in anticipation of the ChCh schools announcement this afternoon? What is going on? Where is the strategy?

    Or is this the strategy – to let poor David Shearer fail at the last hurdle?

    I really want Labour to win the next election but it aint going to happen this way and I’m giving up on working out what it is going to take to make our Parliamentary representatives understand that.

    • Colonial Viper 18.1

      neither the Leader nor the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party have any strong grasp of conventional orthodox economic theory (the one the neolibs have been using to suck the world dry), let alone a working understanding of alternative heterodox economics.

      David Parker is much better but he’s still a fairly orthodox market forces pricing signal regulatory mechanisms kind of guy. And anyways you can’t have him front footing complex economic arguments in front of a camera to Joe Public because it’s just not something he can pull off.

      Key is going to run the entire TV debate series next year using an extended theme and variations of “Show Me the Money”.

      Basically, we’re royally fucked, thanks to the fine political judgement of 65% of the Labour caucus.

      • Alanz 18.1.1

        +1,000,000

        mmm why is there a feeling of getting spit roasted (not in a nice way) by John Key & the Nats at one end but also by 65% of the Labour caucus as well … unbelievable (in terms of the latter)

    • Saarbo 18.2

      +1

  19. Is their a newzealand version of Nate Silver?

  20. millsy 20

    Part of me hopes that National gets in in 2014.

    Why?

    Because the level of hardship, misery, homlessness, sickness, pollution and poisoned water would be so unberable that in 2017, National would be tossed out for a generation, and a fresh batch of Labour/Green visionaries would be able to take New Zealand into a new future.

    • Jimmie 20.1

      ‘Visionary’ Now that is a scary word to associate with the green party and parliament.

      Translated it equals: Greens tell everyone else what they can and cannot do – ban this, ban that, live like old school communal hippies, oh but smoking up the green stuff is just fine.

      • felix 20.1.1

        You should try actually reading or listening to the greens sometime.

      • millsy 20.1.2

        Jimmie, you think its OK for the air we breathe to be poisoned and the water we drink to be fouled dont we.

        Both, IMO are crimes against humanity.

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    On Sunday, I drove from Gisborne to Katikati, through Opotiki, Te Puke and Tauranga. Yesterday afternoon/evening, I made the return journey. One thing I noticed is that National Party billboards popped up regularly, mixtures of individual candidates’ billboards (simply stating...
    Occasionally erudite | 30-07
  • “Improving”
    End-of-Year process positive for Novopay, Steven Joyce, 17 January 2014:Minister Responsible for Novopay Steven Joyce says a 100 per cent completion rate for schools involved in the End-of-Year process and an accompanying low error rate are tributes to the hard...
    No Right Turn | 30-07
  • Farmers don’t set out to pollute our rivers
    It can be easy to vilify farmers. But no farmer sets out to create pollution, and the evidence suggests that many farmers are either already acting responsibly or that they are lifting their game. In particular, dairy farmers are acting....
    Gareth’s World | 30-07
  • Guide to economic evaluation part 3: What is agglomeration?
    Debates over major transport investments often get caught up in arguments over benefit-cost ratios, or BCRs. In recent years, projects such as the Transmission Gully and Puhoi to Warkworth motorways and the City Rail Link have been criticised for their...
    Transport Blog | 30-07
  • Where to now for Colin and the Conservatives?
    It’s (almost*) official – there’s no deal for Colin Craig in East Coast Bays. Murray McCully will not be knifed, thrown under a bus or given concrete shoes to go swimming in. Given that Mr Craig had already accepted he...
    Occasionally erudite | 29-07
  • Real men say sorry
    There are a couple of universal truths that all men should be aware of. Firstly, it takes a bigger man to walk away. Of course men can be accused of being weak if they don't confront their problems with violence,...
    The Jackal | 29-07
  • Why my children took part in a playful protest against LEGO’s partner...