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You pays your money & you takes your chances

Written By: - Date published: 10:53 am, March 9th, 2013 - 96 comments
Categories: capitalism, energy, privatisation - Tags:

Some analysts are talking about risks of investing in Mighty River Power in the media today. Weather, electricity demand, overseas expansion. I’ll tell you what would make me think twice if I was contemplating buying shares (like most Kiwis I couldn’t afford to even if I wanted to).

Everyone acknowledges the power companies over charge because of the way National set up the system with the Bradford reforms. Right now, the government has 400m reasons a year not to do anything about it. After the sales, that will be $200m in dividends.

Any reforms to lower power prices will fall mainly* on a relatively small number of (often overseas) private shareholders and much less on the government books. That rather reduces the government’s incentive to protect the over-charging status quo, doesn’t it? Lots of votes in being the government to bring down power prices, especially when a lot of the profits are otherwise going to foreign corporates.

You would essentially be buying into an industry

  • that has a history of strong government regulatory intervention,
  • that is making super-profits at the moment because the government made it that way,
  • that continues to do so with the government’s tacit consent because it earns the government a lot of money,
  • at the same time as the incentive for the government to let that situation continue will be reduced by half,
  • and at the same the political argument to do something to power prices will become much stronger.

Good luck with that.

*with 30% of the market already private, it’ll be 65% after the sales

96 comments on “You pays your money & you takes your chances”

  1. pollywog 1

    Oh but as long as Key is relaxed about it, we should be too…

    The wolf isn’t concerned with the opinions of sheep!

  2. Colonial Viper 2

    Come on Labour. Get off the mediocrity of the political centre, and announce that you will reacquire the shares at cost, compulsarily over time, with no interest or costs paid.

    And that you will fund the move by a special levy on the top 5%.

    • Alanz 2.1

      If the Centre is a delightfully comfortable place for political slumber, then David Snorer and his deafening silence is occupying very very good space.

    • tc 2.2

      Go all the way and renationalise the entire system, the lines businesses are just as bloated and inefficient, transpower also and all the retailers would get nationalised as the generators already own them.

      Power for the people, novel concept.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        Shit dude, you aren’t you scared of coming across all “hard left” and “heterodox”??? :twisted:

        The banking and financial transaction system is another area to look at.

      • Tim 2.2.2

        … and protect water before its commodified/commoditised.
        Oh, while we’re about it the oil cartel need a kick in the guts; ports/airports are effectively monopolies within a region, so they should all be/remain in public hands; and then the situation with supermarkets. The truly free-maketeer could hardly object could they!
        I can recall the Max Bradford reforms – all supposedly designed to bring us “fishinsies n fectibniss n grater comtishun – all equalling lower prices for the kinsooma”.
        How long will that take do you reckon? All this neo-lib agenda has had a fair suck of the sav AND IT HASN’T/WILL NOT work. The 1/4 century experiment has failed. Unfortunately that 1/4 century coincides with a slippery dick’s educashun and working life and so he knows nothing else.
        Double up ………. roll the dice! Scream like squealing piglets and shout “wasn’t me, wasn’t me!’ when it all starts turning to shit.

      • Don't worry be happy 2.2.3

        We, the people paid for it, the whole lot…lines, dams everything…. It’s ours. We don’t want to sell. What’s happening now is theft. Call the cops!

        What’s more, these thieves are ‘repeat offenders’.

        They have no remorse and no mercy. If they get away with this theft they’ll be back for more.

        I don’t see any hope of rehabilitation until they are in recovery from their addiction to money.

        In the meantime, for the good of our society and our democracy, the only thing to do is to throw the book at them and lock them up.

  3. geoff 3

    James H, are you saying that you think power prices could fall as a consequence of the sale of MRP?

    [no. the say of MRP is neither necessary nor sufficient to cause power prices to fall. In fact, without reform, it’ll cause prices to rise. But it does make reform more likely if and when there’s a new government. JH]

    • Jimmy 3.1

      Sounds great let the capatilists take all the risk and we can have lower prices.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        Smart capitalists take no risks

        They get tax payer bailouts if things go wrong or they are incompetent

    • Wayne 3.2

      Zero evidence of this. How can changing the share ownership in a company increase prices in a market where there are 7 serious players. It is just an assertion.

      • Colonial Viper 3.2.1

        I thought company directors have a responsibility maximise profits. Surely the way to do that with a captive market is to increase prices as far as you are able to.

        It is just an assertion.

        lolwut

        do you even pay your own powerbill?

        • infused 3.2.1.1

          And you wont be able to if there are 7 players. That’s the point.

          • Colonial Viper 3.2.1.1.1

            Why not? Each board of directors is looking to maximise their profits. Do you deny that? And the easiest way with a captive market is to inch up effective power prices month by month.

          • Murray Olsen 3.2.1.1.2

            I wonder how many slightly less than magnificient Tories will be on the boards of more than one of these seven. They don’t mind collectivism at all when it’s them collecting their forces to stiff us all. There might be seven players, but they’re all on the same team and play to the same rules. We just pay more.

      • Tim 3.2.2

        Now I know where the expression “Geeez Wayne!” comes from.

  4. Jimmie 4

    Two little problems with this doomsday scenario.

    1 As the government will still own 51% of MRP (and presumably will continue to receive 51% of all dividend payments) they would still be cutting off their nose to spite their faces if they enforced a lower profit regime on the power industry.

    2 It is looking likely that with MRP there will be close to 4-500,000 IPO investors who will take up the government’s offer to purchase shares in MRP. These 4-500,000 folk are also voters.

    Pissing off 500,000 voters by essentially devaluing their investment is akin to political suicide and would never happen.

    Also if the government wants to make its next MOM share offers to be successful then it won’t rock the investment boat at all.

    I think the left need to face up to the fact that the boat has sailed on opposition to partial asset sales.
    It was fought in 2011 and the left lost. All the time, money, and energy spent on this wasted cause should have been spent on attacking the government on more vulnerable areas.

    All the CIR and msm campaign has done is give free publicity to the partial floats and remind folks to save up for the shares.

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      All Labour need to do is to make a statement that it will renationalise the assets over time, at cost, using a levy on the wealthy, and you will find that the boat will come back real quick.

      Pissing off 500,000 voters by essentially devaluing their investment is akin to political suicide and would never happen.

      Meh.

      If investors want to take the risk/benefit gamble, knowing what might happen, it’s up to them. That’s capitalism for you.

      • infused 4.1.1

        Not going to happen.

        • Colonial Viper 4.1.1.1

          Oh I agree it’s unlikely. Labour would have to give up being a centrist party and get a left wing backbone.

          • infused 4.1.1.1.1

            NZ wouldn’t have the money for another 10+ years to do something like this anyway.

            • millsy 4.1.1.1.1.1

              Probably right there. But that’s what happen when you cut taxes for the wealthy by almost 50%.

    • uke 4.2

      Yes, but high power prices – with 49% profits going to private interests – are also going to piss off a large proportion of the electrorate (i.e. those too poor to become investors).

      So the issue will become political both ways.

    • Murray Olsen 4.3

      I doubt very much if there would be anywhere near half a million Kiwi voters with shares in MRP three years after the theft, or even one year. The shares will become concentrated in fewer hands, as is almost always the case. At a quick guess, I’d say 50k would be closer.
      My question is why it is seen as political suicide to piss of these people, but good management to piss of most of the population with increased power prices? Or even why letting a beneficiary paint their own roof is seen as political suicide?
      Something has gone very wrong with our country.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.3.1

        +1

        And, IMO, what’s gone wrong is the hard capitalism that’s been forced upon us over the last few decades and the kowtowing to the rich that the government (Labour and National led) do.

      • Colonial Viper 4.3.2

        You ain’t wrong there buddy.

    • Young Blood 4.4

      Jimmie nailed it

  5. Rogue Trooper 5

    “throw another Bill on the barbie”
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/8393529/Drought-could-cost-economy-1b
    (two economic commentators in The Dominion this week, Brian and Lyon; this economy is charcoal).

  6. Lanthanide 6

    It’s a pity the referendum still hasn’t been held. If it had been, the Left would have a good basis as to why it would run with this policy.

    At the moment, running this policy would get the left tarred as “sore losers” by National, and probably lots of other good sound-bites that the public lap up and the media would repeat ad-nauseum.

    So I guess they could couch it in those terms: if 67% or more of people reject asset sales in the referendum, then they will run with this policy. This would give everyone a reason to vote in the referendum, increasing the turn out and giving National a hard time in ignoring it, while also tanking the share price in the short term.

    • Lanthanide 6.1

      An interesting quirk in this is that National might try to argue that the referendum was just about whether you agreed with asset sales or not and not whether the Left should implement this policy. But that would directly mirror the election that National like to claim as a “mandate” for why they should sell assets.

  7. Poission 7

    The problematic issue is that the entrenched oligopolies,are using book accounting to force (upwards ) the price returns ie ROI.

    This is the return not on that actual investment, but on the revalued assets returns a problematic area in natural monopolies such has airports,hydro stations etc.

    Here the monopolies such as airports get to screw the consumers and users, and use their investment diversification to not pay tax for example wellington airport has not paid any tax since 2007.

    Here is a good example for an assets tax

  8. RedBaron 8

    Well I think future governments should look at some bankster tricks.

    Firstly – indicate that there is an intent to take power back into full government ownership
    Then when the time comes:
    Issue perpetual bonds to the shareholders secured against the power company – make them totally subordinated so that any paying them back goes to the total end of the queue – just as shareholders are. Also means that you are not issuing govt stock.

    Make repayment conditional on all other debt having been repayed first
    Make the interest rate tied to the profit of the current year or the average of the previous six years whichever is the lessor. Leaves a ticking time bomb should a government be voted out.

    Drop the power prices and make no profit , therefore value of bonds drop substantially.

    Plan A Buy the bonds back – the nice approach at least a holder gets some money.

    Plan B Borrow up large from banks against the remaining assets, give money to the government by way of dividend. Then strip the assets out of the company paying back the banks as this is done. Leave for a bit then wind up the company and oh shucks sorry nothing left for the bondholders. Pleanty of templates for this.

  9. erentz 9

    Once sold I don’t think it will make sense to buy back. The focus first and foremost has to be on preventing sales and winning next year. If labour/greens don’t win next year NZ its all moot because there wont be much of a country worth saving after a third national term. If they do win and we get away with national only selling MRP before the next election I will be happy. The course of action to take then is merge the remaining generation assets. Start regulating the market more strictly. And not buy back the existing generators, but instead build new generating assets. The government generators will be able to out-compete the private ones, overtime it’s share of the generating capacity will increase and the private generators will be marinalised and less able to control the market (which we will have more tightly regulated anyway). In the future we can consider picking the bones off the private generators. Fleece them for their good assets like the dams.

    • Murray Olsen 9.1

      An interesting idea, but can new generating stations be built without significant environmental damage? I suspect that the dams already in existence are in the most efficient places, and other generating methods are still not totally mature. It’d be great if a government could build solar or wind generating capacity and undercut the present companies, but I don’t think we have the technology yet.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1

        An interesting idea, but can new generating stations be built without significant environmental damage?

        Wind power situated offshore. They’re built in existing infrastructure on land and then floated out to location. Environmental damage will be minimal and, on top of that, the area where they’re placed will act as an artificial reef and thus a breeding ground for fish. One that can’t be fished because trawlers and submarine cables just don’t mix.

        It’d be great if a government could build solar or wind generating capacity and undercut the present companies, but I don’t think we have the technology yet.

        I really don’t think that’s a problem

        • infused 9.1.1.1

          Wind power doesn’t work.

          Dams are expensive and fuck the environment.

          • millsy 9.1.1.1.1

            Thought you enjoyed fucking the environment, infused.

          • The Al1en 9.1.1.1.2

            “Wind power doesn’t work.”

            Don’t be stupid, of course it works.
            The only objection are from nimbys like that ex rugby head from the south island and retards.

            Give me a thousand wind turbines over a coal fired or nuke power station any day.

            • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.1.2.1

              And considering that I said to build them offshore even nimbyism doesn’t apply (although I’m sure that some of the fishing fleets will complain).

          • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1.1.3

            Wind power doesn’t work.

            [citation needed]

            • Colonial Viper 9.1.1.1.3.1

              Given that wind power provides NZ with roughly 170,000 MWhrs of electricity a month, infused has a weird concept of “doesn’t work”

    • AsleepWhileWalking 9.2

      I so want that to be the reality…but since when could SOE’s successfully outperform private interests?

      The best outcome will always be if it were never sold in the first place.

      Good to see Mai Chen talk about there possibly being more challenges to asset sales http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10869635

      If, in putting the next SOE on the block, whether Genesis or Meridian Energy, the Crown confuses the specific approval with its general obligations, and fails to properly consult or otherwise have regard to Treaty principles in each particular case, then there is a real risk of each of the further share offers being open to similar challenges. This is particularly so if the next SOE had significantly different interests from Mighty River Power and the Crown’s promises regarding water reform do not apply. Hopefully, that analysis is being done now for Genesis and Meridian Energy.

      • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1

        I so want that to be the reality…but since when could SOE’s successfully outperform private interests?

        Since forever. It’s only an hypothesis that private does better and one that’s not backed up by the evidence.

          • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1.1

            I dunno, was the USSR an SOE of some kind?

          • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1.1.2

            No. Totalitarian states generally do badly because of the amount of graft and nepotism. Exactly with what’s wrong with dictatorial entities such as a capitalist business.

          • Poission 9.2.1.1.3

            Following privatization of strategic assets such as energy Russia went broke,following renationalisation of majority stakes,the strategic energy assets have allowed Russia to become the least indebted of the G8 nations.

            • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1.3.1

              Funny how stopping foreign owned wealth pumps sucking a country dry can be helpful for the economy.

              have allowed Russia to become the least indebted of the G8 nations.

              Russia is also 4th in the world in terms of foreign currency reserves: over half a trillion USD worth.

              Putin’s nationalisation of oil assets has also allowed Russia to acquire an additional 570 tonnes of gold reserves in the last 14 years.

              • Poission

                It would be interesting to find out what difference to the NZ economy there would have been if a lesser portion of the nz super fund had been used in portfolios and the investment had been into Kiwibank

                • Colonial Viper

                  Yep. And it wouldn’t take much to bring tens of thousands of very talented Kiwis with global networks and international experience back home to work on it.

            • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1.1.3.2

              And NZ didn’t do much better:

              Impact on debt (assuming 6% cumulative interest on government debt) ( nominal millions)
              Net increase in debt: 25557

              Losing ~$25b isn’t doing the country any favours.

          • millsy 9.2.1.1.4

            I get tired of the right constantly using the USSR as a stick to beat the left with. Especially seeing as a) the left (except perhaps for John Minto and Hone H) have never advocated whole sale nationalization and b) Western capitalist nations have had a very high level of public ownership of utilities (Google “Tennesee Valley Authority” and “LA Water and Power” and “US Army Corps of Engineers”).

            • Colonial Viper 9.2.1.1.4.1

              Bank of North Dakota

            • Draco T Bastard 9.2.1.1.4.2

              It shows their ignorance in numerous ways:
              1.) The USSR wasn’t communist but totalitarian and run on a hierarchical model which benefitted a few and thus is closely related to capitalism
              2.) Most of the great achievements by the “capitalist” countries such as landing on the moon was done by government and not private enterprise
              3.) The environmental damage done in the “communist” countries is pretty much the same as that done in the capitalist ones and for the same reason – unaccountable management looking for a cheap way to get rid of the waste.

              • Draco T Bastard

                3a.) Unaccountable management looking for a cheap way to get at resources.

  10. Nick K 10

    I am just trying to recall the percentage amount power prices rose in the 9 years of Helengrad…..70% I think. And I’m also trying to recall how much in dividends Michael Cullen banked from excessive profits of said state owned companies during the same period…..> $1Billion I think.

    • saarbo 10.1

      Yes, Cullen, Helen and Hodgson were comfortable letting Max Bradfords screwy market based electricity model lead to increases in electricity prices. In the early 2000’s when there were droughts in the south island we saw wholesale electricity prices at times increase by 1000%.

      If low lake levels are combined with a maintenance shut on particular power stations, wholesale prices can rocket, it was bloody difficult to understand how electricity prices were determined….their didnt seem to be any logic.

      But this isnt going to change if these assets are sold, in fact it will make the situation a lot worse as the government wont have the power to fix the pricing issues.

      I agree with CV on comment 2, Labour need to show some courage and announce a brave policy to buy back any shares in electricity companies (at cost). Make the announcement now.

      • Lanthanide 10.1.1

        “But this isnt going to change if these assets are sold, in fact it will make the situation a lot worse as the government wont have the power to fix the pricing issues.”

        Not really. As 51% owner, the government can still ‘call the shots’ if they want to. Or they can just legislate, which would equally affect all power businesses including the already privitised ones.

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1

          Except for the part where the National Government has reassured investors that it will be a ‘silent’ partner ceeding effective control of the Board to the minority shareholders.

    • Colonial Viper 10.2

      9 years of Helengrad

      As opposed to 5 years Keystone Cops?

  11. Dv 11

    Interesting comments by Bernard Hickey

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10870242

    He compares the ‘whiff of greed and intoxication’ to the 1986 share market frenzy

    He is also critical of the use of Forsyth Barr in light of their ‘misleading and deceptive’ marketing of the Credit Sailles scam.

    He makes the point that if the Mixed Ownership model is to win back the confidence of older generation then Govt should remove Forsyth Barr and Neil Parvour-Smith should resign as a director of the NZX.

    ADD to the relevation that Mighty River has a loss making investment in Chile

    Mighty River admits risk
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10870276

    ADD that the principals of MR are playing silly buggers with the select committee.

    AND there is a bunch of fine print on the bottom of the MR add that I cant read.

    Feels like a scam??

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      It’s always been a scam. Privatisation always leaves the community worse off.

    • Nick K 11.2

      Good articles. All grist for the informed choice mill. Many of those who have pre-registered won’t but any.

    • Poission 11.3

      Partying like it is 2006 or 1986 or 1999 will just give us another hangover.

      Hmm abit of Kipling perhaps

      Then the Gods of the Market tumbled, and their smooth-tongued wizards withdrew
      And the hearts of the meanest were humbled and began to believe it was true
      That All is not Gold that Glitters, and Two and Two make Four
      And the Gods of the Copybook Headings limped up to explain it once more.

      As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man
      There are only four things certain since Social Progress began.
      That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mire,
      And the burnt Fool’s bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire;

  12. RedBaronCV 12

    Anybody investing should also remember how efficent private companies are at getting rid of customers.
    The row over directors fees at Contact Energy cost it some 47,000 customers who voted with their feet.

  13. I think Shearer’s failure to pick up the challenge to buy back MRP at cost tells us where he and the current Caucus majority will go.
    He’s more interested in sucking up to the mum and dad gold diggers who are flocking to clip the ticked of monopoly profits.
    This is like queue jumpers who abandon any social ethics to put No 1 first. It reminds me of the Holland Govt selling state housing to tout private property ownership to Labour voters.
    He is saying its better for Labour to appeal to greedy parasites who want to get windfall profits from undervalued monopolies in renewable energy at the expense of consumers and the sustainability of the economy than to put up a fight for public ownership.
    These assets only exist because the state build them. The private sector has benefited from generations of cheap energy. Not content with that it wants to strip the life out of them.
    A Labour Govt that cannot take a stand on this if fucked. Better it didnt exist and cleared the decks now for a new workers party that makes no bones about ‘taking’ MRP back.
    If Shearer can’t see that this is a ‘make or break’ principle for the left then he’s ideologically right by default and the sooner he is made to resign and go back to pimping mercenaries in Africa the better.

    • RedBaronCV 13.1

      I agree Red Rattler. The dead silence from Labour is demoralising. I know that the Nacts are going to leave nothing in the purse to spend and massive borrowings for the next government.

      Still a buy back is possible if shares are changed for totally subordinated debt issued by MRP.Any interest or retiring of that debt would only be after everything else had been paid – tough if that is worthless.

      • Colonial Viper 13.1.1

        I know that the Nacts are going to leave nothing in the purse to spend and massive borrowings for the next government.

        Then expect Labour, after winning, to come out with a rather orthodox “socially balanced and fiscally responsible” budget in 2015 i.e. austerity light.

    • Colonial Viper 13.2

      Yes, Labour is a centrist party, sympathetic to free market approaches and leaning towards the upper middle class.

      nb in terms of future options, it can’t just be a new “workers” party ie it must represent and mobilise the underclasses and otherwise disenfranchised, but you know this. I just raise it for clarity.

  14. Wayne 14

    Labour is not the Alliance, which many of the posters on this site used to be members or supporters of. The inheritors of the Alliance in Parliament today are the Greens. From what I can see that is where most posters on this site are more ideologically attuned to.

    So you are wasting your time if you think you can change Labour to be the equivalent of the Alliance.

    The Labour Caucus did not choose David Shearer to be the inheritor of Jim Anderton’s mantle, so stop wasting your time railing against Labour not being left enough. There is another Party in Parliament that meets this need.

    By the way as Gaynor’s article in the Saturday Herald showed, Labor in Queensland sold a partial stake in Queensland Rail, so MOM seems to sit OK with many Labor Govts.

    The left has now lost this debate, even if the referendum goes through. Better to focus on things that could be future policy. For instance what about a more creative approach for the Super Fund to drive new economic initiatives for New Zealand. And no, using it to buy back the MOM investors does not count. That will not create nothing new.

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      “Labour is not the Alliance”

      Labour never was the Alliance, and currently it’s not Labour either.

      Wow Labor Queensland ignored not only their own election policies, but also massive union and popular opinion against selling state assets and you see that as some kind of justification?

      All you are pointing out is that Labour has lost it’s historical mandate and mission, and is now a centrist party sympathetic to free market approaches, and leaning towards the interests of the upper middle class.

    • millsy 14.2

      So you thnk Labour should be ‘National-lite’ then?

      I dont know about you, but I reckon that’s bullshit.

      And the Labor parties in Aus stopped being left about 20-30 years ago.

    • Colonial Viper 14.3

      a more creative approach for the Super Fund to drive new economic initiatives for New Zealand. And no, using it to buy back the MOM investors does not count. That will not create nothing new.

      But that’s not the point is it? The Govt (not the super fund) reacquiring the shares at cost returns the assets to public ownership.

      IE it nationalises the assets.

      • burt 14.3.1

        Muldoon would have been proud of you CV

        • Colonial Viper 14.3.1.1

          Muldoon built assets

          Key is selling them off for cheap as chips.

          No similarities there.

          • burt 14.3.1.1.1

            Nationalise, regulate, confiscate… You’re political compass is perfectly aligned with the socialist (dictatorship) of lefty Muldoon.

            • Colonial Viper 14.3.1.1.1.1

              But how else can you reverse asset theft from the nation by privateers?

            • felixviper 14.3.1.1.1.2

              Hi burt. Last time you trotted out this slogan I asked you what Muldoon nationalised.

              You never answered. Care to this time?

    • Draco T Bastard 14.4

      Amazingly enough, I actually agree with Wayne on most of that.

      That will not create nothing new.

      Neither will selling them. In fact, the only thing that selling them does is increase the number of ticket clippers and dead weight loss.

  15. burt 15

    Right people lets be clear: Don’t think about investing your own money in these companies as the only thing that makes them viable is that they over charge…..

    OK, lets have them publically owned using other peoples money so that we don’t need to be concerned that the the only thing that makes them viable is that they over charge ….

    Mega fail James ….

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      It’s not “other peoples money”…all NZ legal tender is Government authorised. There is no other kind.

      If you followed your reasoning, you have to accept that these power generators were built with many other NZ’ers monies.

      So hands off!!!!

  16. Ad 16

    Any future progressive government after Key’s government will have to figure out that in the whole electricity and infrastructure space, regulators will have more power than shareholders about the direction of companies.

    My current suggestions:
    1. Aggregate remaining public capital:
    -The EQC, ACC, and NZSuper funds into a single fund with specific funding targets and profiles.

    2. Pull scrutiny into power:
    – Shift COMU from Treasury into DPMC, and
    – Enable direct shareholder representation on the Boards of the entities eg Ministers (who are not Energy portfolio holders) can go on Boards.
    – Chairs only appointed by Cabinet as a whole, and must front to Select Committee
    – Minimum % of women and Maori on the Board
    – Must hold full Shareholder meeting for any ‘significant’ asset or share sale

    3. Cap Pay
    – The Majority shareholder says: no bonuses, public sector and SOE CEO’s get no more than a Minister’s salary

    4. Regulate them hard
    – Electricity Commission must hold Board meetings in public and publish minutes
    – Electricity Commission requires all company Asset Management Plans to be supplied for scrutiny, and made public
    – Commission required to rule on any price rice 5% above inflation p.a.

    5. Climate Mitigation
    – All electricity generators must show how they will ameliorate climate change, and be given 5% corporate tax cut for achieving targets.. Could be more dams for irrigation and co-generation, or more wind farms versus thermal, over to them to prove it

    6. Adopt the Greenpeace 100% Renewable Generation target
    – Set annual milestones to achieve it

    None of the above would require buying back any shares at all.

    All would help Labour and Greens govern in a world in which the governing force of the state has been drastically weakened.

    A progressive coalition would need to be a whip-smart investor if that investor is to claw back some of the agency it has lost through asset sales, and form policy now to make the tools to do it.

    • Rogue Trooper 16.1

      some “wish-ful” thinking

    • Colonial Viper 16.2

      Any particular reason why you wouldn’t reacquire shares in the assets, in addition to the above?

      By the way, you don’t even really have to reacquire shares. Just get MRP to issue 1,000,000 new shares p.a. to the government and dilute the sons of bitches down.

      No cost to the tax payer.

      • Ad 16.2.1

        I was trying to think through the kinds of options available to Labour and the Greens since they have largely ruled out buying the shares back. The point is to think about the first Cabinet meeting December 2014: from their published policy prescriptions, what options are left to them.

        Don’t think a responsible majority shareholder would be so stupid as to spite itself let alone its own citizens doing what you proposed.

        • Colonial Viper 16.2.1.1

          Don’t think a responsible majority shareholder would be so stupid as to spite itself let alone its own citizens doing what you proposed.

          How would it spite itself? By degrading the market value and financial rating of the shares?

          That my friend, is the bloody point!!!

          • Ad 16.2.1.1.1

            I can see that you are not thinking fro the point of view of a shareholder but rather as one who wishes to see the capitalist system destroyed. Fair enough, if you are not the Government.

            But neither Labour nor the Greens propose to do that. Why not take us through the steps you see would happen to achieve your goal with MRP, and what the steps the media, rating agencies, stock exchange, and the citizen shareholders might take as a result.

            And then take us through what the Government – made up of who you have in those parties now – would do.

            And then rack that mess up with what I propose, which taken together would do the same thing. At zero cost.

            • Colonial Viper 16.2.1.1.1.1

              But neither Labour nor the Greens propose to do what you suggest either? Note: I’m not trying to “destroy” the capitalist system, I’m merely suggesting the use of common capitalist mechanisms perfected by hostile leveraged buy out firms (like KKR) in the 1980’s and 1990’s.

              But this time, in favour of the government and the citizens, as opposed to on behalf of a corporate raider on hedge fund.

              Remember, the name of the game is to attempt to stop the sales from proceeding.

              And then rack that mess up with what I propose, which taken together would do the same thing. At zero cost.

              No, your method is good, but it won’t stop the privatisation of the assets.

              A lighter method which might achieve the same result would be to harden up, and then announce some of your steps in advance. Pay caps, super profit taxes, and active Government representation on the boards for instance. Making the firms subject to OIA and Select Committee inquiry.

              and what the steps the media, rating agencies, stock exchange, and the citizen shareholders might take as a result.

              Yes, the classes with the most power in our capitalist society are going to push back. Without being too cynical, that might suggest that you are doing something correct.

              • Ad

                Proposing some of my list beforehand was my point: that Government now needs to think like a shareholder rather than as a sovereign government. As we have seen, the corporatised model has enabled Solid Energy to proceed unchecked to its own near-destruction despite 100% public ownership. This model is staying in New Zealand according to every current parliamentary party bar ACT.

                What a new progressive government would want to achieve in its first term is the greatest policy gains for the least political “goodwill” expenditure. So no, I would not recommend anything like Government behaving like a “corporate raider or hedge fund”.

                CV you have to be careful that your solutions are not simply a hard Left mirrored inverse of capitalisms’ creative destruction that got the world into the mess we are in after 2007. And prior crises.

                What the state now needs to get its head into is behaving like the most effective shareholder it can. That means not screwing its own share price and those of its citizen investors.

                I wish it were not so, but renationalistaion is never going to happen. Full sovereignty is gone. As under Labour a generation ago, when those shares are gone they are gone.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Ad, the capitalism model is going to fail in the next 10-15 years regardless of what we do or don’t do. For many many people in the developed world it has already failed. And this will accelerate once we get a renewed round of currency failures and debt defaults.

                  The task this nation has in front of it IMO is to ensure that when it fails, we are buffered from the neo-feudalism and other nasty things which are likely to arise.

                  That means not screwing its own share price and those of its citizen investors.

                  Sure, being a long-time operator in capitalist environments I get what you are saying here.

                  The larger context however is that the only real important thing from those assets is electricity. Not their nominal market cap.

  17. Ed 17

    The court found that there is a legitimate treaty claim relating to loss of rights to be involved in the management of the water being used by Mighty River. It would be unfair for this not to be paid for by all shareholders – if met only by the crown this would be a windfall profit to private shareholders in comparison to the government shareholder. All Labour needs do is indicate that it would look to treaty claims being paid for by any companies involved in gaining profits from management of water . . .

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  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3)
    I rise to give this speech on behalf of Denise Roche, who handles the gambling portfolio for the Green Party. This bill deals with class 4 gambling—pokies in pubs and clubs—and it is the result of changes that were suggested...
    Greens
  • Kevin Hague speaks on the Health (Protection) Amendment Bill
    I would like to start off where the previous speaker left off, on the issue of balancing rights or balancing harms. All law is in some way a restriction of personal liberty. That is the point of law. When we...
    Greens
  • Joyce backs away from yet another target
    Steven Joyce has backed away from two targets in two days, refusing to acknowledge that his Government has an unambitious aim to get unemployment down to 4 per cent in 11 years’ time, says Labour Associate Finance spokesperson David Clark....
    Labour
  • Pacific peoples incomes and jobs falling under National
    The Minister of Pacific Peoples is attempting to bury the ugly facts of Pacific unemployment and income levels worsening since National took office in 2008, said Labour’s Pacific Affairs spokesperson, Su’a William Sio. “If the Minister doesn’t acknowledge how bad...
    Labour
  • Using State Spies to attack political opponents – why the SIS are gaining...
    National will only be able to get away with what is being revelled by the IGIS report into the Secret Intelligence Service if we, the people of NZ, let them. And. We. Should. Not. Let. Them. State spies editing intelligence...
    The Daily Blog
  • Anti-Choice Myth-Busting
    Voice for Life issued a press release last week claiming that those of us campaigning for the decriminalisation of abortion in NZ are, among other things, using Nazi propaganda tactics (sigh…) to lie to you about the illegal status of abortion...
    The Daily Blog
  • Judith Collins – the Gift that keeps Giving to the Opposition?
    . . From a news report; Ms Collins resigned before the election after being accused of working with the Whale Oil blog after emails were released suggesting she was “gunning” for former director of the Serious Fraud Office, Adam Feeley,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Annette King? Annette King?? Surely not Annette King!
    I’m not often surprised at the goings on in the Labour Party but I was gobsmacked to see Andrew Little has appointed Annette King as Deputy Leader of the parliamentary Labour Party. I had idly assumed the role would go to Adhern...
    The Daily Blog
  • New Shadow Cabinet – Little does more in 6 days than Goff, Shearer & ...
    New Zealanders do not respect intelligence, they respect confidence. Cunliffe beat Key in the debates, but it didn’t matter because NZers don’t respect the debate, they respect the tone. Our anti-intellecuatlism runs deeper than most with our reverse-egalitarianism. The chip...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves
      This weeks Waatea news column – The myths white people tell themselves...
    The Daily Blog
  • The irony of backlash to petrol stations charging workers for stolen petrol
    You have to laugh at NZers sometimes. you really do. The outrage that has been sparked by news that workers at petrol stations are charged for stolen petrol is one of those perfect examples of a delicious irony most NZers...
    The Daily Blog
  • A Dishonest “Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill”
    Wouldn’t you think a Countering Terrorist Fighters Bill would actually mention “terrorist fighters” in its text? The Bill, as released yesterday, does not. It’s simply another generalised counter-terrorism exercise giving extra surveillance powers to the Security Intelligence Service and enabling...
    The Daily Blog
  • How biased is the media? A Patrick Gower case study
    . . . Isn’t it interesting that Patrick Gower – who made his partisan feelings crystal clear on Twitter on 29 May with this extraordinary outburst;  “Lalia Harré – you make me feel sick by how you are rorting MMP...
    The Daily Blog
  • The C Word
    It isn’t even December but the decorations are up and the ads are on the telly. I am a genuine Grinch come this time of year, so when the conversation at work turned to everyone’s holidays plans I may have...
    The Daily Blog
  • Honouring the Ampatuan massacre victims as fight for justice goes on
    A grim reminder of the Maguindanao, or Ampatuan, massacre on 23 November 2014. Photo: DanRogayan A TOP Filipino investigative journalist will be speaking about the “worst attack” on journalists in history and her country’s culture of impunity in a keynote...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – what are they afraid of: the erosion of democ...
    Today the Hamilton City Council has put on a big party to celebrate the 150th anniversary of European colonisation of the area.  There have been a series of events during the year to mark this event, including a civic ceremony. ...
    The Daily Blog
  • #JohnKeyHistory
    John Key has done it again. This week our lovely Prime Minister has showed us how little he knows about the history of the country he is supposed to be running. Apparently “New Zealand was settled peacefully”. Was it really?...
    The Daily Blog
  • G20 growth targets and growth model offer more problems than they solve
    At the recent G20 in Brisbane, member countries agreed to accelerate growth to an additional 2% on top of current trajectories. But ongoing public sector cuts, asset sales, and reducing workers’ rights indicate that at least part of the growth...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Bill Courtney – Charter Schools: The Shroud of Secrecy Contin...
    The Ministry of Education yesterday released another batch of information relating to the five existing charter schools and the four new ones proposed for opening in 2015. As we have seen before, the release of such information, often requested under...
    The Daily Blog
  • EXCLUSIVE: Campaign reflection, Laila Harré reaching out for radical minds
    Today I’ve announced that I will be stepping down from the Internet Party leadership in December. This will happen once options for the future have been developed for discussion and decision among members. My absolute focus in this election was...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Ebola crisis, capitalism and the Cuban medical revolution
    “Ebola emerged nearly 40 years ago. Why are clinicians still empty-handed, with no vaccines and no cure? Because Ebola has been, historically, geographically confined to poor African nations. The R&D incentive is virtually non-existent. A profit-driven industry does not invest...
    The Daily Blog
  • MEDIA WATCH: TVNZ Reveals Insane Deadlines For Māori and Pacific Island Pr...
    Last Tuesday, November 18th, TVNZ requested proposals from producers for the four Māori and Pacific Island programmes they will no longer be making in-house. Marae, Waka Huia, Fresh and Tagata Pasifika will keep their existing names, existing formats and existing...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Daily Blog Breakfast Club Ep. 1
    TDB Video, Live from Verona Cafe on K-Rd, Auckland – a weekly current affairs show with TDB Editor Martyn Bradbury. This week’s panel: Chris Trotter & Selwyn Manning.The issues: 1 – What now for the New Labour leader? 2 –...
    The Daily Blog
  • Performance-demonstration at Auckland’s High Court to demand justice for ...
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    The Daily Blog
  • IES vote may weaken defense of public education
    PPTA announced today that secondary teachers have voted to include the IES (Investing in Education Success) as a variation to their collective employment agreement with the government. At one level it’s an understandable decision by PPTA members because through engaging in a consultation...
    The Daily Blog
  • NZ History lesson on Planet Key – the lies white people tell themselves
    John Key’s bizarre claims about our ‘peaceful history’ comes across like the apartheid history of South Africa where white people discovered Africa first… New Zealand ‘settled peacefully’ – PM New Zealand was “settled peacefully” by the British, the prime minister...
    The Daily Blog
  • Universal Basic Income and Labour Policy
    On Radio New Zealand’s None-to-Noon on Wednesday (19 November), new Labour leader Andrew Little intimated that he would like to put Universal Basic Income (UBI) on his policy agenda (What policy changes will Andrew Little usher in?) Predictably Kathryn Ryan, despite being...
    The Daily Blog
  • The New Notes : They Ain’t Mint
    Hulk Queen Angry. Hulk Queen smash.   Yesterday, the Reserve Bank announced its new designs for our banknotes. Now, I’ve historically been pretty sketch about this entire process; variously feeling affronted that the government could find eighty million dollars to fund a...
    The Daily Blog
  • MSM under-mining of new Labour Leader already begun?
    . . It did not take long. In fact, on the same day that Andrew Little won the Labour leadership*, the first media reporter was already asking if he would be stepping down  if Labour failed to lift in the...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – invisible disability voices
    Today I am ranting. The Disability Advisory Group has been announced by Auckland Council. This is the body that represents the interests and views of people with disabilities in Auckland. Whilst I would not have applied this time as I...
    The Daily Blog
  • Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little
    Jeremy Wells’ Mike Hosking rant on Radio Hauraki: Today, Andrew Little...
    The Daily Blog
  • Why labelling Little as a ‘Unionist’ is a joke and how he beats Key in ...
    The line being used to attack Andrew Little as a ‘Unionist’ is just an absurd joke, and it comes from people who clearly don’t understand the modern NZ Union movement. Andrew ran the EPM Bloody U, they are easily one...
    The Daily Blog
  • 5AA Australia – Labour’s New Leader + China’s President In New Zealan...
    Recorded on 20/11/14 – Captured Live on Ustream.tv. 5AA’s Peter Godfrey and Selwyn Manning.ISSUE ONE: The New Zealand Labour Party has elected its new leader, the vote going to a third round after no clear outright winner was found in...
    The Daily Blog
  • Did Roger Sutton think he was running the Rock Radio Station?
    Visible G-String Fridays? Full body hugs? Jokes about who you would and wouldn’t have sex with? Honey? Sweety? It’s like Roger thought he was running the Rock Radio Station, not a Government Public Service department set up to rebuild a...
    The Daily Blog
  • US Politics
      US Politics...
    The Daily Blog
  • Amnesty International – The conversation that needs to be had with China
    Caption: Police officer watching Hong Kong pro-democracy march, 01 July 2014 © Amnesty International    Yesterday’s edition of The New Zealand Herald features an open letter to all New Zealander’s from Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China. Along...
    The Daily Blog
  • GUEST BLOG: Patrick O’Dea – “Liar”
    LIAR! ‘Privatised social housing to benefit tenants’ English “Housing Corp was a poor performer and about a third of its housing stock was the wrong size, in poor condition and in the wrong place. That stock was worth about $5...
    The Daily Blog
  • Too Close For Comfort: Reflections on Andrew Little’s narrow victory over...
    THE TRAGIC SCREENSHOT of “Gracinda” in defeat bears eloquent testimony to the bitter disappointment of the Grant Robertson-led faction of the Labour Party. And, yes, ‘Party’ is the right word. The Robertson machine has now extended its influence well beyond...
    The Daily Blog
  • How to defeat child poverty
      How to defeat child poverty...
    The Daily Blog
  • Little’s Shadow Cabinet
    Now the horror of trying to pacify the factions begins. The only thing Little’s new shadow cabinet must do is create the pretence of unity. The reason voters didn’t flock to Labour wasn’t the bloody CGT or Superannuation, it was...
    The Daily Blog
  • A pilgrimage with my sister – Rethink the System
    We’ve both wanted to do a pilgrimage for many years. But, unlike many modern pilgrims, we wanted to be pilgirms in our own country and get closer to our communities, rather than seek greater distance from them. We are both...
    The Daily Blog
  • Lack of policy ambition is Andrew Little’s main problem
    I’ve met Andrew Little a few times and he’s a pleasant man who will make a reasonable job leading what the Labour Party has become in recent decades. He will preside over a much less divided caucus and will be...
    The Daily Blog
  • Journos, film makers, media freedom advocates join Asia-Pacific political j...
    A candlelight vigil for the 58 victims of the 2009 Maguindanao massacre – 32 of them media people. Still no justice for them today. Renowned investigative journalists, film makers, academics and media freedom campaigners from across the Asia-Pacific region will...
    The Daily Blog
  • And the new Labour Leader is ZZZZZZZZZZ
    The victory lap by Caucus over the members choice of Cunliffe has ended and the new leader of the Labour Party is Andrew Little. Yawn. The dullness and caution of the latest Leadership race will be served well by Andrew,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Allow the Facts to Get in the Way of the Neolib Stories
    One of the weaknesses of the political left in New Zealand over the last 30 years has been to allow the neoliberal storytellers to get away with lots of fibs and half-fibs. On TVNZ’s Q+A on 16 November, in a...
    The Daily Blog
  • Defending The Boomers: A Response to Chloe King
    THE BABY-BOOM GENERATION (49-68 year-olds) currently numbers just under a quarter of New Zealand’s population. Even so, there is a pervasive notion that the generation of New Zealanders born between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s exercises...
    The Daily Blog
  • This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty...
      This weeks Waatea news column – Waitangi Tribunal ruling enshrines Treaty as a living document...
    The Daily Blog
  • Key now says SAS will be needed to protect ‘trainers’ behind the wire
    Well, well, well. What do we have here? Government could send SAS to Iraq New Zealand’s elite Special Air Service (SAS) could be deployed to Iraq to protect Kiwi troops sent to train local forces. Prime Minister John Key confirmed...
    The Daily Blog
  • Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)
    Do You Want to Build a Meth Lab? (Frozen x Breaking Bad Parody)...
    The Daily Blog
  • Soft soap for the rich – harsh taxes for the poor
    It’s no surprise to see New Zealand has one of the world’s lowest tax rates for the rich and the superrich. A survey by the global accounting network UHY shows New Zealand’s highest tax rates are lower than even Australia,...
    The Daily Blog
  • Phillip Smith and the rehabilitation process
    The dominant media narrative in horrible murder cases is that the perpetrator is unlikely ever to be rehabilitated. When it appears the offender may get parole the media turns first to family members of the victim who commonly (and understandably)...
    The Daily Blog
  • The Nation review: Finlayson’s terrifying definition of who is on terror ...
    Terrifying Nation today on TV3. Chris Finlayson is on justifying the Government’s Muslim fear mongering and extension of even more surveillance powers. It was jaw dropping. Finlayson says ‘alienated people with a chip on their shoulder’ is the threshold to get...
    The Daily Blog
  • A brief word on The Block NZ
    Is it just me or did The Block manage to sum up everything that is wrong about our culture and economy? Fetishised property speculation as mass entertainment in a country of homelessness & poverty. I wonder if State House tenants...
    The Daily Blog
  • Waitangi Tribunal ruling
    That spluttering choking sound of a thousand rednecks being informed Maori still have sovereignty is a hilarious cacophony of stupid… Crown still in charge: Minister Chris Finlayson on Waitangi Treaty ruling The Waitangi Tribunal’s finding that Maori chiefs who signed...
    The Daily Blog
  • Kiwis Embrace the Spirit of Giving This Christmas
    Auckland, New Zealand – November 25, 2014 – Kiwis are embracing the spirit of giving this Christmas, with new figures revealing that a majority of us will be looking to purchase gifts for six or more people this festive season....
    Scoop politics
  • The writing’s on the wall in aged care
    The writing’s on the wall in aged care, so let’s get on with it....
    Scoop politics
  • Report on release of NZSIS information to Cameron Slater
    The inquiry found the NZSIS released incomplete, inaccurate and misleading information in response to Mr Slater’s request, and provided some of the same incorrect information to the Prime Minister and the Prime Minister’s Office....
    Scoop politics
  • New Zealand a world leader in animal welfare
    The Animal Protection Index , which ranks 50countries across the world on their animal welfare standards, places New Zealand (along with the United Kingdom, Austria and Switzerland)in first place....
    Scoop politics
  • Corrections Review of Phillip Smith’s Illegal Departure
    Corrections Chief Executive Ray Smith has made public a summary of the findings of the review into the illegal departure from New Zealand of prisoner Phillip Smith during a temporary release....
    Scoop politics
  • Proposal Would Ensure Mental Health Transparency: SST
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is once again calling for reform of the insanity defence following revelations over the weekend that mass murderer Stephen Anderson is tutoring at a Wellington art school. Anderson was acquitted of six murders in 1997 by...
    Scoop politics
  • The Warehouse Group praised for removing Grand Theft Auto V
    The decision by New Zealand’s largest retailer The Warehouse Group (TW Group), to withdraw stocks of the latest version of Grand Theft Auto V (GTA V) and other R18 games, has been praised by advocacy group Stop Demand Foundation....
    Scoop politics
  • The Warehouse & Noel Leeming Praised for Principled Stand
    Family First NZ is congratulating The Warehouse and Noel Leeming for reinforcing their ‘family-friendly values’ by removing R18 games and DVD’s from its shelves, and is calling on other retailers including JB Hi-Fi, Harvey Norman and Dick Smith...
    Scoop politics
  • PM’s Post-Cab on Iain Rennie, China and the Smith Inquiry
    In a press conference held today in Wellington, Prime Minister John Key answered questions regarding Iain Rennie’s potential resignation, the independent inquiry into the Smith/Traynor escape, and recent trade deals with China....
    Scoop politics
  • Safety Week 2014 focused on a safe summer
    ACC’s annual Safety Week kicks off today. With summer just around the corner, Safety Week this year is focusing on keeping safe when playing sport, enjoying recreational activities or drinking alcohol....
    Scoop politics
  • Safety focus during motorcycle month
    As the Central District Police annual Month of Motorcycles campaign cruises into its second week, the results so far have been positive with many motorcyclists playing their part to keep our roads safe....
    Scoop politics
  • Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST
    Insane Law Perverting Course of Justice: SST The Sensible Sentencing Trust is slamming a decision which may acquit a Whakatane offender of serious dangerous driving charges....
    Scoop politics
  • Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons
    Taranaki Base Hospital draped in white ribbons to show violence towards women is never OK...
    Scoop politics
  • Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media
    Family Violence Intervention Team uses social media to say “no” to domestic violence Everyone has the right to feel safe at home. Many do not. One in three partnered New Zealand women report having experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner...
    Scoop politics
  • Smoke Alarms in Rental properties
    TPA says recent calls for mandatory smoke alarm installations in rental properties is an opportunity for all parties to come together to improve the safety and quality of rental housing....
    Scoop politics
  • CTU will not engage in Governments sham consultation process
    Today the CTU has sent a letter to Prime Minister John Key articulating serious concerns about both the content and the rushed process the Government has clearly signalled it intends to follow to progress the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation...
    Scoop politics
  • Job vacancies steady in October
    The number of skilled job vacancies advertised online remained steady in October across most industry groups and occupations, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report....
    Scoop politics
  • 600 Slaves And Counting on New Zealand Soil
    The 2014 Global Slavery Index has just been released, and buried within its pages is New Zealand’s growing issue of human exploitation and slavery. When taken in conjunction with the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons Report 2014,...
    Scoop politics
  • Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and NZ
    Media Statement from Police Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand: Police Commissioners take a stand against violence against women and children...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ Police Commissioner makes a stand against Family Violence
    New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush has joined with his Australian Police Commissioner colleagues at Parliament House in Canberra this morning to take a stand on violence against women and children....
    Scoop politics
  • Amnesty International campaigns for end to domestic violence
    Amnesty International will be making a donation of over $500 to Aviva (formerly known as Women’s Refuge Christchurch) at the conclusion of Tuesday’s inner city march against domestic violence....
    Scoop politics
  • Waka Hourua celebrates what’s working in suicide prevention
    On 19 and 20 November, Māori and Pasifika national suicide prevention programme Waka Hourua held its first national hui-fono in Auckland. The theme was Whakarauika Mai: Bringing Communities Together to Prevent Suicide in Aotearoa. ...
    Scoop politics
  • Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower
    Domestic violence problem bigger than Sky Tower SKYCITY’s Sky Tower in Auckland will be lit up in white on Monday evening Nov 25th at 10pm, on the eve of White Ribbon Day. The anti-domestic violence network SAFTINET (Safer Auckland Families...
    Scoop politics
  • State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little
    State Services Commissioner ‘unfit for the job’ says Little The new Labour leader Andrew Little has called for the State Services Commissioner Iain Rennie to be stood down after his handling of the Roger Sutton sexual harassment case. "The idea...
    Scoop politics
  • Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre
    Patrick Gower interviews Laila Harre Headlines: Laila Harre to quit as Internet Party leader by Christmas when the party has completed its review, but would love to return to parliament Says party considering options for its future including winding...
    Scoop politics
  • Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little
    Lisa Owen interviews Labour leader Andrew Little Headlines: Andrew Little says the shape of his front-bench for the 2017 election may not be clear until the end of next year Indicates next week’s appointments may be temporary: “So I may...
    Scoop politics
  • Phillip John Smith – statement
    Police and the New Zealand Embassy in Brasilia are aware of a decision from the Brazil Federal Court requiring the deportation of Phillip Smith within 10 days. Further assessment is required to ensure there is a full understanding of this...
    Scoop politics
  • Green’s ‘not speaking out about human rights abuses in China
    Right to Life challenges Russell Norman the co-leader of the Green Party to explain why, he was prepared to ask Prime Minister John Key to talk to Chinese President Xi Jinping about human rights abuses in countries bordering China but...
    Scoop politics
  • Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election
    Goodfellow congratulates Key on IDU election National Party President Peter Goodfellow has congratulated Prime Minister John Key on his election today as Chairman of the International Democrat Union (IDU)....
    Scoop politics
  • Taxpayers’ Union Congratulates PM on IDU Appointment
    The Taxpayers’ Union is today congratulating Rt. Hon. John Key on becoming the Chair of the International Democrat Union , as former Australian Prime Minister John Howard retires from the role after 12 years. Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director...
    Scoop politics
  • High demand for Consumer NZ’s “Do Not Knock” stickers
    Consumer NZ has distributed nearly 100,000 “Do Not Knock” stickers since the launch of its campaign to fight back against dodgy door-to-door sellers.The “Do Not Knock” campaign was launched on 3 November 2014. Free “Do Not Knock” stickers...
    Scoop politics
  • Phillip Smith decision still pending
    Detective Superintendent Mike Pannett is returning to Washington DC where he will continue to closely monitor a pending decision from the Brazilian authorities on the process to return Phillip Smith to New Zealand....
    Scoop politics
  • High Court demonstration to demand justice
    People outraged at the lack of justice in the so-called ‘Roast Busters’ case and 99% of other rape cases in this country are holding a visually powerful mass action at the Auckland High Court at 1 o’clock on Saturday. They...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ Society Wins Global Award For Fighting Animal Testing
    New Zealand banning animal testing of legal highs has been acknowledged with an award given in London. The New Zealand Anti-Vivisection Society (NZAVS) was awarded the 2014 LUSH Prize for lobbying against animal testing. The prize was given at the...
    Scoop politics
  • Poor govt advice to workers on petrol station drive-offs
    The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions has raised concerns with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment ('MBIE') regarding their reported advice to workers about the petrol station drive away issue....
    Scoop politics
  • New Ombudsman opinion
    The Ombudsman has published his opinion on a complaint concerning the Police refusal to release information about a charging decision....
    Scoop politics
  • Kindergarten support staff achieve pay rise in tough climate
    The valuable contribution of kindergarten support staff has been recognised with a pay increase, despite the significant funding cuts that the kindergarten associations are experiencing....
    Scoop politics
  • Democracy and Conservative Religion: The Case of Islam
    “Is Islam compatible with democracy?” is a frequently-asked question. Recent rethinking of secularism and democracy have opened up new possibilities to think about religion and democracy. This question is important particularly in the case...
    Scoop politics
  • NZ fiscal watchdog needed to guard the public purse
    New Zealand needs tighter fiscal rules and an independent watchdog to improve the quality of government spending and reduce the risk of a return to deficit spending as the country’s population ages, if not before....
    Scoop politics
  • NZSMI disappointed ANZTPA proposal shelved
    November 20, 2014: Consumer healthcare products industry body, the New Zealand Self-Medication Industry Association (SMI) says it is disappointed Government has once again shelved plans to create one medicines regulatory agency for both New Zealand and Australia....
    Scoop politics
  • Democracy Action Welcomes Tauranga Vote
    Responding to Tauranga Council’s unanimous vote not to establish separate Council seats on the basis of ethnicity, Lee Short, Democracy Action founder says: “The establishment of a Maori ward would have damaged the relationship between Maori and...
    Scoop politics
  • Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’
    Employer caught abusing new ‘teabreaks law’ to exploit workers The government passed the controversial ‘teabreaks’ legislation only a few weeks ago and already Unite Union has caught an employer using this law as an excuse for ill-treating their...
    Scoop politics
  • FGC response to Commerce Commission report
    The New Zealand Food & Grocery Council is not surprised by the Commerce Commission’s findings, given New Zealand’s current legal framework....
    Scoop politics
  • Bascand: Brighter Money
    Seeing people’s initial reactions to the new banknote designs is a heartening reminder of what an important role currency plays in our lives, and what a sense of pride and heritage our notes evoke....
    Scoop politics
  • RBNZ releases Brighter Money designs
    New Zealand’s banknotes are getting brighter and better, with the Reserve Bank today unveiling more vibrant and secure banknote designs which will progressively enter circulation later next year....
    Scoop politics
  • 25 years of children’s rights
    UNICEF and OFC celebrate 25 years of children’s rights with Just Play Sports Days On Universal Children’s Day (20 November) and as part of the Oceania Football Confederation’s (OFC) inaugural President’s Cup, UNICEF will celebrate 25 years of children’s...
    Scoop politics
  • Xiamen delegation to Wellington has business focus
    Stronger business, education and cultural ties with our Chinese partners will be the focus when a 20-strong government and business delegation led by Xiamen Mayor Mr Liu Keqing which visits Wellington tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday as part of the...
    Scoop politics
  • Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message
    Warriors promote White Ribbon Day message Shine and Orakei Health Services On Tuesday, the Vodafone Warriors will promote the White Ribbon Day message to the community at Eastridge Shopping Centre, Mission Bay. The Warriors are supporting their charity...
    Scoop politics
  • Superannuitants to protest unethical investments
    A delegation of Auckland superannuitants will deliver a protest-card petition and protest letter to the New Zealand Super Fund this Thursday afternoon to call on the fund to divest from companies which support the Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
    Scoop politics
  • Manukau job cuts ‘running the place into the ground’
    Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed to its staff yesterday that 54 jobs will go before Christmas....
    Scoop politics
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