Archive for August, 2011

Who to believe?

Written By: - Date published: 11:41 am, August 31st, 2011 - 38 comments

NRT: Some “strategy”

Written By: - Date published: 10:31 am, August 31st, 2011 - 39 comments

National’s Energy Strategy has been roundly criticised. The promises of more renewables and energy efficiency are more ‘aspirational’ fluff with no plan to actually get there. And, worse, the heart of the strategy works against sustainability and environmental responsibility – it’s all about drilling up and burning more oil. I/S at NoRightTurn explains.

Australia bound?

Written By: - Date published: 10:11 am, August 31st, 2011 - 20 comments

Some advice if you are planning on joining the many kiwi’s that have left the country to go to Australia since National made it their aspiration to do something about that migration trend. They certainly have massively increased the outflow – one of their few success stories. But where to go to in aussie?

Nats plan to sell $2b+ assets overseas

Written By: - Date published: 9:36 am, August 31st, 2011 - 93 comments

The Nats say their ‘expectation’ is 30% of the assets they want privatise would go straight to foreigners. That’s just their lowside guess. More would be sold offshore by Kiwi buyers. Get $2b cash now from foreigners now. Lose $300m in returns year after year after year forever. And lose control of our future. Doesn’t add up.

Turning Green

Written By: - Date published: 8:40 am, August 31st, 2011 - 49 comments

Tracy Watkins admits today’s Fairfax poll is pretty out of whack but there’s no denying the trend has turned against Labour in the past few months. People back the policy. That’s not the problem. Labour will still be hoping to close up 5% or so in the campaign. On the positive side: what a result for the Greens!

Welcome to Finland

Written By: - Date published: 6:54 am, August 31st, 2011 - 57 comments

Where National Standards is only the answer to “what keeps other countries from catching our education system?”

Open mike 31/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 31st, 2011 - 62 comments

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner). Step right up to the mike…

Human face of public service cuts

Written By: - Date published: 3:00 pm, August 30th, 2011 - 41 comments

Good human interest story in the DomPost today about the human costs of public service jobs cuts. A Wellington woman has written a letter to Prime Minister John after her 63-year-old mother learned last week that her position at the Agriculture and Forestry Ministry is to be axed. Staffing cuts after a merger with the Fisheries […]

Quake costs blowout

Written By: - Date published: 1:27 pm, August 30th, 2011 - 51 comments

The estimate of the liability for costs of the Christchurch quakes has just been more than doubled.  Thank goodness or the foresight of the first Labour government who set up the EQC in 1947.

Free trade suckers

Written By: - Date published: 10:45 am, August 30th, 2011 - 38 comments

Free trade is meant to be about opening up markets for our exports so that we can improve our trade balance and, ultimately, become less indebted as a nation. Yet the opposite seems to be happening. Darkhorse shows that this is the experience of all countries that lower their trade barriers in a still largely protectionist world.

The new political battleground

Written By: - Date published: 9:12 am, August 30th, 2011 - 23 comments

Rijab looks at how social media can be a useful tool for political parties but how it also needs to be used carefully, lest it come back to hurt you. Red Alert and Frogblog are very free, with MPs writing what they want and relatively loose moderation, whereas NationalMPs is insipid and tightly controlled – who has taken the smarter course?

Irene sounds yet another warning

Written By: - Date published: 7:23 am, August 30th, 2011 - 53 comments

Irene is yet another example of the significant increase in extreme weather that we’re seeing all around the globe.  But this warning will be ignored like all the rest.

Open mike 30/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 30th, 2011 - 255 comments

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner). Step right up to the mike…

Not the ACT party list

Written By: - Date published: 1:24 pm, August 29th, 2011 - 38 comments

I was going to do a post on the ACT party list.  But then I realised that I just don’t care.

Ocean Acidification

Written By: - Date published: 12:00 pm, August 29th, 2011 - 32 comments

We know that our carbon pollution is damaging the climate – making the atmosphere warmer and less stable – but it also makes the sea more acidic. Ocean Acidification means the aquaculture industry could be in big trouble by the middle of the century, not to mention the rest of the fishing industry. But the government blithely ignores the problem.

Assets going cheap

Written By: - Date published: 10:30 am, August 29th, 2011 - 16 comments

With the world’s markets in turmoil (again) how are the Nats going to hock off those assets? Fire-sale time!

Jackel: NBR’s hack job on Hone lambasted

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, August 29th, 2011 - 60 comments

The establishment elite know Hone Harawira is their greatest foe. That’s why they try to besmirch him again and again, including by claiming he called Osama Bin Laden a freedom fighter and mourned his death? Now, the Press Council has ruled that the NBR’s Bin Laden article purposely misrepresented and maligned Hone.

In praise of collective bargaining

Written By: - Date published: 7:13 am, August 29th, 2011 - 75 comments

One of the lies at the heart of the Nats’ approach to industrial relations is that negotiating directly with the employer “empowers” the individual worker and allows them to get better wages and conditions.  The facts prove otherwise.

Open mike 29/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 29th, 2011 - 78 comments

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner). Step right up to the mike…

Gaynor on vampire neoliberalism

Written By: - Date published: 3:28 pm, August 28th, 2011 - 14 comments

Brian Gaynor notes vampire economics of neoliberalism means nearly all the largest listed companies are either privatised former public assets and/or monopolies thanks to government regulation. The capitalist elite has failed to generate wealth and stripped previously privatised assets. Now, their party, the Nats, plans to suck out more of our public wealth.

The New Zealand age of aging in charts

Written By: - Date published: 12:17 pm, August 28th, 2011 - 21 comments

Like many countries worldwide, New Zealand has an aging problem. Digging around the available charts it isn’t hard to see why. But New Zealand has less of a problem than many developed countries because of the demographics of our Maori and Pacifica populations plus the continuing immigration. It is still pretty bad.

Revolution and hunger

Written By: - Date published: 9:51 am, August 28th, 2011 - 44 comments

What provokes a populace to take to the streets in violent uprising?  Is it the inexorable power of a demand for justice and democracy?  Or is it something much simpler than that…

Open mike 28/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 28th, 2011 - 66 comments

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner). Step right up to the mike…

Suicide and community

Written By: - Date published: 1:13 pm, August 27th, 2011 - 67 comments

Following the release of data by the Chief Coroner, suicide is once again getting some time in the headlines.  Coincidentally, news from Christchurch supports the suggestion that stronger communities reduce suicide rates.

We are all socialists now

Written By: - Date published: 9:09 am, August 27th, 2011 - 64 comments

According to John Key all New Zealanders have a socialist streak.  But wait, there’s more…

Wealth creators

Written By: - Date published: 7:48 am, August 27th, 2011 - 79 comments

Extracts from an article by Dr Campbell Jones (Senior Lecturer in Sociology, University of Auckland).  Who creates wealth?  Is wealth evidence of merit?

Open mike 27/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, August 27th, 2011 - 32 comments

Open mike is your post. For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose. The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the link to Policy in the banner). Step right up to the mike…

For the Minister of Silly Ideas

Written By: - Date published: 3:10 pm, August 26th, 2011 - 7 comments

As we all know, John Key is the most effective Minister of Silly Ideas that the country has had since Robert Muldoon. Of course no-one can follow that closely in the great chuckler’s footsteps – John Key hasn’t even got close to bankrupting the country yet. He has been trying though. But here is another silly idea for him to look at. It is a developing industry that should be as effective as the cycleway or youth benefit cards!

Caption contest

Written By: - Date published: 2:26 pm, August 26th, 2011 - 45 comments

Weekend social 26/08/2011

Written By: - Date published: 2:00 pm, August 26th, 2011 - 31 comments

Weekend social is for non political chat. What’s on for the weekend, gigs, film or book reviews, sports, or whatever. No politics, no aggro, why can’t we all just get along?

What we owe policy wonks

Written By: - Date published: 1:35 pm, August 26th, 2011 - 21 comments

Yesterday William commented to Cuts and Consequences to the effect that who needs policy analyst and that big private companies don’t bother with them and so neither should government. I’m paraphrasing a little bit but it did strike me that many people (including it seems some very senior ministers in this government – but not – funnily enough […]

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