$7.5 billion surplus

Written By: - Date published: 2:08 pm, October 8th, 2019 - 101 comments
Categories: budget 2017, Economy, grant robertson, Politics - Tags:

The government has just unveiled a $7.5 billion surplus.
Treasury announced today that:
  • The Government’s surplus has increased $2b to $7.5b
  • Net Government debt has fallen to 19.2 per cent of GDP, down from 19.9 per cent a year ago
  • The total DHB deficit widened to $1 billion
  • Total Government revenue increased $6.2 billion to $86.5 billion.

The surplus unveiled today is $4b higher than what was expected in May’s Budget – and $2b higher than the actual surplus unveiled this time last year.

The NZ Herald notes that:

Part of the reason for the $2b increase in the surplus is largely down to a revaluation of New Zealand’s railway. A change in the way the government-owned rail assets were valued contributed to the surplus being $2.6 billion higher than expected.

One-off changes to the way tax was calculated also contributed to the surplus.”

What should they spend it on?

Or is this a bit smoke-and-mirrors?

101 comments on “$7.5 billion surplus ”

  1. Booker 1

    Good luck to National trying to spin this one. Labour = good economic management, and they consistently produce the numbers to back that up.

    • Clive Macann 1.1

      National is having a shot it though.


    • Chris 1.2

      "Labour = good economic management, and they consistently produce the numbers to back that up."

      Yes, but the nats and their mates still successfully spin the opposite story, and it's the lie that Labour is hopeless at economic management the right rely upon to claim "business confidence is low". This manufactured "fact" of low business confidence is then used to counter Labour's good economic management. The truth seldom suits the right hence it's MO of using lies as the basis for almost everything it says and does.

      Labour needs to strike while the iron's hot and use this current surplus to bust the myth once and for all that historically blows the right out of the water when it comes to the economy. There needs to be a concerted effort to do this because not only is the general belief is the opposite, the effect this myth has on the public psyche is significant.

      • Booker 1.2.1

        All good points. That voxy story Clive linked to above cracks me up – National just can't drop talking about measly tax cuts and roads. What a broken record.

  2. Stuart Munro. 2

    I think some of this is Cullen's legacy, and revaluing assets can be misleading. Nevertheless it's a strong result, a vast improvement on the Gnat omnishambles, and a spike in some of those attack memes they're trying to build like "part-time" and the broken ruler pics.

  3. alwyn 3

    Perhaps Robbie will find the nerve to tell Genter where to get off.

    Wellington needs the money to fix its transport woes now rather than putting off things like the second Mt Vic tunnel for a decade or so as Genter has apparently demanded. We can't be absolutely clear about that of course as she refuses to release the information to OIA requests. When is the Ombudsman going to come to a decision?

    We could also do with getting a proper, safe, highway through from Otaki to Levin. We want it now.

    Come on Robertson. You are meant to represent Wellington. Well do so. Stop spending your time trying to cover up for your mate who was in the Labour Party Leader's Office. Do what we elected you to do.

    • Dukeofurl 3.1

      Road Transport funding isnt done from the Consolidated Revenue. Where is the 'surplus' from the Land Transport Fund and why should Wellington be 'getting it'

      Robertson is a wellington MP, the money spent is allocated by the Board of LTNZ according to broad government guidelines , not the whim of the Finance Minister

      • cleangreen 3.1.1

        Dukeofurl I heartily agree with you as Wellington was eager to allow all their freight to be trucked through to our region waking us up all night with 24/7 truck movements though to Napier Napier port instead of using rail so Wellington can get stuffed.

        Has anyone woken to why roads carrying legions of logs and freight are being destroyed by truck vibrations?

        The facts are in now.

        So best we use rail as the reconstruction of rail is far cheaper than resurrecting roads as the land use is so small by comparison.

        • Ad

          If Labour get in next year, they can open a good few of the new motorways National started.

    • Sacha 3.2

      Wah, I want a road and a tunnel!

      Evidence-based policy says the next stage of improving transport in Wellington is about reliable public transit from railway to airport, not more lanes for cars with the odd bus jammed between them. Get used to it.

    • Ad 3.3

      The Greens are substantially boxed in by Labour and NZF.

      I'd even be surprised if there's an all-gases climate bill now.

  4. Enough is Enough 4

    Why the fuck are they sticking with their austerity strategy?

    This is a neo-liberal government if they are holding onto surpluses this large while we have record waiting lists for social housing, child poverty has increased and we have an infrastructure deficit.

    We have unprecedented cheap credit and should be taking advantage of that.

    FFS – Stop acting like a Tory Government and start spending that surplus where it is needed

    • Peter 4.1

      Spend the money so the defectives on the other side can go berserk about election bribery and/or say they wasted the money. Then go and vote for National so the Proper World order can be restored and they can bitch about the cupboard being bare.

    • Dukeofurl 4.2

      You havent read the notes, there is NO CASH surplus 'to spend', revaluations of assets arent spending money.

      Where is the austerity you talk about?

    • Adrian Thornton 4.3

      "FFS – Stop acting like a Tory Government and start spending that surplus where it is needed"…you forget that these people (Labour) are Free Market Liberal Capitalists not some sort of left leaning Socialist do gooders who would stupidly put housing and health and education first..their ideology has more in common with Nationals (or the Tories ) than it does with that espoused by Corbyn or Sanders.

  5. Herodotus 5

    So at the time there were strong valid reasons for pay increases, the govt stated they had no money. Yet just now they have found $2b to add to the surplus thru changes in nzrail valuations. They did not know that when these pay demands were made. How DISHONEST is that !!🤥 any changes in accounting treatment would have been known well before this disclosure. I hope those with outstanding pay claims make the most of this announcement.

    • Dukeofurl 5.1

      Most of the pay increases came through, the changes in working conditions werent all improved which was a big demand

  6. I think they're on a hiding to nothing. Nat supporters will find ways to claim it's all smoke and mirrors to conceal the serious lasting damage these commies are doing to the country's economy, and Labour/Green supporters will mostly be highly pissed off that the government's building up a surplus instead of spending the money on whatever is that individual's primary concern.

    I'm surprised The Chairman isn't here expressing concern that this looks very bad for "Jacinda" – did they cop a ban or something?

  7. Siobhan 7

    If I didn't pay all my basic housing costs, my medical and dental expenses, maintenance and update on my mode of transport, etc..resulting in even greater costs down the track..then ran around crowing about how much money I had sitting in my bank account people would think I was deluded.

    ditto…a Labour lead Government.

    You'll never get Transformative Change under Austerity rules.


  8. McFlock 8

    The surplus unveiled today is $4b higher than what was expected in May’s Budget

    lol even if the rail revaluing was $2B, Treasury was out by 100% in a prediction for just a few months later. Economics is bunk.

    Personally, I'd put more money towards health and benefit levels. And tell the business confidence surveys and tory economists to go spin.

    • The Al1en 8.1

      I was just going to mention the business confidence surveys and how negative they are… And these people are the comptrollers in the engine room of our economy? Heavens help us all.

    • Adrian Thornton 8.2

      "Personally, I'd put more money towards health and benefit levels. And tell the business confidence surveys and tory economists to go spin"…totally agree with that comment, except that won't happen ( or if it does, it will be incrementally introduced of course) because Labour is guided in it's every move by it's Liberal/Free market/Capitalist economists and ideology…they talk a lot, put on a shit load of 'working groups', pay a ton of consultants, but actually do sweet fuck all.

      Will quite possibly be remembered as one of the most ineffectual Labour govt's of the modern period, against some other pretty lackluster contenders.

      Turn Labour Left!

      • McFlock 8.2.1


        If Labour were a little bit further Left they'd not have gone into coalition with NZ1 and we'd have a nat/NZ1 govt at the moment. I'll take "ineffectual" over "outright harmful".

        • lprent

          Generally my opinion as well.

          Personally I'm always amused when I see people complaining that the centre-left or centre-right aren't going far enough left or right respectively, when there simply isn't the support amongst the bulk of the voters for going that far.

          Of course the real issue is that the complainants haven't been able to convince enough of their fellow citizens to drive the politicians there.

          Politicians are always the weather vanes of public opinion rather than the producers of weather.

          In a MMP environment or anything that is even moderately representational they don't (as a group) hew to what a majority of the public are willing to accept, then they don't get voted in. That governs their lives. You see this even in a caucus. They don't demand changes if they can't get enough of their caucus members to agree.

          And that is before you look at coalition politics.

          Really they have to have a damn good story that resonates with enough of the public, caucus, and coalition before something even slightly extreme will happen. And complaining about it seldom does anything. Coming up with a good idea and a story tat sells it is far more efficacious.

      • observer 8.2.2

        Count to 61, Adrian.

        Ardern is no fool. She is on track for a Labour-Green majority at the next election. She understands (even if some on the "left" do not) that the best way to get lasting left government is to wait for NZF to die. Odds are that will happen in 2020.

        In the meantime the PM plays nice with Winston. She is killing him with kindness, and it's very smart … too smart for some, I fear.

        • Dukeofurl

          Labour will aim to have both Greens AND NZF on side in a broader coalition.

          Thats the method Clark and Key used sucessfully over 18 yrs.

          Having two party coalition will both blow apart the major party and the minor one. Multi party coalitions hep diffuse the issues and pressures.

          • McFlock

            A solid likelihood, to be surebut I think the other lesson coming to the fore is that even if you leave someone out of the coalition, give them space for policy wins and don't alienate them – if the nats hadn't tried to fuck Winston, Bill English might still be PM today.

  9. karol121 9

    What to spend it on?

    It's already pre-spent is it not? And that 7.5 bill would not likely have even touched the sides.

    Ledgers black are vogue, until they become a dark, black ledger splotch.

    Maybe Graeme Hart might be prepared to chip in a billion for and on the behalf of government so as to more effectively improve our national adult dental health scheme. The non-subsidised retail, dental practice scheme, that is.

    Well, at least the dental health subsidy for children in NZ is about to turn 100 years of age.

  10. ianmac 10

    "Of course we left the strong economy in such a good state that it is shameful that all that Robertson could manage was a miserable $7.5 billion surplus. If we were in our rightful place as Government the surplus would be at least $15billion. Disaster as usual by this Ardern shambles," said Bridges with Prime Ministerial aplomb.

  11. Ken 11

    Spend most of it on wild women and liquor…..squander the rest.

    • Karol121 11.1

      Agreed Ken.

      If you've got it, spend it like there's no tomorrow, and when that's finished, CHARGE IT.


  12. observer 12

    If NZ had high inflation, high unemployment, high interest rates and a big deficit, the "Business Confidence Survey" would be bad.

    Fortunately, we have low inflation, low unemployment, low interest rates and a big surplus. So naturally the "Business Confidence Survey" is … oh.

    In other news, a survey of All Blacks fans shows a very low level of confidence in Australia winning the rugby world cup. It's almost as if they don't like the other team.

    • Ken 12.1

      I think "business" is having a crisis of confidence.

      Perhaps they need to see a therapist.

  13. mac1 13

    “This is $7.5B stolen from the pockets of ordinary Kiwis.

    This money should be returned to the off-shore accounts of ordinary Kiwi mums and dads. Further rebates should be returned to those 10% of hard-working Kiwis who pay more than one set of rates for owning Sounds baches, holiday homes and capital gains ghost houses which they don't live in…….

    Did I mention also the discounts payable to owners of high petrol use vehicles to offset the road user charges not paid by EV owners?” continued Simon Bridges. “This money could build bridges in Northland, too, as the goverment promised,” Bridges went on.

  14. Can the old guys shift off the pot. Knock knock – When are you going to come out of the money closet? Can't hear anything, are you still alive in there? Perhaps the song goes 'It's now Orr never.'

    We will swing and sway if Labourcan only get tuneful – and think of the children and the future. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hli1fuk8zQQ

  15. bwaghorn 15

    Any one on the left that cant see this as a good thing is to stupid to comment on politics.

    You cant do fuck all from opposition and part of winning elections in nz is showing sound fiscal management.

    Oh and now they get to open the throttle a bit more on all the good things a functioning democracy can do.

    • mike 15.1

      Couldn't have put it better myself.

    • Nic the NZer 15.2

      Government surpluses (or deficits) are neither good or bad things. The appropriate surplus or deficit depends on the surrounding economic context. There are some general implications of surpluses which may provide a more nuanced view however.

      The net shrinkage of government debt has by accounting matched the net shrinkage in non government savings. You can decide if its presently a good thing for NZers to be finding it tougher to save.

      Also of relevance here, as the monopoly currency issuer the NZ govt can't save in its own currency.

    • Herodotus 15.3

      Are you for real, anyone on the left how is labour any different from national ? Different faces same direction for NZ. So we have a nice face now as PM, so 10,20 or 50 years time how will history differentiate John Key from Helen Or our current PM ?

      At least the greens early 2000 were consistent to following their ideals now we have a girls can follow a leftist policy (fletcher land) boys are establishment and the 2 cannot co-exist.

      Don’t divert from the centre. How will that allow NZ to progress we go with how the current flows 🤢good or bad

      • Dukeofurl 15.3.1

        How many votes did your party get . 1500?

        If labour needed to be 'more left' there would a lot of votes in that area. There isnt. Power comes from the centre

        • Herodotus

          unfortunately I am not our deputy pm, nor Colin craig or Gareth Morgan so I don’t have a party that follows the cult of personality.

          So following your comment we only marginally sway from moderately left or right ? No wonder we are fu$&@/. So don’t bother to comment should you think we need to venture more than the middle of the road, because jacinda will not take us any other direction the John took us. I am thinking lemmings and cliffs 🤔

          [Corrected typo in user handle]

    • Naki man 15.4

      They will probably wait until election year

  16. David Mac 16

    I'm struggling to understand what our position is. Have we got 7.5 billion in our wallet or have we just said 'Lets value Kiwirail at this much.'

    • Nic the NZer 16.1

      Its neither. As a currency issuer the NZ govt always has the same spending capacity regardless of its present debt, surplus or deficit position.

      • David Mac 16.1.1

        Do they have an endless supply of disposable dollars? Sounds like a free lunch to me.

        • Nic the NZer

          Yes, the reserve bank is part of the government and is legally the sole issuer of $NZ. We (should) actually judge the governments spending for its effects on the economy, not for a spurious accounting balance.

          • David Mac

            Hmm yeah. We need to keep our currency geared to the global money-go-round Nic.

            I'm many miles from a bank that can help me Nic and I've arrived home with a pocketful of South American currencies, I don't spose you could convert some Bolivar for me could you sport?

            • Nic the NZer

              Not sure what this means. The reserve bank doesn't target the exchange rate, that is allowed to float in most cases. In fact tieing the exchange rate to the US is one causes of Venezuela importing inflation.

              • David Mac

                I'm sure you're smart enough to see the ramifications for a government that decides to create a bank balance that will fund their extended wish-list.

                I'm not sure why you're ignoring the voice that is whispering to you 'We can't just put 2 zeroes on the end of our bank balance bro."

                • Nic the NZer

                  Good, you agree then its all about the economic outcomes. As I said,

                  "We (should) actually judge the governments spending for its effects on the economy, not for a spurious accounting balance."

              • Pat

                it may not "target the exchange rate" but it dosnt ignore it.

                • David Mac

                  Being geared to all the other currencies of the world is a good thing. We're just useless at making the most of our situation. I think our logs should be Ikea desk-tops and our tonnes of milk powder 500 ml tubs of Kiwi household fridge ready goodness.

                  A log is worth $1000. As matches $100,000.

                  • Pat

                    easier said than done…..especially when the buyer wants to support their own industry…..which is not to say it shouldnt be the goal but there are contradictory forces at work and by and large our exports are available elsewhere so we have little in the way of leverage

                    • David Mac

                      So quit? OK, I'm going fishing…

                      Or how about we make a concerted effort to live up to our 100% Pure handle, cut herd levels by 25%, clean up waterways and create markets for a premium priced ethical product, surf on the back of our ever enhanced reputation.

                      It's hard not to wonder why it appears Fonterra couldn't organise a thickshake in a milkbar.

                  • Pat

                    read what I wrote…did I say quit?….I believe I said we have little leverage. There is one area we have a unique product and weve been flogging that for all its worth for 20 odd years…care to guess what that might be?

                    • David Mac

                      There is an open cast mine quite close to me in the Far North. It employs a few people and basic infrastructure. They extract clay suitable for the finest ceramics in the world. I believe most of their shipments go to Wedgewood. Are you referring to the extraordinary properties of possum fur Pat? Yeah, huge potential. They and Polar bears are the only animals that have the fabulous natural insulation qualities of hollow fur fibres. I have a jersey that is as soft as cashmere and is like wearing an electric blanket.

                  • Pat

                    No David…your guess isnt even close, and I must self correct, we havnt been flogging it for all its worth, weve been having a bargain basement sale….and the product is residency

                    • David Mac

                      Ahhh yes. A popular product sold on our behalf.

                      The better life we can create for New Zealanders the more attractive we become as a place to migrate to.

                      It's a Catch 22 situation highlighted by things like refugees that had no intention of settling along the way, they were Sweden bound. Who can blame them, it's exactly what I'd do. It's human to thrive.

                      While we can't be bothered picking our own apples and need to get a man in, I think we construct our own diminishing resources. We get what we ask for.

                  • Pat

                    curiously I dont recall being asked whether I wanted a population of 15 million or not

                    • David Mac

                      We vote em in. They make the calls on our behalf. If enough of us feel ripped off, we chuck em out.

                    • Descendant Of Smith

                      Should have taken that up with the last government who was letting them in and allowing them to work more than the previous one.

                  • Pat

                    and if they both have the same undeclared policy?

  17. David Mac 17

    Kiwirail assets are worth more money. Immense land holdings, lots of it in prime locations.

    As a business proposition the collective assets are a money pit. Worth heaps but run at a chronic loss. We choose to live with the fiscally disastrous rail network. Viva la Choo Choo.

    As a business, a million a week loser. As an appreciating asset, yep but for it to be money in our wallet I think we'd need to turn the downtown shunting yards into Waitemata Harbour-side apartments

    • Dukeofurl 17.1

      No its not . The asset base is the albatross as its depreciation is the large majority of the accounting loss. Not a large cash loss. Operationally it might even be cash positive. Cant afford new capital expenditure though, especially for Interisland ferries.

      Same goes for DHB 'losses' , depreciation covers most of it and actual cash losses are fairly small ( apart from this year for one off holiday pay correction)

      • Dukeofurl 17.1.1

        Kiwirail 2018 revenue $615 mill

        Expenses $567 mill

        Operating surplus $48 mill

        For some reason there was a $220 'Earthquake impairment'.

        Government contribution was only $40 mill capital grants

        How old are you? Downtown shunting yards went 30 years ago.

    • Worth heaps but run at a chronic loss.

      The loss pales into insignificance compared to sewerage and wastewater systems, roads, pretty much any infrastructure you care to name. Is there any particular reason the rail network should be looked on simply as a business rather than infrastructure?

      • David Mac 17.2.1

        Yeah, we could add the increased value of the sewerage infrastructure and make it a 9 billion surplus.

        I'm making a bit of a Chairman of myself here but I don't think we're as rich as we think we are.

        • Psycho Milt

          Accountants move in ways that make God's mysteries seem mundane, their wonders to perform.

          • lprent

            Ah but the language of accountants is the most opaque of all of the old professions. I did an MBA just to learn the language because I was tired of trying to figure out what they were saying when I was running a factory.

            Turned out to be both straight forward and easy to learn. The language was just short-hand (and way less esoteric than the computing babble that I learnt later).

            If you really want obtuse, then try law. Balancing legal principles to a judgment is an artform rather than something as simple as accounting.

  18. Grant not Robertson 18

    Well good for Nic the NZer – I’m glad that someone here has a rudimentary grasp of economics.

  19. SPC 19

    Only two real figures

    1. Net Government debt has fallen to 19.2 per cent of GDP, down from 19.9 per cent a year ago.

    So the debt target (under 20% debt to GDP by 2020/2021) has been easily achieved and given the looser target for 2023 is not a constraint (assisted by Housing Corp doing some of is own borrowing – balanced by its growing land and housing asset value).

    2. The total DHB deficit widened to $1 billion.

    Given the cash deficit this is a bit of a problem and indicates the government is not in a position for a spend up. In that sense, “$7.5B budget surplus” misleads most of the public.

    While the government is able to borrow to finance a budget deficit (and remain within 20% debt to GDP), it will remain constrained by its commitment for government to spend less than 30% GDP (until after the 2020 election when the Labour-Green agreement on this comes to an end – and Greens do not want to continue with it).

  20. Descendant Of Smith 20

    This is just a game that the two parties play and is about as useful as pissing on a sand castle.

    National comes in writes down the value of Kiwi rail, Labour comes in values it back up.

    Been going on for ages. One of the things I've noticed over the years. Seen this happen with lots of government assets – national often lowering the valuation when they want to sell stuff off. Economics – pretty much as scientific as astrology.


    "The final valuation of KiwiRail was $369 million – more than half the price the Government paid for it.

    The Labour government bought TranzRail from Toll on July 1 last year for $690m. A provisional valuation in the government financial statements in September 2008 put the value at $442m. Today Transport Minister Steven Joyce said the final valuation by PriceWaterhouseCoopers was $388.29m.

    A Treasury report said a fair value for KiwiRail at the purchase date would have been $369.54m."



    "BUSINESSDESK: KiwiRail is to be restructured and its land holdings shifted to another entity, with a writedown of some $6.7 billion that will result in $1.8 billion being added to the government’s operating deficit this financial year."


    • Dukeofurl 20.1

      Thanks for getting the numbers.

      With the DHB they too have 'valuation' issues. Open a brand new hospital building , say worth $900 mill and depreciation suddenly turns your balance deep into the red…..oh woe.

      There really needs to be better public accounting measures for non profits that are owned by government and local bodies. Railways , DHBs arent really in the 'red' as headlines suggest for the general public

  21. belladonna 21

    They could fix up rest homes with the surplus, they are a disgrace but who cares about the sick and elderly. Another broken promise from Labour.

    • David Mac 21.1

      The Baby-boom bubble are now 55 -74 years old. I think over the next 15 years we might see demand for rest home beds climb and the family house market ease. We should be preparing for this now and I agree Bella, a sensible area in which to invest some of any surplus. Statistically, older people vote more.

      This from a Senior net website…

      "By 2036, it’s projected:

      • Around one in 4.5 New Zealanders will be aged 65-plus
      • That's 1,258,500 million people
      • It's an additional 547,300 over 65's, up from a total of 711,200 in 2016.
      • Or a 77 per cent increase

      Contrast that with the under 14s:

      • There will be 991,900 children by 2036
      • It's an extra 70,400 under 14s, up from 921,500 in 2016
      • It represents only a 7.6 per cent increase"
    • Sacha 21.2

      If you put another billion into rest home subsidies tomorrow, much of it will disappear into only a few corporate accounts in foreign banks.

      In-home care needs more funding to keep older people out of expensive facilities. However there is more money to be made from property investment so corporates are snapping up sprawling retirement villages, pocketing govt care subsidies, paying themselves a tidy profit and putting their hands out for more. Let's not be taken for mugs.

  22. belladonna 22


    $1.60 a day I have heard is the allowance for food, carers are overworked and underpaid b ut do their best and the reports in the paper of residents with maggots in their wounds just disgusts me. What on earth can you buy for $1.60 a day for food in this day and age. Labour dId say they would sort it but havent, at the expense of what. I have voted Labour all of my life, helped out at elections&; but never again

  23. A 23

    Pay for full costs of disabilities. That's the best use of money other than paying down debt.

  24. cleangreen 24

    Another labour coalition Government awaits.

    Good action from Minister of transport reigning in the toxic NZTA again.

    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford is now appropriately putting the heat on NZTA quote; ‘obstructive tactics”

    • CEAC and NHTCF has never been fairly treated by NZTA through all our attempted efforts to have NZTA give fair urban mitigation from traffic.
    • CEAC under OIA requested documents from NZTA two months ago and was refused our request for OIA documents for NZTA activities 1995 to 2019, a reasonable request as we were beginning a study of NZTA activities inside our ‘Napier urban zones to Napier port.’

    Also today we heard a statement on ‘Magic – drive at 4.40pm with news hubs Ryan Bridge interview with Phil Twyford.

    Mr Twyford stated that he is directing NZTA policy to begin a slowing down of all transport speeds for road safety, – to lowered settings in cities and rural areas and this will be positive for us all. We will be following this policy as it unfolds.


    The ‘Road Transport Forum, (RTF) does not want lower speeds.
    Response from the trucking lobbyist Nick Leggett quote;
    Road Transport Forum chief executive Nick Leggett said those proposals, which included recovering a fairer proportion of costs from a wider group of road users, could see the a pendulum swing into over-regulation and more expense put on road users
    “We’re concerned that throwing more money into regulation will see investment in road maintenance suffer.”

    https://www.magic.co.nz/home/shows/talk/magic-drive.html – The Bridge/Twyford audio pod is not appearing on their website yet.
    Earlier press on this policy was in the press February and June. Here are those sites.

    [Where did you get the quote from Nick Leggett from? Why did you not put this in block-quote nor did you use quotation marks? You can correct your omission until 12 noon tomorrow. Because you have been warned about this before, this is your last one and next time, if there’s one, you’ll receive an immediate ban – Incognito]

    [Banned until Monday 2019-10-14, for failing to provide proper attribution of quote and not making clear which text has been quoted, e.g. by using quotation marks or block-quote. Because of your history of this behaviour, subsequent bans for the same behaviour will escalate – Incognito]

    • Incognito 24.1

      See my Moderation note @ 10:17 PM.

    • Ad 24.2

      If I get the time I will do something on this announcement.

      There are a lot of gradual accumulative factors to the road toll increase, across the entire transport regulation field.

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    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am on Tuesday, July 23 are:Deep Dive: Penlink: where tolling rhetoric meets reality BusinessDesk-$$$’s Oliver LewisScoop: Te Pūkenga plans for regional polytechs leak out ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    8 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 23

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 23, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Health: Shane Reti announced the Board of Te Whatu Ora- Health New Zealand was being replaced with Commissioner Lester Levy ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    9 hours ago
  • HealthNZ and Luxon at cross purposes over budget blowout

    Health NZ warned the Government at the end of March that it was running over Budget. But the reasons it gave were very different to those offered by the Prime Minister yesterday. Prime Minister Christopher Luxon blamed the “botched merger” of the 20 District Health Boards (DHBs) to create Health ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    10 hours ago
  • 2500-3000 more healthcare staff expected to be fired, as Shane Reti blames Labour for a budget defic...

    Long ReadKey Summary: Although National increased the health budget by $1.4 billion in May, they used an old funding model to project health system costs, and never bothered to update their pre-election numbers. They were told during the Health Select Committees earlier in the year their budget amount was deficient, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    11 hours ago
  • Might Kamala Harris be about to get a 'stardust' moment like Jacinda Ardern?

    As a momentous, historic weekend in US politics unfolded, analysts and commentators grasped for precedents and comparisons to help explain the significance and power of the choice Joe Biden had made. The 46th president had swept the Democratic party’s primaries but just over 100 days from the election had chosen ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    16 hours ago
  • Solutions Interview: Steven Hail on MMT & ecological economics

    TL;DR: I’m casting around for new ideas and ways of thinking about Aotearoa’s political economy to find a few solutions to our cascading and self-reinforcing housing, poverty and climate crises.Associate Professor runs an online masters degree in the economics of sustainability at Torrens University in Australia and is organising ...
    The KakaBy Steven Hail
    21 hours ago
  • Reported back

    The Finance and Expenditure Committee has reported back on National's Local Government (Water Services Preliminary Arrangements) Bill. The bill sets up water for privatisation, and was introduced under urgency, then rammed through select committee with no time even for local councils to make a proper submission. Naturally, national's select committee ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    23 hours ago
  • Vandrad the Viking, Christopher Coombes, and Literary Archaeology

    Some years ago, I bought a book at Dunedin’s Regent Booksale for $1.50. As one does. Vandrad the Viking (1898), by J. Storer Clouston, is an obscure book these days – I cannot find a proper online review – but soon it was sitting on my shelf, gathering dust alongside ...
    23 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell On The Biden Withdrawal

    History is not on the side of the centre-left, when Democratic presidents fall behind in the polls and choose not to run for re-election. On both previous occasions in the past 75 years (Harry Truman in 1952, Lyndon Johnson in 1968) the Democrats proceeded to then lose the White House ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 day ago
  • Joe Biden's withdrawal puts the spotlight back on Kamala and the USA's complicated relatio...

    This is a free articleCoverageThis morning, US President Joe Biden announced his withdrawal from the Presidential race. And that is genuinely newsworthy. Thanks for your service, President Biden, and all the best to you and yours.However, the media in New Zealand, particularly the 1News nightly bulletin, has been breathlessly covering ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 day ago
  • Why we have to challenge our national fiscal assumptions

    A homeless person’s camp beside a blocked-off slipped damage walkway in Freeman’s Bay: we are chasing our tail on our worsening and inter-related housing, poverty and climate crises. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • Existential Crisis and Damaged Brains

    What has happened to it all?Crazy, some'd sayWhere is the life that I recognise?(Gone away)But I won't cry for yesterdayThere's an ordinary worldSomehow I have to findAnd as I try to make my wayTo the ordinary worldYesterday morning began as many others - what to write about today? I began ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • A speed limit is not a target, and yet…

    This is a guest post from longtime supporter Mr Plod, whose previous contributions include a proposal that Hamilton become New Zealand’s capital city, and that we should switch which side of the road we drive on. A recent Newsroom article, “Back to school for the Govt’s new speed limit policy“, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 22

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am on Monday, July 22 are:Today’s Must Read: Father and son live in a tent, and have done for four years, in a million ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 22

    TL;DR: As of 7:00 am on Monday, July 22, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:US President Joe Biden announced via X this morning he would not stand for a second term.Multinational professional services firm ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #29

    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 14, 2024 thru Sat, July 20, 2024. Story of the week As reflected by preponderance of coverage, our Story of the Week is Project 2025. Until now traveling ...
    2 days ago
  • I'd like to share what I did this weekend

    This weekend, a friend pointed out someone who said they’d like to read my posts, but didn’t want to pay. And my first reaction was sympathy.I’ve already told folks that if they can’t comfortably subscribe, and would like to read, I’d be happy to offer free subscriptions. I don’t want ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • For the children – Why mere sentiment can be a misleading force in our lives, and lead to unex...

    National: The Party of ‘Law and Order’ IntroductionThis weekend, the Government formally kicked off one of their flagship policy programs: a military style boot camp that New Zealand has experimented with over the past 50 years. Cartoon credit: Guy BodyIt’s very popular with the National Party’s Law and Order image, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • A friend in uncertain times

    Day one of the solo leg of my long journey home begins with my favourite sound: footfalls in an empty street. 5.00 am and it’s already light and already too warm, almost.If I can make the train that leaves Budapest later this hour I could be in Belgrade by nightfall; ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • The Chaotic World of Male Diet Influencers

    Hi,We’ll get to the horrific world of male diet influencers (AKA Beefy Boys) shortly, but first you will be glad to know that since I sent out the Webworm explaining why the assassination attempt on Donald Trump was not a false flag operation, I’ve heard from a load of people ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • It's Starting To Look A Lot Like… Y2K

    Do you remember Y2K, the threat that hung over humanity in the closing days of the twentieth century? Horror scenarios of planes falling from the sky, electronic payments failing and ATMs refusing to dispense cash. As for your VCR following instructions and recording your favourite show - forget about it.All ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 20

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts being questioned by The Kākā’s Bernard Hickey.TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 20 were:1. A strategy that fails Zero Carbon Act & Paris targetsThe National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government finally unveiled ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Pharmac Director, Climate Change Commissioner, Health NZ Directors – The latest to quit this m...

    Summary:As New Zealand loses at least 12 leaders in the public service space of health, climate, and pharmaceuticals, this month alone, directly in response to the Government’s policies and budget choices, what lies ahead may be darker than it appears. Tui examines some of those departures and draws a long ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Flooding Housing Policy

    The Minister of Housing’s ambition is to reduce markedly the ratio of house prices to household incomes. If his strategy works it would transform the housing market, dramatically changing the prospects of housing as an investment.Leaving aside the Minister’s metaphor of ‘flooding the market’ I do not see how the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted (Again!)

    As previously noted, my historical fantasy piece, set in the fifth-century Mediterranean, was accepted for a Pirate Horror anthology, only for the anthology to later fall through. But in a good bit of news, it turned out that the story could indeed be re-marketed as sword and sorcery. As of ...
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Friday, July 19

    An employee of tobacco company Philip Morris International demonstrates a heated tobacco device. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Friday, July 19 are:At a time when the Coalition Government is cutting spending on health, infrastructure, education, housing ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 8:30 am on Friday, July 19 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister Casey Costello orders 50% cut to excise tax on heated tobacco products. The minister has ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 19-July-2024

    Kia ora, it’s time for another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! Our header image this week shows a foggy day in Auckland town, captured by Patrick Reynolds. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Climate Wrap: A market-led plan for failure

    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items climate news for Aotearoa this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer. A discussion recorded yesterday is in the video above and the audio of that sent onto the podcast feed.The Government released its draft Emissions Reduction ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Tobacco First

    Save some money, get rich and old, bring it back to Tobacco Road.Bring that dynamite and a crane, blow it up, start all over again.Roll up. Roll up. Or tailor made, if you prefer...Whether you’re selling ciggies, digging for gold, catching dolphins in your nets, or encouraging folks to flutter ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Trump’s Adopted Son.

    Waiting In The Wings: For truly, if Trump is America’s un-assassinated Caesar, then J.D. Vance is America’s Octavian, the Republic’s youthful undertaker – and its first Emperor.DONALD TRUMP’S SELECTION of James D. Vance as his running-mate bodes ill for the American republic. A fervent supporter of Viktor Orban, the “illiberal” prime ...
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Friday, July 19, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:The PSA announced the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) had ruled in the PSA’s favour in its case against the Ministry ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 19

    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers last night features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s release of its first Emissions Reduction Plan;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor and special guest Dr Karin von ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #29 2024

    Open access notables Improving global temperature datasets to better account for non-uniform warming, Calvert, Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society: To better account for spatial non-uniform trends in warming, a new GITD [global instrumental temperature dataset] was created that used maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) to combine the land surface ...
    5 days ago
  • We're back again! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live

    Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on UnsplashWe’re back again after our mid-winter break. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Gut Reactions.

    Trump Writes His Own Story: Would the “mainstream” media even try to reflect the horrified reaction of the MAGA crowd to the pop-pop-pop of the would-be assassin’s rifle, and Trump going down? Could it even grasp the sheer elation of the rally-goers seeing their champion rise up and punch the air, still alive, ...
    5 days ago
  • Dodging Bullets.

    Fight! Fight! Fight! Had the assassin’s bullet found its mark and killed Donald Trump, America’s descent into widespread and murderous violence – possibly spiralling-down into civil war – would have been immediate and quite possibly irreparable. The American Republic, upon whose survival liberty and democracy continue to depend, is certainly not ...
    5 days ago
  • 'Corruption First' Strikes Again

    There comes a point in all our lives when we must stop to say, “Enough is enough. We know what’s happening. We are not as stupid or as ignorant as you believe us to be. And making policies that kill or harm our people is not acceptable, Ministers.”Plausible deniability has ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:The inside stories of KiwiRail’s iRex debacle, Westport’s perma-delayed flood scheme and Christchurch’s post-quake sewer rebuild, which assumed no population growth, show just how deeply sceptical senior officials in Treasury, the Ministry of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • What's that Jack Black?

    Ah-rah, deeSoo-guh-goo-gee-goo-geeGoo-guh fli-goo gee-gooGuh fli-goo, ga-goo-buh-deeOoh, guh-goo-beeOoh-guh-guh-bee-guh-guh-beeFli-goo gee-gooA-fliguh woo-wa mama Lucifer!I’m about ready to move on, how about you?Not from the shooting, that’s bad and we definitely shouldn’t have that. But the rehabilitation of Donald J Trump? The deification of Saint Donald? As the Great Unifier?Gimme a bucket.https://yellowscene.com/2024/04/07/trump-as-jesus/Just to re-iterate, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • June 2024: Earth’s 13th-consecutive warmest month on record

    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters and Bob Henson June 2024 was Earth’s warmest June since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was the planet’s 13th consecutive warmest month on record, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported July 12. As opposed to being focused in ...
    5 days ago
  • Connecting the dots and filling the gaps in our bike network

    This is a guest post by Shaun Baker on the importance of filling the gaps in our cycling networks. It originally appeared on his blog Multimodal Adventures, and is re-posted here with kind permission. In our towns and cities in Aotearoa New Zealand, there are areas in our cycling networks ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • Webworm Down Under Photos!

    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The politics of managed retreat

    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Some changes are coming

    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • About fucking time

    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking

    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.

    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    6 days ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?

    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.

    Slip-Sliding Away: Labour may now enjoy a dominant position in Britain’s political landscape, but only by virtue of not being swallowed by it.THE BRITISH LABOUR PARTY’S “landslide victory” is nothing of the sort. As most people understand the term, a landslide election victory is one in which the incumbent government, or ...
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent

    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac

    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • A blanket of misinformation

    Two old sayings have been on my mind lately. The first is: “The pen is mightier than the sword”, describing the power of language and communication to help or to harm. The other, which captures the speed with which falsehoods can become ingrained and hard to undo, is: “A lie can ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 7:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 are:Scoop: Government considers rolling back home insulation standards RNZ’s Eloise GibsonNews: Government plans tree-planting frenzy as report shows NZ no longer ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 , the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day were:Simon Watts released the Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP), which included proposed changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • “Shhhh” – National's 3 Waters is loaded with higher costs and lays a path to ...

    This is a long, possibly technical, but very, very important read. I encourage you to take the time and spread your awareness.IntroductionIn 2022, then Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Adern expended significant political capital to protect New Zealand’s water assets from privatisation. She lost that battle, and Labour and the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Plugging a video channel: Dr Gilbz

    Dr. Ella Gilbert is a climate scientist and presenter with a PhD in Antarctic climate change, working at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Her background is in atmospheric sciences and she's especially interested in the physical mechanisms of climate change, clouds, and almost anything polar. She is passionate about communicating climate ...
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” again

    Back in 2022, in its Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, the government promised to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation. Since then they've run a secret "consultation" on how to do that, with their preferred outcome being that agencies will consult the Ministry of Justice ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Crashing New Zealand's health system is not the way to prosperity, Prime Minister

    Another day, and yet another piece of bad news for New Zealand’s health system. Reports have come out that General Practitioners (GP) may have to close doors, or increase patient fees to survive. The so-called ‘capitation’ funding review, which supports GP practices to survive, is under way, and primary care ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • Closer Than You Think: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.

    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    1 week ago
  • Come on Darleen.

    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won

    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16

    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16

    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother

    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?

    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)

    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    1 week ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.

    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago

  • Sir Don to travel to Viet Nam as special envoy

    Sir Don McKinnon will travel to Viet Nam this week as a Special Envoy of the Government, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced.    “It is important that the Government give due recognition to the significant contributions that General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong made to New Zealand-Viet Nam relations,” Mr ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Grant Illingworth KC appointed as transitional Commissioner to Royal Commission

    Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden says newly appointed Commissioner, Grant Illingworth KC, will help deliver the report for the first phase of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into COVID-19 Lessons, due on 28 November 2024.  “I am pleased to announce that Mr Illingworth will commence his appointment as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • NZ to advance relationships with ASEAN partners

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters travels to Laos this week to participate in a series of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)-led Ministerial meetings in Vientiane.    “ASEAN plays an important role in supporting a peaceful, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific,” Mr Peters says.   “This will be our third visit to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Backing mental health services on the West Coast

    Construction of a new mental health facility at Te Nikau Grey Hospital in Greymouth is today one step closer, Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey says. “This $27 million facility shows this Government is delivering on its promise to boost mental health care and improve front line services,” Mr Doocey says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • NZ support for sustainable Pacific fisheries

    New Zealand is committing nearly $50 million to a package supporting sustainable Pacific fisheries development over the next four years, Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This support consisting of a range of initiatives demonstrates New Zealand’s commitment to assisting our Pacific partners ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Students’ needs at centre of new charter school adjustments

    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says proposed changes to the Education and Training Amendment Bill will ensure charter schools have more flexibility to negotiate employment agreements and are equipped with the right teaching resources. “Cabinet has agreed to progress an amendment which means unions will not be able to initiate ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
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