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A rolling maul or treading water?

Written By: - Date published: 5:58 am, June 30th, 2009 - 33 comments
Categories: economy, john key, national/act government - Tags:

In the face of widespread criticism that his government is asleep at the wheel, John Key has boldly relaunched some tired old spin. See, we’re meant to believe the reason why our government, alone amongst the developed countries, has done bugger-all to save and create jobs is that, rather than a ‘big-bang’, Key has adopted for a ‘rolling maul’ of initiatives.

Would it be impertinent of me to ask just where this wonderful rolling maul is and what it consists of?

Key said there were ’40-50′ ideas from the Job Summit sent t0 ministers for development (you can see the list of ideas and the ministers assigned here) but they nearly all seem to have sunk without trace, and are mostly small beer anyway. We’re meant to believe that there’s all kinds of work going on ‘behind the scenes’ that will (eventually) lead to policy. Bollocks.

The ministries are focused on trying to carry out their existing responsibilities with less money and fewer staff. And they’re leaking like sieves. At the moment, there’s not the capacity to develop these supposed wonder ideas and if it were happening, we would have heard about it. Far from developing exciting new policies, Ministers aren’t getting the basics done. Chopper Tolley, for example, hasn’t even replaced the new ECE regulations due for July 1, which she binned back in November, and hasn’t announced the new ECE funding rates, also due on July 1.

The truth, the scary truth, is the reason the government has lost control of the political agenda and shows no signs of regaining it, is that they’re out of ideas on the economy. They came into power with a smattering of policies – tax cuts, some anti-PC populism, and some gifts for their mates but have found themselves tasked with confronting the challenge of a generation.

It’s clear that they’re just not up to it. Key is way out of his depth. English is an ideologue, more obsessed with slashing government like in the 90s than doing what works. Smith and Hide are liabilities. Bennett, Wong, Collins, Coleman, Heatley, Tolley, Brownlee etc are empty suits with no ideas. Sharples and Turia are in dreamland. The good ministers – Finlayson, Power, Groser – are sidelined.

It’s not going to change. Incompetent ministers aren’t suddenly going to become competent. Key, who always just wanted PM on his CV, isn’t suddenly going to develop the vision and drive to lead us out of this economic mire. This is a government treading water, and slowly running out of energy for even that.

33 comments on “A rolling maul or treading water?”

  1. infused 1

    I’m quite happy for them to do nothing. A lot of the jobs created during the last 7 or so years were only here because of a booming artificial economy. Look at the countries that are pumping billions in to their economy, nothing is happening. I’m glad the National govt is not wasting our money.

    • Bill 1.1

      Maybe if those unspecified countries you are referring to pumped money into the real economy instead of throwing taxpayer billions at the banks in the forlorn hope of some trickle down?

      Which is surely the argument. Not ‘to stimulate or not to stimulate’, but ‘to stimulate at the bottom and wait for a percolator effect, or to stimulate at the top and wait for a trickle down’.

      If the government is not going to attempt governance at all ( as seems to be becoming the case) then maybe it’s time we gave it a crack ourselves? Except I suspect you’re not keen on that idea either.

      So government devoid of governance it is then.

  2. tsmithfield 2

    Our unemployment rate is actually quite good compared to a lot of countries. Therefore, it could be argued that there has not been the same need to mortgage our futures on dubious stimulus packages.

    However, the government has done some quite good things that are not as spectacular but never-the-less quite effective.

    An example is the movement of the GST threshold for going onto the payments basis. This has been lifted from 1.2m to 2m. For us this has meant an input into cashflow of about 10k through the adjustment that occurs when changing the GST calculation method. This is approx 1/5 a salary. So, when multiplied across the country, this move in itself has probably saved quite a few jobs

    • felix 2.1

      Bill and John have been telling us for eight months that they’re spending more on their stimulus package, by population, than just about any country in the world.

      You don’t believe them I see.

      • jarbury 2.1.1

        Was that before or after they canned the tax cuts?

        Australia has probably had one of the largest stimulus packages – and (surprise surprise) they’re one of the countries least adversely affected by the recession.

        • gingercrush 2.1.1.1

          They were also not in recession before the world-wide recession hit. They’re also heavily involved in mining which will always cushion them. Not to mention much of what they export are going to countries who themselves are not facing large recessionary pressure.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.1

            They’re also heavily involved in mining which will always cushion them.

            Really?
            Seems that reality disagrees with that statement.

            The Trouble With Energy
            Part 1
            Part 2
            Part 3
            Part 4

      • gingercrush 2.1.2

        That is because New Zealand stimulatory practice isn’t through constant borrowing unlike nearly every other country. Our stimulus on the whole is fast-tracking existing programs. Its still a stimulus hence why the OCED and the World Bank have both said New Zealand has reached its limit of what they can do to provide stimulus to the economy.

        • jarbury 2.1.2.1

          What has been fast-tracked? A few roading projects, a couple of schools…. and a very small number of state houses?

  3. I think the fact that unemployment hasn’t hit 8% (yet) has only meant there hasn’t been quite the same political pressure for the government to do more.

    It’s not much consolation for the 1000 people a week losing their jobs though, or the tens of thousands more who are worried about losing their jobs.

  4. gingercrush 4

    I do find it hilarious that there is always constant talk of the National Party being arrogant. Yet anyone reading this can smell the arrogance of those on the left. But you go on thinking what you believe. We’ll be laughing back at you in 2011.

    • Pascal's bookie 4.1

      Coming from the guy that reckons Krugman, Stiglitz, Keynes et al are wrongity wrong wrong about economics, but won’t explain why.

      Any way, this arrogance you see. Is it more or less than the arrogance in this:

      We’ll be laughing back at you in 2011.

      Perhaps you could give me an example.

      • gingercrush 4.1.1

        ….

        I never said they were wrong about economics. I just simply do not agree with borrowing millions of debt on stimulus.

        As for why this post is arrogant. That is obvious. When you believe just three people in National are talented. You clearly don’t even know what you’re talking about. I don’t think you’ll see DPF rolling out a post declaring everyone in Labour talentless. Even though if you’re going to talk about talent. You should be looking at Labour. Because while they have some good members. Many on their side have clearly been politicians for simply too long.

        • Pascal's bookie 4.1.1.1

          I never said they were wrong about economics. I just simply do not agree with borrowing millions of debt on stimulus.

          So you disagree with them, but think they are right? Surely not.

          Surely you disagree with them because you think they are wrong? Do you think that those guys, with their fancy degrees and book learning, and prizes from the nobel people are unaware of the debt issue? Just saying you disagree with them is itself arrogant as all hell unless you can show why they are wrong to think the debt is worth incurring.

          As for the rest,. how arrogant you are, just saying that obviously National has a lot of talent and that such an idea just goes without saying, and that I should be talking about the things you think I should be talking about and what have you.

          But anyway, do you think the post is more arrogant, or less arrogant than this:

          We’ll be laughing back at you in 2011.

          • gingercrush 4.1.1.1.1

            Do grow up PB. How many neo-liberals have degrees. Indeed how many neo-liberalists teach economics. Would you agree with everything they have to say? Would you agree with them at all? What about bank economists. Do you agree with much of what they say? After all, according to your pathetic analysis. Failure to agree with anyone that has either a Nobel Prize or a University degree wihout an explanation makes you arrogant. You’re pulling at straws PB. I have stated numerous times why I didn’t agree with borrowing millions/billions of debt. Its called an opinion. I guess we’re not allowed opinions anymore.

            • Ari 4.1.1.1.1.1

              Opinions are like assholes- they’re not useful unless they’re connected to some plumbing that makes them work. 😉

              I don’t personally mind you disagreeing about something, but you should at least be willing to put up a reason for everyone and defend it.

            • Pascal's bookie 4.1.1.1.1.2

              hahaha. What a load of straw. You burst in laughing at how arrogant we are and skiting about how National has already got 2011 sewn up, and now you’re crying about the mean old bookie calling you out.

              Heat. Kitchen.

              I don’t agree with some things neoliberals say, and I do state why I disagree with them, I point out where I think they are wrong and I point out who I do agree with.

              You tend to state your opinions as if they are fact. I’ve seen you say as fact that Obama’s plan has already failed, (are you aware that it is hardly even started yet? that most of the money is yet to be spent?), and then claim that this proves Krugman wrong. Are you aware that Krugman predicted Obama’s plan would be too small. Do you actually read the people that you claim are wrong?

              Please point me to where you have said why you think the stimulus plans are a bad idea. All I remember seeing from you is statements about how it will lead to debt. No one disputes that, so it is irrelevant. You need to explain why it is wrong to think that the debt will be a worse problem. ie, you need to explain why Krugman, Stiglitz, et al are wrong. And yes, they know all about the debt.

              You are perfectly entitled to think they are wrong of course, no one has said otherwise.

  5. Bill 5

    Was it Hooten on Radio NZ yesterday arguing that the government should do nothing because if they did something and it didn’t work then that wouldn’t look good?

    Maybe next time somebody should set up the ‘Paper Cut Out Party’?

  6. Jasper 6

    Where’s the boot camps?

    Keys State of the Nation speech from January last year stated that he had a comprehensive outline of how to effect that policy. So far, so dull.

    It’s got merit, but rather than “boot camps” why not take the idea one step further and expand it to include all those who are not in work, training or study and aged between 17 – 30, and send them off to a training camp for 6 months.

    Training camp will cover all the physical requirements for the police, army, navy, and airforce. At the end of 6 months, all trainees can choose which path they want to take. If they don’t want to go into the defence force, but look for work, all well and good but they won’t be eligible for the dole (because 6 months at training camp will be paid for.. much like 6 months at police college is paid for at the moment)

    This boosts our defence force, and with an expanded navy we can get a host of smaller boats patrolling our shores, getting rid of illegal trawlers, and poachers.

    The Army can be used to conduct dawn raids and kick out those 12,000 PI overstayers who are bleeding us dry and not giving anything back.

    Leechers and bleeders need to be kicked out and sent back home. Immigration don’t have the power, the army can conduct searches for illegals.

    Our police force will be expanded as in recession crime escalates, as proven on this site, when unemployment rises.

    On joining one of those forces, people sign up for an initial three year contract. One year training, one year overseas doing peacekeeping missions, and one year back in NZ. Upskills our country, and starts clearing out the dreck and muck.

    I acknowledge that kicking out overstayers is a contentious issue, but seriously, 12,000 sucking off our teats and giving nothing back is crippling. New Zealand does need to crack down.

    • Bill 6.1

      How many teats you got there Jasper? Might I suggest cabbage leafs for the sake of relief? Perhaps after your nipples have settled your comments will be less painful too!. I honestly thought your comment was misfiring satire until the penny dropped.

      • Jasper 6.1.1

        Last time I looked I had three teats.

        One for the SO, one for the kid and one for the government.

    • I’ll leave your disgusting bigotry for others (maybe you could train up some special soldiers to deal with those darn overstaying darkies, SS has a nice catchy ring to it?) to deal with, but how exactly do you expect someone to survive if you cut off their payments once you kick them out of your training camp, where they have been locked up unable to go look for work.

      Thats the thing about you tories who have never even been close to living in a situation like that. You have no conception of no money. You may know what its like to have “no money” for a new car or fridge, but you’ll likely to have never been anywhere near, no money for food and shelter. And for all you’re sides talk about “the real world”, it really is quite a laugh.

      • Jasper 6.2.1

        What? Me Tory?

        Kitno, you didn’t read the point I made where those in training camps are getting paid to be there. As it’s highly unlikely they’ll ever get a chance to spend that money while at camp, as food, and shelter is provided free, they will have more than enough to survive off while looking for work.

        If they can’t find work, the option is still there to get into one of the forces as long as its within a set time period – say three months. Didn’t put that in there.

        Assuming we pay a going rate of $30,000 a year, after 6 months at camp that’s still a good 10K to live off for a couple of months.

        But unlike sitting at home sending off multiple CVs for jobs that have hundreds of applicants, they’re getting some value out of exercise.

        As for the teat suckers, why are they here? Seriously, Labour forgot that it’s a party that was created by workers, for workers. When it’s attentions focused inwards and on the lower rung of society it succeeded in alienating a large bloc of middle class workers.

        Riddle me this: You didn’t say anything against my points, except to say I’m a bigot on ridding the country of overstayers.
        When was the last time any overstaying PI set up a business, hired locals to work for them? None. When was the last time an overstaying asian set up a business and hired locals to work for them? None, cos they’re not overstayers when they have a business.

        There’s logic in there somewhere to my flu addled brain.

        • Bill 6.2.1.1

          Since I’m over 30 jasper, can I join your version of the Home Guard? And as you will no doubt be Captain Mainwaring, can I be Private Frazer?

          Just send me your measurements and we’ll get you all fixed up.

          • Jasper 6.2.1.1.1

            So why is it good to have 12,000 overstayers contributing nothing to our society?

        • “When was the last time any overstaying PI set up a business, hired locals to work for them? None. ”

          Maybe that is because it is illegal, and it is in their self interest to stay here, and starting a business is a pretty quick way to get caught.

          • Jasper 6.2.1.2.1

            Ok, now turn it around into a legal PI

            Any of those legal immigrants set up their own businesses? I know ONE. Just one, and they hire white kids cos they admit privately they wouldn’t hire any PI teens as they’re “too lazy”

            So whats really the biggest drain on our society? Maori or PI?

            • felix 6.2.1.2.1.1

              Jasper,

              Are you seriously saying that of all the Polynesian immigrants legally in NZ only one has started a business that you know of?

              Are you further suggesting that this shows anything apart from your lack of contact with Polynesians?

              Is this a serious statement that you expect rational people to engage with?

  7. Ari 7

    I think you do the Maori Party a bit of disservice by saying they’re asleep.

    More like they’re trying to figure out how to challenge National to give them more when they can’t threaten to paddle their waka alongside Labour instead.

  8. Zaphod Beeblebrox 8

    Arguing about who has talent, who knows what they are talking about etc etc is pointless. In the end all you get is one lot saying our beliefs are better than theirs.

    The questions should be- Is who has the better ideas to brand and position NZ for sustainable economic, ecological and social progress? Who has the creative talent to foster new ideas?

    We know what is coming ie world wide food, energy and water shortages, The ability to envisage new ideas or at least attempts to think outside the square will be the most important factor determining our future.

    Labour weren’t great at responding to changes going on around them, It is painfully obvious that this government has a lot of catching up to do to reverse the decline of our research, environmental, social and educational capital. Cutting back in these areas will set us years back.

  9. Bill 9

    Sorry. Replied in wrong place

  10. Tom Semmens 10

    Jasper, Jasper! Nice of you to conveniently package all the Shibboleths of the teh interweb right in one post!

    First of all, if everyone between the ages of 17-30 is going to be employed by the various organs of state repression, how do you propose to uphold the libertarian ideal of freedom? All those armed soldiers, sailors and airmen with nothing to do…
    And I hope you don’t mind the tax increase to pay their wages whilst they idle about in their barracks doing nothing. Actually you probably won’t get a say, because shortly after you employ the army to routinely engage in internal policing, they’ll probably just take over running the whole place. Nice blow for freedom, you fuckwit.

    And if we are going to pay all these young people a considerable wage whilst training to become permanently employed on the state payroll, would it not be better to just train them to be teachers, nurses, firefighters, you know, useful things that don’t involve miltarism? Or are you attracted by the idea of all those hunky men in uniform? It is O.K. to admit that here. You are amongst liberals now.

    Honestly. As i said, you’ve displayed all the shibboleths of right wing posters. Kneejerk, unfocussed and inchoate anger over something – anything! – Racism (how many whites are overstaying here, have you ever wondered?), an apparent yearning for an authoritarian hierarchy (how DID your potty training go anyway?) – except for yourself – and a desperate desire to punish people to, presumably, make yourself feel a better and more superior person.

    Go away and don’t come back until you’ve grown up and matured into a real adult.

    • Jasper 10.1

      Tom Tom! Calm down fucks sake.

      Surely you know by now I just like to rark up members amongst the left simply as I don’t believe that the left should be all cushy and molly coddle those who choose to live here at the expense of others who already do. I’m sorry but that’s exactly what’s happened over the past 4 years.
      Labour was a party founded by workers, for the workers, which has been forgotten by them. Too focussed on washing out the swill from the pig bucket to make it pristine and clean without realising it’s just going to get dirty again in a matter of minutes.

      It’s not everyone as you believe, just those who aren’t already in school, work or training. I.e. those on a benefit.

      They won’t be sitting around doing nothing either.. If New Zealand can actually get peace keepers overseas, it’ll heightens our standing in the world.

      Sure, my targets the PI’s for now as they’re in my community and I see first hand the effects the overstayers have in my community. Thats not to say my beliefs dont extend to asian, australian, filipino, brazilian, american, african, british, and european overstayers. They’re all tarred with the same brush if they aren’t contributing to our society.

      Felix – I work with Polynesians in community groups and at the churches so it’s a bit off for you to suggest I have a lack of contact with them. When the news broke about Otimis Hapu scam, many in my area wanted to see him until it was explained it wouldn’t help their family members, many of whom claim benefits as it’s too easy for them to do so.
      Rankles against my beliefs. If they were here legally, it wouldn’t be an issue, but to be an ii, and claim benefits that’s fucking pathetic.
      As for those who set up businesses, yes, only ONE I know of actually has a business that employs other people outside of themselves or their immediate family (who may or may not be ii). If there are others, then sure, I’ll update my listings, but the fact remains, I don’t know any other PIs who’ve set up a business and hired external staff. Do you?
      This is disregarding all those who get into franchises as to my mind, that’s not starting your own business. You’re simply taking the IP from someone who’s set up the company and applying their methodologies to call yourself “Jims Mowing Ltd”

      Of course the other alternative is to set the benefit (any benefit) claimant age from 25 and be done with it. At least then that gets those between 18 – 25 off welfare, and into the real world instead of putting their hand out at the age of 18 in the expectation of being looked after by WINZ.

      Believe me, I know this is whats happening having worked at WINZ, and perversely, being on the other side of the counter at WINZ a couple of years apart.

      The current cradle to the grave situation doesn’t work, and is far more damaging to NZ’s economical and societal interests in the long term, so it’s time to get real and think radically.

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    Sheer Loopiness: Many of those expressing bemusement at the antics of these #turnardern effacers, were convinced that they were yet another expression of the National Party’s increasingly spiteful anti-government propaganda campaign. They marvelled at the oddness of the perpetrators’ mindset and questioned the common-sense of allowing the rest of New Zealand ...
    4 days ago
  • Things to know about Whakaari/White Island
    Brad Scott, GNS Science VolcanologistThis post was originally published by GeoNet. Following the 9 December devastating eruption at Whakaari/White Island we have put together some information about the island. New Zealand’s most active volcano Whakaari/White Island is currently New Zealand’s most active volcano, it has been since an eruptive episode ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • Status quo supports status quo
    The Justice Committee has reported back on its Inquiry into the 2017 General Election and 2016 Local Elections, with a host of recommendations about how to improve our electoral systems. Some of their recommendations are already incorporate din the Electoral Amendment Bill currently before Parliament, but there's also a recommendation ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The Greens abandon NeoLiberalism
    Back in 2017, in order to make themselves "electable" in the eyes of rich people who oppose everything they stand for, the Greens signed up for NeoLiberalism, adopting a restrictive set of "Budget Responsibility Rules" which basicly prevented them from using government to make things better. Now, they're finally abandoning ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Lying about a failed war
    Since invading in 2001, the US has consistently claimed that their war in Afghanistan has been going well, even when it continued year after year after year. Of course, they were lying, and thanks to the Washington Post and the US Freedom of Information Act, we get to see just ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Artificial Intelligence and You
    How should we think about artificial intelligence and the implications that it has for our work and leisure? There are many articles on artificial intelligence and its potential impacts on jobs, and the ethics of applications. These are important topics, but I want to focus on some less discussed aspects, ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    5 days ago
  • Statistical manipulation to get publishable results
    I love data. It’s amazing the sort of “discoveries” I can make given a data set and computer statistical package. It’s just so easy to search for relationships and test their statistical significance. Maybe relationships which ...
    5 days ago
  • More lies on the Twitter (Dan Hodges edition)
    The other big story concerning Leeds Hospital is Boris Johnson's bizzare behaviour at Leeds Hospital, where he was confronted by a journalist and challenged about a four year old boy with suspected pneumonia who was left sleeping on the floor, rather than getting  abed like a sick kid would in ...
    5 days ago
  • LabourActivistPunchedMattHancock’sSPADGate
    So, for a brief period of history, it was alleged that a protester had punched Matt Hancock's SPAD (not a euphemism; special adviser) when Hancock visited Leeds Hospital.This was reported by the likes of Robert Peston and Laura Keunssberg, as well as the less credible Guido Fawkes.  It also quickly ...
    5 days ago
  • France’s anti-Zionism is anti-liberté
    by Daphna Whitmore Last week France passed a law that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. It is based on a definition of anti-Semitism that includes criticism of Israel such as: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Another bus lockout
    Over the past year we've seen major bus problems in Hamilton and Wellington, as drivers have sought better wages and an end to the bullshit of split shifts, which basicly see them "married to the job". And now its Auckland's turn. When NZBus's drivers planned low-level strike action of not ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Showing us how its done
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. But those targets are insufficient. Meanwhile, Denmark is showing us how its done:Denmark’s parliament adopted a new climate law on Friday, committing to reach 70% below its 1990 emissions in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Public sector dysfunction should not be allowed to undermine freedom of information
    Another day, another piece of legislation with a secrecy clause. This time its the innocuous-seeming Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill, which (after establishing a new body and making it subject to the OIA in three different ways) includes the rapidly-becoming-standard clauses enabling it to request information from other public ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • “This is England, this knife of Sheffield steel…”
    The state of the United Kingdom is fractured, torn up, shredded. The Empire is gone, it died a long time ago. And yet, the country is still tracking with a lead in favour of the ones who play to the ingrained, class-bound division for political gain. It is a disgrace ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • CORSIA, coming soon to an airport near you
    On 27 September, Greta Thunberg addressed a crowd of 500,000 at the School Strike for Climate in Montreal, saying: “You are a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And Sweden is also a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And in both cases, it means absolutely nothing. Because ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Cloaking hate speech and fake news in the right to free expression.
    It should be obvious by now but let’s be clear: The same folk who regularly traffic in disinformation, misinformation and “fake news” are also those who most strongly claim that their freedom of expression rights are being violated when moves are made to curb hate speech (as opposed to protected ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    1 week ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    1 week ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • How plant-based meat is stretching New Zealand’s cultural and legal boundaries
    Samuel Becher, Victoria University of Wellington and Jessica C Lai, Victoria University of Wellington Earlier this year, the New Zealand-based pizza chain Hell Pizza offered a limited-edition “Burger Pizza”. Its customers weren’t told that the “meat” was plant-based. Some customers complained to the Commerce Commission, which enforces consumer law in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago

  • New partnership to boost screen sector job opportunities
    Auckland’s growing screen sector is the catalyst for a new partnership between the Ministry of Social Development and Auckland’s economic development agency Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED). The launch today at FilmFX in Henderson, is to celebrate the partnership which looks to capitalise on the social and economic development opportunities ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • A minute’s silence for Whakaari White Island victims
    A minute’s silence will be observed at 2.11pm on Monday 16 December in honour of the victims of the Whakaari White Island eruption, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has confirmed. “Wherever you are in New Zealand, or around the world, this is a moment we can stand alongside those who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • NZ to help fund fight against measles in the Pacific region
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced New Zealand will contribute NZ$1 million of funding towards the joint United Nations Fund for Children (UNICEF) and World Health Organisation (WHO) Pacific Regional Action Plan for Measles.   “Prevention through vaccination is the most effective way of avoiding illness and a costly health emergency. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • New Zealand remembers Sir Peter Snell
    New Zealand is today remembering one of our true sporting heroes, triple Olympic gold medal winner Sir Peter Snell. “He was a legend, here and around the world,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “Our thoughts are with Sir Peter’s wife Miki and their family.” “Sir Peter is recognised as New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • PM congratulates Boris Johnson on election victory
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson on his election victory.  “New Zealand and the United Kingdom are close friends and despite our distance we are strongly connected by our history and people,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “I look forward to continuing to work with Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Building a platform for the future of rail
    The Government has released its long term vision for a sustainable 21st Century rail network that gets our cities moving, connects our regions and gets more freight off the roads.   Deputy Prime Minister and State Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters said the Government is committed to rebuilding New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement Whakaari White Island recovery operation
    I want to start by acknowledging the families who have experienced such grief and such loss since the extraordinary tragedy on Monday. Today was all about reuniting them with their loved ones. We've just come from the airport where many of them were gathered and in amongst what you can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
    Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being A housing project by Kohupātiki whānau in Hastings is an outstanding example of a Māori-led housing initiative that can reduce financial pressure and reconnect whānau to their whakapapa says the Minister for Māori Development Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Minister Mahuta officially opened the Aroha Te Rangi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government provides more funding for major community wetland restoration project
    Restoration efforts for a significant wetland in the Hawke’s Bay are getting more support announced Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage. “Wetlands are vital to healthy landscapes and ecosystems. They function as nature’s ‘kidneys’, filtering and protecting water quality, acting as nature’s sponges after rain and are home to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New funding to support Environment Centres working for sustainable local solutions
    New Government funding announced today will help communities make a difference in tackling environmental issues Associate Minister for the Environment Eugenie Sage announced in Hawkes Bay today. The Ministry for the Environment’s Community Environment Fund is dedicating $243,101 to growing the capacity and capability of the Environment Hubs Aotearoa’s (EHA) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
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