web analytics

Australia: screaming backwards with CGT

Written By: - Date published: 1:51 pm, July 13th, 2011 - 57 comments
Categories: brand key, capital gains, Economy, making shit up, russel norman - Tags:

Russel Norman put a dagger into John Key yesterday in question time asking whether a series of national and international economic authorities really wanted to “put a dagger through the heart of growth” with a CGT.

Key waffled and whined and contradicted himself: ‘it won’t raise any money’, ‘it’s a tax grab’, ‘it’ll send the economy backwards’, ‘everyone will avoid it’, ‘it’s hideously complex’, ‘we already have one’, ‘it won’t solve the problem’, ‘we already basically did this and fixed the problem’.

But the best moment was when Norman looked at the evidence across the Tasman.

Dr Russel Norman: Has the Prime Minister seen the evidence that the Australian economy has outperformed the New Zealand economy every year since 1985, the same year that Australia first introduced a capital gains tax, which would supposedly put a dagger through the economy?

Rt Hon JOHN KEY: There are many differences between the New Zealand and Australian economies…. (followed by over a minute of increasingly hysterical non sequiturs)

So, is Norman right? Not precisely, New Zealand grew faster than Australia a couple of times,  but the Australian economy vastly outstripped New Zealand’s overall, growing 58% per capita since 1985 compared to New Zealand’s 28%. It was after CGT was introduced there, and the neoliberal reforms took hold here, that the gap really opened up.

And it’s clear that did not go “screaming backwards” when CGT was introduced, as Key would have you believe:

Australia’s growth per capita has averaged 0.5% per quarter since CGT came in compared to 0.4% before had as far back as records go.

I don’t know about you, but if CGT is a dagger through the heart, I would prefer it to slow starvation via neglect from Key and co.

– Bright Red

57 comments on “Australia: screaming backwards with CGT”

  1. freedom 1

    ( sardonic tone ) hate to point out the obvious but NZ is not on that graph so how is the all important visual comparison meant to be made? We know it is true because all data supports the facts, but the RWNJ brigade will cry foul that the post is confusing and murray already has a headache from all the whistling

  2. queenstfarmer 2

    My take on Key’s claims:

    ‘it won’t raise any money’ – partially true. Indications are it will raise close to a billion, after about a decade. In the short term (next few years) it won’t raise much.

    ‘it’s a tax grab’ – it’s a tax increase, that’s for certain, though it won’t be felt immediately.

    ‘it’ll send the economy backwards’ – probably false (i.e. unlikely), but unknown.

    ‘everyone will avoid it’ – partially true. People will try to avoid it, and wealther people tend to (legally) avoid tax much more than others.

    ‘it’s hideously complex’ – compared to other taxes, true.

    ‘we already have one’ – true, but it’s a bit kneecapped.

    ‘it won’t solve the problem’ – true, if the problem is how does Labour propose to fund extravagent spending promises.

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      ‘it’s hideously complex’ – compared to other taxes, true.

      Not compared to the earnings from foreign investments regime mate. Not one bit as complex.

      • Jim Nald 2.1.1

        Complex? Difficult? The sky will fall?

        On the eve of Labour’s tax policy announcement, I am relaxed.

        I have, just this afternoon, scheduled an appointment with my bank about my plans in the next few months to buy another house.

        I am working out my own finances and long term plans, and come what may with Labour’s policy, I will be comfortable.

    • Reality Bytes 2.2

      Sure It may take a decade to raise a billion annually by some forecasts.

      BUT…

      What about the capital that gets redirected into other productive areas like business investment, as more investors shy away from property speculation. What about the increased tax revenue due to that?

      The decreased social welfare costs from the knock on effect of greater available employment opportunities…

      And from that the increased tax revenue from PAYE due to the greater number of people employed…

      And from that the increased tax revenue from GST due to a greater number employed having greater disposable income…

      And increased tax revenue from businesses that would not exist if the capital was tied up in over-priced property speculation…

      And all of the above repeated as more people with more disposable income have more potential to invest.

      Oh and more reasonably priced housing, meaning less of a brain-drain, as less people jump the ditch to Aussie.

      The direct tax take from the CGT is just the icing on the cake, I suspect the benefits from all of the above mentioned would be far far greater than the basic amount that CGT would bring in.

      • queenstfarmer 2.2.1

        That is possible – and actually why I am cautiously in favour of a limited CGT – although note that the Aussie graph above didn’t take off after CGT, as well as not going down. So it is far from clear whether it would boost the economy (though again I like the rationale)

  3. davidc 3

    Why compare ourselves to Oz? They are more than a little different to lil ole NZ. 57% of what they export comes out of a hole in the ground, and frankly who cares? nice place to visit but wouldnt wanna live there!

    • Blighty 3.1

      are you saying that mining is the reason why cgt didn’t send Australia ‘screaming backwards’?

      Please explain how.

      • davidc 3.1.1

        Record earning thru mining so the export earnings are fantastic and the service industries that support mining are coining it all keeps gdp boyant, but really my point was that its not an apples to apples comparison.

        • Blighty 3.1.1.1

          um. are you claiming that Australia was going through a mining boom in the mid 80s and that was all that stopped Australia from going ‘screaming backwards’ due to the introduction of CGT?

          • davidc 3.1.1.1.1

            Yip 🙂

            Remembering that CGT takes a long time to get into gear and by the time it did the mining boom was well underway.

            • Blighty 3.1.1.1.1.1

              that’s retarded.

              you have no evidence. You just want something, anything, up to avoid the clear facts that CGT didn’t hurt the Australian economy

              • Colonial Viper

                Australia wasn’t hurt by the CGT not because of the mining which is merely a confounding factor, but because large deserts make countries less susceptible to the negative economic affects of a CGT. And Australia has plenty of those.

                Aussie Rules also plays a part as that changes the social dynamics of the society, which studies have shown reduce the potential negative effects of a CGT.

                New Zealand, absent these protective factors, is definitely at heightened risk from going backwards so Key is right.

            • Robert M 3.1.1.1.1.2

              This is part of the truth, but Australia is a vastly wealthier country. The rich list people in Australia are ten times wealthier than their compatriots in NZ. Education and health are vastly more private domains in Australia. Half the school age population in Australia goes to private schools. \Much of the Australian middle class will draw the majority of their income from shares, inheritance and company and business ownership. That isn’t remotely the case here. Australias reliance on mineral wealth may be regarded as an exception-but it is also true that NZ excessively relies on agricultural industries which have largely reached their sustainable limit. \Investment of new tech in agriculture will not necessarily produce great medium term gains. CGT is another tax on the bright and the professional classes. It will be a furthur barrier to keeping talent in the country. It is a tax born of ignorance, cynicism and envy.

              • Colonial Viper

                CGT is another tax on the bright and the professional classes. It will be a furthur barrier to keeping talent in the country. It is a tax born of ignorance, cynicism and envy.

                Singing for your supper on behalf of the top 5% of NZ society eh? Or is that the top 1%?

                US style tax welfare for the wealthy is wrecking their country and it isn’t welcome here. The chant of the Republican Party is simple: tax cuts for the rich, service cuts for the poor!!!

                It will be a furthur barrier to keeping talent in the country.

                Actually I am hoping that all the speculators and ticket clippers will go and we can get on with building a properly productive NZ.

        • mik e 3.1.1.2

          AUS also introduced the compulsory super scheme around that time as well.now they have$1.4trilion in savings no wonder Australia hasn,t had a recession since 1980 while we,ve had 6 most of them on nationals watch only one on Labours , in fact National have only managed to get 9.5% economic growth by volume in 12years Labour manged 28% in 9 years !

          • Jim Nald 3.1.1.2.1

            NZ could have come out much better now if our super wasn’t killed?

            Brian Gaynor’s pieces:

            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/super-fund/news/article.cfm?c_id=468&objectid=10465138

            http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10667652

            “A dreadful political decision, announced on December 15, 1975, transformed New Zealand from the potential Switzerland of the Southern Hemisphere into a low-ranking OECD economy.

            “Without this decision we would now be called “The Antipodean Tiger” and be the envy of the rest of the world. We would have a current account surplus, one of the lowest interest-rate structures in the world and would probably rank as one of the top five OECD economies.

            ….

            “The irony is that we once had a fantastic superannuation scheme which was terminated by Prime Minister Robert Muldoon on December 15, 1975.

            “This was the worst economic decision by any New Zealand government in the past 50 years and turned the country from being a potential Switzerland of the Southern Hemisphere into a low-ranking OECD country that is falling further and further behind its next-door neighbour.”

  4. Herodotus 4

    Key waffled and whined and contradicted himself: ‘it won’t raise any money’, ‘it’s a tax grab’, ‘it’ll send the economy backwards’, ‘everyone will avoid it’,
    There is already a CGT it was just that the IRD and various govts decided for what ever reasons not to enforce the legislation and interpretations at the time. I am sure we all know of examples where individuals were trading in property and not contributing their fair share to society, and from this insightful link !!!
    http://www.national.org.nz/Article.aspx?articleId=9733
    For example, in 2004, IRD targeted property investment in Queenstown, Wanaka and some parts of Auckland. They gathered an extra $106.6 million in tax from those investigations, including $52.9 million from Auckland alone.
    So I would love to ask P.Dunn, and senior members of previous govts why they did not have as a priority enforcement of this legislation ? Why was it acceptable for many to avoid paying their due taxes ? and finally what steps are in place currently to hold people accountable for taxes they owe from any previous capital gains (its not rocket science to search LINZ database for patterns of property trading)?

    • davidc 4.1

      Herodotus, I agree.
      There is a vast black ecconomy that could be taxed if IRD got of its arse.
      Typical scenario is the self employed builder/plumber/sparkie who builds or tarts up a house using materials that have been purchased thru his company and written off on other jobs so not only does he not pay income tax on the materials he claims the GST and then gets a tax free profit on the house when its sold.
      Enforcement is the answer not renaming the tax.

      • Colonial Viper 4.1.1

        Need a wealth tax of around 0.5% p.a.

        • sean maitland 4.1.1.1

          All you envious little lefties, jealous with rage, wanting to grab other peoples money and get your filthy little bludging paws all over it……

          • rosy 4.1.1.1.1

            You think? I’m one of many who doesn’t need anyone else’s money, but I do think broadening the tax base, including a CGT is a really good idea. A few very rich people around the world are also thinking broadening the tax base is a really good idea. I particularly like this headline:

            German Rich Demand Higher Taxes

            You need to get with the programme Sean, being greedy is losing its cool.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      There is already a CGT it was just that the IRD and various govts decided for what ever reasons not to enforce the legislation and interpretations at the time.

      No, it’s that the rules around it are so amorphous as to be impractical to apply. They have to work at it proving every single case which would mean that, if it was applied across the board, it would most likely cost more to administer than it could possibly collect.

      • Herodotus 4.2.1

        DTB I would question
        They have to work at it proving every single case which would mean that, if it was applied across the board, it would most likely cost more to administer than it could possibly collect.
        As when the IRD took individuakls to court and were sucessful a history of precedent would build up. Sure there would be some who would escape, this would have reduced the necessity for a CGT as much of whatthis may collect would already have been collected !!!!!!
        – yet those who assigned a Sales & Purchase comtract to a 3rd party and took a gain would find it difficult to argue that there was an element of non speculation, also those who traded property 3,4 5+ or more properties over say a 6 yr period, and there were many in this boat. For this it should have been the easily picked fruit thatthe IRD went after, instead of NO FRUIT !!!
        With my limited knowledge I would be surprised it over the 5th Lab govts tenor I could not have collected 100+ million p.a.
        Perhaps the CGT is Phils/labs conscience acting up over what previous govts were entitle to and failed to collect.

        • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.1

          Perhaps they could have but why not make it easier and cheaper to do so?

  5. freedom 5

    There’s a vast in your face economy too and only a fraction of the Tax debt has been paid

    All the major banks and so many other Multinationals have regularly had extensions for hundreds of millions in tax and you want to thumbscrew the chippies and the house cleaners
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10601998

  6. Herodotus 6

    I am aware of many builders who “lost” materials when building their own home/bach on other projects. This allowed them to min the cost of their home (max the capital gain) and to claim as deductions for coy tax and GST on the business (saving over 40% in materials costs 12.5% GST and the 33% on the 87.5% on materials).
    It was a standing joke that whenever a builder built a pool for himself there was also 1 being constructed for a client-funny how many pools required 2 filter pumps, extra concrete and pool fencing, and how is the IRD to know who is a builder when as an occupation they entered Company Director?
    I had at the pub one night the priviledge of listening to a builder complain how hard it was for him to lose a $70k cash job and for the IRD not to know. How some are so unfortunate 😉

    • davidc 6.1

      On your ACC paperwork you have to say what you do, that shouldnt be too hard for IRD to work out.

      Also shouldnt be too hard to line up company directors names/company names and vendors on LINZ or RPNZ that keep popping up. If company sells houses and same director sells houses then director should be audited!
      Also spot audits on companies would turn up all sorts. I was in construction for nearly 20 years and never once audited, but I course I was clean anyways!
      I had read but I cant remember where that for every dollar expended by IRD on audit they bring in $8.

    • Ianupnorth 6.2

      People laugh or go into denial when I tell them I know of a 25m long salt water lap pool built as a ‘fire dam’ on a BOP dairy farm, and a Bijon Frise that has its food and vet bills claimed as business expenses as it ‘catches rodents’.
       

  7. Ianupnorth 7

    BTW, how do you put a dagger into growth when there isn’t any?

  8. RedLogix 8

    I have to agree Herodotus; the real failure lay with the govt in the 90’s which according to my own accountant, who is himself ex-IRD, deliberately directed IRD not to put much resource into enforcing this aspect of tax law.

    I’ve said this before… almost all of the effect of a CGT tax would be achieved simply by properly enforcing the existing tax law.

    Now I do know that it took the 5th Labour govt some years to gain an appreciation of what was going on. It was as late as 2005 before Dr Cullen directed IRD to beef up it’s resources in this area and immediately on doing so started finding all amounts of avoided tax.

    And that on gaining office one of this National govt’s first priorities has been stripping that same resource out of IRD.

    And the existing law is not actually all that ill-defined. The current rules are actually quite clear and difficult to avoid.

    I’m not so much against a CGT, after all I’m quite comfortable with the current rules which I believe amount to much the same thing, I’m just underwhelmed by it all.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      I’m not so much against a CGT, after all I’m quite comfortable with the current rules which I believe amount to much the same thing, I’m just underwhelmed by it all.

      Its just a start mate. Rest of the package comes out tomorrow. Asset taxes and capital/currency controls are needed as well.

    • wtl 8.2

      Your comment suggests that one of the main problems with the current law is that enforcement is dependent on the whims of the government of the day. On that basis, a change to the law, as Labour is proposing, would help overcome this problem – any future government would have to repeal the new law, making their intent plain for all to see, rather than the current rather nebulous approach of turning a blind eye.

      • RedLogix 8.2.1

        any future government would have to repeal the new law, making their intent plain for all to see, rather than the current rather nebulous approach of turning a blind eye.

        Yes.. that’s not a bad point. But then again while I can accept a CGT rule would perhaps work better from an avoidance point of view, you have to recall that the current rule pings the entire capital gain at the applicable marginal tax rate, usually 33%… while Labour’s proposed policy is only rated at 15%.

        Worse still because the ‘grandfathering’ date would 2012 at the earliest, it would effectively give a free pass to huge amounts of capital gain accumulated over the last decade.

        The other thing that generally concerns me about these kinds of rules is that they penalise improvements. In other words if I do the place up, and pay for it out of my own tax paid income… then if I sell the asset for a gain… then I effectively pay tax on the value of the improvements a second time.

        The other effect often seen in other countries is that the small mum and dad rental investors are slowly but surely pushed out of the market, which is gradually concentrated into the hands of a few relatively few very large landlords.

        Combine these two effects and I wonder if it isn’t a bit a recipie for slum-landording. Just thinking..

        • Colonial Viper 8.2.1.1

          The other thing that generally concerns me about these kinds of rules is that they penalise improvements. In other words if I do the place up, and pay for it out of my own tax paid income… then if I sell the asset for a gain… then I effectively pay tax on the value of the improvements a second time.

          Let’s say an investment in improvements of $10,000 secures a capital gain of $5,000 at sale a couple of years later.

          That investment has just returned you $5000 beyond the capital you originally put in.

          It appears to me that $5000 investment gain should be taxed, just like it would have been if you had received it as dividends, interest payments or wages (albeit at different rates).

          The other effect often seen in other countries is that the small mum and dad rental investors are slowly but surely pushed out of the market

          Why would this concentration occur? Currently we have an effect where younger New Zealanders are unable to afford houses at current prices, but a small number of New Zealanders can afford several.

          Combine these two effects and I wonder if it isn’t a bit a recipie for slum-landording. Just thinking..

          There are a few student flat districts I am aware of which isn’t too far off this.

          • Herodotus 8.2.1.1.1

            Come tomorow I hope that Lab (D.Cunliffe) has filled in the small print.

            There to me appears that there will be plenty of scope for the gains that have accumulated over the years to be lost for all time. It would be great to read that in association with any (rumoured) CGT that the IRD will be able to retrospectively review past trading activities pre 2005 (7 yrs previous from this years election). So to be fair those that have profited from marginal activity in the past will also be caught (using the existing legislation and extending to cover more than 7 yrs).

            I have yet to hear of any investigations into share trading and tax being applied to this activity.

            The other aspect I have yet to hear is how the govt will be able to serve a tax notice on non-residents, as if the tax is payable based on the tax year, profits that have been obtained how will these be collected. As the basis for withholding tax is to receipt payment at source so should there be flight the govt has already received payment, how will this be captured with a CGT? I have not read how other countries overcome this, and it was previlent in 04-07.

            • Colonial Viper 8.2.1.1.1.1

              There to me appears that there will be plenty of scope for the gains that have accumulated over the years to be lost for all time.

              What gains? Its worth taking stock here.

              Virtually every dollar of “gains” in the property market was backed my another dollar of mortgage debt.

              • Herodotus

                The gains I am referring to are those whereby property was purchased in the 01-04 period whereby the greatest gains were achieved, and even with the current depressed market there are still capital gains that have not been realised.
                The background effort that Lab has placed will be evident by tomorrows announcement. If it is well planned with detail or if it is just chasing headlines with little detail, just like the 39% tax rate and all the loopholes that were allowed that resulted for many to divert income and pay lower tax rates.
                Knowing the number of non resident Kiwis in 2 areas in Auckland that have traded in property I am worried that they will escape this tax, as they will not appear in any tax records. just lik ethe current tax that allows GST registered to purchaes land GSt excl. Now I wonder how many people have a made upGSt no?

            • Lanthanide 8.2.1.1.1.2

              “It would be great to read that in association with any (rumoured) CGT that the IRD will be able to retrospectively review past trading activities pre 2005 (7 yrs previous from this years election).”

              Electoral suicide if declared before the election.

              But you are advised to keep tax records for 7 years, so all of these people currently evading tax don’t really have any excuse if they’re audited.

          • RedLogix 8.2.1.1.2

            @CV

            It appears to me that $5000 investment gain should be taxed, just like it would have been if you had received it as dividends, interest payments or wages (albeit at different rates).

            I’m not sure the numbers you give work out the way you intended.

            If I had invested say $10,000 in a bank account and then close the account at the end of the year (the equivalent of selling)… you expect the say $400 interest earned to be counted as income and therefore taxable. But you’d be outraged if the taxman counted the entire $10,400 as income and taxed you 33% on the whole amount.

            So if I have spent the same $10k (from tax paid income) adding improvements to a property (maybe even just my own labour), and it gained an extra $15k on resale as a result… I’d happily pay tax on the $5k surplus… but the whole $15k would be a different matter would it not?

            So what was my ‘capital gain’ again?

            Why would this concentration occur? Currently we have an effect where younger New Zealanders are unable to afford houses at current prices, but a small number of New Zealanders can afford several.

            Well it does seem to be the experience in some overseas countries I can think of. For example in Scotland IIRC some 90% of the houses are owned by less than 4% of the population. Landlords owning 10,000’s of houses for generations are commonplace.

            If you make landlording unattractive for ordinary investors the residential rental market might shrink somewhat (but never drop below I’d guess 25% of homes) it would likely be taken up by large cashed up entities via the usual processes of capitalism.

        • Lanthanide 8.2.1.2

          “Yes.. that’s not a bad point. But then again while I can accept a CGT rule would perhaps work better from an avoidance point of view, you have to recall that the current rule pings the entire capital gain at the applicable marginal tax rate, usually 33%… while Labour’s proposed policy is only rated at 15%.

          Worse still because the ‘grandfathering’ date would 2012 at the earliest, it would effectively give a free pass to huge amounts of capital gain accumulated over the last decade.”

          I don’t believe Labour’s new law is going to replace the existing one. It simply means if you are buying deliberately for a capital gain and no other purpose, you should have the gain taxed as income. If you aren’t buying deliberately for capital gain, you’ll just pay the 15%.

          Therefore, the grandfathering law isn’t going to stop people who bought properties deliberately for the capital gains for having to declare that as income. I guess it’s possible that IRD may ease off on their collections and prosecutions in this area once the new law is passed, though.

        • mikesh 8.2.1.3

          A similar sort of thing occurs with shares when profits are retained, since retained earnings would normally be expected to cause an increase in the share price. But even though the company has already paid tax on those earnings, a shareholder selling subsequently will have to pay CGT, so the earnings end up being taxed twice.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.3

      And the existing law is not actually all that ill-defined.

      Apparently, as reported on here a few days ago, Treasury and the IRD disagree with you.

  9. alex 9

    Dr Norman should be made finance minister if Labour win, after all, Labour are mining Green policies pretty heavily.

    • Reality Bytes 9.1

      For sure.

      If greens are the kingmaker’s, it’s a virtual certainty. And Norman/Metiria being co-deputy prime-ministers will be part of the deal.

      • felix 9.1.1

        Are you both high?

        • Reality Bytes 9.1.1.1

          “If” is a conjunction that can introduce a conditional clause.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conditional_clause

          IF Greens are the kingmakers, you CAN GUARANTEE Key will be offering them co-deputy prime ministerships, and the Greens will get the same offer from Labour.

          Governments say we won’t work with this or that party, but speeches or promises are not the same thing as actual power. They will quickly change their tune and backtrack on said promises, arguing we had to change or mind because it’s important for the country we are in power etc…

          Exactly the same as Goff will work with Mana even though he says he won’t.

          No I am not high, thanks for asking. Interesting segway, but please try to keep on topic.

          • felix 9.1.1.1.1

            Maybe if you got high you wouldn’t be so patronising. Give it a go.

            What you’re suggesting is of course possible but would represent a major break with convention which wouldn’t be undertaken on a whim if at all.

            For post election negotiations to result in such an outcome, at least one of the two larger parties would need to be willing to countenance such an unprecedented governing arrangement. Possible, but if neither are then no dice.

            Therefore there’s no such guarantee anyone can make.

            Contrary to what’s often thrown around in these discussions, being in a “kingmaker” position doesn’t mean you get whatever you want. It means you get whatever the “kings” are willing to give up.

            • Reality Bytes 9.1.1.1.1.1

              Mate, I think getting accused of having an opinion for merely being high, to be patronizing, hence my response, so what goes around comes around. But I laugh it off and give a bit of quid pro quo patronizing response myself, no offense intended, just a bit of friendly dueling 🙂

              But back to the topic, I agree, being a Kingmaker doesn’t guarantee anything, but boy does it make a difference! It all comes down to how much balls/ovaries the theoretical kingmaker has.

          • Lanthanide 9.1.1.1.2

            “Exactly the same as Goff will work with Mana even though he says he won’t.”

            Not really, because Mana will NEVER go with National. The only situation in which Labour need to actively deal with Mana is the case where, without Mana, Labour is beaten by a repeat of the current government makeup: Nat + Act + MP + UF. Such an outcome as this is quite unlikely, because you could flip MP over to Labour’s side and therefore not need Mana.

  10. Georgecom 10

    Nice stuff from Norman using Keys comments over and over again to expose the hysteria that Key tried to inject into the debate. A nice clinical disection of the prime Minister. Basically Key was done over with his own words. Also nice interjection by Cunliffe that Key may want to try quoting McBeth.

  11. alex 11

    All I’m saying Felix is that Dr Norman has the chops as an economist, I’m not saying that the Greens will be offered high cabinet positions, after all, they continually get shafted by Labour, and the membership would never accept supporting National.
    But seriously, a strong Green party would do wonders for both the quality of policy produced by Parliament and the quality of debate. They play the ball, not the man.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • New era for Ngāti Kuri and Auckland Museum
    Words and images by Jacqui Gibson Gone are Auckland Museum’s days of doing science using a museum-centric academic approach, after Māori land rights holders Ngāti Kuri gave the museum an ultimatum.
    Tom Trnski holding a fossilised whale tooth from the Far North.Aussie-born Head of Natural Sciences at Auckland Museum ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    36 mins ago
  • Circling vultures: Why MediaWorks TV is really in trouble
    MediaWorks announced in October 2019 that it intended to sell off its struggling television business and cancel or cut back on several popular local programmes, including New Zealand Today, Married at First Sight New Zealand and 7 Days. Its radio and outdoor advertising arms are currently performing well, but MediaWorks’ ...
    Briefing PapersBy Peter Thompson
    4 hours ago
  • Scary Opinium Poll
    Westminster voting intention:CON: 44% (+3)LAB: 28% (-1)LDEM: 14% (-1)BREX: 6% (-)via @OpiniumResearch, surveyed this weekChgs. w/ 08 Nov— Britain Elects (@britainelects) 16 November 2019 This, of course, doesn't look good.  Labour have been chucking big, headline grabbing policies left, right and centre ... Well, maybe not right.  Left, left ...
    13 hours ago
  • A coward’s ploy.
    Some readers may remember that I mentioned last year that I was applying for NZ citizenship. I filled out the paperwork and had my original citizenship interview in February. Everything went well until they discovered that, because I had spent five months in the US in 2017, I had not ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    21 hours ago
  • Left censorship and exclusion against gender-critical women: a Marxist critique
    by Deirdre O’Neill It is becoming quite acceptable for certain sections of the left to declare that people like me – women who are ‘gender critical’ – should not be allowed in leftist or anarchist spaces. Leaving aside the arrogance and implicit authoritarianism of this claim, its lack of critical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    22 hours ago
  • “Uncertainty” can be better solved with a better grasp of life’s inherent complexities…
    There is an article in The Conversation, written by Jeremy P. Shapiro (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University), about what he sees as the psychologically-based underpinnings of three main matters that seem to vex people all around the planet. The article is titled “The Thinking ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 days ago
  • Citizens vs the Rogue Deep State
    . .   Blogger Martyn Bradbury has won his case against unreasonable search and surveillance against the NZ Police; and subsequent Police attempts to produce evidence in secrecy, in a closed Court. His case highlights a disturbing growing trend in Aotearoa New Zealand for State power to be used against ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • Massey University’s free speech policy double-plus-good
    The Committee of Disobedient Women has intercepted an email from Dr Emma Eejut, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Massey University to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas. Dear Jan, Thank you for your courageous move.  I think 10 pages of blether** should tie any of the students game enough to try holding ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Unacceptable
    That's the only response to the findings of the Ombudsman's investigation into LGOIMA practices at the Christchurch City Council:My investigation identified serious concerns about the Council’s leadership and culture, and its commitment to openness and transparency. In particular, Council staff raised concerns with me about various methods employed by some ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • There is what corruption looks like
    NZ First seems to be nakedly trying to enrich itself from public office:A powerful New Zealand First figure helped establish a forestry company that then pushed for money from two key funding streams controlled by a New Zealand First Minister. An RNZ investigation has found Brian Henry, lawyer for Winston ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Escape from Manus Island
    Behrouz Boochani is an award winning author and journalist. He is also a refugee, who for the past six years has been detained in Australia's offshore gulag on Manus Island, and in Papua New Guinea. But last night, with the cooperation of the WORD Christchurch festival and Amnesty International, he ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • When World’s Collide.
    Different Strokes: If a multicultural immigration policy imposes no obligation on immigrant communities to acknowledge and ultimately embrace their host nation’s most cherished traditions and values, then how is that nation to prevent itself from being reduced to a collection of inward-looking and self-replicating ethnic and cultural enclaves?THE COALITION GOVERNMENT’S ...
    3 days ago
  • Could There Be Method In Massey University’s Madness?
    Protective Zone: Reading the rules and guidelines released by Massey University, it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that its governing body considers the whole concept of free speech a disruptive threat to the orderly imparting of orthodox academic knowledge.IN TRUE ORWELLIAN fashion, Massey University has announced its commitment to ...
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: We need more trees, not less
    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    4 days ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    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 The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    6 days ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    6 days ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    7 days ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    7 days ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    1 week ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    1 week ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    1 week ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    1 week ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    1 week ago
  • Too Late To Change Capitalism’s Flightpath?
    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    1 week ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    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 If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The freshwater mussel housing crisis: eviction by invasive weeds?
    Tom Moore Traditionally a food source and cutting tool, freshwater mussels/kākahi are now widely valued as water filters that help clean our waterbodies and maintain ecosystem health throughout Aotearoa. The improvement they provide in water quality can make it easier for other animals to live in streams and rivers, as ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Back it up Luxon: endorsing the destructive past is not actually the way forward
    And to think he gave all the potential goodwill away with that moronic, cult-like statement (repeated ad nauseam by many National hardliners) that Key is quite simply “the greatest PM we ever had”… Installation complete: this was nothing ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Good riddance
    National MP and former Conservation Minister Maggie Barry will not seek re-election next year. Good riddance. Because in case anyone has forgotten, barry is a bullying thug who terrorised both public servants and fellow MPs. She is one of the people who makes Parliament a toxic workplace, and our country ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: D-Day
    The Zero Carbon Bill is back in the House today for its second reading. While this isn't the final stage, its still effectively D-Day for the bill. Because today, at around 5pm, is when we're going to find out if it has a majority, whether National will support it or ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston is right
    Winston Peters is in court today, suing a bunch of former Minister and civil servants over their pre-election leak of his superannuation repayment. He's characterised the leak as malicious, and said that it is repugnant that his information was passed on to Ministers to use for political advantage. And he's ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Media impartiality
    Sky's economics editor, Ed Conway has posted a Twitter thread responding to a claim that - as far as I can see - Labour never made:
    Are NHS operation cancellations at an all-time high? That's the impression you might have been left with if you read this story from the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Finish what’s on your plate
    Murray Cox Do I have to finish my favourite genome? That’s an often-asked question. Geneticists generally strive to produce high-quality genomes that sequence every last gene, making full use of the state-of-the-art technologies coming on stream. Sequencing DNA means determining the order of the four chemical building blocks – called ...
    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
    2 weeks ago
  • Gainful Employment: A Cautionary Tale.
    Transformative Politics: The idea is to turn each recipient into an unwitting accomplice in their own transformation. From interested observer to hyped-up activist, sharing our messages promiscuously with ‘friends’. You’ll be part of an ever-expanding circulatory system, Jennifer, for the ideas that will win us the election.”JENNIFER SKITTERED her chair ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    1 hour ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    4 days ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    5 days ago
  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    1 week ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    1 week ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Closer cooperation with Korean horse racing industry
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters met with Korea Racing Authority Chairperson Nak Soon Kim in Seoul today to discuss closer cooperation between the New Zealand and Korean horse racing industries. As part of the visit to the Seoul Racecourse, Mr Peters witnessed ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Otago to lead digital creativity
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10 million to establish Otago as the centre of New Zealand’s creative digital industry over the next ten years, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “The initiative will bring us closer to the vision of ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Young Otago students encouraged to take on forestry careers
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF)’s skills and employment programme will help young Otago people into long-term forestry careers, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Ara Mahi will invest $63,000 in the 2020 school year to support eight 17 and 18 ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF backing Dunedin’s waterfront ambitions
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will support local plans to revitalise and stimulate economic development opportunities in Otago, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The four Regional Economic Development Ministers have approved an in-principle investment of $19.9 million towards the region’s ...
    3 weeks ago
  • M. Bovis eradication progress welcomed
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is pleased to have received the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) report on the Coalition Government’s Mycoplasma bovis eradication efforts, which shows significant progress in the fight against the disease. New Zealand First Spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, says the report’s findings ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF boosts Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development Hon David Parker, Minister for Trade and Export Growth The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing to support economic growth opportunities for Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sectors, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Trade and Export Minister David Parker announced today. Almost $20 million ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Minister Peters discusses Pacific challenges and denuclearisation in Seoul
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters and his South Korean counterpart, Kang Kyung-wha, discussed in Seoul today opportunities to work more closely in the Pacific and the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Mr Peters and Minister Kang confirmed New Zealand and the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF supports high speed broadband for marae at Parihaka Pa
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development  Hon Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Māori Development The three marae in the historic Parihaka Pa complex in Taranaki have been upgraded to high speed broadband with the support of the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Connecting the ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Fairer rules for tenants and landlords
    The Government has delivered on its promise to the over one million New Zealanders who now rent to make it fairer and more secure, Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Kris Faafoi has announced today. Both renters and landlords will benefit from the suite of practical changes to the Residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Two decades of marine protection celebrated at Te Tapuwae o Rongokako in Tairawhiti
    A marine conservation milestone - the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve - is being celebrated today at a community event in Tairāwhiti/East Coast attended by the Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “The creation of this marine reserve in November 1999 was a game ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Food industry asked to step up fight against obesity
         The Government is asking the food industry to step up work to tackle obesity including reducing sugar, fat and salt in their products, better information for consumers, and tighter restrictions on advertising to children. Health Minister David Clark and Food Safety Minister Damien O’Connor have responded to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Modern emergency care for Queenstown area
    ew, modern emergency department and outpatient facilities at Queenstown’s Lakes District Hospital mean better emergency care for the growing tourist mecca’s visitors and locals, says Health Minister David Clark. Today Dr Clark officially opened the hospital’s redeveloped Emergency Department and Outpatient facilities. The new facilities include: •    An extended Emergency Department ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Contraception important for New Zealanders
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter says today’s release of sexual and reproductive health data reinforces the significance of the Government’s commitment to providing free or very low-cost contraception. The Ministry of Health today published statistics from the Ministry of Health’s 2014/15 Health Survey. “It is important people can make ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ medical staff and measles vaccines going to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that at the request of the Samoan Government, New Zealand will be providing further support to Samoa as it faces a worsening measles outbreak. “In response to a request from the people of Samoa, New Zealand is providing 3000 measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
    “The new Disability Action Plan 2019–2023 moves us towards the inclusive and accessible New Zealand that this government has committed to,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today.  “The Action Plan was designed by disabled people, their family and supporters, the disability sector and government agencies. It will ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Joint Statement – Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting
    Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting 14 November 2019 Joint Statement 1. Defence Ministers Ron Mark and Dr Ng Eng Hen today conducted their third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore. 2. Building on the Enhanced Partnership signed between both countries in May this year, this annual meeting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Sexual Violence Legislation Bill has its first reading
    A Bill to improve the court system’s response to sexual violence has passed its first reading in Parliament today. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Sexual Violence Legislation Bill will reduce the trauma sexual violence complainants experience in court, while maintaining defendants’ fundamental rights and making sure the trial process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Streamlined business invoicing a step closer
    Streamlined payment practices are a step closer for Kiwi businesses with the formal launch of New Zealand’s e-Invoicing framework. Small Business Minister Stuart Nash says the government has now established the structure to enable automated and direct data exchange between the accounting systems of buyers and sellers. “The move to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • More frontline biosecurity officers protecting NZ
    Another 51 quarantine officers and four new biosecurity detector dog teams will help protect New Zealand from invasive pests and diseases this summer, says Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “The Government is delivering on its commitment to strengthen New Zealand’s biosecurity system and support our valuable primary sector “New Zealand’s flora, fauna ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ space economy worth $1.69 billion
    A new report has found New Zealand’s space sector contributed $1.69 billion to the economy in the last financial year and employs 12,000 people, Minister for Economic Development Phil Twyford announced today. The report by Deloitte was commissioned by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and shows New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Chair for Royal Commission into Abuse
    Judge Coral Shaw has been appointed as the new Chair of the Royal Commission into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. "Judge Shaw, who is currently one of the inquiry commissioners, is extremely well qualified for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Better mental health facilities for Palmerston North
    The Government has confirmed its third major mental health facility upgrade since the Budget, this time at Palmerston North Hospital. The Prime Minister and Health Minister today visited MidCentral DHB to announce that $30 million has been allocated to upgrade its acute mental health facility. It follows earlier announcements in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bowel Screening hits halfway point
    The roll out of the National Bowel Screening Programme has reached the halfway mark, with 10 out of 20 District Health Boards now part of the programme. MidCentral DHB, which covers Palmerston North, Manawatu and surrounding districts, this week became the latest to DHB to offer free bowel screening to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • More vaccines for meningococcal disease
    The Government welcomes PHARMAC’s decision to fund a vaccine to protect young people from meningococcal disease from 1 December this year. “Meningococcal disease is a serious threat which people at higher risk should be protected from,” says Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter. “The combined pharmaceutical budget was increased by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Fisheries innovation projects supported
    Groups involved with innovative fisheries research projects are encouraged to apply for government support in the latest funding round from the Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures programme. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash says the SFF Futures funding is designed to be flexible enough to support small or large projects across a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government fixes culturally arranged marriage visa issue
    The Government has fixed an issue affecting how Immigration New Zealand has processed visa applications for culturally arranged marriages, which will now see a consistent process applied which ensures people with legitimate arranged marriages can visit New Zealand while also preventing any rorting of the system. Earlier this year Immigration ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Extension for Royal Commission into Mosque attacks
    The Royal Commission into the Attacks on Christchurch Mosques will report back on 30 April 2020 to give it more time to hear submissions and consider information, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The Royal Commission was originally scheduled to report back to Government by 10 December 2019. “There has ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Terrorism and Trade on agenda as Foreign Minister visits the United States
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington DC today to attend a ministerial meeting focused on defeating ISIS, and to continue pursuing New Zealand’s trade opportunities. Mr Peters will participate in a meeting of Foreign and Defence Ministers from key countries contributing to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Hoiho get extra support alongside 168 community conservation groups backing nature
    The recently crowned Bird of the Year, the hoiho/yellow eyed penguin, is getting a much needed helping hand alongside more than 168 other community conservation projects announced Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage today. 168 community conservation projects throughout New Zealand are benefiting from $8 million in government grants, including $500,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New safety measures for modified pistols
    Controls on assault rifles and semi-automatic firearms are to be broadened to include some types of pistols, under changes to a bill currently making its way through Parliament. Police Minister Stuart Nash has tabled a Supplementary Order Paper to the Arms Legislation Bill, which is currently before a Select Committee ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Minister of Defence to visit Singapore and Thailand
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark will travel to Singapore today to conduct a counterpart visit and to co-chair the third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting with his counterpart, Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen. “Singapore is one of our most important defence partners in the region, and our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Future secured for Salisbury School
    Nelson’s Salisbury School is to be rebuilt, creating a modern and suitable learning environment for students at the residential special school, Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Associate Education Minister Tracey Martin announced today. The school for girls aged 8-15, in Richmond, was earmarked for closure by National until the process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Resource management reform options released
    The panel undertaking a comprehensive review of the Resource Management Act has identified the main issues to be addressed and options for reform and is calling for feedback to inform its final report.  In July the Government announced the comprehensive review of the resource management system, including the RMA - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission established
    An important safety valve has been added to New Zealand’s criminal justice system with the third reading of the Criminal Cases Review Commission Bill today. The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) will investigate claimed miscarriages of justice. “We’ve seen how our justice system can very occasionally get things spectacularly wrong, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Racing Industry destined to be on-track
    Racing Minister Winston Peters welcomes the tabling of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) 2019 Annual Report in Parliament today. He says the 2019 Annual Report marks the point when New Zealand’s racing industry’s decline was arrested and a turnaround started. RITA’s 2019 Annual Report recorded an industry net profit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand firefighter support to Queensland
    The New Zealand Government is today sending 21 firefighters to help fight the ongoing catastrophic Australian bushfires. “The fires in Australia are in some of the toughest, most challenging conditions ever,” says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin.  “As of yesterday morning, there were 100 active bushfire-related incidents across Queensland and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Supporting all schools to succeed
      More frontline support for schools through a new education agency, as part of a redesigned Ministry of Education More support for principals and school boards including through a new centre of leadership and local leadership advisor roles New independent disputes panels for parents and students Management of school property ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Reform to support better outcomes for Māori learners and whānau
    The Government’s reform of the Tomorrow’s Schools system is a watershed moment in education and an opportunity to create meaningful change for ākonga Māori and their whānau, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis said today. “Last year through Kōrero Mātauranga | Education Conversation, Māori teachers, parents, ākonga, whānau, hapū and iwi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Infrastructure pipeline growing
    Infrastructure Minister is welcoming the first of many updated project pipelines from the newly established New Zealand Infrastructure Commission today. The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga, has released an expanded pipeline of major capital projects – another crucial step towards delivering better infrastructure outcomes. “The first iteration of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tighter firearms law to further improve safety
    Tougher gun laws designed to improve public safety through firearms prohibition orders are proposed in a new document released for public input. Police Minister Stuart Nash says firearms prohibition orders (FPOs) would give new powers to Police to ensure high-risk individuals come nowhere near firearms. “We have already prohibited the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New TVNZ chair & directors confirmed
    Andy Coupe has been confirmed as TVNZ’s new Board Chair. “Mr Coupe has strong commercial and capital markets experience and TVNZ has benefited from his technical knowledge of business and finance, as well as his extensive governance experience,” the Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Kris Faafoi said.  Andy ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Hutt Road cycle path officially opened
    Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter today officially opened a separated pathway, following the completion of the Kaiwharawhara Stream bridge, which will improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians along Hutt Road.  The $6.8m Hutt Road project provides a separated path for cycling and pedestrians, the replacement of informal parking ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Announcement of new Ambassador to Russia
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of career diplomat Si’alei van Toor as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Russia. “I’m pleased to appoint Ms van Toor to this position. She brings a wealth of experience to the role having previously served as Senior Trade Adviser to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update
    The Treasury’s 2019 Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) will be released on Wednesday December 11, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Coalition Government will publish the 2020 Budget Policy Statement at the same time, outlining the priorities for Budget 2020. Further details on arrangements for the release will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Giving a Boost to Kiwi small businesses
    A new initiative to better support small businesses through hands-on mentoring and advice has been launched by the Minister for Small Business. The first event in the Kiwi Business Boost series of regional workshops and online tools has been launched in Wairoa by Stuart Nash. “The Business Boost initiative combines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Nearly three quarters of Rolleston connected to UFB
    The latest Quarterly Connectivity Report shows that more and more New Zealanders are moving to Ultra-fast Broadband (UFB), with Rolleston having the highest uptake at 74 per cent, as at the end of September. “This means that nearly three quarters of Rolleston’s households and businesses have moved to ultra-fast services. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Historic day for landmark climate change legislation in New Zealand
    The passing of the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill will help ensure a safe planet for our kids and grandkids, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw said today. The landmark legislation which provides a framework to support New Zealanders to prepare for, and adapt to, the effects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Release of Oranga Tamariki Practice Review
    The review of Oranga Tamariki practice around the planned uplift of a Hastings baby in May shows significant failings by the Ministry and that the planned and funded changes to shift from a child crisis service to a proper care and protection service need to be accelerated, Children’s Minister Tracey ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago