Author Archive

Slowing economy?

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, August 14th, 2019 - 39 comments

In May this year the New Zealand Treasury was projecting growth accelerating from 2.4% to 3% in 2019-20 while the Reserve Bank has pessimistically cut interest rates to 1%. Both can’t be right.

Dunedin South as Next Fox River Dump Disaster?

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, August 10th, 2019 - 75 comments

If we thought the devastation and mess caused by a flood ripping through the old dump at Fox Glacier village was bad, just wait until a decent storm punches through the old dump of New Zealand’s fifth largest city on its coastline. It’s getting close.

Should the Government spend massively more?

Written By: - Date published: 3:18 pm, August 8th, 2019 - 58 comments

With yesterday’s announcement by the Reserve Bank to cut interest rates by 1%, some are suggesting that the government should embark on a massive public works spree to stimulate the economy while increasing national debt at low interest rates.  But Kiwisaver reform may be more effective.

Maybe we should take the plane

Written By: - Date published: 7:42 am, August 7th, 2019 - 119 comments

Activist Greta Thunberg is attending a United Nations global warming summit in New York, and will get there by boat not airplane.  But should she consider flying?

Arnhem Land and Ihumātao

Written By: - Date published: 8:28 am, August 5th, 2019 - 44 comments

A Recent High Court decision in Australia suggests that protection of indigenous land rights may be better than we think.

Can the Greens rise like the liberal democrats?

Written By: - Date published: 9:56 am, August 4th, 2019 - 71 comments

Only 6 months ago the UK Liberal Democrat party was at a real low, with their leader resigning and the polls about 7%: same as the last five years.  Fast forward five months from that and they are ready to become a major opposition party of opposition.  Can the Greens do the same?

Embark 2019

Written By: - Date published: 8:05 am, July 29th, 2019 - 99 comments

Last week the Embark 2019 conference involved corporations discussing what they can do to address climate change.

Jacindamania

Written By: - Date published: 8:01 am, July 28th, 2019 - 138 comments

Despite the babies and the engagements, maybe it’s time to ditch the default Jacindamania.

The strait of Hormuz

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 am, July 20th, 2019 - 49 comments

With the seizing of an oil tanker by Iran in the Strait of Hormuz today as a presumably tit-for-tat escalation for British seizing an Iranian ship, and the U.S. Navy harassing their coastline, we are in for a senseless and dangerous political escalation.

Matata

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, July 18th, 2019 - 44 comments

Many a bold claim has been made for the necessity of responding to climate change, but when it comes to storms affecting one’s own home, Matata is surely the test case of this century.

A Good Week for Conservation

Written By: - Date published: 7:26 am, July 15th, 2019 - 10 comments

Three big, bold moves for conserving nature and expanding our awareness of it were announced inn the last week. All of them led by Minister Eugenie Sage.

5G flip flop

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, July 2nd, 2019 - 62 comments

Six weeks after banning China’s leading tech firm Huawei from contracts with U.S. businesses, U.S. President Donald Trump appears to have reversed it after meeting China’s Premier Xi Jinping.

100% carbon free power generation?

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, June 26th, 2019 - 77 comments

The Interim Climate Change Commission has come out saying that making our electricity generation 100% renewable would be really expensive and that that expense would land on the poor of New Zealand. But the Government has already indicated it could be flexible on the target. ICCC should be helping us plan, not throwing road blocks in the way.

Regulating Bankers

Written By: - Date published: 8:16 am, June 25th, 2019 - 76 comments

Grant Robertson gets occasional criticism from the left but it is hard to fault him for his timing or his delivery in seeking to strengthen banking sector oversight.

The Hong Kong protest worked

Written By: - Date published: 8:22 am, June 16th, 2019 - 20 comments

Carrie Lam, the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, has permanently suspended the legislative proposal to enable extradition of Hong Kong people to among other places mainland China.

Farewell Mr Makhlouf

Written By: - Date published: 12:39 pm, June 13th, 2019 - 46 comments

Gabriel Makhlouf will be remembered because of events surrounding the unauthorised access of Treasury information by National. History should result in him being remembered for more positive things, like the creation of a new framework that has restructured how the government spends public money from the ground up.

Tiananmen Square’s Failed Revolution

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, June 4th, 2019 - 70 comments

Right now we could be dealing with a China with a similar mixed model to Vietnam, or a re-unified country like Germany. What happened to change this?

The Coming Global Economic Slowdown and New Zealand

Written By: - Date published: 8:45 am, June 3rd, 2019 - 49 comments

With the United States – China trade war well underway, the sick chaos of Brexit is shrinking the U.K. economy and slowing much of Europe’s economy, and smaller economies such as that of Mexico in the crosshairs through further politically manufactured trade disputes, the second half of this year looks for New Zealand nowhere near as rosy as the first half.

EU elections

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, May 25th, 2019 - 20 comments

The results of the European parliament elections are due.  It’s the first election they’ve had since the refugee crisis, the Brexit referendum, and the election of U.S. President Donald Trump.   There’s a reasonably high chance that the far right are going to increase their share of this Parliament.

The hard change of forestry

Written By: - Date published: 10:41 am, May 18th, 2019 - 98 comments

Forestry is forcing an important tilting point between mitigating climate change and land use, and it’s going to affect the viability of some North Island towns.

US China trade talks and New Zealand

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, May 12th, 2019 - 91 comments

Donald Trump’s trade war with China is way, way bad for New Zealand.

Regulating social media

Written By: - Date published: 7:48 am, April 26th, 2019 - 83 comments

Is it possible that the zeitgeist for global social media regulation is peaking at the right time, and the big tech giants will accede?

Leading a feminist Pacific

Written By: - Date published: 3:19 pm, March 28th, 2019 - 63 comments

It’s time to convert Ardern’s massive global symbolic capital into a lasting legacy for the Pacific. It’s time for a feminist international development policy.

Westland Dairy sale

Written By: - Date published: 12:08 pm, March 20th, 2019 - 30 comments

Westland Dairy has done a deal to sell out to Yili industrial Group of Mongolia. This company is the third largest dairy company in New Zealand.

Cardinal Pell

Written By: - Date published: 2:55 pm, March 13th, 2019 - 6 comments

Cardinal Pell has been given six years in jail for his crimes against children. But the Catholic Church has a range of other allegations to resolve.

No More Investing In Oil Exploration

Written By: - Date published: 10:47 am, March 10th, 2019 - 21 comments

Norway’s government has announced it is selling out of oil exploration although it will continue to invest in energy companies that have refineries and are engaged in distribution and retail sales of oil and gas products.

Sage gets the money

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, March 5th, 2019 - 47 comments

Greens Minister Eugenie Sage deserves praise for securing some solid funding increases for her Conservation portfolio.

Venezuela, China and Russia

Written By: - Date published: 1:41 pm, March 4th, 2019 - 54 comments

In the new world order of robber barons in which most states are collectively so weak that they no longer effective resistance against large corporations, we should start to view states as diplomatic fronts for corporations.

Digital Corporations: Pay Us What You Owe Us

Written By: - Date published: 7:17 am, February 19th, 2019 - 75 comments

The Government has indicated that it will seek to tax digital companies from overseas.

$58 billion verses democracy: Bouganville

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, February 14th, 2019 - 5 comments

There’s trouble on the horizon in Bouganville with its government proposing significant changes to its mining law to allow wide scale mining on the island.

Dear St Valentine

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, February 13th, 2019 - 25 comments

Deep in the perpetually joyous realm you inhabit, could you pop over and have a chat to St Francis?   I am pretty sure that your spirit of spreading love throughout humanity is so necessary that if you did not exist we would have to invent you.   But the speed and volume of the […]

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