web analytics

Author Archive

Sick

Written By: - Date published: 11:41 pm, January 18th, 2014 - 48 comments

Warning bells ringing for Nats

Written By: - Date published: 5:23 pm, December 1st, 2013 - 36 comments

On Thursday Vernon Small wrote on the Chch East by-election: “Anything above 53 per cent will look like a fine result for Labour, anything under 50 per cent a relative failure. If Doocey can attract 40 per cent of the vote National can be well-pleased. Less than 33 per cent and the warning bells will be ringing for 2014.” And we know what happened next.

Granny damning of Crazy Craig

Written By: - Date published: 10:54 am, November 24th, 2013 - 88 comments

It’s not often that you’ll see a Herald editorial quoted at length here, but when they’re right, they’re right: Key [is] dead-set on forging a governing coalition with the Christian-Lite Conservative Party and its troublingly dim leader, Colin Craig. If Colin Craig is the answer to John Key’s problem, then National is in trouble.

Only 6,500 ‘mums and dads’ for Air NZ

Written By: - Date published: 7:13 am, November 23rd, 2013 - 69 comments

It just gets worse. Only 6,500 ‘retail investors’ bought shares in the Air NZ asset sale. These are the so-called ‘mums and dads’ who National said would flock to buy into the asset sales. 0.15% of the population. And these are some rich ‘mums and dads’ – they bought $23,000 of shares each on average. Let’s face facts: the asset sales have failed in their own terms. National has failed New Zealand.

Tin ear or cold heart?

Written By: - Date published: 7:58 am, November 20th, 2013 - 239 comments

Since he came to office, John Key’s government has spent over $350 billion (and borrowed over $50 billion). It has handed out taxpayer largesse to casinos, rich sailors, finance companies, and international corporations. So, why the blunt refusal to pay just $3.4 million to the Pike families and lean on the shareholders to get the cash back? Tin ear or cold heart?

Coleman’s disgracefully cowardly display

Written By: - Date published: 8:38 am, November 15th, 2013 - 151 comments

National’s, weird, favourite line at the moment is to say ‘we’re going to ignore the asset sales referendum and the opposition are hypocrites because they ignored the smacking referendum’. Russel Norman finally had had enough yesterday, and asked Jonathan Coleman just who had been PM when the referendum happened. Coleman’s answer was textbook cowardliness.

Is it any wonder?

Written By: - Date published: 9:58 am, November 13th, 2013 - 90 comments

Never wonder again why National is opposed to any kind of wealth tax, including capital gains tax, and would rather tax hard work instead. Never wonder again why there’s hundreds of millions of dollars for uneconomic irrigation projects but crumbs to feed hungry kids. Just look at this table of what the richest MPs won, and remember their friends are of the same class.

Rorty rorty

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 am, November 11th, 2013 - 89 comments

You’ll remember that, back in 2009, Bill ‘Double Dipton’ English was caught claiming an ‘out of town’ allowance – intended to pay for non-Wellington-based MPs’ accommodation in the capital – to pay the mortgage on his family home in Karori. Key’s solution was to let all his ministers claim the rort. Now, it turns out some of them are doubling down on the rort.

Couldn’t organise a piss up in a brewery

Written By: - Date published: 7:18 am, November 6th, 2013 - 98 comments

National was warned not to give the main ultrafast broadband contracts to Chorus. All it would do would restore and strengthen the monopoly that had kept internet prices too high (which Cunliffe has addressed). Of course, National ignored that. And now, once again, National finds itself in a corner, about to bailout out a large corporate that is using its market power to threaten its political agenda.

Doing what works

Written By: - Date published: 9:21 am, November 4th, 2013 - 88 comments

One of Steven Joyce’s favourite refrains is that Labour is trying to take us back to the 1970s. You know, those dark days when unemployment was near non-existent, wages were high, growth was strong despite external shocks, we had nearly no foreign debt, profits stayed here, were we one of the richest and most egalitarian countries. He’s not far wrong.

“The purists can weep”

Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, November 3rd, 2013 - 105 comments

Labour’s new KiwiAssure policy has been welcomed by John Armstrong as good politics. And it is. But it’s also good policy – at the same time we’ve got a government hell bent on making sure electricity profits flow to overseas investors, David Cunliffe’s policy is about giving Kiwi’s the ability to ensure that any money made from their insurance stays in the country and pays for hospitals, schools, and New Zealanders’ retirement.

The test

Written By: - Date published: 7:46 am, November 1st, 2013 - 114 comments

Fairfax has decided to go a bit mental on Labour and Cunliffe. An endless stream of stories trying to tweak Cunliffe’s nose over every little thing. Part of this is covering the embarrassment of their own rogue poll. More importantly, it’s a test that all new leaders get. The wave of hypercritical stories don’t mean much in themselves, how Cunliffe’s Labour responds does.

Key says ‘damn the torpedoes’ on asset sales

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, October 30th, 2013 - 44 comments

The asset sales have been an unmitigated failure. They’ve raised less money than expected, they’ve cost more than twice as much as National said they would, no ‘mums and dads’ have shown up to buy the shares, and the public is waiting for its referendum. Now, it turns out that Treasury warned Key not to flood the market but Key plans to keep on flooding it.

Two-term panic gripping the rightwing punditry

Written By: - Date published: 10:52 am, October 26th, 2013 - 102 comments

John Armstrong, Tracy Watkins, and Fran O’Sullivan all write today about National’s plunging polls and the growing likelihood that this will be the first two-term National government. They take different approaches – Armstrong: there’s nothing for Key to worry about, Watkins: there was a problem but the tide’s turning back, O’Sullivan: yeah, Key’s fucked.

The Meridian flop

Written By: - Date published: 7:29 am, October 24th, 2013 - 143 comments

National’s trying to blame it on Labour and the Greens for the Meridian sale flop, which attracted only a quarter of the expected ‘mums and dads’ (rich ‘mums and dads’ who put in $18k each). But let’s just get this straight: the decision to sell was National’s. If they don’t think they’re getting the price that they should for the sales, then they should stop them.

Taking from the poor to pay the rich

Written By: - Date published: 7:29 am, October 23rd, 2013 - 119 comments

In the same week the government announces a five million dollar gift to a yachting syndicate, Child Poverty Action Group has revealed that 13,000 of our poorest families have had their income slashed.

Random impertinent questions

Written By: - Date published: 8:52 am, October 21st, 2013 - 66 comments

Who says the ‘threatening texts’ in the Brown/Slater/Palino came from Brown’s camp? Didn’t the threatening text push Chuang into the affidavit, after weeks of being pressured by Palino advisor, Wewege? Doesn’t that make those texts awful useful for Slater/Palino? Do you believe Palino knew nothing of the affair, as he claims? If the purpose of the affidavit had been to present it to Brown quietly and get him to resign, wouldn’t that be blackmail?

What’s the play?

Written By: - Date published: 12:10 pm, October 16th, 2013 - 108 comments

No-one’s happy with the revelations about Len Brown’s private life, apart from Slater (himself also an adulterer) who is wallowing in all the details that Chuang seems only too happy to provide. But what’s interesting is that this is clearly a political play. Who’s behind it and what do they have to gain? The players: Slater, Slater snr, Chuang, and Palino.

Granny Herald tries to de-legitimise political opposition, again

Written By: - Date published: 7:42 am, October 15th, 2013 - 36 comments

Yesterday, the Greens illustrated the size of the gambling concessions in the SkyCity deal with a to-scale cardboard display in Aotea Square. The visually striking move got extensive coverage on Breakfast yesterday and a rather, odd, story in the Herald, which chose to focus on the cost of the protest. What was that, presumably, outrageous cost? $3,000.

Armstrong on Nat’s attack on wages

Written By: - Date published: 8:01 am, October 12th, 2013 - 30 comments

John Armstrong has a good column on National’s attack on Kiwi workers today. Covering off David Cunliffe’s speech to the CTU, Armstrong talks about the way the Nats have been playing small target on their raft of small employment changes that add up to a serious attack on the wages and rights of all of […]

From failure to farce

Written By: - Date published: 7:44 am, October 11th, 2013 - 95 comments

“John Key’s asset sales have descended from failure to farce” – that’s how Metiria Turei described the announcement that Mighty River Power will be buying back shares just five months after they were privatised. Clayton Cosgrove put it more bluntly: “It’s a good thing the government doesn’t own a brewery cos they couldn’t organise a pi .. a DRINK in one”.

Cunliffe stands strong for fair pay and your work rights

Written By: - Date published: 6:29 am, October 10th, 2013 - 139 comments

David Cunliffe showed that he wasn’t just pandering for votes in the leadership race by reaffirming and strengthening his commitment to work rights at the CTU conference yesterday. When David is PM the minimum wage will rise to $15 an hour, the public service will set an example by paying the living wage, and the Nats’ attacks on rights will be reversed – no more Fire at Will, no more youth rates.

Shutdown 2013

Written By: - Date published: 7:15 am, October 7th, 2013 - 61 comments

The US is creeping toward a week of government shut down. Held hostage by the Republicans Tea Party wing.

It will be fascinating to see what this does to the GOP. Will it split into two parties one essentially fascist and one more like the republicans of old? Or will it just dwindle away for a while?

All hail RBNZ independence! – Armstrong

Written By: - Date published: 10:32 am, October 5th, 2013 - 94 comments

Old man Armstrong’s out on the Herald’s front lawn this morning, shaking his fist and telling those bloody kids in Labour to stop questioning whether the Reserve Bank is doing the right thing. They should sit quietly and accept whatever the Bank decides to do. This is called ‘consensus’, apparently. Problem is, Armstrong provides no justification for complete RB independence.

Simon Bridges caught fibbing again

Written By: - Date published: 6:57 am, October 3rd, 2013 - 15 comments

Simon Bridges has been keeping a low profile lately but he’s in the news again today, and onceagain he’s been caught being somewhat less than honest.

It turns out he’s been caught trying to bury a report showing a huge quarterly jump in electricity prices.

National’s screwed up new housing policy

Written By: - Date published: 9:59 pm, October 1st, 2013 - 43 comments

We know there is a massive home affordability problem, especially in Auckland. So, here’s National’s plan: don’t build any additional houses, just sell some ‘surplus’ state houses in provincial towns… where there isn’t an affordability crisis, and give 500 families these houses up to $20,000 of taxpayer money. That’s not a home affordability policy, it’s a parody of one.

How?

Written By: - Date published: 7:38 am, September 30th, 2013 - 85 comments

The Herald and John Key are whining that National will have a ‘moral mandate’ to govern after the next election if it is the highest polling party, even if it can’t form a majority and the Left can. But the Herald and Key don’t answer the critical question: how? How would a National Party that can’t secure a majority in Parliament govern?

Meridian on the block

Written By: - Date published: 7:24 am, September 30th, 2013 - 40 comments

If you weren’t paying attention you could easily miss the fact that Meridian shares are opening today. that’s because there’s been a lot less mainstream hoopla about it than there was with the sale of MRP. Despite the face there’s been a whole host of taxpayer funded sweeteners attached to the deal.

On merit

Written By: - Date published: 1:07 pm, September 29th, 2013 - 35 comments

Which Labour MP has Matt McCarten today described as “Another Cunliffe loyalist rewarded.” and scored 5/10?

Now, which Labour MP got the government on the ropes with a member’s bill to the point that Bill English had to threaten a rarely used and politically damaging financial veto?

On national’s smear tactics

Written By: - Date published: 9:34 pm, September 25th, 2013 - 100 comments

As Irish predicted, the Nats continued their desperate smear campaign today with the revelation that David Cunliffe doesn’t actually have a qualification he never actually claimed to have. Honestly, you couldn’t make this shit up.

Labour up 6.8% – Herald DigiPoll

Written By: - Date published: 6:04 am, September 25th, 2013 - 269 comments

Sure it’s just one poll but that’s nearly seven percent. And it’s (nearly) all come off National. This goes quite some way to explaining why National are breaking out the desperate dirty tricks…

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Bring back the Mental Health Commission
    The People’s Mental Health Review is a much needed wake up call for the Government on mental health, says the Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.   “I applaud their proposal to restore a Mental Health Commission and their call for ...
    16 hours ago
  • And the band played on…
    Making Amy Adams the Housing Minister five months out from the election is just the orchestra playing on as National’s Titanic housing crisis slips below the waves – along with the hopes and dreams of countless Kiwi families, says Labour’s ...
    17 hours ago
  • Hotel no place for children in care
    ...
    4 days ago
  • Maybe not, Minister? Nick Smith’s housing measure suppressed
    Sir Humphrey: Minister, remember the Housing Affordability Measure work you asked us to prepare back in 2012? Well, it’s ready now.Minister Smith: Oh goodie, what does it say?Sir Humphrey: Nothing.Minister Smith: Nothing?Sir Humphrey: Well, sir, you asked us to prepare ...
    4 days ago
  • Inflation data shows many New Zealanders are worse off under National
    The latest inflation data from Statistics New Zealand shows that too many New Zealanders are now worse off under the National Government, said Labour’s Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson “Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) is now running at 2.2 per cent, and ...
    5 days ago
  • Another emergency housing grant blow out
      Emergency housing grants data released today show another blow out in spending on putting homeless people up in motels, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford.   ...
    5 days ago
  • Families struggle as hardship grants increase
    The considerable increase in hardship grants shows that more and more Kiwi families are struggling to put food on the table and pay for basic schooling, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    5 days ago
  • More tinkering, no leadership from Nats on immigration
    National’s latest tinkering with the immigration system is another attempt to create the appearance of action without actually doing anything meaningful, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    6 days ago
  • Suicide figures make for grim reading
    The 506 suspected suicides of Kiwis who have been in the care of mental health services in the last four years show that these services are under severe stress, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark.   “If you do the ...
    7 days ago
  • Pay equity deal a victory for determination and unions
    The pay equity settlement revealed today for around 55,000 low-paid workers was hard-won by a determined Kristine Bartlett backed by her union, up against sheer Government resistance to paying Kiwis their fair share, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “Labour welcomes ...
    7 days ago
  • DHB’s forced to make tough choices
    The Minister of Health today admitted that the country’s District Health Boards were having to spend more than their ring fenced expenditure on Mental Health, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark.   “The situation is serious with Capital and Coast ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Nats break emergency housing pledge – deliver just five more places
    Despite National’s promises of 2,200 emergency housing beds, just 737 were provided in the March Quarter, an increase of only five from six months earlier, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Research underlines need for KiwiBuild
    New research showing the social and fiscal benefits of homeownership underlines the need for a massive government-backed building programme like KiwiBuild, says Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Social data security review too little, too late
    The independent review into the Ministry of Social Development’s individual client level data IT system is too little, too late, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “The Minister of Social Development has finally seen some sense and called for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • More questions raised on CERA conflicts
    With the admission that three more former CERA staff members are under suspicion of not appropriately managing conflicts of interest related to the Canterbury rebuild, it’s imperative that CERA’s successor organisation Ōtākaro fronts up to Parliamentary questions, says Labour’s Canterbury ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour to tackle Hutt housing crisis
    Labour will build a mix of 400 state houses and affordable KiwiBuild homes in the Hutt Valley in its first term in government to tackle the housing crisis there, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “Housing in the Hutt ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Farewell to John Clarke
    This wonderfully talented man has been claimed by Australia, but how I remember John Clarke is as a young Wellington actor who performed satirical pieces in a show called “Knickers” at Downstage Theatre. The show featured other future luminaries like ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • Valedictory Speech
    Te papa pounamu Aotearoa NZ Karanga karanga karanga; Nga tupuna Haere haere haere; Te kahui ora te korowai o tenei whare; E tu e tu ... tutahi tonu Ki a koutou oku hoa mahi ki Te Kawanatanga; Noho mai noho ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Buck stops with Gerry Brownlee
    The fact that the State Services Commission has referred the CERA conflict of interest issue to the Serious Fraud Office is a positive move, but one that raises serious questions about the Government’s oversight of the rebuild, says Labour Canterbury ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Teachers deserve a democratic Education Council
    Teachers around New Zealand reeling from the news that their registration fees could more than double will be even angrier that the National Government has removed their ability to have any say about who sits on the Council that sets ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Free trade backers are simply out of touch
    Are the backers of free trade out of touch with public opinion? This was the question asked when the Chartered Accountants launched their Future of Trade study. I was astonished by the answer in a room of free trade enthusiasts ...
    GreensBy Barry Coates
    2 weeks ago
  • John Clarke aka Fred Dagg will be missed by all Kiwis
    The man who revolutionised comedy on both sides of the Tasman, John Clarke, will be sadly missed by Kiwis and Aussies alike, says the Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little.   “I grew up with Fred Dagg and I am ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s modern approach to monetary policy
    A commitment to full employment and a more transparent process to provide market certainty are the hallmarks of Labour’s proposals for a new approach to monetary policy, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens back Labour’s plan for monetary policy reform
    Labour plans to change the way we do monetary policy in New Zealand and the Green Party supports them fully. We’re now of a single mind on this. Labour will move away from our reliance on a single, unelected person ...
    GreensBy robert.ashe
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens back Labour’s monetary policy reform
    Labour plans to change the way we do monetary policy in New Zealand and the Green Party supports them fully. We’re now of a single mind on this. Labour will move away from our reliance on a single, unelected person ...
    GreensBy James Shaw
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt drops ball on Masters Games housing squeeze
    Families currently living in emergency accommodation face being forced out onto the street as motel accommodation in Auckland is filled up by contestants and visitors of the World Masters Games in coming weeks, says Labours social development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • State inquiry for Nga Morehu – The Survivors of State Abuse
    The Prime Minister must show humanitarian leadership and launch an independent inquiry into historic claims of abuse of children who were in State care, says Labour’s Deputy Leader Jacinda Ardern. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Coleman – ‘overwhelmed by disinterest’ and ‘conked out’
    Today’s trenchant criticism of the Government’s health policy by Ian Powell the executive director of the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists must trigger action by the Minister, says Labour’s spokesperson for Health David Clark. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on Syria
    Like the rest of the world, I have been horrified at the chemical attack on innocent Syrians that led to the deaths of so many men, women and children,” says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “The deliberate attack on civilians as ...
    3 weeks ago
  • The hard truth about that soft drink ad
    I am relieved that Pepsi has pulled its ridiculous commercial that obscenely co-opted the #BlackLivesMatter movement. At the very least, it was an awkward failure that tried too hard to be something it could never be. At its worst, it ...
    GreensBy Marama Davidson
    3 weeks ago
  • Journalism Matters: Interesting the public in the public interest
    Last week I launched two policies to support Kiwi journalism because as Bill Moyers put it, “the quality of democracy and the quality of journalism is deeply intertwined.” Journalism matters because it’s how we discover what’s happening in our world, ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    3 weeks ago
  • Homeownership rate hits new low; KiwiBuild needed now
    The homeownership rate has fallen to just 63.1 per cent, according to Statistics New Zealand’s newly released Dwelling and Household estimates. That’s down three per cent under National to the lowest level since 1951, confirming the need for Labour’s KiwiBuild ...
    3 weeks ago
  • OECD endorses Labour’s Future of Work approach
    An OECD report released today, highlighting the need for increased support for workers who are made redundant, is a strong endorsement of the direction of Labour’s Future of Work Commission, says Labour’s Employment spokesperson Grant Robertson. “We welcome the OECD’s ...
    3 weeks ago
  • The Government knows diddly squat about health funding
    Asked about the funding of the Auckland Regional Public Health Service, the Associate Minister of Health was at sea today on the typhoid outbreak, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark.   “When I asked Nicky Wagner who was responsible for the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Nicky Wagner blames disability workers for Govt’s funding failure
    Nicky Wagner displayed disrespect and sheer arrogance when she insulted disability support workers today, says Labour’s Disability Issues spokesperson Poto Williams. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Parata in denial over special education crisis
    Hekia Parata has her head buried in the sand when it comes to the pressure that schools are under as they attempt to cope with an increasing number of children with severe behavioural and other learning support needs, says Labour’s ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Data-for-funding move hits Privacy roadblock
    The Government’s much-criticised grab for private client data from social service organisations has suffered another defeat after the Privacy Commissioner’s damning report, says Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Carmel Sepuloni. “This is a defeat for the Government’s plans to force social ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New research shows need for government-led house building
    Research by economist Shamubeel Eaqub shows the need for the government to lead the building of affordable starter homes, as would happen under Labour’s KiwiBuild policy, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Kiwis need answers on typhoid outbreak
      The Ministry of Health wasn’t told about the typhoid outbreak until 11 days after three people from the same church were admitted to hospital, says Labour’s spokesperson for Health David Clark.   “It is no longer credible for the Minister ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Maori Party gets it wrong again on RMA
    The Māori Party is missing the big picture on National’s Resource Management Act reforms by supporting a fundamentally flawed Bill, says Labour’s Local Government spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Maori Party error own goal on GM
    The Maori Party amendment to the Resource Legislation Amendment Bill does not achieve what they say it does on genetic modification, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson David Parker. “Their amendment relates to the new powers given to the Minister to over-ride ...
    3 weeks ago