Brian Easton’s DL talk now online

Written By: - Date published: 1:27 pm, February 25th, 2009 - 32 comments
Categories: drinking liberally, economy - Tags:

easton-croppedFor those of you who missed Brian Easton’s recent talk on the recession at Drinking Liberally Wgtn (or just couldn’t hear over the rain) the papers are now up online.

It’s fascinating reading, if a little frightening. Part I on the world economy is here, and Part II on the New Zealand economy is here. Both are essential reading if want to understand how we got into this mess, and what it means for us here in New Zealand.

[Hat tip: Just Left]

UPDATE: Oh yeah, and before I forget, DL Wgtn is happening again tomorrow (Thursday) evening with guest speaker Grant Robertson. Topic is “No time for slash and burn: the future of public services in NZ”. 5.30pm, Southern Cross. And it’s inside this time so you won’t have to worry about the rain.

32 comments on “Brian Easton’s DL talk now online”

  1. jbc 1

    Interesting reading.

    Surprised there was nothing in there about the huge consumer imbalance that has resulted from the very easy credit markets of the past decade or so. The so-called ‘bubble’ economy. The collapse was inevitable given the sustained consumer/producer imbalances.

    Now the credit pendulum has swung too far back the other way – but surely we don’t want to fix this by returning to the days of spending significantly more than we earn. Some serious lifestyle adjustment is needed for the hire-purchase / car-loan economies of the west.

  2. Ianmac 2

    As a person of low Economic skill, I was as usual impressed by Brian Easton’s explanation. What does it mean for me and mine? I don’t know nor can I guess whether it is wise to spend up large and keep the internal economy alive, or whether to contract my spending, or whether what I do will have no (collective) effect at all.
    Is our Govt’s cautious approach a good strategy?
    What happens if that $90 billion debt is not serviced?

    Oh. My brain hurts!

    • You mean the $90 billion in counterfeit money created out of thin air by private banksters charging us interest in real world wealth?

      I say to the Guillotine with the banksters and let’s take our money back where it belongs; with us and our legally elected representatives whom we will keep a serious eye on to do the right thing.

      It worked for the Dutch, the French and the Americans for a while and it’s time we cull the greedy lot back to bearable levels once again.LOL.

  3. Is it me … or does the name of the person who wrote the post no longer appear?

    I can still work out SP’s posts tho 🙂

    I do like the reply function tho.

    [lprent: Fixed. Default was incorrect. Had another malware intrusion this morning from a hole in wordpress 2.7.0. It was fixed in 2.7.1 so there was a rapid upgrade with the new version sitting on my dev system. Didn’t go quite as easily as I’d have liked….]

  4. Rex Widerstrom 4

    While normally I accord anyone with the title “economist” about as much credence as I do a witchdoctor, Brian Easton is the exception. And he’s just so good at explaining economics in a way that minimises the use of actual numbers (which aren’t my strong suit… just ask my bank).

    This talk should be required reading before anyone clicks through to a discussion about “the financial crisis”… and for a few journos before they write anything else about it.

    One thought kept recurring to me as I read about “toxic assets” amassed on banks’ balance sheets…

    We entrust things to people every day and we hold them to a high standard of accountability even if their intention was not criminal. If an airline pilot crashes his plane,or a schoolbus driver his bus and is found to have been in error there are consequences. They are expected to atone for the grief and suffering caused by their error – and, mostly, they accept that they must do so. They’re even gratified, in a way, to have some chance to step up and accept, and apologise for, their errors and the harm they’ve caused.

    Yet some bankers have, through sheer greed and recklessness, crashed our economy. Perhaps no one was killed (though a few more might starve or freeze to death I guess) but there is still a lot of suffering caused to a lot of people.

    But where are the consequences? If it’s good enough to expect there to be consequences for third strike offenders, why are governments the world over sending the message to bankers that it’s okay to over-reach and fail. Not just okay, but that we (the taxpayers) will insulate you from even the personal costs of failure (provided you accept a “reasonable” salary of US$500,000).

    I argue that we wouldn’t need “3 strikes” if consequences were made plainer sooner to more people. The same applies to money traders. Since we’ve failed to discipline them adequately for “minor” infractions where one or two companies or banks might have collapsed in the past (or even for the whole S&L fiasco) I really can’t understand why the opportunity is not being seized now – not even by nominally left wing leaders like Rudd or Obama – to impose consequences as a warning against future excesses.

    • Ianmac 4.1

      Yes Rex. Somehow the “Bank” is anonymous where the bus driver is that bloke with the dark glasses. (Just checking the reply button.)

    • Interesting questions Rex,

      You might find some answers here and here

      And a man by the name of F. William Engdahl, a specialist in Economics wrote a series of very readable articles about why we are in this predicament and why bankers do not have to worry about the consequences of their actions.

      And by the way, it wasn’t a couple of greedy individual bankers or “bad apples” as it were. It is a scam on a humongous scale. Each and every top Wall street and City banker is part and parcel of that system and that includes John Key

    • jbc 4.3

      Rex: “Yet some bankers have, through sheer greed and recklessness, crashed our economy.”

      Yes they have. And it’s not over yet (Eastern Europe…)

      My point above (which seems to have fallen on deaf ears) is that while the bankers had their feet planted on the credit “accelerator” the masses enjoyed the ride and lapped up that credit like there was no tomorrow.

      If the bankers had been conservative (drove the economy like granddad on his way to lawn bowls) then a large part of the economic miracle of the past decade would never have eventuated.

      The problem now is that even if the money is there; nobody wants to borrow it. If there’s a credit crisis then why haven’t those annoying telemarketers pushing cheap and easy loans put down their headsets for good?

      • Pascal's bookie 4.3.1

        “If the bankers had been conservative (drove the economy like granddad on his way to lawn bowls) then a large part of the economic miracle of the past decade would never have eventuated.”

        Given that the miracle turned out to be old fashioned prestidigitation, I’m not sure what your point is.

        (captcha is on fire: whether margins)

        • jbc 4.3.1.1

          prestidigitation. Indeed. [I confess I had to look that up]

          Perhaps I needed to be more explicit. To look at this as simply a banking/credit/borrowing problem seems to miss the greater predicament: that a lot of the borrowing (including what Easton mentions) is just “papering over” some fundamental imbalances.

          I’m not suggesting that any of Easton’s reasoning is wrong, but that it only describes a part of the problem we are facing.

          What I find more disconcerting than the banking crisis is that a fair proportion of the growth (in incomes and employment) may have been fueled by “financial steroids” peddled by these bankers.

          Even if the banks were all fixed and started behaving themselves, and if NZ found some new overseas lenders, then we would still have a big problem.

        • Travellerev 4.3.1.2

          Pb,

          and don’t forget that old double-shuffling, honey-fugling, hornswoggling and skullduggery”.LOL.

  5. He guys,

    You may have been off line a bit longer than you anticipated but the reply function is awesome. Nice for some sub-threads without feeling like you hijacked the whole thread. LOL

    Very curious how it will be used here.

    Cheers,

    Trav

    • lprent 5.1

      Yeah. There was outbreak of a malware intrusion this morning through a nice hole in 2.7. Upgraded using the development version. But had a few problems with double UTF8 coding.

      I’m still bringing things online…

      • Daveski 5.1.1

        God help me … I agree with Eve 🙂

        I find Drupal upgrades scary but straightforward. I gave up on manual upgrades of WordPress and now slum at wordpress.org.

        Good job on the upgrades – the functionality gets better each time.

        • lprent 5.1.1.1

          Don’t thank me. Thank the open source people. The only thing that I’ve got customized in here is the css on top of the k2 theme.

          The auto-upgrades on wordpress are getting pretty good.

  6. Ianmac 6

    Cannot access “ACT MP caught Out”. Is it me or everyone?

  7. Ooh oops I landed in purgatory I think.

  8. vto 8

    I been thinking on this for some long time now. The last few years I have been annoying people around me with one of my theories which was that the world was heading for another great depression – reasons: 1, the house of cards called the world of debt obligations which was so massive and complex, and 2, it is a natural cycle which can be seen throughout history. My pick was that it would occur sometime 2010 – 2015. Started a bit earlier (or did it?). Other part of the theory was that govts, due to politics, would try to arrest it but eventually fail – result, a double-bottomed bottoming.

    Anyway, plenty people said similar blah blah..

    My currently developing theory is that these toxic assets etc can best be dealt with by sudden and painful lancing. This again will be driven by politics. The risk to nation states across the world is high and rising – picture say an east european country, say a …ania, …via or …istan where the armed forces have always been somewhat removed from political control. They sense the time is coming for the removal of so-and-so politico. And they will have the ability to do so. Who will prevent them? Only the west imo. But will the west? And how? (politically and physically)(perhaps a time to be thankful for Russian brutality).

    Among other unrest.

    Western political systems will recognise that if they are not super strong then they too will get dragged down etc. Hence one part of the appetite for a massive lancing of the boil that is toxic assets and other such creatures. Public will appreciate and understand the strength, despite massive splattering from the toxic boil, and get behind some new structures etc.

    … It is a developing theory and those a few random strands that I haven’t yet completely weaved …

    Bringing those strands to Mr Easton’s points one such area that stuck out for such a lancing could be “it also includes equities owned overseas, corporate and personal debt, trade credit and host of other sorts of liabilities.” Clearly the consequences would be massive. And worldwide. But perhaps a ‘wiping of the slate’ is the only way …

    to be continued…

    captcha: organize industry (there is definitely a wee gnome somewhere making these up)

    • vto,

      That is an interesting opening for debate.

      I would like to point your attention towards point 2 you bring up; the fact that there is apparently a natural cycle. Sort of like what goes up must come down and there is nothing you can do about it. A mysterious financial force of nature. Something none of the smarty pants who regulate our financial world know how to deal with. And above all something we just have to endure and live through.

      That doesn’t sit well with me. This is for various reasons

      1/ Money is man made. It is issued somewhere, somehow and for some reason sometimes more money is issued that there is in existence and based on mathematical issues that have no bearing on real world wealth and all of a sudden for some reason that money disappears.

      2/ When that money disappears it is always the poor and the middle class who get poorer and the upper class and the rich get richer. (A generalisation but you get my drift)

      3/ When the world drifts into a recession and god forbid into a depression it always seems to coincide with wars and destruction based on strange ideologies which leave entire continents destroyed in their wake and millions upon millions of people dead.

      4/ The only people who never seem to be affected by this somehow unmanageable financial cycle are the people managing our financial world. They just get richer and richer.

      You see if these financial giants where like us they would be, like us, fallible and there would be, like in our lives, sometimes unpleasant consequences if they made stupid decisions.

      You grow to fast in your business and get over extended you might go bankrupt, you cheat on your partner he/she kicks you out the door, you cheat on your tax return and they find out you get done, the list is endless.

      When you’re a banker and I mean not your average commercial banker who lends some money to a business and hopes to see that money back with some interest but one of your really big behind the scenes Money Masters that never seems to happen.

      One case in point is for example something that happened with Merrill Lynch and the LTCM hedgefund, the first fund too “big to fail“. (Accidentally the collapse of this hedgefund was the reason that John Key had to fire hundreds of his colleagues earning him the name of the “Smiling Assassin”)

      the LTCM hedgefund was heavily involved in manipulating the Asian Currencies and the Russian Rouble causing both the Asian and the Russian Crisis and when it collapsed as a result it was bailed out by amongst others Merrill Lynch under supervision of the Federal Reserve.

      One theory as to why this happened was stupidity and greed but another is that the LTCM hedgefund was used to break the independence of the Asian currencies (Which where bailed out by the IMF with serious conditions attached to it and which by many in those countries is experienced as a form of colonisation) and the Russian Rouble (Russia also had to accept IMF aid and equally heavy conditions). This opened up those currencies to massive speculation and made Wall street very happy thank you.

      By the way you are aware that John Key’s speciality was the Asian financial market and Over-The-Counter derivatives or OTC’s don’t you and that at the time of the events with the LTCM he was both the head of foreign Exchange and the European head for Bonds and Derivatives and that after he successfully aided and abetted Merrill Lynch in their endeavours with the LTCM he was invited as one of only four advisors to the Federal Reserve of New York for the Foreign Exchange committee.

      A position held three years previous by Robert Rubin, (AIG Trading)

      Another major player in this hedgefund was, by the way, a man called George Soros, the same man who just paid $ 30.000 to help finance a debate about New Zealands drug laws prepare Kiwi’s for financial intervention by big money now that the Election law has been repealed. (I bet him and John Key are old mates seeing as they both know a lot about speculation in Asian currencies.)

      Seeing as there were no consequences for the banks involved in the LTCM hedgefund stupidity is not what comes to the fore in my mind.

      According to this article it was the first time that Alan Greenspan and the Federal Reserve of New York bailed out a group of banks and a hedgefund sending a message to the banksters that no matter how hard they gambled they’d always be bailed out.

      Interesting eh?

  9. Pascal's bookie 9

    By ‘lancing’ you mean what?

    By ‘wiping of the slate’ are you suggesting a biblical jubilee style debt forgiveness type of thing?

    Edit: Meant to say. interesting comment. ta.

    I’d be worried first and foremost about Mexico on the failed state watch list. 3 news actually ran a bit tonight on what is probably the most underreported story of the last couple of years. Essentially the drug cartels are running the border states. They probably outgun the govt, and certainly out-finance them. It is a war, on a par with Iraq. If Mexico collapses, you will have millions of refugees heading for the US over land border, with news coverage 24/7.

    • vto 9.1

      In some form or other yes. But not ‘forgiveness’. It is partially underway already with the idea of govts buying up the toxic assets (pretty much for simple disposal in a safe fashion), so perhaps simply a ramping up of that approach. In a big way. Perhaps probably coordinated between govts.

  10. rave 10

    Easton is just producing the usual liberal hashup of the crisis. Its about financiers out of control and the need to regulate them with some form of revived Keynesian state management of the economy. Well that’s already happening except the bankers are managing the state managing the economy. The state is subsidising the losses of the capitalists with the future income generated by workers. Its advancing our pensions to pay their profits. So state management is no answer. Nationalisation under workers control (not Gordon Browns) is the answer.

    The reason Easton doesnt come up with a workable answer is that he doeasnt ask the important question. He doesnt address the question as to why such a huge amount of finance was invested in assets which proved to be worthless. Capitalists normally invest in real assets to produce value (employing workers to create the value). How come all of a sudden they invest in assets which have a vastly overinflated value compared to their cost of production?

    The only feasible explanation is that the productive system seized up and the surplus capital had to find new outlets to make a profit. This capital was invested in buying and selling existing assets thus driving up their value out of all proportion to their actual value. The bubbles that resulted were bound to burst. Should we pay for this speculative crisis? No! Let the bastards that made their profits out of driving up the prices of housing and who are ducking for cover and putting the cost of their crisis on to the backs of workers pay for it.

    The uprisings in Greece, and Gaudeloupe, and the big strikes in France and Italy are only the beginning of the refusal of workers to pay for the çapitalists crisis. We will not allow them to sack us, criminalise us, shoot us, and otherwise shit on us because it is their rotten system that is falling down.

    Auckland Protest against the 90 day Act where the bosses are lining us up a cheap labour reservoir for their Jobs Summit plans to save their skins by flogging ours…

    Aotea Square Saturday 12 noon.

    Years ago Rosa Luxemburg said we face a choice between socialism and barbarism. Recently Istvan Meszaros said: barbarism if we are lucky.

    Here’s a Marxist talk by Meszaros on the current crisis if anyone is interested:
    http://welcometotheneworldisorder.wordpress.com/2009/02/25/istvan-meszaros-the-new-crisis-of-capitalism-30mins/

  11. rave 11

    Here’s an interesting quote from a COUNTERPUNCH article:
    http://www.counterpunch.org/
    “How the economy was lost” by Paul Craig Roberts Feb 24th.

    “The bald fact is that the combination of ignorance, negligence, and ideology that permitted the crisis to happen still prevails and is blocking any remedy. Either the people in power in Washington and the financial community are total dimwits or they are manipulating an opportunity to redistribute wealth from taxpayers, equity owners and pension funds to the financial sector.”

    Which is it? Dimwits or manipulators?

    How better to manipulate while appearing a dimwit. Sound familiar?

  12. higherstandard 12

    Very good article Rave………. I suspect the answer is ‘dimwit’ as the author says in relation to the US economy.

    “our best hope is that the rest of the world is even less competent and even in deeper trouble”

    • Hs,

      Paul Graig Roberts is is an economist and a nationally syndicated columnist for Creators Syndicate. He served as an Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan Administration earning fame as the “Father of Reaganomics”. He is a former editor and columnist for the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, and Scripps Howard News Service. He is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and he holds a Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. He was a post-graduate at the University of California, Berkeley, and Oxford University where he was a member of Merton College.

      In 1992 he received the Warren Brookes Award for Excellence in Journalism. In 1993 the Forbes Media Guide ranked him as one of the top seven journalists in the United States according to Wikipedia.

      He is also a lifelong Republican and one of our foremost spokespersons in our quest for a new and independent investigation into the events of 911.

      He is very much of the opinion that stupidity and ignorance are not what is driving the economic collapse. Why don’t you google his name and educate yourself a little now that you have read one of his pieces.

  13. RedLogix 13

    Roberts makes considerable mention of the negative consequences of ‘offshoring’ jobs from the USA.

    I have read endless tributes to Wal-Mart from “libertarian economists,’ who sing Wal-Mart’s praises for bringing low price goods, 70 per cent of which are made in China, to the American consumer. What these “economists’ do not factor into their analysis is the diminution of American family incomes and government tax base from the loss of the goods producing jobs to China. Ladders of upward mobility are being dismantled by offshoring, while California issues IOUs to pay its bills. The shift of production offshore reduces US GDP. When the goods and services are brought back to America to be sold, they increase the trade deficit. As the trade deficit is financed by foreigners acquiring ownership of US assets, this means that profits, dividends, capital gains, interest, rents, and tolls leave American pockets for foreign ones.

    Not of course to be outdone, any bungle the Yanks can do, we can do better:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/4860134a13.html

    Only the Greens opposed the FTA with China.

    • rave 13.1

      Except that Americans now own a large part of the world economy. There is no “offshore” anymore.
      And everyone else pays for US indebtedness because it prints the world money and has the biggest guns. Globalisation has meant that the US is now a global economy and the US domestic economy is an anachronism. The US is the only economy in the world whose “protectionism” means a protection racket for the globe, not its own borders. Obama is going to kill the subsidies to US agribusiness and beef up the military “protection” of its oil interests in Asia. The US IS the world economy. It has China and Russia in its sights.
      NZ on the other hand with a bankster running it is just part of that US global economic empire. Its always been an entry in the ledger of some imperialist bank. Now its only a matter of which US bank survives to run us. What is your pick? My pick is BOA. Ask John.

  14. vto 14

    busy day, but one other thing to add to the mix…

    The so-called bubble economy was not in fact such a bubble. All the procudtion actually produced. Mankind produced numerous house, mansions, boats and yachts and ships, ferraris and suv’s and corollas. Everyone was gainfully employed and things were ctually physically made. It was a reality. A physical reality that still exists today.

    I think it should be borne in mind that if anything the bubble is on the downside. Now. ffs, houses are selling so far below the cost of replacement that if anything is surreal it is this current ‘value’ placed on houses. Over the longer term value must equal cost. At the moment it is more out of wack than it was on the upside.

  15. BLiP 15

    Rave said:

    ” . . . Except that Americans now own a large part of the world economy. There is no “offshore’ anymore. . . . ”

    I would say China pretty much owns the USA. China need only call in its loans and the yanks would have to go to war or start digging up Wall Street for a veggie patch.

    • rave 15.1

      China has a large chunk of US treasury bonds. But if it suddenly tried to sell the bonds back what would be the result? A massive fall in the US dollar which would devalue the bonds considerably, and a similar revaluation of the RMB and consequent loss of exports to US much greater than is already happening.
      Why would China cut its own throat?

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    In 1994, I was the editor for an issue of Planet magazine focused on cannabis, its culture and the prospects for the end of its prohibition. Part of that issue was an interview with 'Ringo', an experienced cannabis dealer.I recently posted my essay from that issue, and I figured it ...
    4 days ago
  • The invasion of women’s sports by men: some facts
    Dr Helen Waite, sports sociologist and former elite athlete, on the invasion of women’s sport by men and the anti-scientific and misogynist ideology used to rationalise it.   ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Remainers starting to sound like fascists
    As Brexit comes to a grisly conclusion (perhaps) people on all sides are saying intemperate and uwise things.  Some, like the Daly Mail, have been doing it for years.People as normally level headed as Jon Lansman are calling for automatic deselection of MPs who vote against a (likely) Labour three ...
    5 days ago
  • Labour MPs supporting Johnson’s turd-sandwich deal?
    I find this unbelievable:
    I've got one source saying more Labour MPs than expected are mulling whether to vote for the deal - including names who were not on the letter to Juncker and Tusk— Emilio Casalicchio (@e_casalicchio) 17 October 2019 I've compiled a list of possible reasons why Labour ...
    5 days ago
  • Why do we need control orders again?
    On Wednesday, the government was loudly telling us that it needed to legislate to allow it to impose "control orders" - effectively a parole regime, but imposed without charge, prosecution, conviction or real evidence - on suspected terrorists because they couldn't be prosecuted for their supposed crimes. Today, it turns ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Bullshitting the Minister
    On Monday, the Hit and Run inquiry heard from NZDF's former director of special operations, who claimed that the defence Minister knew everything about the Operation Burnham raid. Today, the inquiry heard from that (former) Minister - and it turns out that he didn't know nearly as much as NZDF ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Speaker: Extinction Rebellion is not a cult (but ecstasy for the people)
    Yoga gurus and cult leaders – I’ve seen a few. Two weeks ago, I unknowingly joined an alleged new-age cult at the Kāpiti coast, together with a giant kraken and some neatly dressed pensioners who would make any book club proud.They were among the two hundred people of all ages ...
    6 days ago
  • We need to bring the police under control
    The last decade has seen a trend of increasing weapons availability to police. Assault rifles. Tasers on every hip. Guns in cars. And following the march 15 massacre, pistols on every hip, all over the country. At the same time, its also seen an increase in the abuse of force: ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • If you can’t measure it, does it exist?
    In the last couple of weeks, I’ve been busy preparing for our summer paper on Science Communication. Looking for something amusing about ‘risk’ in science, I came across this neat xkcd.com cartoon about why so many people come knocking on my door (or phoning me, or emailing me) desperately wanting ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    6 days ago
  • Swinson’s swithering
    Jo Swinson is doing even worse at this Being Sensible lark that I'd thought.  I've just become aware of the following utterance
    .@KayBurley presses Lib Dem leader @joswinson on whether she would agree to a #Brexit deal 'no matter how bad a deal it is' as long as it had ...
    6 days ago
  • Women’s rights, trans ideology and Gramsci’s morbid symptoms
    by John Edmundson The International Socialist Organisation (ISO) have recently reposted a February article, by Romany Tasker-Poland, explaining ISO’s position in the “trans rights” debate.  It is available on their website and on their Facebook Page.  The article sets out to explain why “socialists support trans rights”.  It reads more ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • We need to take guns off police
    Today's IPCA report of police criminality: a police officer unalwfully tasered a fleeing suspect who posed no threat to anyone:The police watchdog has found an officer unlawfully tasered an Auckland man who broke his ankle jumping off a balcony to escape arrest. [...] To avoid arrest, the man jumped over ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • “Bringing kindness back”
    "Auckland City Mission: 10% of Kiwis experiencing food insecurity", RNZ, 16 October 2019:About half a million people are experiencing food insecurity, according to new research from the Auckland City Mission. Food insecurity, or food poverty, is defined as not having enough appropriate food. The City Mission said over the last ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Press Release: “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance b...
    Media Statement for Immediate Release 16th October 2019 “Fake News” from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers Despite comments from Auckland City Council CCOs Board Chairs re pay and performance bonuses for top managers—Herald Newspaper Tuesday Oct 15th–there is very little evidence ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    7 days ago
  • Ever-So-Slightly Bonkers: Simon Bridges Plays To His Base.
    Would You Buy A Used Propaganda Video From This Man? Bridges and the National Party’s strategists have discovered that the ideas and attitudes considered acceptable by today’s editors and journalists are no longer enforceable. The rise and rise of the Internet and the social media platforms it spawned means that ...
    7 days ago
  • Asking for food
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    Opposable ThumbBy Unknown
    7 days ago
  • Forty years of change in the jobs Kiwi do and the places they call home
    John MacCormick Over the last 40 years, New Zealanders – and people in other countries – have experienced big changes in the jobs they do and where they live and work. These changes include: a decline in manufacturing jobs an increase in jobs in ‘information-intensive’ industries (which are better paid ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • Protecting Fresh Waterways in Aotearoa/NZ: The Strong Public Health Case
    Nick Wilson, Leah Grout, Mereana Wilson, Anja Mizdrak, Phil Shoemack, Michael Baker Protecting waterways has the benefits of: (1) protecting water from hazardous microbes; (2) minimising cancer risk and other problems from nitrates in water; (3) avoiding algal blooms that are hazardous to health; (4) protecting mahinga kai uses (cultural ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Massey University triggered to rebrand
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In a press release today Massey University announced it has decided to rebrand and reorientate after struggling to be a University for grown-ups. For some time the University has wanted to be a safe play space for wee-woke-misogynists who have been really badly triggered ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Swinson backing calls for a second referendum (again)
    After a brief dalliance with 'hard Revoke' it looks like the Lib Dems are changing ground on on Brexit, with leader Jo Swinson reverting to calling for a second referendum on Johnson's deal.The party has tabled an amendment to the Queen’s speech requesting that any deal brought back from Brussels ...
    1 week ago
  • An odious bill
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • National is now the party of climate arson
    So, Judith Collins has done a Facebook rant about climate change, peddling the same shit National has been shovelling for the past twenty years: the impacts are overstated, there's no need to do anything about it, and its too hard anyway (oh, and its so unfair that people who peddle ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The environmental footprint of electric versus fossil car
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Manifest” by Andrew Bird – A Song For The Times.
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    1 week ago
  • Passing the buck
    Last month, NZDF's shoddy coverup of what it knew about civilian casualties in Operation Burnham began to fall apart, with the revelation that a report on the matter, which NZDF claimed not to have, had been sitting in an NZDF safe for the past nine years. Yesterday, the man responsible ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • India a major player in Earth observation satellites
    While many imagine that countries like the USA and Europe dominate space activities, in fact India is now a major player on this stage. It launches satellites for its own purposes and also commercially, and has constellations orbiting our planet and returning data of vital importance to that nation in ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • The rot at the top (2).
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    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Common misconceptions about “Global Warming”
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    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    1 week ago
  • A climate of tyranny
    For the past week, Extinction Rebellion has been peacefully protesting in London to demand action on climate change. The British government's response? Ban their protests:Police have banned Extinction Rebellion protests from continuing anywhere in London, as they moved in almost without warning to clear protesters who remained at the movement’s ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Collins crushes climate
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    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • More disappointment
    When they were running for election, Labour promised to overhaul the Employment Relations Act and introduce fair pay agreements to set basic pay and conditions on an industry level, preventing bad employers from undercutting good ones. They followed this up by establishing a working group, which reported back in January ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
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    1 week ago
  • Losing Labour’s Mills-Tone.
    Nothing Left To Say: Labour's pollster, Stephen Mills, remains swaddled-up in the comforting myths of the 1980s. As if the experience of Roger Douglas’s genuinely radical post-Muldoon policy agenda was literally a once-in-a-lifetime thing – as much as the party could possibly absorb for at least the next 50 years.MEMO ...
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Disability and the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse
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    1 week ago
  • Spain is not a democracy
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • UK Conservatives hate democracy
    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
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    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
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    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago

  • Minister of Finance and Sport and Recreation to visit Japan and Vietnam
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson departs tomorrow for events and meetings in Japan and Vietnam.  While in Japan, he will discuss economic and fiscal issues including meeting with the Minister of Finance, Taro Aso, and Minister of Economic and Fiscal Policy, Yasutoshi Nishimura. He will meet with the Minister of Education, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Dashboard tracks housing progress
    The Government’s Housing Dashboard released today confirms record numbers of state houses are under construction and shows the Government build programme is gaining momentum.  “After nine years of inaction, and a hands-off attitude from the previous government we’re starting to see things move in the right direction for housing,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Ministerial Statement on the International Convention Centre fire
    Mr Speaker, I wish to make a ministerial statement relating to the Auckland fire. The Government is closely monitoring the situation with the fire at the NZ International Convention Centre and is thankful that everyone is now safe. Firefighters are doing an incredible job managing the fire and bringing it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government invests in Te Reo, environmental data research
    The Government is investing in ambitious research that will digitise Te Reo, grow the low-carbon protein efficient aquaculture industry, help interpret environmental trends, and large data sets says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The four projects range from teaching Siri to speak Te Reo to crunching large environmental ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Government announces next steps as part of a comprehensive plan to fix skills gap
    A new education-to-employment brokerage service to strengthen connections between local employers and schools. Funding for more trades focused ‘speed-dating’ events to connect schools with employers. Promotional campaign to raise profile of vocational education. The Government is taking action to increase the number of young people taking up vocational education and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Corrections Amendment Bill passes third reading
    A Bill to improve prison security and ensure the fair, safe, and humane treatment of people in prison while upholding public safety has passed its third reading. Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the Corrections Amendment Bill makes a number of changes to ensure the Corrections Act 2004 is fit for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Ngāi Tahu CEO appointed to NZ-China Council
    Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, has selected Arihia Bennett MNZM, Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. The New Zealand-China Council (the Council) was established in 2012 as a New Zealand led and funded organisation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Southern Response claims move to EQC
    Responsibility for processing the small number of Southern Response claims still to be settled will be transferred to EQC by the end of the year. “As claim numbers reduce, it no longer makes sense for the Crown to have two organisations processing the remaining Canterbury claims,” Grant Robertson says. “Since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bowel screening starts in Whanganui
    Health Minister David Clark is encouraging Whanganui residents to take up the opportunity for free bowel screening, which can detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat.   Over the next two years 12,000 Whanganui locals, aged 60 to 74 will be invited to participate in the National Bowel Screening ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Pacific Peoples Minister to attend Our Ocean Conference in Norway
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, heads to Oslo today to represent New Zealand at the sixth Our Ocean Conference, which is being hosted by the Norwegian Government from the 23-24 October. “The Our Ocean Conference mobilises real action on issues like marine plastic pollution and the impacts of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures Conference: Connection...
    Session 4: Pacific Connectivity – Youth, Media and New Opportunities   Kia ora tatou katoa and Warm Pacific greetings to one and all. Representatives of Tainui, the local people of the land, or manawhenua – the indigenous peoples of this area – have welcomed you this morning in accordance with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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