Budget Protest at Parliament today

Written By: - Date published: 11:26 am, May 19th, 2011 - 54 comments
Categories: budget 2011, democratic participation, Unions - Tags:

Unions and community groups don’t need to wait till after the Budget is read to know they’ve been screwed.  They’re gathering today at Parliament at 12pm for a protest rally – come along if you’re in town.

I was talking to a union organiser today who said that one of her main worksites – politically apathetic most times (with all the love in the world) is up in arms over National’s cuts to KiwiSaver and Working for Families.  They’re feeling pissed and betrayed and who can blame them.  With any luck they’ll still feel like that in November.

54 comments on “Budget Protest at Parliament today”

  1. PeteG 1

    Odd timing, presuming they don’t know the details of the budget.

    The union protest will feature speakers including Labour leader Phil Goff, the Greens’ Metiria Turei, CTU president Helen Kelly and Alan Johnson from the Salvation Army.

    They aim to speak out about cuts to social and public services and send the message that all it will do is increase hardship, poverty and unemployment.

    If they prove to have guessed wrong will they have a retraction protest tomorrow?

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      They didn’t “guess” wrong.

    • Deadly_NZ 1.2

      Jesus peteg Did you not even read the first line of the article???? Hang on I’ll save you the bother of using the page up key.
      here is the first line.
      “Unions and community groups don’t need to wait till after the Budget is read to know they’ve been screwed”

      Now unless you think they are psychic, then they are just people using that what god gave them but you seem to have been overlooked, the ability to reason and work things out. train of thought prob goes like this Last budget Crap, Services cut, wages static or dropping, prices soaring, comodities soaring, Earthquake, bail out for rich old bastards who played in the dodgy markets , making sure they don’t lose anything, may need a donation later, So when looking at all this and more they came to the thundering conclusion.

      WE ARE GOING TO GET SCREWED!

  2. chris 2

    The usual suspects. ‘The lets protest any way march’. ‘Gimee gimme – as its all about me’. The ‘yes lets make cuts as long as I’am not effected mentality’. Is this the way to equality ? me thinks not.

    • Ari 2.1

      Well, at least the last three words seem true.

      A recession is the time you’re supposed to be really careful about making sure you’re spending money on high-multiplier programs, like the ones the government is so fond of cutting, and perhaps think about cutting some of the spending that’s less useful, such as contracting out work that the government itself could do more cheaply and just as well.

  3. Tammy Gordon 3

    I would give anything in the world to be able to announce a retraction tomorrow saying we got it all wrong and there will be no cuts to KiwiSaver, WFF, Student loans or public services. Somehow I don’t think that’s going to happen though. But do you want to make it interesting, Pete G?

    • PeteG 3.1

      What about if there were acceptable adjustments to them considering the circumstances?

      Or do you think that government benefits, credits and services should only every remain the same or increase, and they should never decrease no matter what the economic conditions are like?

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        When economic conditions are tough and private sector spending is falling, the Goverment must raise new revenue from the wealthy and spend more into the economy.

      • Lanthanide 3.1.2

        Here’s the first headline from Stuff for you: “Working for families cuts bigger than expected”.

        • joe bloggs 3.1.2.1

          Under today’s changes the total cost of the WFF scheme will be trimmed by 4%, dropping from $2.8 billion now to $2.6 billion by 2015. That’s $200m in cuts by 2015, targeting families with working age children – neither earthshattering nor “bigger than expected”.

          New operating spending of around $4 billion which is tightly focused on frontline health and education services – a positive move.

          Compulsory employer contributions to Kiwisaver to rise to 3% – that’s a 50% increase over the current level – makes up for the reduction in Govt support.

          The “repayment holiday” for borrowers based overseas will be cut from three years to one year – at long bloody last! These pricks who hive off overseas after racking up huge debts take twice as long to repay their loans as those of us who have chosen to stay in NZ. About time they were brought back to play on the same level playing field as the rest of us.

          Student loan defaulters will have no more access to loans – the previous Labour government allowed student loan defaulters to borrow yet more under the loan scheme. Good to see that rort addressed.

          All kudos to the Nats for a fiscally responsible approach to a very difficult economic climate.

          • mickysavage 3.1.2.1.1

            JB the figures are premised on considerable growth.  They expect 4% this year.  There is not the slightest chance that this will occur and when it does not occur we are suddenly in a big financial hole.  This really is smokes and mirrors stuff.

            • PeteG 3.1.2.1.1.1

              Do you think they should be cutting expenditure more just in case?

              • No I think that they should tax the wealthy so that the deficit is addressed.
                 
                Audrey Young in the Herald says this:
                 

                Bill English’s plan to return the country to surplus sounds good but feels flimsy.
                It is based on heroic assumptions of a strong economic economy, high wage growth and and nothing going wrong.

                 

                • PeteG

                  Labour would be backing the ponzi treadmill growth strategy too wouldn’t they?

                  John Pagani on Stuff says “there is nothing here to create faster growth”.

                  Maybe we need to consider alternatives to continued growth to try and pay for yesterday.

                  • Judging by their past performance they will pay debt off and create jobs.
                     
                    I see the CT attack lines are being fed to the trolls …

                • joe bloggs

                  If tax, tax and more tax is Labour’s answer to the current economic climate then you’re welcome to the opposition benches.

                  Better to control spending than more death by a thousand taxes.

                  You might not appreciate the colour of this budget but Standard and Poors certainly does.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Ah yes, Standard & Poors, one of the ratings agencies that gave sub-prime home loans Triple A ratings. Going from their past performance I don’t think that listening to them is a credible way to make decisions for our future.

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    You might not appreciate the colour of this budget but Standard and Poors certainly does.

                    Which would be why they took us off negative outlook yeah?

                    Nah.

                    So according to S&P this budget changes nothing.

            • Peter 3.1.2.1.1.2

              The billion dollar question, where will growth come from? They don’t say do they.

              • PeteG

                We must grow our exports – maybe they should consider double bunking cows.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  We’re already doing that – it’s where all the pollution in our rivers and lakes is coming from.

          • lprent 3.1.2.1.2

            Compulsory employer contributions to Kiwisaver to rise to 3% – that’s a 50% increase over the current level – makes up for the reduction in Govt support.

            You mean after they dropped the level from 4% down to 2% in 2008? Don’t be more of a fool than usual.

            You forgot that the arseholes are planning to sell off many remaining assets to overseas ownership. Did you notice that there is no limitation of sales to foreign owners?

            • RobC 3.1.2.1.2.1

              Not to mention the employer contribution will now be taxed. FFS joe bloggs read and understand before you open your mouth

  4. ZeeBop 4

    Debt was Labours problem, inherited from them, that’s why John Key found
    the money to drop the top rate of tax and send us into massive borrowing.

    Looking backwards, English promises to repeat the tried and trued solutions
    that worked so well because oil was in real terms getting cheaper. This
    is now no longer the case. Its like a car owner saying he can drive
    as far on the same amount of money he did a decade ago, sure if you
    ignore the current price of oil, and the future of peak oil scarcity.

    Its a shameful waste of a taxpayers money to fund a bunch of lying
    blind morons who run our country.

  5. Bernard Hickey is picking up on the heroic assumption theme:
     

    The government has bet the economy will come right and it doesn’t need to significantly cut government spending to get its borrowing under control.
    That all makes sense if you believe in GDP growth rates of 1.8 per cent, 4.0 per cent and 3.0 per cent over the next three years.
    The trouble is the Treasury has overestimated GDP growth rates since 2008 by around 2-3 percentage points of GDP as households and businesses elected to repay debt.
    The government is essentially betting that households and businesses will start borrowing again and stop repaying so much debt.
    That’s an heroic assumption given household debt to disposable income ratios are still well above anything normal and the sort of growth implied by Treasury’s forecasts will be accompanied by floating mortgage rates of close to 8 per cent.
    The government has not understood that this time it is different, as Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart wrote in their analysis of economic growth and debt levels after the financial crises of the last century. Economic growth is significantly slower for up to a decade after a crisis, particularly when a nation is labouring under heavy debt, as New Zealand is.

    The National Party, making shit up so that it can be reelected and sell all our stuff …
     

  6. And Brian Fallow has seen the same thing:
     

    This may well have been a good Budget – if it was delivered this time next year.
    Right now it is risky to freeze government spending.
    It is based on a strong pick-up in the economy.
    But that recovery at this point only exists in economists’ forecasts.
    It is not there yet, plain for all to see, in the data coming out of Statistics NZ.
    There are huge uncertainties around the forecasts and the risks, as economists like to say, are “to the downside”.

  7. David Cunliffe also has a comment:
     

    National is also pinning its hopes on growth that it has failed to deliver in the past three years. With no sign of an economic plan from this government there is no reason to think that these growth projections will materialise.
    This is more of the same from National. Every budget it has promised that growth is just around the corner. Every time that growth hasn’t occurred and the government has had to borrow more instead.
    The lack of an economic development plan is breath-taking. There is no credible strategy for jobs and growth. National is completely out of ideas.
    There is no plan to grow savings and capital sufficiency or improve investment incentives for a modern high-value economy.

    The thing that really attracts attention is that Blinglish has used Treasury’s more rosy predictions of tax income and ignored a more conservative IRD prediction that was $4 billion lower.
     
    New Zealand, you have been conned.

  8. burt 8

    I saw the idiots. How can you possibly explain to people who think they know in advance what is in the budget that tax payer funded KiwiSaver is like playing the pokies. The govt extracts more money from you than it can ever return to you because it had administration costs – the we call it free money. So they protest wanting the govt to take probably close to $2,000 off them so it can give them $1,040 back ! Yeah – churn rocks !

    • Lanthanide 8.1

      I seriously doubt there are $960 in admin fees for every member of kiwisaver who gets the government tax matching. Assuming we have 1 million people that qualify for at least some of it, that would be $960m just in administration costs.

      Try again, burt.

      • felix 8.1.1

        Sorry Lanth, burt thought it up more than a week ago.

        I tells ya it’s locked in now and no amount of logic or simple maths is ever gonna shift it.

        • burt 8.1.1.1

          felix

          Tax payer funded (dollar for dollar matching up to $1,040) for KiwiSaver is not redistribution, it is not taking from anyone to give to someone else – it is only paid to people who pay enough tax to have enough spare to contribute to KiwiSaver – Why do you defend it like it is redistribution from the wealthy to the needy – it is not.

          • Lanthanide 8.1.1.1.1

            pssst, burt, you get the “tax credit” if you put in $1040 to kiwisaver. It doesn’t matter how much tax you actually paid. This means beneficiaries can also get $1040 worth of “tax credits” every year if they deposit $1040 in their kiwisaver.

            • burt 8.1.1.1.1.1

              OK sure, beneficiaries earning over $26,000 might choose to contribute 4% to KiwiSaver.

              The key point here is that if we had a zero rated tax threshold I would agree more with the idea that taxing people to give it back to them is good social policy. Because it would provide most benefit to low earners and non tax payers. However the tax paid by a person earning $26,000 would be $3,570. I wonder if we polled these people what they would choose, $1,040 less tax taken or $1,040 added to KiwiSaver. I guess nanny knows best what’s good for low earners and it’s not her fault if they can’t afford 4% of their earnings to access it.

              Meanwhile higher earners don’t thank them enough for funding their tax credits and I get called a fool for pointing it out.

              • Lanthanide

                burt, you still don’t get it.
                 
                Someone who earns $10,000 a year, can choose to take some of their after-tax pay and deposit it, voluntarily, into kiwisaver, and get the $1040 “tax credit”.
                 
                Btw, I’m just highlighting the fact that you don’t know what you’re talking about. You’re welcome.

      • burt 8.1.2

        Would you feel better if I said $1,400 needs to be extracted to deliver $1,040. You only have to pay $360/year to get your own money back…..

        Felix – perhaps you could direct credit your pay to me and I’ll give some of it back to you and you can think I’m fabulous for giving you free money ????

        • felix 8.1.2.1

          No burt I don’t think I’ll do that as we have a system already in place which works far more efficiently than your fantasy one.

          Thanks anyway.

      • burt 8.1.3

        You might also want to look at this;

        http://wheresmytaxes.co.nz/

        IRD costs us $1,445.71 each every year….

        But hey, if you like paying people to give your own money back to you then sure – keep your head in the sand and pretend it is free money.

        • Draco T Bastard 8.1.3.1

          Translated:
          Oh noes, we have to pay to have necessary work done, Woe is meeeee!

          Fuck you’re an idiot burt, clinging to oversimplified slogans that totally misrepresent the complexities of the issue you’re trying to address.

          • burt 8.1.3.1.1

            What are you on about Draco ? Sure there is a cost to managing the scheme and that is necessary. But are you really saying it’s essential to collect money from us to give much of it directly back to us ?

            Hell if you think that is necessary then please let me manage your income for you – I’ll only take a small cut for being the middle man who gives it directly back to you – a function you seem to think is necessary.

            • Draco T Bastard 8.1.3.1.1.1

              No you fucken moron, I’m saying that it’s necessary to have the IRD and at $1500 per year each is pretty damn cheap. Hell, some accountants charge more than that for simple book keeping on one persons accounts.

              • burt

                Yes, and if they choose to add it too their own superannuation scheme (KiwiSaver or not) then they pay nobody for that financial exchange.Why take it off low earners in the first place?

                I know nanny needs to live, but really, how many minimum wage level workers contribute 4% to KiwiSaver to get the same benefit higher earners are getting for doing something they have probably always done?

                Now if the first $1,040 in income tax paid each year was credited to your KiwiSaver scheme rather than having to put hard cold cash in there then sure recycling (churn) makes sense.

                • Draco T Bastard

                  That, as expected, fails to make any sense.

                  How much of the $1500 per year each that we’re paying goes into administering Kiwisaver? Or, to put it in terms that you might be able to understand, The $1500 covers more than just the administration of Kiwisaver.

                  Why take it off them in the first place? Because it caters to human nature and so becomes a more reliable way of getting people saving for their retirement. And it’s not given straight back to them but put in an account that they can’t touch until they retire.

                  As I said, clinging on to simplistic slogans that fail to engage the complexities of the issues that you’re trying to address.

                  • burt

                    Hey Dracko, I like getting paid others peoples tax to do what I have always done as well, but that’s not making it good social policy.

              • Colonial Viper

                The best efficiency is when the IRD collects money from tax payers, and uses it to pay the Chinese Government the interest that we owe them on our loans.

                Instead of using that tax money to, you know, provide public services and core infrastructure for New Zealanders.

                • burt

                  Yes CV, the empty kitty and the stalled domestic economy has forced borrowing. Think back though CV, remember Cullen talking about saving for a rainy day. Well he paid of debt but didn’t save much and over bid for a rusty old train set just before he left office. He seemed to think the sun would shine forever.

                  Do you honestly think Labour would have continued their surpluses had they stayed in power?

                  Just like 1990-1993 all over again and forelock tugging apologists blame National ! Unbelievable.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    real simple reasons to hold National responsible:

                    they have held the reins of power for 2.5 years
                    they gave tax cuts to advantage the already rich ahead of all others
                    they bailed out rich investors involved in high risk speculative activity
                    they have no plan or way out other than to sell the family silver

                    Cullen 9 straight years of surpluses, English 3 years straight as a loser.

                    • Mac1

                      And they told lies to get into power in 2008. No change to GST, Kiwisave, Working for Families. Told lies, had no plan apart from enrich more the already rich, total failure as a budget and as a government.

                      Labout had 9 years of low unemployment, surpluses and responsible fiscal management. No comparison, really, CV.

                    • burt

                      9 Years of surplus eh…

                      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/budget-2008/news/headlines.cfm?c_id=1501935

                      The deteriorating state of the Government books show that New Zealanders are hurting from the combination of the economic…

                      The government’s bank balance has moved further into the red. New Zealand’s fiscal position worsened in March…

                      All the growth in the Treasury’s December economic and fiscal update is in the wrong things – such as unemployment, fiscal deficits and Crown debt…..

                      Investment losses unveiled in today’s crown accounts are higher than expected but the overall plunge into the red is in line with predictions, National’s finance spokesman Bill English says.

                      The government’s financial statements show the crown operating balance was $757m in deficit at September 30, against a forecast surplus of $943m…

                      You shouldn’t repeat people who just say shit because it fits the way they wish it were CV. .

                    • Colonial Viper

                      That’s a bullshit link burt, it doesn’t go anywhere where that quote is supposedly from.

                      English – 3 deficit strikes and he’s out 🙂

                      And I just found this from Cullen from the same article you little shit

                      Once assets were taken into account the Crown’s net financial position was positive, standing at about 5.7 per cent of GDP.

                      “This strong balance sheet position vindicates the Government’s decision not to blow the surplus in good times.

                      Cullen saved for a rainy day and English has blown it all and then some in less than 3 years.

                  • felix

                    burt, I’ve forgotten what your main issue with all this was.

                    Can you remind me please?

  9. Jum 9

    It was most interesting to hear Amy Adams at 5.18pm today telling us that Union Members do not work hard.

    Unions might like to pass that comment on to their members and families.

  10. Colonial Viper 10

    New Zealand – you have been warned. You vote John and Don in this year, and you can expect things to keep sliding backwards in an increasingly ugly way.

    • chris73 10.1

      Exactly, Johns told us what hes expecting to do so if (when) hes re-elected it’ll be because we want it to happen

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    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    6 days ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    6 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three 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. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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