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Celebrating 50th Anniversary of PRC recognition

Written By: - Date published: 10:12 pm, December 21st, 2022 - 15 comments

“When Joe met Chou, we have opened the door and said hello” captions the photo of the Beijing meeting between  Joe Walding and Chou EnLai in March 1973. It followed New Zealand’s recognition of the People’s Republic of China on December 22, 1972, an anniversary definitely worth celebrating.

India and Free Trade – finally someone turned the lights on

Written By: - Date published: 12:26 pm, December 19th, 2022 - 16 comments

After nearly 20 years of frustrating ‘Free Trade’ talks between India and New Zealand, the chair of the India New Zealand Business Council (INZBC), Earl Rattray, has acknowledged that “a different approach to the traditional Free Trade Agreements which have served us well in many markets will be needed for India.” Whew. About time.

Diplomatic Values

Written By: - Date published: 5:39 pm, November 21st, 2022 - 4 comments

Trudeau got a 10-minute stand-up with Xi followed by a public shirt-fronting, Albanese a 32-minute sit-down, and Jacinda Ardern a 50-minute formal bilateral. In the carefully calibrated world of the diplomatic dance-card, that says something. New Zealand would be foolish not to take advantage of what is on offer from China.

How Brexit Shanked Britain

Written By: - Date published: 8:05 am, October 17th, 2022 - 23 comments

The political and economic disasters now unfolding in Britain are the responsibility of the Conservative Party from their 2016 Brexit vote through to now.

Will We Go Down With China?

Written By: - Date published: 11:24 am, August 22nd, 2022 - 19 comments

Muchn’all as I try and stay positive about New Zealand’s economic direction, our reliance on China is getting much, much worse, and we need to move as China declines.

Ardern significantly improves EU Free Trade deal

Written By: - Date published: 11:13 am, July 2nd, 2022 - 26 comments

Before her involvement in the European Union Free Trade Agreement negotiations Jacinda Ardern was accused of “scattering stardust” in a vain attempt to get an agreement over the line.  If this is an example of Jacinda scattering stardust then long may she continue to do so.

The politics of high inflation – can governments do anything?

Written By: - Date published: 10:46 am, May 19th, 2022 - 13 comments

It is clear that we will continue to face these economic challenges with tools that are ill-equipped to face the problems. Only a truly international response can create an economy that delivers for all.

The world in 6 months

Written By: - Date published: 8:59 am, March 15th, 2022 - 117 comments

In six months time the world could be in a very precarious position.

Is This The Boom We Wanted?

Written By: - Date published: 11:20 am, March 4th, 2022 - 65 comments

New Zealand’s time as high end ingredients producer to the world has arrived. But it has big costs.

CPTPP V Nuclear Submarines

Written By: - Date published: 2:45 pm, September 19th, 2021 - 41 comments

In a piece of incredible timing, on the same day as Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom announced their defence technology procurement pact and pissed off ally and competitor alike, China formally applied to join the Comprehensive and Porgressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Why Not Support The Farmers?

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 am, July 17th, 2021 - 106 comments

The Groundswell farmers movement want the new freshwater policy scrapped, the “ute tax” removed, lots of imported labour for farm work, parts of the ETS dumped the new Significant Natural Area policy dumped, the draft policy on indigenous biodiversity scrapped and Crown Pastoral Land Reform Bill stopped.  How likely is this?

The week when Scomo came to visit

Written By: - Date published: 11:12 am, June 6th, 2021 - 5 comments

This week has seen the Australian Broadcasting Corporation to suggest that Australia is adopting a principled stand and New Zealand has sold its soul to China for trade.  But the comments by Morrison and Ardern made after their Queenstown meeting suggests the opposite.

New Zealand’s Perverse Economy

Written By: - Date published: 7:28 am, May 29th, 2021 - 37 comments

At a forecast farm gate milk price of between NZ$7.25 and NZ$8.75 per kilo of milk solid, Fonterra is going to fill up its milk tankers, drive back to their suppliers with cash and pump it straight back into the farmhouse like we haven’t seen in a decade.

So! You want a “plan”?

Written By: - Date published: 4:36 pm, March 11th, 2021 - 50 comments

Expecting a bit much aren’t you? We haven’t had that since Muldoon. At least he had them. The kind of people now asking for a plan were those who complained about governments that “interfered with the sacred ‘free market’” and screamed about “central planning”, “picking winners”, “protectionism” etc. They prefer just getting cheap labour to give the illusion of economic growth. And build a cycleway!

Reasons to abandon NZ’s Five-Eyed Folly

Written By: - Date published: 2:35 pm, February 4th, 2021 - 29 comments


Wayne Brown’s recent suggestion “Is it time to sell our seat on FiveEyes?” is from someone well placed by experience to form an educated opinion. “Trade sanctions of the type Australia is facing are a weapon used by both USA and China. So let’s have a debate on whether we need Five Eyes, or whether it’s time for us to trade on independently.”

Brexit revisited

Written By: - Date published: 7:19 am, December 13th, 2020 - 19 comments

With Brexit looming there is talk of unfinished customs software and the possibility of chaos around ports, the UK’s food supply being compromised, and potential skirmishes with France at fishing spots.  And Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron are refusing to talk to Boris Johnson.  Hang on England, this is going to get wild.

“Reds under the Bed”.

Written By: - Date published: 8:40 am, September 4th, 2020 - 78 comments

Everyone has recently had an education on  “Socialism” working in practice.

And a graphic illustration of the shortcomings, of under regulated “Free market” Capitalism, Globalism, tax cuts for the rich, and the mania for monetising everything in sight, and “running it like a business”.

How Trump Has Changed New Zealand’s future

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, September 2nd, 2020 - 28 comments

Post Trump how is the world order looking?

US v China: new Cold War or new Opium War?

Written By: - Date published: 10:27 am, August 25th, 2020 - 23 comments

The Trump administration has declared war on China, and there is much speculation in the punditry as to whether or not this is a new Cold War similar to that waged post World War 2 against Russia. In my opinion, the 19th century Opium Wars may offer a more appropriate analogy, albeit with a likely different outcome.

Hong Kong principles

Written By: - Date published: 9:49 pm, July 28th, 2020 - 38 comments

According to our Prime Minister, today’s announcement that New Zealand is suspending extradition arrangements with Hong Kong is because of our principles. But it is not immediately clear what these principles are, other than falling into line with our Five Eyes spying partners. Some history is important.

Re-open New Zealand

Written By: - Date published: 10:23 am, July 3rd, 2020 - 82 comments

It is great to see former Prime Minister Helen Clark join the debate about re-opening New Zealand’s borders. We need it. There is no better time for New Zealand to re-launch itself to the world.

The plan for Monday

Written By: - Date published: 9:43 am, April 18th, 2020 - 30 comments

Even if New Zealand gets out of the immediate Covid-19 infection better than most other countries, the result is still a wrecked world and a slow recovery. What we face is something like an Australian firefighter with a hose and a tanker facing an onrushing wall of flame: they successfully dampen down a defined circle […]

What we were doing wasn’t working.

Written By: - Date published: 6:32 am, April 15th, 2020 - 112 comments

After the lockdown, it is tempting to try and go back to what we had before. To the familiar and comfortable, especially for us that were comfortable. Forgetting that for so many, things were anything but, comfortable. That won’t be happening. “Before” no longer exists.

New Zealand’s poor in this new crisis

Written By: - Date published: 9:16 am, April 11th, 2020 - 126 comments

Covid 19 is not some great leveller. To succeed the state has to completely redirect the economy to so that ordinary workers and working families are supported.

China: Guns, Germs, and Steel

Written By: - Date published: 8:00 am, February 14th, 2020 - 34 comments

The coronavirus outbreak that exploded three weeks ago in the central Chinese city of Wuhan has prompted the most severe Chinese government actions in three decades.

Oh Look! (What. a. surprise.)

Written By: - Date published: 10:41 am, February 8th, 2020 - 20 comments

Mainstream media yet again aiding and abetting the character assassination of whistle blowers.

Mike Moore

Written By: - Date published: 7:30 am, February 3rd, 2020 - 104 comments

It’s not often you find New Zealanders who give every single breath they have to the left and do it with resounding and even global success. Such a person was Mike Moore.

Chinese New Year

Written By: - Date published: 9:26 am, January 27th, 2020 - 15 comments

With China’s New Year arriving, and a terrible flu virus struggling to be contained within it at the same time, it’s time to reflect again on China’s future and impact for New Zealand.

Brexit – sorry its not getting done anytime soon.

Written By: - Date published: 11:23 am, December 12th, 2019 - 5 comments

Can the Conservatives get brexit done by January 31st as they are promising in the election? The short answer is no. The slogan is catchy, and taps into public sentiment. But it is also pure unadulterated bullshit. If the Conservatives do form the next government these words will haunt them, especially Boris Johnson.

The Missing Millions

Written By: - Date published: 11:18 am, December 12th, 2019 - 18 comments

Millions of people and an entire region of the UK left out of polling calculations….

The NHS and privatisation

Written By: - Date published: 12:14 pm, December 10th, 2019 - 18 comments

The NHS is well loved by the British public. It is seen as something which makes British society decent and civilised. That the NHS is now stretched and badly underfunded is seen as a national outrage. Fears of even further privatisation of the NHS due to a US trade deal has unsurprisingly made the NHS the number one election issue.

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