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National’s PR support springs into action

Written By: - Date published: 8:19 am, September 2nd, 2022 - 52 comments

Yesterday National’s PR machine also known as Mike Hosking on Newstalk ZB sprang into action to get the message out that National will not negotiate with Destiny Church over support.  Even though eight days previously Chris Luxon pointedly did not rule this out.

The Goldilocks budget

Written By: - Date published: 9:25 am, May 20th, 2022 - 24 comments

How was the 2022 budget?  Was it the worst since Ruth Richardson’s mother of all budgets or the best since the first Labour Government gave everyone a Christmas bonus in 1935?

Budget Day!

Written By: - Date published: 8:15 am, May 19th, 2022 - 50 comments

Today is budget day.  What surprises will Grant Robertson announce to address the country’s many and varied problems.  Will Christopher Luxon and Nicola Willis be able to sound like they actually understand what is in the budget?  Stay tuned for 2 pm …

What Can Be Saved?

Written By: - Date published: 7:12 am, April 29th, 2022 - 157 comments

The tide of this government is running out. There’s 18 months left in the term. What would you save?

Can This Government Be Saved?

Written By: - Date published: 5:43 pm, March 25th, 2022 - 118 comments

Can Labour win a third term? Here are some pathways up, and some pathways down.

Pick a side

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, March 17th, 2022 - 351 comments

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelinsky has made a direct appeal broadcast to the United States Congress. That will sort out the Putin supporters from the rest.  And with climate change beckoning it is time to pick a side.

Light Rail: The State Is Back

Written By: - Date published: 9:46 am, January 31st, 2022 - 30 comments

The light rail route and mode decision this week shows something new. It’s in the nature of the state itself.

The country’s books are in remarkably good shape

Written By: - Date published: 8:44 am, December 16th, 2021 - 79 comments

As the country rebounds out of partial lockdown the Treasury’s recently released half yearly Economic and Fiscal update suggests that the Country’s accounts are in remarkably good shape.

National’s plan – open and be damned

Written By: - Date published: 9:43 am, October 21st, 2021 - 71 comments

Yesterday National released what feels like take 16 of its Covid response plan, this one focussing on business interests and setting a hard timeline for reopening.  But getting significant details wrong and rehashing failed policies previously tried in England has dampened its effect.

Judith’s very bad two days

Written By: - Date published: 8:12 am, September 2nd, 2021 - 50 comments

Judith Collins’ insistence that Parliament be reconvened even at a time that the country was in lockdown level 4 has backfired spectacularly.

Minister Robertson’s Economic Development Strategy

Written By: - Date published: 7:32 am, July 15th, 2021 - 20 comments

Minister Roberston’s recent speech to the Trans Tasman Business Circle sets out both how this government is using the pandemic to reset whole sectors of the economy, and also how it is getting its head around economic and social challenges. The points made were unsurprising, but his intended direction was unclear.

Social insurance, a premium not afforded to all.

Written By: - Date published: 12:02 pm, June 20th, 2021 - 59 comments

One of the details announced in the budget was funding to explore a ‘social unemployment insurance’ scheme. This scheme has been pushed by the Council of Trade Unions and Business NZ, which will work with the Government in a newly set-up Tripartite Working Party. When we dig into it though, we realise it is no safety net. It’s a parachute that slows our drop, giving us time, before we hit that real net – down so far below. 

The end of Ruthenasia

Written By: - Date published: 8:03 am, May 21st, 2021 - 61 comments

National presented a particularly glum picture in Parliament yesterday.  And it was not only the realisation that Judith Collins is out of her depth. It was because this budget spells the end of Ruthenasia.

Budget 2021

Written By: - Date published: 12:37 pm, May 20th, 2021 - 71 comments

Headline change, budget is lifting weekly main benefit rates by between $32 and $55 per adult to tackle inequality and child poverty, as well as reinstating the Training Incentive Allowance.

Government backs away from public service wage announcement

Written By: - Date published: 8:02 am, May 12th, 2021 - 34 comments

Some good news from yesterday.  The Government has decided to walk back earlier comments suggesting a wage freeze for teachers and nurses.

About the public service pay freeze

Written By: - Date published: 7:40 am, May 6th, 2021 - 45 comments

A few of us on the left have issues with the public service wage freeze announced yesterday. By setting the salary level so low, at $60,000 per annum, the threat is that previous gains for teachers and nurses will be undermined.

About Grant Robertson’s bright line tax statement

Written By: - Date published: 10:39 am, March 28th, 2021 - 217 comments

Media has been abuzz with comment about how last election Grant Robertson has backtracked on a promise on not extending the bright line test.  Should politicians stick to their pronouncements no matter what?  Or should they change their minds if circumstances demand a change in course?

The Unbearable Lightness of the Bright-Line Test

Written By: - Date published: 4:20 pm, March 13th, 2021 - 96 comments

The bright-line test is a red herring and does nothing to deter housing speculation.

Senior Business Leaders Call Out To Government. Again

Written By: - Date published: 8:12 am, March 3rd, 2021 - 41 comments

Senior business leaders have called for more openness and clarity from the Government on its plan for getting New Zealand to “COVID normal”.  But have failed to say what they would do to contribute or what they are doing to help.

Time to do something about poverty

Written By: - Date published: 7:40 am, February 23rd, 2021 - 77 comments

In recent news Standard and Poors has improved New Zealand’s credit rating because of its success in handling Covid, and a vast majority of kiwis support the Goverment increasing income support for those on low wages or not in paid work.  The Government has the budget space and the majority’s backing to do something about poverty.

Is New Zealand’s The Best Little Economy In The World?

Written By: - Date published: 7:23 am, January 26th, 2021 - 53 comments

New Zealand is the best-managed country in the world. And currently has one of the best economies.

Must New Zealand Pay Back All This Public Debt?

Written By: - Date published: 9:34 am, December 20th, 2020 - 22 comments

Without much fanfare, Minister Robertson has used 2020’s crisis to bury the historic scourge of monetarism and within it the excuses of the governments that used it as a pretext to sell off our key government income generators.

The Government’s finances are in very good shape

Written By: - Date published: 7:55 am, December 17th, 2020 - 66 comments

The Government’s finances are in remarkably good shape.  Who would have predicted that dealing properly with a global pandemic would have had better results for the economy than timidly dealing with it and trying to ensure that economic activity continued? But by international levels our Government debt is already low and maybe now is the time to spend on vital areas such as poverty, climate change and the housing crisis.

Time’s up Labour

Written By: - Date published: 4:50 pm, November 20th, 2020 - 114 comments

It’s not possible to resolve New Zealand’s housing and poverty crises from within a neoliberal frame. Change is going to have to be driven from outside of parliament.

C’mon Grant

Written By: - Date published: 10:40 am, November 18th, 2020 - 51 comments

This government must demonstrate that it has the ability to lead the New Zealand economy where it has stated it wants it to go. It does not want more headlines like the average house in Auckland now being priced at $1 million.

COVID19 Vaccine and New Zealand’s K-Shaped Recovery

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, November 11th, 2020 - 36 comments

IF the discovery of a potential Covid vaccine looks like a new dawn, let’s not forget that this is the accelerating point of the K-shaped recovery New Zealand have been dreading. Our already rich are on the line heading upwards. They are getting richer because of a range of our Government policies.

Labour’s cabinet

Written By: - Date published: 1:48 pm, November 2nd, 2020 - 78 comments

Some details of the new Cabinet announced today by Jacinda Ardern.

Show us the plan Labour

Written By: - Date published: 10:19 am, October 22nd, 2020 - 154 comments

Labour want to govern based in stability for all New Zealanders, but how does that work when your grand narrative has massive plot holes around ending poverty?

Paul Goldsmith should stop digging

Written By: - Date published: 3:05 pm, October 3rd, 2020 - 80 comments

Paul Goldsmith has shown yet again his complete inability to understand how Government finances work by claiming there is a $10 billion dollar hole in Labour’s fiscal plan where there is none.

Mood of the Boardroom: National is toast

Written By: - Date published: 11:07 am, September 28th, 2020 - 45 comments

The NZ Herald Mood of the Boardroom finance election debate should be for National what it is like attending a Living Wage campaign meeting for Labour.  They should be at home and the participants should be solidly behind them.  But not this year.

Paora Goldsmith is National’s $4 billion dollar man

Written By: - Date published: 4:17 pm, September 20th, 2020 - 116 comments

Paul Goldsmith has blighted National’s campaign launch by making a $4 billion dollar mistake in National’s budget costings.

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