Causes and effects

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 pm, August 30th, 2008 - 47 comments
Categories: crime, economy, election 2008, Social issues - Tags:

A series of graphs from the Social Report. First off, the unemployment rate

When the unemployment goes up or down, the practical effect is a decrease or increase in household incomes

as the country got poorer under National, unemployment rose, incomes fell, and and the poverty rate rose, compounded by National’s cut benefits and its choice to let inflation eat up the minimum wage

unemployment, poverty, and growing social inequalities place a society under stress. That increases the likelihood that people will behave in tragic ways.

These things do not just happen and they are not just the actions of ‘evil’ people who deserve punishment; they are social phenomena linked to the health of a society. Full employment and raising incomes for the poor are the best ways to keep our society healthy and reduce such tragic events. Worth keeping in mind when we come to vote.

47 comments on “Causes and effects ”

  1. Steven 1

    [lprent: Threadjack deleted – you are banned for a two weeks. I’m getting a bit pissed with this habit of some people to avoid discussing the posts. ]

  2. Anita 2

    Steven,

    the ETS bill and the reasons for pushing it through with such haste

    Haste?

    Standard process, full select committee and public submissions …

  3. Anita 3

    Look at that unemployment rate – neoliberal policies really did screw over PI and Māori communities 🙁 Why was it acceptable to have policies which disadvantaged some ethnic groups so disproportionately?!

  4. randal 4

    anita…dont spoil the dream…dont you know that in todays world everybody has to be spoon fed or else they will get a resentment. wah wah wah.

  5. randal 5

    steven if you do the research then YOU can do everything you want someone else to do for you..typical tory

  6. Helen wants to push through this ETS bullshit so she can get brownie points on the world stage and get a parasitic United Nations job after she is obliterated at the election.
    It’s not fucking rocket science from a corrupt witch. Duh !

  7. toad 7

    d4j: how is it that you can have this as a permanent quote on your blog:

    Be nice to people on your way up, because you will surely meet them again on your way down.

    But, as in the above post, adn there have been much worse from you, you call someone a “corrupt witch”. That really isn’t very nice and doesn’t inform anyone of anything or argue any point.

    Can you please try to debate the issues d4j, rather than hurl abuse.

  8. Toad, I am getting rather tired of you back stabbing me over at your mental g spot blog and now you try and tell me what I can say on here . Are you a moderator you fuckwit know all dickhead. If the owner of the blog is unhappy with my presence then they can ban me . Your opinion means nothing you washed up deluded loser !!

  9. lprent 9

    Wow – that 3rd graph is the kicker for me.

    I knew that the mother of all budgets really kicked up the poverty levels for families dramatically in 1991 (retail dropped like a stone that year). The ethnic breakdown shows who got hurt because they were unemployed. Also notice the big jump in unemployed in 2001 after the Nat’s fucked the economic policy with the MOYB. A set of measures designed (supposedly) to reduce costs to the taxpayers increased them by paying lower benefits to more beneficiaries.

    But the shocker is how historically high the household poverty levels still are. There is more work to be done – can’t let the Nat’s to have the opportunity to screw things up again for all of us (apart from their Waitemata Trust mates of course).

    BTW: You notice the flattening of the third graph between 1998-2001 with the three period between data points. That was probably due to the rise of yearly unemployment in the first graph with the ‘asian flu’. The 3 year period flattened the spike for that period. A good example of how you can make statistics lie using period selection (probably inadvertent in this case?).

    BTW2: It’d be interesting to look at a graph showing changes in the rate of change in GDP over that period (far easier to read than a simple GDP graph looking at economic effects). I think it’d show a direct correlation.

  10. Tim Ellis 10

    d4j, I know you mean well, but you’re not adding to the debate here. Try putting a sock in it, or at least moderating your own language. I don’t know about other people, but I don’t want to read that kind of abuse.

  11. I am sorry Tim, but I am still recovering from the effects of being called a “feral inbred” by Miss Clark when I lived in Westport.
    I will put a sock in it and let it smoulder away.

  12. randal 12

    when did she call you a feral inbred…like 1979 or something?

  13. randal not long after the tree huggers destroyed Timberland’s for the Coast.You know 1998.

  14. randal 14

    build a bridge, get over it, move on, youre only as good as your last game, live the dream, accept the challenge, set some goals

  15. Bill 15

    I think you undercall it Steve when you say simply that social inequalities “increases the likelihood that people will behave in tragic ways.” The last sentence (below)in particular is, I believe, more in line with calling a spade a spade.

    From Commission on Social Determinants of Health FINAL REPORT by the WHO (2008)

    ” This unequal distribution of health-damaging
    experiences (unfairness in the immediate, visible circumstances
    of peoples lives their access to health care, schools, and
    education, their conditions of work and leisure, their homes,
    communities, towns, or cities and their chances of leading a
    flourishing life) is not in any sense a ‘natural’ phenomenon but
    is the result of a toxic combination of poor social policies
    and programmes, unfair economic arrangements, and bad
    politics. ”

    and

    “Reducing health inequities is, for the Commission on Social
    Determinants of Health (hereafter, the Commission), an
    ethical imperative. Social injustice is killing people on a
    grand scale.”

    captcha Sarah $1 FMD

  16. Lew 16

    Tim: You know D4J means well?

    I hardly think he means anything. Perhaps he does, but it’s obscured under such great mounds of attack-dog propaganda that it’s hard to see.

    L

  17. Hi D4J,

    What do you think of National’s welfare policies?

  18. “What do you think of National’s welfare policies?’

    Good question insipid Tiger Tea. Under Labour I am still waiting patiently for a job as the State Services Commission wrote it on 21 December 2006;
    “I am pleased to confirm that as a result of the application made on your behalf by AL of Workbridge, you are now eligible to participate in the Mainstream Supported Employment Programme.’

    You reminded me Tiger, I must blog that letter before the election so voters can see what kind of bias creeps Labour are. Like Lew said the propaganda war must be fought. Hi Lew go stew. I foolishly took the government at its two faced word.

    Oh well under National I might be accepted into the work force and hopefully we won’t have a Prime Minister and Children’s Commissioner hell bent on having me arrested and jobless. The feminist cause is certainly having the desired effect regarding my employment possibilities.

    I would like to run boot camps for young unemployed people.Left right left right quick March SIR !We will call the obstacle course Helen’s Hole.

  19. toad 19

    d4j said: Toad, I am getting rather tired of you back stabbing me over at your mental g spot blog and now you try and tell me what I can say on here . Are you a moderator you fuckwit know all dickhead.

    On g.blog, yes. Here, they wouldn’t let me anywhere near moderation. In case you haven’t noticed, I’m Green not Labour.

    One way to convince people of an argument is to pick out its most abusive, foulmouthed, dogmatic and extremist opponent, bait them a little, and sit back and watch the incoherent vitriol spew forth.

    You set yourself up as an easy target almost every time d4j!

  20. Toad the day I listen to you is the day Aunty Helen and not to bright Sue Bradford pass a lie detector test. Talk about hitting a g spot – duh Toady get a grip.

  21. Under national youll get booted off your benifit, how will you like that eh?

  22. sean 22

    What is failed to be mentioned here is that the crapload of trouble that our economy ran into in 1990 was due to the outgoing Labour government bankrupting the country.

  23. higherstandard 23

    And the reversal towards the end of the 90s

  24. “Under national youll get booted off your benifit, how will you like that eh?”

    The benefit stinks – you try bringing up children on $14k a year.The nanny state keeps you broke and controlled. Talk about killing in the name of – go back to school darling and learn to spell you drop kick mess.

  25. Anita 25

    sean,

    What is failed to be mentioned here is that the crapload of trouble that our economy ran into in 1990 was due to the outgoing Labour government bankrupting the country.

    Reference?

    People keep saying that here, but no-one has ever come up with any evidence for it.

  26. toad 26

    Well, I guess d4j disproves Judith Collins’ theo that Work and Income is artificially keeping unemployment figures down by moving unemployable jobseekers from the unemployment benefit to the sickness benefit.

    If that really were happening,I would imagine d4j would have been one of the first to be moved over.

    Addressing people as “you fuckwit know all dickhead” is hardly likely to enhance your job prospects d4j.

  27. higherstandard 27

    Anita

    Briefings to incoming governements are here

    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/briefings

    I think the 1990 one is to the incoming Bolger government ?

    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/briefings/1990/big90-1.pdf

  28. Look Toad my language is appropriate for the occasion. I am a valuable asset for any common sense government.

  29. higherstandard 29

    Common sense government … surely an oxymoron

  30. HS as the world struggles there is no place for idiots in government.

  31. Bill 31

    Sean and Anita.

    Bankrupted or not bankrupted is irrelevant.

    The neo-liberalism that all NZ governments have practised for the past 20 – 25 years exacerbates the inequalities found in all forms of Capitalism.

    As quoted above from the W.H.O. report, they rightly state that life threatening inequality –
    “is not in any sense a ‘natural’ phenomenon but is the result of a toxic combination of poor social policies and programmes, unfair economic arrangements, and bad politics.”
    and that –
    “Social injustice is killing people on a grand scale.’

    Now, for sure, there are more kids dying as the result of social inequality on the shore of Lake Victoria than in Christchurch or Auckland. But kids are dying. The numbers don’t matter.

    Why are they dying? Because of the ‘toxic combination’ highlighted in the WHO report.

    The NZ Government has released a Social Report that attempts to side step the pertinent underlying facts of the matter. I’d say that is morally and intellectually bankrupt.

    It’s the equivalent of a social report on slavery claiming progress in the welfare of the slave population as an implicit justification of slavery.

    Neither you nor anyone else on this list would accept the moral or intellectual tenets of such an argument, and yet here we are; a capitalist government is justifying capitalism through incremental improvements in the ‘casualty rate’ and it’s basically accepted as okay. Why is that?

    Conditions of slaves did indeed improve over time in the slave system, but you wouldn’t think that a reason for accepting slavery. But the same argument justifies or excuses Capitalism? Why the double standards everyone?

  32. Quoth the Raven 32

    Sean – No left winger would agree with the actions of the fourth Labour government. This government has sought to redress the damage done to this country by two successive neo-liberal governments.

  33. Bill 33

    Quoth the Raven

    The present NZ government adheres to the same neo-liberal orthodoxy as the two successive ones you mention. Did you miss that one somehow?

  34. the sprout 34

    nice data SP, great to see.

  35. Quoth the Raven 35

    Bill – Yeah I did. I can see where you are coming from, but I can’t really agree with you on that one. I don’t think a neo-liberal government would’ve bought back the railways. I don’t think a neo-liberal government would’ve started a state owned bank. I don’t think a neo-liberal government would’ve changed conditions such that unions could start to make a come-back. I don’t think a neo-liberal government would’ve undone the opening up of ACC to competition. I don’t think a neo-liberal government would have introduced income related rents on state houses and so on. All besides the point that neo-liberalism was a movement specific to a time, that’s now passed.

  36. Buy back the rail and spend billions on upgrading the tracks. Expensive train set Dr Caustic.

  37. randal 37

    staying on topic it is easy to see that anomie and social dysfunction began to unravel and increase after National took power last time and even worse we are still feeling the effects of their total disregard for standards and principles. the right wing ideology imported wholesale from the american republicans in the 1980’s had the slogan that ‘ideas have consequences’ and yes they do. this is the legacy of unscrupulous unconscionable hankering for power and neglect of the people.

  38. Bill 38

    Quoth the Raven.

    I’ll go along with you insofar as the current government has somewhat blunted the nastier edges of neo-liberalism. How much that has to do with individual parties within government and lobby groups pushing the Labour party to adopt the things you point out and how much it came off of Labour’s own back is debatable.

    And at the end of the day, a few policies does not amount to making them ‘not’ neo-liberal.

    Not wanting to get into a compare my shopping list to yours type argument, but the Labour Party which is the dominant voice in Government still advocates ‘free trade’ and also, I cannot believe that the give back to parents being limited to those in employment was not driven by ideology.

    I’m interested in your assertion that neo-liberalism was ‘specific to a time that’s now passed.’ I’d like to agree with you and wish it were true, but the guys in Washington and the international financial institutions they control don’t seem to have heard the word.

  39. Quoth the Raven 39

    Bill – I’m not saying that the ideals have gone. What I mean is that neo-liberalism was something of the seventies – nineties. A label for governments with similar policies. Similar to New Left. It’s not an idealogy in the way that marxism is. You probably know more then me on the subject. To me the whole politcal spectrum is a confusing mess of labels that seem to mean different things to different people.
    D4J – Who’s the MP for west coast tasman? Yes he’s from Labour. Seems the coasters don’t hold the grudge that you do.

  40. Anita 40

    Quoth the Raven,

    D4J – Who’s the MP for west coast tasman? Yes he’s from Labour. Seems the coasters don’t hold the grudge that you do.

    Actually Damien O’Connor voted against the Forests (West Coast Accord) Bill (with agreement from the Labour caucus). This is the best reference I could find in a hurry.

    Wow even on a Sunday afternoon my brain is full of useless trivia 🙂

  41. Greg 41

    Sean – “What is failed to be mentioned here is that the crapload of trouble that our economy ran into in 1990 was due to the outgoing Labour government bankrupting the country.”

    I’m sorry, but you clearly have no idea what you’re talking about. The bankrupting the country thing was done by the previous National government under Muldoon with his ‘Think Big’ plans. The fourth Labour government that you refer to helped pull us out of that hole, whatever your views on their policies they certainly lowered New Zealand’s debt during their time in power – look at the figures. Hardly bankrupting the country eh? Bolger’s 1990 National government was actually relatively similar to the previous Labour government in ethos – lowering government spending, privitisation etc.

  42. Dean 42

    LP:

    “I knew that the mother of all budgets really kicked up the poverty levels for families dramatically in 1991 (retail dropped like a stone that year). The ethnic breakdown shows who got hurt because they were unemployed. Also notice the big jump in unemployed in 2001 after the Nat’s fucked the economic policy with the MOYB. A set of measures designed (supposedly) to reduce costs to the taxpayers increased them by paying lower benefits to more beneficiaries.

    But the shocker is how historically high the household poverty levels still are. There is more work to be done – can’t let the Nat’s to have the opportunity to screw things up again for all of us (apart from their Waitemata Trust mates of course).”

    I’m not sure which is less surprising – your inherent racism as defined by equating economic reforms with higher unemployment because of racial extraction – or your blatant, feigned ignorance over the lack of measures taken by the government of the last nine years to reverse anything meaningful in this regard.

    It is this very attitude – treating different racial groups as somehow victimised by any New Zealand government – which contributes to their continual decline. Anybody would think you’d been living in some sort of confused, 80’s era South Africa the way you go on about it.

    Besides, you can talk all you like about various statistics but we all know where the crime is happening, don’t we? You can attempt to racially profile people as being somehow victimised by successive governments but any grouping of them who seeks change gets called “haters and wreckers” by your party. I would point you towards the increase in spending in this regard the current government has made and would invite you to compare and contrast that to the increase in violent crime the same groups of people and suburbs have experienced.

    As for trusts and donations, I know you want to try hard to ignore the trusts and donations Labour and it’s cohorts have recieved, but taking a stab at the Waitemata trust when you and your own have been so guilty of the same thing just smacks of radical fundamentalism. You need to stop making exuses for Clark knowing and ignoring, because it’s destablising your own argument amongst anyone with any kind of critical eye.

    You need to think a little more about what you post in relation to those you seek to attack.

  43. Bill 43

    Quoth the Raven.

    Neo-liberalism is very much an ideology in the way that Marxism is. It is based on a particular economic theory that advocates free trade and private enterprise, a diminishing (and eventual disappearance)of state activity – beyond promoting and protecting private enterprise – and elevating individualism on the premise that society does not exist in any concrete fashion. The theory goes, that left alone, the market will naturally produce the beneficial outcomes we all want.

    Utter bollox of course and with the exception of here in NZ was imposed solely on the back of massive violence and in spite of serious grass roots resistance.

    It’s what the ‘Washington Consensus’ is all about…conditionalities attached to loans that ensure the neo-liberal programme is adhered to and violent repression of resistance when required, including the use of an internal puppet regime’s military and where that is not available, NATO.

    It’s not a thing of the past, but it is under pressure (particularly in S. America at the moment). It’s barely questioned in NZ though…certainly, strangely, not on this blog.

    Conversely, the ‘New Left’ was not an ideology..merely a label attached to, well, a lot of disenchanted one time authoritarian Marxists and others who saw calamity and defeat in the collapse of the USSR rather than an occasion for celebration and an opportunity to reclaim the initiative lost in the failed revolution of 1917 and the subsequent establishment of Bolshevik totalitarianism in the USSR.

    The ‘New Left’ were and are a hodge podge of so-called leftists who accepted the rights assertion that There Is No Alternative (TINA); who drew new horizons for themselves that were totally within the parameters of capitalism.

  44. lprent 44

    Dean:

    Most of your comment is ridiculous.

    In medical terms what you’re saying in that you shouldn’t treat people with a vaccine for a disease that they may become exposed to. By your reasoning, because there is a possibility that they will not contract the disease, they shouldn’t get the vaccine in case that they had natural immunity. That does ignore the problem to the wider population of having a rampant epidemic in a smaller population.

    Of course you look at any correlations that show where there are variances in the population. You do it to make sure that you target resources for disease, crime, social problems, etc as effectively as possible. To do otherwise would be a gross waste of resources. This happens when you’re looking for melanomas, cervical cancer, teenage theft, educational dysfunctions, or whatever.

    In this case there is a distinct difference showing up in population segmented by ethnic origin in unemployment rates. Of course you target resources that way.

    On the other matter.

    The Labour, Progressives and the Greens donations have largely had names attached. These are not being anonymous donations.

    The Nat’s pushed more than $2.3 million through anonymous donations in 2005. Act did a lesser amount in 2002. This was legal, but totally immoral. It was impossible to see what corruption was associated with those donations.

    Personally bearing in mind the nature of these two parties, I’ll assume that the donations were for favours past or future until proven otherwise.

  45. Talking about support and money – don’t the Unions prop up Labour with large amounts of money?They clearly did when I was a Union delegate.

  46. Dean 46

    “Most of your comment is ridiculous.

    In medical terms what you’re saying in that you shouldn’t treat people with a vaccine for a disease that they may become exposed to. By your reasoning, because there is a possibility that they will not contract the disease, they shouldn’t get the vaccine in case that they had natural immunity. That does ignore the problem to the wider population of having a rampant epidemic in a smaller population.”

    Very well.

    Explain why South Auckland is undergoing a surge in criminal activity. Compare and contrast that to the effort and money that have been spent there, and come up with a conclusion that isn’t race based or involving throwing more of the same at the area.

    Because it’s not working. Shame you can’t see it. Talk about ridiculous. Even the Maori party agree – remember them? Helen’s haters and wreckers.

  47. lprent 47

    Low income, inadequete education, and low expectations.

    You can see the low income in the top graph. When you see the group unemployment drop to the averages, you will start seeing the crime stats change. To do that you need to increase the education level people get. To do that you need to change the expectations.

    It takes time (decades) to turn around communities. The majority of the people in those communities are hardworking people working for their families to have better chances in the next generation.

    What is your alternative? Create ghetto’s?

    The area I live in had the same kinds of problems a century ago – then it was “The Irish”.

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    The Justice Committee has reported back on the government's racist bill to eliminate Māori representation in local government. The report duly notes the Waitangi Tribunal's finding that the bill breaches te Tiriti, and the bill's inconsistency with our international human rights obligations - and then proceeds to ignore both. Instead, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Christopher Luxon is – Big in Japan
    This week our Prime Minister Christopher Luxon… mmm, let’s take a moment to consider just how good that sounds. Hope you weren’t eating.Anyway that guy. Better? That bloke from the telly, he said - what I would say to you is… I’m big in Japan. My kind of people, hard ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 21-June-2024
    Tis the winter solstice! The shortest day and longest night of the year. The good news: we’re on our way back to summertime. Here’s another roundup of stories to brighten up your Friday. Our header image is from CRL and shows Waihorotiu Station lit up for Matariki 2024 The ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    5 days ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Friday, June 21
    Our economic momentum remains anaemic, and it’s possible the tiny increase in GDP was a ‘dead cat bounce’. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Per-capita GDP has fallen 4.3% from its peak over the last 21 months, which is more than it it fell in the Global Financial Crisis recession ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Futility of Punishment
    Hi,I was in Texas recently and couldn’t stop thinking about how in some parts of America they really like to kill their prisoners. As a society we tend to agree murder is wrong, but somewhere along the way Texas figured it’s fine if it’s after 6pm and the killing is ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • The new Beehive approach to the environment
    A persistent theme has been weaving between the Committee rooms at Parliament all this so-called “Scrutiny” week as MPs have probed Ministers and agencies about their work and plans. The question has been simply what the environmental price might be if the country begins to accelerate its infrastructure building to ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #25 2024
    Open access notables Climate Change Is Leading to a Convergence of Global Climate Distribution, Li et al., Geophysical Research Letters: The impact of changes in global temperatures and precipitation on climate distribution remains unclear. Taking the annual global average temperatures and precipitation as the origin, this study determined the climate distribution with the ...
    5 days ago
  • You take nicer pictures when you’re not drunk
    Readers keeping count will know it's more than five years since I gave up booze. Some of you get worried on my behalf when I recount a possibly testing moment. Anxious readers: today I got well tested.All the way across France I've been enquiring in my very polite and well-meaning but ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Cancer
    Turn awayIf you could, get me a drinkOf water 'cause my lips are chapped and fadedCall my Aunt MarieHelp her gather all my thingsAnd bury me in all my favourite coloursMy sisters and my brothers, stillI will not kiss you'Cause the hardest part of this is leaving youI remember the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why we shouldn’t buy new planes for the PM
    Its not often that one has to agree with Judith Collins, but yes, it would indeed cost “hundreds of millions of dollars” (at least) to buy replacement aircraft to fly the Prime Minister on his overseas missions of diplomacy and trade. And yes, the public might well regard that spending ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • The Stadium Debate – What About the Transport Options?
    A few weeks ago, Auckland Council took another step in the long-running stadium saga, narrowing its shortlist down to two options for which they will now seek feasibility studies. The recommendation to move forward with a feasibility study was carried twenty to one by the council’s Governing Body for the ...
    6 days ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 20
    Social Development Minister Louise Upston has defended the Government’s decision to save money by dumping a programme which tops up the pay of disabled workers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: It has emerged the National-ACT-NZ First Government decided to cut wages for disabled workers from the minimum wage to $2 an hour ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Where the power really resides in Wellington
    The new Chief Executive of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC) yesterday gave a Select Committee a brutally frank outline of the department’s role as the agency right at the centre of power in Wellington. Ben King, formerly a deputy Chief Executive at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • Climate Adam: Why we're still losing the fight against Methane
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Carbon dioxide is the main culprit behind climate change. But in second place is methane: a greenhouse gas stronger than CO2, ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: More ETS failure
    A few weeks ago, I blogged about the (then) upcoming ETS auction, raising the prospect of it failing, leaving the government with a messy budget hole. The auction was today, and indeed, it failed. In fact, it was such a failure that no-one even bothered to bid. Its easy to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Return of Jacinda.
    Oh, take me, take me, take meTo the dreamer's ballI'll be right on time and I'll dress so fineYou're gonna love me when you see meI won't have to worryTake me, take mePromise not to wake me'Til it's morningIt's all been trueEarly morning yesterday, well before dawn, doom-scrolling.Not intentionally, that’s ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • How good is the interim NW busway?
    This is a guest post by Pshem Kowalczyk, a long-time follower of the blog. With great fanfare, just over six months ago (on 12 November 2023), AT launched its interim busway for the NorthWest region, with the new WX express service at the heart of the changes. I live ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    7 days ago
  • Consumer confidence collapses after Budget, in contrast with rest of world
    The first widespread survey of consumers and voters since the Budget on May 30 shows a collapse in confidence. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The belt-tightening and tax-cutting Budget delivered on May 30 has not delivered the boost to confidence in the economy the National-ACT-NZ First Government might have ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • The end for the Air Force 757s
    The Air Force 757 that broke down with the Prime Minister on board in Port Moresby on Sunday is considered so unreliable that it carries a substantial stock of spare parts when it travels overseas. And the plane also carries an Air Force maintenance team on board ready to make ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    7 days ago
  • At a glance – Was 1934 the hottest year on record?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    1 week ago
  • It's not New Zealand they've never heard of, it's him
    Sometimes you’ll just be so dog-tired, you can only keep yourself awake with a short stab of self-inflicted pain.A quick bite of the lip, for instance.Maybe a slight bite on the tongue or a dig of the nails.But what if you’re needing something a bit more painful?The solution is as ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Some “scrutiny” II
    Last month I blogged about the Ministry of Justice's Open Government Partnership commitment to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation", and how their existing efforts did not give much reason for confidence. As part of that, I mentioned that I had asked the Ministry for its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why the Biden “peace plan” for Gaza is doomed
    After months and months of blocking every attempt by the UN and everyone else to achieve a Gaza ceasefire, US President Joe Biden is now marketing his own three-stage “peace plan” to end the conflict. Like every other contribution by the US since October 7, the Biden initiative is hobbled ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Raised crossings: hearing the voice of vulnerable pedestrians
    This is a guest post by Vivian Naylor, who is the Barrier Free Advisor and Educator at CCS Disability Action, Northern Region, the largest disability support and advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also advises on AT’s Public Transport and Capital Projects Accessibility Groups. Vivian has been advocating and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • Leaving on a Jet Plane
    So kiss me and smile for meTell me that you'll wait for meHold me like you'll never let me go'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet planeDon't know when I'll be back againOh babe, I hate to go“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Barbara Grady Illustration by Samantha Harrington. Photo credits: Justin Lane-Pool/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, European Space Agency. In an empty wind-swept field in Richmond, California, next to the county landfill, a company called RavenSr has plotted out land and won ...
    1 week ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
    Although NZ readers may not be that interested in the subject and in lieu of US Fathers Day missives (not celebrated in NZ), I thought I would lay out some brief thoughts on a political subject being debated in the … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
    TL;DR: Chris Bishop talks up the use of value capture, congestion charging, PPPs, water meters, tolling and rebating GST on building materials to councils to ramp up infrastructure investment in the absence of the Government simply borrowing more to provide the capital.Meanwhile, Christopher Luxon wants to double the number of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
    When I was invited to come aboard and help with Greater Auckland a few months ago (thanks to Patrick!), it was suggested it might be a good idea to write some sort of autobiographical post by way of an introduction. This post isn’t quite that – although I’m sure I’lll ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
    Hi,Tickled was one of the craziest things that ever happened to me (and I feel like a lot of crazy things have happened to me).So ahead of the Webworm popup and Tickled screening in New Zealand on July 13, I thought I’d write about how we made that film and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
    One occasionally runs into the question of what J.R.R. Tolkien would have thought of George R.R. Martin. For years, I had a go-to online answer: we could use a stand-in. Tolkien’s thoughts on E.R. Eddison – that he appreciated the invented world, but thought the invented names were silly, and ...
    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
    A listing of 35 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 9, 2024 thru Sat, June 15, 2024. Story of the week A glance at this week's inventory of what experts tell us is extreme weather mayhem juiced by ...
    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
    After a busy week it’s a good day to relax. Clear blues skies here in Tamaki Makaurau, very peaceful but for my dogs sleeping heavily. In the absence of a full newsletter I thought I’d send out a brief update and share a couple of posts that popped up in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
    Now in the land of Angus beef and the mighty ABsWhere the steaks were juicy and the rivers did run foulIt would often be said,This meal is terrible,andNo, for real this is legit the worst thing I've ever eatenBut this was an thing said only to others at the table,not ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    2 weeks ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago

  • Minister celebrates students’ space success
    Space Minister Judith Collins is applauding students from Canterbury University’s Aerospace Club on their success at the world’s largest inter-collegiate rocket engineering competition, the Spaceport America Cup. “More than 120 teams from 20 countries participated in Spaceport America Cup, with the team from Canterbury University winning in their ‘30,000 Foot’ ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Address – Commemoration of the 74th Anniversary of the Commencement of the Korean War
    Tena koutou.Ki nga kaumatua,Ki nga whanau,Ka maumahara tonu tatou ki a ratou. Greetings.To the elders,To the families,We will remember them. Firstly, a special welcome to all the veterans here this morning and their families.  I want to acknowledge the veterans who are marking this day but cannot be with us ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • New WorkSafe board appointments to address a history of poor financial management
    Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden says three appointments to the WorkSafe board have been made to strengthen the organisation, ensuring it has the skills and expertise it needs to carry out its functions.  “WorkSafe has faced a number of recent challenges, including accumulating an almost $18 million ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Next phase of the Royal Commission into COVID-19
    Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden says this coalition Government is delivering on our commitment to expand the terms of reference for the independent Royal Commission into COVID-19 Lessons Learned. “There will be a second phase to the Royal Commission which features new commissioners and an expanded terms of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government introduces Three Strikes Bill
    The Government has introduced a Bill today to restore the Three Strikes sentencing law, Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee says. “New Zealanders are rightly concerned about violent crime. We are delivering on our commitment to introduce a revised Three Strikes law as one of our key law and order priorities.  ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • New support for agricultural emissions reduction
    The Government and the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) are together committing an additional $8 million towards AgriZeroNZ to boost New Zealand’s efforts to reduce agricultural emissions. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says the strength of the New Zealand economy relies on effective and affordable emission reduction solutions for New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Government actions strengthening Māori success
    Tākina Puanga. Ko Puanga kei runga. Ko Puanga e Rangi. Tākina mai te ara o Puanga nui o te rangi. Tākina ngā pou o te tau. Ki te whai ao ki te ao marama. Puanga or Rigel celebrations reflect a renewed energy across our communities – to acknowledge those who ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Transformative investment in cancer treatments and more new medicines
    The coalition Government is delivering up to 26 cancer treatments as part of an overall package of up to 54 more new medicines, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti and Associate Health Minister David Seymour announced today. “Pharmac estimates that around 175,000 people will benefit from the additional treatments in just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • More support for drought-affected communities
    The coalition Government is providing more financial support to drought-stricken farmers and growers in many parts of the country to help with essential living costs. “Rural Assistance Payments have been made available in 38 districts affected by dry conditions to help eligible farmers and growers whose income has taken a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New cops means more Police on the beat
    The decision to deploy more Police on the beat in Auckland CBD has been welcomed by Police Minister Mark Mitchell and Associate Police Minister Casey Costello. Starting from 1 July, an additional 21 police officers will be redeployed in Auckland City, bringing the total number of beat police in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government takes action to address youth crime
    The Government is introducing a new declaration for young offenders to ensure they face tougher consequences and are better supported to turn their lives around, Children’s Minister Karen Chhour announced today. The establishment of a Young Serious Offender declaration delivers on a coalition Government commitment and supports the Government’s target ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
    The Department of Internal Affairs [Department] is making a significant upgrade to their Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which blocks access to websites known to host child sexual abuse material, says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “The Department will incorporate the up-to-date lists of websites hosting child sexual ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New vaccine research aims to combat prevalent bovine disease
    A vaccine to prevent an infectious disease that costs New Zealand cattle farmers more than $190 million each year could radically improve the health of our cows and boost on-farm productivity, Associate Agriculture Minister Andrew Hoggard says. The Ministry for Primary Industries is backing a project that aims to develop ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Making it easier to build granny flats
    The Government has today announced that it is making it easier for people to build granny flats, Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop say. “Making it easier to build granny flats will make it more affordable for families to live the way that suits them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
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