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Chart o’ the day: the real world

Written By: - Date published: 9:54 am, August 2nd, 2011 - 68 comments
Categories: capitalism - Tags:

Sources- Statistics NZ trade figures. Reserve Bank foreign exchange turnover.

68 comments on “Chart o’ the day: the real world”

  1. vto 1

    This should be front page news and linked directly to John Key.

    What does Key have to say about it? I mean currency trade is supposed to be about support of trade etc, however it is quite clear that near 95% of currency trade is 100% pure speculation.

    Talk about non-productive shit.

    • mikesh 1.1

      The chart doesn’t tell us where “invisibles” come. In the left block or the right block. Assuming they are in the right block then we don’t know how much of that block is actual speculation.

  2. Afewknowthetruth 2

    ‘This should be front page news and linked directly to John Key.’

    You have got to be dreaming!

    The prime function of the corporate-owned media is to keep all fundamental truths well hidden and keep the proles distracted with trivia. And make a profit out of it.

    99% of the populace don’t even realise: they actually pay money to be distracted and misinformed. That’s how successful the corporate misinformation system is.

    • Gosman 2.1

      Perhaps you can suggest that the next left led government could set up a ministry for truth so that the ‘correct’ view of the world can be put forward.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        Yes.

        Actually, re-introducing not for profit news media media channels would do it.

        • felix 2.1.1.1

          “Back in reality” was for Gos, not you btw. Public news channels are definitely needed.

      • felix 2.1.2

        Back in reality, giving bodies like the BSA a few more teeth to deal with the accuracy of reporting mightn’t be a bad idea.

      • Ianupnorth 2.1.3

        Even when there is truth, knowledge that is generated from robust academic research the current government choose not to believe it and do the opposite of what is recommended!

    • vanakast 2.2

      Except that this, like the media, leaves out a huge amount of information. A lot of the media isn’t corporately owned, it’s publically funded, and it certainly isn’t all right-wing.

  3. JustMal 3

    Nice chart. Whats the source, be interested to know if there is any historical information available (ie, would like to look at how its changed over the last few years)

  4. ghostwhowalksnz 4

    Why else would Key say you can do nothing , as a former currency trader thats what they want.

    The small margins on huge speculative flows and the ‘carriage’ trade are what he made his fortune on. Being paid massive bonuses based on the profit for his company.

    I see an opening for Winston Peters here, as Labour sits on its hands regarding currency speculation.
    Its right up Peters street to rail against the ‘big money speculators’ and the effect its having on average kiwis. Watch this space

    • Gosman 4.1

      New Zealand used to strictly control the currency by setting it’s value against the US Dollar. That didn’t stop the speculators causing a run against it in 1984.

      You just need to look at Zimbabwe, (where currency speculation was made illegal pre 2008), to see what would happen if you attempted to do something similar here.

      You can’t eliminate a market were there is a need for it.

      • mik e 4.1.1

        Yeah right again Gossip Man telling porkies again . make it up as you go Gossman. its hardly wort replying to BS Zimbabwe was a totally different scenario nothing faintly similar to NZ 1984 .You say you have worked for different investment banks what as cleaner or tea lady.Muldoon was playing games with the opposition while they were waiting in the wings. Muldoom borrowed and hoped us into a corner not unlike Bill English and Roger Douglas.Zimbabwe lost most of its productive sector and there were to few goods in the market due to his nihilistic behavior .The opposite was true of Muldoon we had to many goods and couldn’t sell them. Goossman your under standing is a joke your claims to have worked for big investment banks is an even bigger joke!

        • Gosman 4.1.1.1

          You have no idea about what happened in Zimbabwe with regard the currency there do you mik e? Well that much is clear from your response.

          So to educate you a little – what the Government there tried to do for a number of years, especially between 2000 and 2008 was to set the price of the Zimbabwe dollar, in essence to fix it.

          The trouble was the dollar is only worth what the market is willing to pay for it, not what a Government official decides it is worth.

          Zimbabwe found that out the hard way when the official market dried up and people took their money to the black market instead.

          NZ learned a similar lesson in 1984 when Muldoon refused to let the market determine a more realistic value of the currency.

  5. Which chart, the meaningless one at the top, or the electionresults one just underneath?

    The top one has virtually no information so it’s impossible to tell what it relates to, the other is an “if the eelction was today” sort of scenario that also has limited meaning because if an election was today many people would be thinking differently about how they might vote.

    • Pascal's bookie 5.1

      So all your, (what would it be, dozens?), of comments about what the polls tell us are actually meaningless Pete?

  6. freedom 6

    i know it is bashing my head against a brick wall but a structure based on financial renumeration is no way to run an Election Poll. I-Predict is a stock exchange. People have a commercial interest in the results. If that does not skew the content then i don’t know what would. How can it be at all accurate when people always will, always can and always do manipulate stocks to make money.

    It might be fun for those taking part but being touted around the place as a poll device to show how voters may or may not be behaving is not what we need when trying to kick a Trader out of office.

    • Gosman 6.1

      So make some money by betting against the bias in the market. It would seem to be a no brainer but one which lefties seem to fail to grasp.

      • freedom 6.1.1

        Gosman, there is a popular starfish who is less obtuse than you
        that is why i am saying it is an unreliable tool for reporting polling, d’uh

        • Gosman 6.1.1.1

          You don’t understand the market do you?

          The value of these things are dependent on the real event. Hence if it is totally skewed because of the bias you claim exists then it would be easy to make a killing by basing your bets on what you think the actual reality is.

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1

            “make a killing”

            what by inflating the value of our dollar to the point that our real tech exporters whither and die?

            Thanks, but the NZD should not be used as just another chip in the ludicrous world finance casino.

          • felix 6.1.1.1.2

            He’s explained his point twice now Gos. Please read it this time.

            • Gosman 6.1.1.1.2.1

              Ummm… his point, if I read him correctly, is that I-predict is bollox because of the underlying bias of the people in the market. However if there does exist such a bias, as the basis of the market is real world outcomes, it would be easy to make money by betting against the market.

              For example if I-predict is suggesting that National will win the election by 10 percentage points and you think this is bollox and as a result of inbuilt bias then bet that it will be less than that or even that Labour will win. you will get quite good rate on that and therefore make a nice tidy sum.

              Now what is so hard for you to understand about that?

              • felix

                “Ummm… his point, if I read him correctly, is that I-predict is bollox because of the underlying bias of the people in the market.”

                Then no, you don’t understand his point correctly. Have another crack at it.

                And this time, read the words first then figure out what’s being said.

                • Gosman

                  How abou you, (or freedom) tell me what the point is because –

                  “I-Predict is a stock exchange. People have a commercial interest in the results. If that does not skew the content then i don’t know what would. How can it be at all accurate when people always will, always can and always do manipulate stocks to make money.”

                  Seems to indicate pretty clearly that freedom was trying to claim that I-predict is inaccurate because of the nature of the people engaged in the market.

                  Where in that passage is there anything remotely suggesting something other than what I have suggested it means?

                  • felix

                    I don’t see anything there about a bias in the market. Try again.

                    • Gosman

                      Ummmm….. freedom was trying to state the I-predict market doesn’t relect reality because of this manipulation – that means the market is biased.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Not sure if ‘biased’ is the right word, but its certainly not a ‘free market’ in terms of transparency or efficiency 🙂

                    • felix

                      No Gos, not in the way you’re implying.

                    • Gosman

                      So felix explain exactly what freedom’s point was if not stating that I-predict is a biased market (i.e. one which reflects more a particular view of a select number of market participants rather than the underlying reality).

                    • felix

                      Here’s what you said, Gos: (you don’t mind, do you?)

                      his point, if I read him correctly, is that I-predict is bollox because of the underlying bias of the people in the market.

                      Stop yer wriggling and read it fer yerself.

                    • Gosman

                      You have till to tell me what freedom’s point was if not that I-Predict does not reflect reality because of the underlying bias of people in that market to attempt to manipulate it for financial ends.

                      So what was his point felix?

                    • felix

                      Oh ffs you’re never going to get it on your own, are you?

                      The money isn’t made and lost according to any “real event” as you put it, that’s for the suckers.

                      The money is made on the way up and on the way down. Movement is all that matters.

                      It’s not real Gos. You’re either being taken for a ride or you’re trying to pull the wool. Either way you’re full of shit.

                    • Gosman

                      So please explain how all that is reflected in freedom’s statement “How can it [i.e. I-predict] be at all accurate when people always will, always can and always do manipulate stocks to make money”?

                      It seems quite clear from that single sentence that freedom doesn’t think I-predict is an accurate reflection of the underlying reality.

                      Which was exactly my point. If freedom doesn’t think this then take advantage of this fact and place bets that more accurately reflects reality.

                  • freedom

                    Gosman.
                    I will use small words ok.
                    It is a Stock Market -so it is flawed as a device for polls.

                    stock-market:
                    An exchange where trading is conducted

                    poll:
                    An inquiry into public opinion conducted by interviewing a random sample of people

                    do you see the difference?

                    • Gosman

                      Then make money on this flaw.

                      It is quite simple really freedom. I-predict will pay out when something in the real world becomes more likely to happen. You sell as the event becomes more likely to happen and if you are correct then as more information comes to light then this will be reflected in the price.

                      You think it doesn’t reflect accurately the chance of this thing happening because of the way it has been baised by market participants in their efforts to make money.

                      However if it isn’t pricing correctly because of this reason it offers you and prime opportunity to make some cash by betting on something with better than even odds.

                      Let me put it another way for you using a real life example. Some people made a killing in Hong Kong horse race betting because to Chinese people cerain numbers are lucky and certain are unlucky. So Horses that had the number 8, (which I believe is very lucky), received more money than they may have warrented because of form. Hence if you had a good betting strategy you could beat the market.

                    • lprent []

                      Why bother gambling? Who cares.

                    • Gosman

                      Life is a gamble lprent. Human activity is driven by risk and reward.

                      As for why freedom should care, essentially I was advising freedom to put the money where the writing skills were. If what freedom was stating was correct then I-predict is a market ripe to be expolited by someone who takes advantage of the distortions.

                    • lprent []

                      Oh I agree that it is a shallow market that would be easy to exploit. My point was that as a market it also carries no real meaning outside of making money. Why would I or freedom want to participate? That is why it is shallow – because it is designed for shallow people. You can tell – they show Act getting significiant vote… 😈

                      If I have time or effort or resources to expend on a political party then I can and do that directly. If I have something to say on the political process I can and do that directly as well.

                      For that matter if I want to support a company I often just go and work for them or directly buy their shares – many interesting companies aren’t listed in any market.

  7. Lindsay 7

    Ever since we have had a floating exchange rate specualtion in foreign exchange made up approx 95% of all FE trades. It is a zero sum game, the winners = the loosers.
    We should put a tax on it as was suggested by the economist Tobin, ie the Tobin Tax.

    • freedom 7.1

      Just desserts
      The real lunacy of the modern Markets, be it crops, cash, diamonds or debt, is how the majority of trading now occurs with no human pause of consideration or thoughts of redress to the
      ramifications of the investment. In times past a Trader’s house was a fancy restaurant that most would speak of in hush reverie and maybe get to see once or twice on those very special occassions that colour one’s life. They were always a busy place.

      Friends and foes would gather, some arriving by ship, or plane, some by private car, some on public trains but all could walk in the gate knowing as long as the bill could be paid, they had as fair a chance as the next guy to get a table. The Traders were there to facilitate the transaction and it happened at the physically-constrained speed of the human. Even with the advent of digital technology into the markets, there was always a human to show the menu, take the order and deliver the desserts. The Trader may have slowed the course during a run on apple pie or softened a call for more baklava and pushed out a tiramisu, but not today.

      Today the market is Algorithm. A monument to avarice. You get to look in through a slit in the wall and shout an order for a cheeseburger but never again will you see the front door. It doesn’t matter if you have a jacket & tie, there are no longer any tables open in the dining room. If you are quick and don’t mind the smell, there are some spots on the back terrace by the bins.
      Your experience of the party is now well and truly that of an outsider.

      Inside, Crab Platters of digital delectations are being cracked crunched chomped swallowed and excreted before the Human Trader even saw the option was on the table.

      Do you want fries with that?

      • Gosman 7.1.1

        What are you on freedom?

        When was this supposed magical happy time when people visited a traders luxury appointed house to spend a few memorable and life changing moments?

        • freedom 7.1.1.1

          its a bloody analogy. Way to ruin a creative day you pinhead.

          For Gosman: or, Comprehension for toddlers

          In days past if you had a few bucks you could trade and people controlled the trades. Now if you have a few bucks you have a computer trading autonomously for you.

          • Gosman 7.1.1.1.1

            You really have no idea about the history of the market do you.

            Markets have tended to be loud, messy, busy places where people shout and jostle and attempt to get the best deals for themselves. You just need to look at market places in third world nations to realise that.

            In short your polyyannaish world never existed.

            • Bored 7.1.1.1.1.1

              Methinks you confuse a useful thing such as a market with a useless thing such as a a casino. Anybody working in a market will tell you it works best in a win win fair trade scenario where something useful changes hands. A casino on the other hand pits you on an all or nothing win lose scenario.

              • Gosman

                No I think you mistake a market for a bureaucratic clearing house.

                Markets are whatever people want them to be. Even if you attempt to control them or make them illegal they will still exist in whatever form the people involved in them want.

                That is why Socialists could never, and can never, control the black market. I suspect you think the black market is a bad thing.

                • Bored

                  FFSake Gos, you are a total pillock. I work in markets. I do real business stuff in them, and I know speculation when I see it. Even do some. You get some real life stuff poked at you and you go off about beaurocrats….I never even mentioned them. Where did that tosh come from?

                  Then its the “socialist” call. FFSake again. I said markets were useful…sounds a very socialist statement dont you think? Thats just the point, you dont think.

                  Then the “black market” comment. Are you getting desparate?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Funny this is, capitalists can’t control black markets either.

                    Look what happened when the completely opaque, undisclosed, unregulated multi-trillion dollar black market in financial derivatives collapsed in 2008.

                    Threatened to take down the entire global economy.

                    Going to happen again in the next 6 months I’d say.

                    And lets not even talk about the market in illicit drugs in capitalist ol’ NZ.

                    Lesson: GOS has NO IDEA what he is talking about.

            • freedom 7.1.1.1.1.2

              Why are you such a literal and close-minded individual ? I know that the world i sometimes allude to has never existed you complete moron, if it did do you think people like myself would bother to be fighting for one. Gosman you are without doubt one of the most obstinate children i have ever attempted to communicate with.

              You talk of a free market that has never been free. You say you want a level playfield yet put the goalposts on a bank. You blather on about the wastrels that are the left and how they never amount to anything real. If real is the world that i see around us and that is all it will ever be, and that satisfies you then i despair for your heart Gosman, i really do.

              • Gosman

                So what was the point of raising the idea of times past when you now admit they never existed and doesn’t reflect the reality of the human condition when it comes to commercial interactions between two or more people?

                Why didn’t you just state that was where you dream, (and it is a dream), humans could get to at some indeterminate time in the future?

          • Gosman 7.1.1.1.2

            Your analogy does highlight why left wing people never understand the market because they think they can tame and civilise human nature in some utopian vision of love and light.

            • Colonial Viper 7.1.1.1.2.1

              Ahem.

              Actually that’s why you have market regulations and rules; because Lefties know very well that human nature can be cruel and unkind to the vulnerable and powerless.

            • mik e 7.1.1.1.2.2

              Of course its nothing to do with internal hyper inflation and the fact Zimbabwe has no productive sector . I suspect that the wheel barrows of cash got to much for them and they went back to bartering it was never going to work in a country like Zimbabwe using it as an example shows the futility of your argument!

              • Gosman

                Zimbabwe had a large non-agricultural productive sector mik e. It was the second largest in SADC until the early 2000. It was Zanu-PF’s policy of fixing the dollar, inefficient SOE’s, and excessive size of the Zimbabwe state that destroyed it and led to the Hyper inflation. Zanu-PF’s land grab starting in 2000 only accelerated the decline of what was already in a very parlous state.

                • Bored

                  Gos, much as I dont like the Zimmers business have you ever considered that what you were watching that lead to the hyper inflation was the ending of a century old invasion and imposed system? Perhaps the natives just got plain pissed off with it and did not care about the money and foreign interests reactions. To me it looks like a very high price to pay to get rid of invaders and their systems but who knows? Did you lose a farm?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Bored, economic collapse always occurs when the serfs and the coloureds get uppity.

    • Colonial Viper 7.2

      It is a zero sum game, the winners = the loosers.

      Uh, not true, our real economy exporters have been slaughtered by the high dollar and the variability in our dollar.

      Having our dollar >US60c has meant hundreds of thousands of jobs destroyed.

      If we were smart like Singapore we would peg the dollar to a (secret) basket of foreign currencies and weight its movements to achieve our national economic goals.

      • Lindsay 7.2.1

        For the speculators it is a zero sum game, the gains = the looses.

        • Colonial Viper 7.2.1.1

          Sure I get that bit, but who gives a shit when the speculators create collateral carnage in the real economy and in real businesses?

          btw I support a Tobin Tax or something very similar.

  8. Adrian 8

    Let’s tax the fuckers. A Financial Trading Tax at ONLY one tenth of 1% on this figure would bring in $265 million a month or $3.18 billion a year. Although once instigated it would slow the trade down, so we wouldn’t get so much but at least the NZD would be at a sensible price, because at the current level it is going to send exporters to the wall and cost thousands of jobs.

    • DonKey 8.1

      But Adrian, the speculators are the “wealth creators” and randian heroes of the national economy. We mustn’t scare them away with nasty taxes,

      Let’s cut public services so that they can drain our economy more, the little people won’t mind

    • Colonial Viper 8.2

      Indeed sometimes the benefit of a new tax is not how much money it brings in, but the behaviours it incentivises.

      Just like the CGT :mregreen:

  9. mik e 9

    Just about every other country is intervening in its currency using many different devices .China has no problem setting it currency so all its productive sectors can make a steady profit. The only ones that make a steady profit in New Zealand are the untaxed speculators . They are nothing but leaches on the productive sectors !New Zealand is one of the very few countries that allow the productive sector to be annihilated every time one of our sectors stars making a profit so hence we borrow more to keep the economy afloat which makes the currency more volatile

    • Dan 9.1

      Sorry, but if you’re going to claim that someone is ‘profiting’ from the dollar, then you better include consumers, which is pretty much everyone. Oil would be at least a dollar more expensive if the USD were to fall by 30c, which would impact every good in the country. So consumers do benefit from the higher dollar too.

  10. vto 10

    Just remember, it always go volatile just before the meltdown…

  11. Matthew Hooton 11

    Zetetic – I am sure your graph is accurate but the point I think you are trying to make is wrong. It is the so-called speculators who keep the currency relatively stable. If there were no speculators, everytime Air New Zealand bought a new plane or Fonterra brought back dividends from its offshore investors, the currency would swing massively. The speculators means that such transactions don’t singificantly affect the value of the currency. This means, ironically, that real businesspeople – eg Air New Zealand, Fonterra, etc – can rely on the value of the currency much more than if the speculators weren’t involved. This seems a stretch at 88c but its still true!

    • Gosman 11.1

      Yes but our lefty friends on the whole don’t understand the benefit of having liquid markets Matthew.

      To many of them all speculation is inherently evil and should be stamped out. Prices should be set at fair value and managed under the auspices of a benevolent and just Government agency.

    • vto 11.2

      That is a point he has, tangential and minor

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    Back in December, when the government was introducing new secrecy legislation on an almost daily basis, I posted about the Infrastructure Funding and Financing Bill. The Bill establishes a new class of public entity, "special purpose vehicles", which collect and spend public money and enjoy statutory powers. Despite this, they ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Against a carbon bailout
    If we are to avoid making the planet uninhabitable, we need to cut carbon emisisons fast. Which basicly means putting the fossil fuel industry - coal, gas, and oil - out of business. But this means that the banks and other lenders who have bankrolled the industry's environmental destruction will ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Still a criminal industry
    More evidence that the fishing industry suffers from pervasive criminality, with Forest & Bird highlighting some odd numbers in the annual statistics:The Annual Review Report For Highly Migratory Species Fisheries 2018/19 (Pg 4, Table 4) showed only 4% of commercial long lining trips for tuna and swordfish reported non-fish bycatch ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Controversy? Or Manufactroversy?
    A few days ago, New Zealand’s Minister of Education announced the wider release of a resource on climate change, which was initially trialled at a Christchurch school during 2018. According to the Minister, children will learn about “the role science plays in understanding climate change, aids understanding of both the response ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    6 days ago
  • The emerging coronavirus outbreak in China
    By now you’ve probably heard of the new virus causing an outbreak of severe pneumonia in China. The question on most people’s minds is, how worried should we be, especially as hundreds of millions of people will soon be travelling across China and beyond to visit family for the Lunar ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • How did climate change get so controversial?
    An excerpt from the book Cranky Uncle vs. Climate Change, released Feb 25. Our human brain is poorly equipped to deal with a threat like climate change. Over millions of years, we’ve evolved to avoid life-threatening dangers like predators jumping out of bushes. We’ve survived by quickly detecting and avoiding immediate, short-term ...
    7 days ago
  • Farmers are ruining Canterbury’s rivers
    Its summer, so people naturally want to go for a swim. But in South Canterbury, you can't, because the rivers are full of toxic goo:As of Monday, the Waihi River at Wilson Street footbridge, Geraldine, the Waihao River at Bradshaws Bridge, and three spots on the Opihi River - at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Sack Shane Jones
    Late last year, NZ First was caught trying to enrich itself from public office, with a dodgy forestry company linked to a number of NZ First figures sticking its hand out repeatedly for government money. Regional Economic Development Minister shane Jones' "explanations" were patently unconvincing, and his recusal from deciding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • BIG idea physics
    This morning I’ve been having a quick look through some documentation from The Ministry of Education on proposed changes to NCEA Level 1 Science. For those not familiar with the NZ secondary education system, a typical student would complete NCEA level 1 at the end of year 11.  In this ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • Revolution in New Zealand? Not Even Close!
    No Fires Thanks, We're Kiwis: For the moment, in those close-to-home places where revolutions are born, there may be tetchiness and resentment, frustration and complaint, but nowhere is anybody uttering the cry that will bring a New Zealand revolution into being: “We have found the way to make tomorrow better ...
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #3
    Story of the Week... Editorial of the Week... Toon of the Week... Quote of the Week... Graphic of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... 'It's heart-wrenching': 80% of Blue Mountains and 50% of ...
    1 week ago
  • Britain exits the European Union and takes a sharp right turn
    by John Smith  Britain’s exit from the imperialist bloc known as the European Union (EU) is now irreversible. The crushing electoral defeat of the Labour Party has dismayed many workers and youth who had placed their hopes in Jeremy Corbyn, its left-wing leader. This article assesses these historic events, neither of which ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #3
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Jan 12, 2020 through Sat, Jan 18, 2020 Editor's Pick The Past and the Future of the Earth’s Oldest Trees Bristlecone pines have survived various catastrophes over the millennia, and they ...
    1 week ago
  • How climate change influenced Australia’s unprecedented fires
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections, and has been adapted into a new myth rebuttal on climate-wildfire connections with the short URL sks.to/wildfires Australia’s frightening bushfires, which kicked off an early fire season in September 2019, have already had cataclysmic effects, and the continent is still just in the early ...
    1 week ago
  • Gender Identity Ideology – A Partial Bibliography of Online Coverage
    This great resource has been contributed to Redline by Janie Doebuck. Janie made some notes on the bibliography: 1) It is by no means exhaustive. There are tons more gender critical posts, essays, articles, podcasts, youtube videos, etc. online. 2) There are links in the bibliography that are behind paywalls. There ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • About those biased Oscar Nominations
    There’s been a lot written about the 2020 Oscar Nominations and their apparent lack of diversity. It’s true, there are in fact no women nominated for the Best Director and very few nominees of colour across the board. But is this a result of a biased process or a symptom ...
    2 weeks ago
  • How New Zealand media reports chronic pain
    Hemakumar Devan Around three million New Zealanders access news media (both paper and online) every week. Yes, you heard that right! So, the potential for news media to shape public health beliefs is common sense. As chronic pain affects one in five New Zealanders, we wanted to find out how ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Still Waiting For American Democracy.
    Unfinished Republic: Though the United States' crimes against democracy are legion, most Americans are blissfully unaware of them. The brutal realities of American life: the officially sanctioned violence; the refusal to hold racists accountable for their actions; the seemingly endless tragedy of African-American suffering; of which White America is the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • In Outrage Over Its Bunk Science, Goop Finds Fuel for Growth
    Michael Schulson For years, experts have said that Goop, the wellness and lifestyle brand founded by the actor and entrepreneur Gwyneth Paltrow, markets pseudoscience and overblown cures. And for years, despite the criticism, Goop has just kept growing. Now the company, which was valued at $250 million in 2018, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Tobacco Excise Taxes and the Smokefree 2025 Goal: Some Ways Forward
    Janet Hoek, Richard Edwards, George Thomson, Andrew Waa, Nick Wilson Debate over tobacco tax increases has intensified as research indicates potentially conflicting policy directions. On the one hand, excise tax increases continue to stimulate quit attempts among smokers yet, on the other hand, they may lead to financial hardship for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #2, 2020
    Conflation and how to fix it VIa AMS,  Raul Lejano looks at what in a layperson's thinking would be called conflation— confusion and blending of entirely different topics— when people think about climate change. Ideology and the Narrative of Skepticism  (open access) starts with some arguably frightening false connections between the science and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • ‘Cranky Uncle’ smart phone game will show you how to disarm climate deniers
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bud Ward (Image: Courtesy of John Cook) When it comes to climate change, it seems every family has its own version of the proverbial Cranky Uncle. An uncle, cousin, grandparent, in-law, neighbor, whatever. Just think back to the recent holiday season’s large ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Science in the ’20s – part 1
      Outrageous, immoral or downright dangerous. That’s a description of the lifestyle of women “flappers” in the 1920s. Could it apply to science (and scientists) in the 2020s? Actually, you could look back at the past decade and see those, or similar terms, used about some science and scientists. Sometimes ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Postscript: Citizenship Granted.
    I am pleased to say that I have been granted NZ citizenship. I need to do the ceremony for things to be official, but the application was a success. I now join my son as a dual NZ-US citizen. To be fair, very little will change other than the fact ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Music: Morales is coming
    It will be no secret to longtime readers that I, Russell Brown, love the disco.   So I'm pretty excited by the fact that one of the greats of the game is returning this summer – and also pleased to say I have tickets to give away.Legendary mixer and DJ ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The WHO Vaccine Safety Summit – from someone who was actually there
    The conspiracy I saw a new conspiracy theory flying around the other day. According to the conspiracy (that seems to originate from Del Bigtree), the World Health Organization have been ‘caught on camera’ questioning the safety of vaccines. Gosh this sounds as though someone was a mole at a ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • The timely death of the British Labour Party
    Below is an article submitted to Redline by Alec Abbott  At its inception, the British Labour Party was a vehicle for the propagation of racist and imperialist views within the working-class. Such views are still widespread in the party, as they are in Europe’s Social-Democratic parties, though, in the case of ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Mystery China pneumonia outbreak likely caused by new human coronavirus
    Connor Bamford, Queen’s University Belfast Since December 2019, there has been a cluster of 59 cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, eastern China. The pneumonia is associated with a previously unidentified coronavirus related to the deadly SARS virus. Seven of those cases are thought to be serious, and one person – ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Yes, koalas are cute – but should we bring them to NZ? Errm, no
    It’s been hard to miss the extreme fires raging across Australia and the tragic plight of the animals – human and otherwise – affected by the fires’ insatiable spread. I know I’ve been captivated and concerned by the tales of how Australia’s famous wildlife has been coping. Koalas approaching cyclists ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s negative campaigning
    Anybody who looked into the Dirty Politics saga knows all too well that honesty is often in short supply within the National Party. You would think that after the exposure the John Key government received over their untruthful attack politics, the National Party would learn from its "mistakes" and leave ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ending the government’s charade over water
    For the past decade, the government has been responding to the obvious Treaty issues raised by water allocation with the mantra that "no-one owns water". But last year, the Waitangi Tribunal ruled that actually, Māori owned it, and that those rights had never been extinguished. They recommended that iwi bring ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Northern Ireland joins the civilised world
    Same-sex marriage has finally become legal in Northern Ireland. But not through any decision of the Northern Irish Executive or Assembly, which has only just reformed after a three year walkout by the DUP; instead, Westminster made that decision for them. I've talked before about the constitutional impropriety of this, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • I had an intense conversation at work today.
    Claire Cohen-Norris volunteers with Citizens Climate Lobby as a chapter founder and leader in rural New York. Her climate advocacy sprung from her drive to provide a secure, joyful and fulfilling life for her two wonderful children. It has become a life’s mission, shared with her like-minded husband and partner. Claire ...
    2 weeks ago
  • French transport workers take on Macron over pension reform
    by John Edmundson Starting on December 5th, 2019 workers in the Parisian rail network commenced an open-ended strike in opposition to French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposed changes to their pension scheme. Rail workers in the Metro Underground have, for decades, had retirement conditions that compensate them for the low wages, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • What a difference the decimal point makes
    I’m back at work following a nearly three-week break over Christmas. We were fortunate to be offered a house to stay in for a week over Christmas, which enabled us to have a holiday in Dunedin and see the extended family reasonably cheaply. But the house came with a catch:  ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Who’s Going To Stop Him?
    Blank And Pitiless: Having ordered the assassination of the Iranian General, Qasem Soleimani, President Donald Trump promised to reduce the cultural monuments of Iran’s 3,000 year-old civilisation to rubble if a revenge attack was mounted. A breach of international law? Certainly. A war crime? Indisputably. Who’s going to stop him? Nobody.WHAT ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A worker’s story
    This interview is from Aotearoa Workers Solidarity Movement (AWSM) and is the first of an ongoing series of interviews they plan to do with workers from various sectors who are having their well being and livelihoods damaged. They begin with an educator in Southland. Due to the attitude and actions ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #2
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Jan 5, 2020 through Sat, Jan 11, 2020 Editor's Pick Debunked Australian Bushfire Conspiracy Theories Were Pushed by Alex Jones, Murdoch Media   As unusually intense and widespread bushfires have ...
    2 weeks ago
  • J.K. Rowling, the Seattle Library, and the Issue That Must Not Be Named
    This article was submitted to Redline by Seattle-based activist Lucinda Stoan J.K. Rowling recognizes repression when she sees it.  That’s why the author of the wildly popular Harry Potter books recently tweeted in defense of Maya Forstater. Forstater lost her job for stating that sex is real and immutable. A judge ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Rules of Empire: Laws simply do not apply and “National Security” excuses all else.
    Empires rise and fall, and the American Empire is absolutely no different. But while an Empire, in order to further the footprint, it seems to pay to do one primary thing above all else: project that everything – everything – is “simply for the good of the world” at large, ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    3 weeks ago
  • Indian lessons for NZ workers – the January 8 general strike
                    by Phil Duncan On Wednesday (January 8) another massive general strike took place in India.  Some 250 million industrial workers, white-collar workers, agricultural labourers struck against the government’s economic policies and attacks on the Muslim population through new proposed citizenship rules. This ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: The action that counts
    Over on Newsroom, Professor Jacqueline Beggs writes about the action she is taking on climate change. Its the usual list: reduce meat, don't fly, consume less. I'm doing some of this myself, and none of it hurts - but the way our economic system is constructed means the impact of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 weeks ago
  • Fossil fuel political giving outdistances renewables 13 to one
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Karin Kirk Corporations, special interest groups, and individuals inject billions of dollars into the American political system every year. Much of the financial support in politics is concealed from public view, as some rules – and loopholes – allow “dark money” and ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Animal response to a bushfire is astounding. These are the tricks they use to survive
    Dale Nimmo, Charles Sturt University Have you ever wondered how our native wildlife manage to stay alive when an inferno is ripping through their homes, and afterwards when there is little to eat and nowhere to hide? The answer is adaptation and old-fashioned ingenuity. Australia’s bushfire season is far from ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 weeks ago
  • Should I ditch my fossil-fueled car?
    Yes. Reducing the number of cars in your household, or switching from petrol/diesel to electric, will dramatically reduce your greenhouse gas emissions. It’s one of the easiest and highest-impact climate steps you can take. New Zealand is being flooded with cars The New Zealand vehicle fleet is increasing rapidly. In ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Planet History: Taking Tea with Quentin
    This interview with Quentin Crisp is part of a series of articles republished from Planet, the independent magazine I edited in the early 90s from a base at 309 Karangahape Road, along with Grant Fell, Rachael Churchward, Fiona Rae, David Teehan, Mere Ngailevu and others.Inevitably, you forget things, and over ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #1, 2020
    Supply Side How are we doing with CO2 emissions? It's an important question, increasingly posed to a mixed bag of CO2 contributors who may or may not provide accurate reportage. Liu et al present a new, additional means of measurement based on satellite observations of nitrogen dioxide co-emitted from ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Donald Trump’s strategic gamble
    There’s a meme going around the Internet at the moment claiming that Donald Trump is a bit of an idiot. To outside eyes it does seem as though the President of the United States thumbs his nose at his own countries laws and administration far too often to be taken ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: 2020
    We are back for 2020! From changes to Family Funded Care, to a record high number of Kiwis in construction in the trades - we're already back making progress on those long-term challenges. Read all about it and more ...
    4 days ago
  • Winston Peters: “Ihumātao deal still a long way off”
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters told Mike Hosking that a settlement deal regarding Ihumātao in Auckland is still a long way off. The Maori King's flag was lowered at the site near Auckland Airport yesterday, sparking suggestions an announcement of a deal could be made by Waitangi Day. Pania Newton, ...
    5 days ago
  • Winston Peters accuses Gerry Brownlee of ‘politicising’ Holocaust memorial
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters is accusing Gerry Brownlee of "politicising" a Holocaust memorial event after the National MP questioned the lack of Kiwi representation there. The Yad Vashem World Holocaust Remembrance Centre in Jerusalem, Israel, is holding the World Holocaust Forum on January 23 to mark 75 years since ...
    5 days ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund to help Waipukurau Pā sites attract thousands of tourists
    The Ngā Ara Tipuna - Waipukurau Pā Site Interpretation project is receiving $2.798 million from the Provincial Growth Fund. It is is expected to boost the town's employment and tourism, creating sixteen new jobs once completed and attract up to 15,000 visitors a year. Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development ...
    6 days ago
  • “Common sense will prevail, not extremism” Winston Peters backs Shane Jones’ pro-meat stance
    New Zealand First leader Winston Peters is backing his MPs who have spoken out against a new climate change teaching resource that advises students to eat less meat to save the planet. The new teaching resource, announced by Education Minister Chris Hipkins and Climate Change Minister James Shaw, tells students ...
    1 week ago
  • Violent assault on paramedic highlights need for law change
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Justice Today’s horrific violent assault of an on-duty female paramedic which rendered her unconscious is truly unsettling. “Our thoughts are with the paramedic, her loved ones and the St John’s team at Warkworth Station,” says New Zealand First Justice Spokesperson Darroch Ball. “Harsher penalties for perpetrators ...
    1 week ago
  • Acting PM Winston Peters confirms NZDF troops in Iraq not hit by Iranian attacks
    Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters called for calm and diplomacy following Iranian missile strikes on bases housing United States troops in Iraq, but confirmed New Zealand's base in the country was not hit. The New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) was earlier today investigating claims New Zealand's base in Iraq had ...
    1 week ago
  • Kaikōura $10.88 million boost in tourism & business
    Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10.88 million to boost business and tourism opportunities in Kaikōura, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. As part of the Kaikōura Marina Development Programme, the following two projects will receive ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Delivering a stable water supply to Wairarapa
    Hon. Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in Wairarapa The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $7.11 million to create a sustainable water supply for the Wairarapa. The PGF will provide a $7 million investment to Wairarapa Water Limited to progress the Wairarapa Water Storage Scheme towards procurement, consenting, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Housing consents hit highest level since 1974
    Housing consents have hit a 45-year high, as Statistics NZ data shows a total of 37,010 residential consents were issued in the year to November --- the first time they have breached the 37,000 mark since the mid-1970s. Statistics NZ said the trend had been rising since late 2011, when ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Darroch Ball MP: “Violence against first responders is a problem on the rise”
    New Zealand First MP Darroch Ball says that a paramedic being kicked unconscious last night in an attempted burglary in Warkworth, north of Auckland, is a symptom of a larger problem. "Incidents like this are becoming more and more frequent...and it’s getting worse," Mr Ball said. The MP is pushing for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister Ron Mark asks NZDF to conduct fire risk assessment from defence point of view
    Defence Minister Ron Mark said there was nothing to prevent similar large-scale bushfires seen in Australia from also happening in New Zealand, and has asked the New Zealand Defence Force to conduct a nfire risk assessment from a defence point of view. The defence assessment would help prevent a disaster ...
    3 weeks ago

  • PM announces election date as September 19
    The 2020 General Election will be held on Saturday 19 September, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. “I will be asking New Zealanders to continue to support my leadership and the current direction of the Government, which is grounded in stability, a strong economy and progress on the long term ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund supports Waikato youth into constructionProvincial Growth Fund supports Waika...
    Two projects focussed on supporting Waikato youth into the construction industry have been given combined funding of just over $1 million from the Te Ara Mahi allocation of the Provincial Growth Fund, Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today.  The two Te Ara Mahi PGF projects announced are: ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund supports Waikato youth into construction
    Two projects focussed on supporting Waikato youth into the construction industry have been given combined funding of just over $1 million from the Te Ara Mahi allocation of the Provincial Growth Fund, Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today.  The two Te Ara Mahi PGF projects announced are: ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • New Zealand to support Pacific Public Sector Hub
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced New Zealand’s support for a Pacific-led hub that will strengthen public services across the region. “Strengthening public services is a core focus of New Zealand’s Pacific Reset, as efforts to improve democratic governance in the Pacific contributes to a strong, stable and more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Minister pays tribute to journalist, author and broadcaster, Gordon McLauchlan
    The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, has paid tribute to well-known New Zealand author, journalist and broadcaster, Gordon McLauchlan, following Mr McLauchlan’s death today. “Gordon held a statesman-like place in New Zealand’s media, which was fittingly acknowledged in last year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours, when he was ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Minister wishes best of luck to those heading back to school
    As Kiwi kids and teachers return to classrooms over the coming weeks, the families of around 428,000 students will feel a bit less of a financial pinch than in previous years, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The Government’s decision to increase funding for schools that don’t ask parents for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Health staff to meet flights from China as precautionary measure
    Public health staff will begin meeting flights from China from tomorrow, to actively look for signs of the novel coronavirus and provide advice, information and reassurance to passengers. Health Minister Dr David Clark says the additional measures are being taken following the arrival of the disease in Australia, via flights ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • National Yearling Sales 2020
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government and construction industry to build big, lift productivity with Transformation Plan
    Delivering the workforce and productivity gains required to build the houses, schools, roads, rail and hospitals New Zealand needs will become easier with the Government-industry Construction Sector Transformation Plan launched today, Minister for Building and Construction Jenny Salesa says. “The action plan launched today delivers on the Government’s Construction Sector ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Log trains to begin on Wairoa-Napier line
    Log trains are about to start running between Wairoa and Napier following Provincial Growth Fund investment to reopen the rail line, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. The Government invested $6.2 million to reopen the mothballed rail line which was closed after significant storm damage in 2012. “With PGF ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Minister of Defence concludes successful visit with his US counterpart
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark met with United States Secretary of Defense Mark Esper today. “This was an excellent opportunity to meet with one of our closest security partners,” Ron Mark said. “The main focus of the meeting was to discuss challenges that New Zealand and the United States share ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand acknowledges ICJ decision on Myanmar
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today acknowledged the ruling of the International Court of Justice in relation to the Rohingya people in Myanmar. The ruling ordered the Government of Myanmar to take all measures within its power to prevent the commission of acts of genocide in relation to members of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ’s trade aims advanced at Davos meetings
    A proposal to cut “trade and production-distorting subsidies” in the agricultural sector by 2030 has set out important measures to ensure a fair agricultural trading system.  Speaking after attending meetings of trade ministers in Davos, Switzerland, Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker welcomed the joint proposal from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Great news for New Zealanders with cystic fibrosis
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says he is delighted that PHARMAC has struck a provisional deal to fund Kalydeco – a medicine which is set to improve the quality of life for about 30 New Zealand children and adults with cystic fibrosis. “While rare, cystic fibrosis is an awful inherited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand least corrupt country in the world
    New Zealand has regained its position as the least corrupt country in the world for the second time under this Coalition Government, says Justice Minister Andrew Little. “New Zealanders can be proud that our reputation as one of the least corrupt countries in the world has been restored,” says Andrew ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Boost for Rēkohu/Wharekauri/Chatham Islands Community Conservation
    Community conservation in Rēkohu/Wharekauri/the Chatham Islands is receiving a boost, with grants to support local projects announced today by Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage. “Rēkohu/Wharekauri/ the Chatham Islands are home to 20 per cent of New Zealand’s threatened bird species and 11 per cent of New Zealand’s threatened plant species. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Rātana Pā goes high-tech with UFB
    Iwi, hapu and visitors to Rātana Pā near Whanganui now have access to ultra-fast broadband following its connection, completed in time for annual Rātana celebrations, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. The connection and associated hardware were funded from the Provincial Growth Fund’s $21 million Marae Digital Connectivity programme, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt’s strong financial management acknowledged
    The Government’s strong financial management and plan to future proof the economy with new infrastructure investment has gained further recognition from an international ratings agency. Credit rating agency Fitch has upgraded one of its main metrics assessing the Government’s books, lifting its foreign currency AA rating outlook to ‘positive’ from ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Boost in Whānau Ora funding to keep changing lives
    Whānau throughout New Zealand are set to benefit from an extra three million dollars that will go directly to Whānau Ora Commissioning Agencies, the Minister for Whānau Ora Peeni Henare announced today.  Including previous funding boosts, the Agencies will now receive $87 million this year between them.  In Budget 2019 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More people getting into work
    The December quarter benefit numbers released today show the Government’s plan to get people off the benefit and into work is starting to pay off,” Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni said.   “Nearly 19,000 people cancelled their benefit and went into work in the last few months of the year – ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Wairoa gets up to $6.1m to rebuild heart of CBD
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing up to $6.1 million to revitalise business and tourism opportunities in Wairoa, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. The PGF is funding: Up to $4.8 million for the Wairoa Integrated Business and Tourism Facility Up to $960,000 for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major Events support for creative and cultural events
    Creative and cultural events that highlight New Zealand’s diverse culture and build national pride are set to get a funding boost through the Major Events Fund, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. The new Creative and Cultural Events Incubator, which is funded through the Major Events Fund, will open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Classroom internet in hundreds of schools to get a boost
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