Climate change, political heroes, political culture

Written By: - Date published: 8:06 am, April 13th, 2017 - 117 comments
Categories: accountability, activism, climate change, disaster, global warming, Parliament, russel norman - Tags: , , , , ,

How ironic that Parliament is to debate climate change today, as the latest in a torrent of warming-fueled extreme weather events bears down on the country. A good opinion piece on Stuff:

Climate fight requires political heroes

Last year, Victoria University researchers produced a compelling visual of water lapping up to the grounds of Parliament […] It’s an apt image as MPs prepare for a historic parliamentary debate on climate change this afternoon, while New Zealand is recovering from severe floods caused by two tropical cyclones in as many weeks. These are no longer one-in-500-year events.

The subject of the debate is the report Net Zero in New Zealand, by Vivid Economics. This important report looks at transformational pathways for New Zealand to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions in the second half of the century, as called for under the Paris Agreement.

While political parties should and undoubtedly will maintain their own mix of distinct policies, it is vital to New Zealand’s long-term interests that we build broad consensus on goals and strategies for decarbonising our economy.The global consequences of inaction are becoming increasingly clear. The floods, drought and wildfires felt around our country over recent months are worrying signs of a new normal.

Further delay and uncertainty will be very costly. Across the ditch, the Australian Energy Council says that political uncertainty has raised power prices by more than if the government had put in a $50 per tonne carbon price.

The wheels are in motion, but in New Zealand, we have frankly spent a decade stuck in second gear. We lack a coherent plan of action. Vivid Economics’ report offers a compelling summary of our potential to become a net zero emission nation. It demonstrates that this is an achievable goal; how we might get there is simply about the choices we make from now on. […] There are multiple viable pathways ahead, requiring us to assess tradeoffs and make strategic choices as a nation.

As citizens (and especially as voters) we must do two things from today. First, we must hold our MPs accountable for building and keeping to a cross-party consensus on a zero emissions future. Second, we must give them permission to step away from any entrenched party positions to make sensible, pragmatic decisions for our future.

* The special parliamentary debate will take place 3-5pm and can be viewed on Parliament TV or at www.bit.ly/2osBwjL

The intent to build a cross-party consensus is of course excellent, and in its service I will not further pursue the points of “A decade stuck in second gear” and “We lack a coherent plan of action”.

The headline of the piece mentions political heroes. We have always had them, we have never treated them well. One of them, Russel Norman, has just literally put his body on the line (and in the sea) in front of a massive oil exploration ship. For this service, he and the other heroes are to be charged by this government under the first application of a law designed to suppress such protest.

Political heroes are necessary but not sufficient. We need a new political culture. A culture that values facts and evidence, and that punishes politicians for ignoring them. A culture that plans for the future. A culture that acknowledges the limits placed on us by physics and the environment. A culture that puts people ahead of money. A culture that the political right will fight quite literally to the death to oppose.

(Prove me wrong in Parliament today! Please?…)

117 comments on “Climate change, political heroes, political culture”

  1. bwaghorn 1

    Any and all carbon taxs must be spent in nz on science and reduction.
    While the ets was a great idea human nature says it can never work on a global scale , the nats proved that by corrupting it totally .
    Any party that stays with the world wide ets will not get my vote , this is the one single issue i will decide on.
    Also planning for turning nz into a fortress might be a good idea for if things get real rough.

    • solkta 1.1

      I think the green Party policy of using carbon tax income to offset an income tax reduction is the best way forward. Low income people can’t afford to pay more tax. If there is thought a need for more research this should be funded by an increase in the top tax band as this will have a secondary effect of reducing non-essential carbon burning.

      • It’s also the best way to protect the policy from future sabotage if National get back in, because good luck to them repealing a policy that’s effectively an income tax cut.

    • Tamati Tautuhi 1.2

      Any more news on the fake carbon credits purchased by National from Lithuania, did we get a credit for the illegal sale and is there ongoing legal proceedings to recover the money?

  2. Carolyn_nth 2

    So the debate will be at about the time the heart of the storm will be hitting Auckland, and just before the full impact on the Coromandel and Bay of Plenty. Sobering times.

    People, animals and the environment matter and we are all interlinked and inter-dependent.

    And, looking at how CERA managed Christchurch, this from the post is important:

    We need a new political culture. A culture that values facts and evidence, and that punishes politicians for ignoring them. A culture that plans for the future. A culture that acknowledges the limits placed on us by physics and the environment. A culture that puts people ahead of money.

    My bold.

    • Anne 2.1

      Will put this here:

      It looks now like Cook’s centre is further east than anticipated so Auckland should be spared the worst of the weather. Where Auckland and Northland may be in trouble is later today when the “severe” south westerly gales hit.

      Once again Coromandel and Bay of Plenty are going to be the hardest hit with the storm centre barreling over the top of them.

      http://www.metservice.com/maps-radar/rain-forecast/rain-forecast-3-day

      • Carolyn_nth 2.1.1

        Thanks, Anne. Have been having difficulty accessing the metservice web site.

        My thoughts are with colleagues and family in places like Waiheke and Coromandel.

        Feel fortunate that I am not scheduled to work today as had worked Monday instead, so I don’t need to travel across the harbour bridge.

    • michelle 2.2

      W need a new leader, someone that is inspirational , innovative and not afraid to speak out at the moment we don’t appear to have any and neither do any other countries. The world is lacking good strong leadership its no wonder we see turmoil and civil unrest on a daily basis .
      At the moment we have a leader with no morals or principles and he is the 2nd one his mate was the same rotten to the core talked a load of bull and dumb NZers were falling over themselves.

    • Gosman 2.3

      ” A culture that puts people ahead of money.”

      I think this qualifies as a platitude.

      Can you give me an example of a culture where this is the case?

      • “platitude
        ˈplatɪtjuːd/
        noun
        a remark or statement, especially one with a moral content, that has been used too often to be interesting or thoughtful”.

        “A culture that puts people before money”
        Not interesting or thoughtful, Gosman? The concept of a culture that functions with something other than the acquisition of money as its focus, doesn’t interest you? Is not thoughtful?

        • Gosman 2.3.1.1

          I was thinking more along these lines

          “Platitudes are geared towards presenting a shallow, unifying wisdom over a difficult topic. However, they are too overused and general to be anything more than undirected statements with ultimately little meaningful contribution towards a solution.”

          There is little meaning in the statement “A culture that puts people before money”.

          • Robert Guyton 2.3.1.1.1

            There is little meaning in the sentence, for you, but that’s due to your ideological myopia. If you can’t see anything in there, look elsewhere (myob). Others see a vast landscape of constructive ideas in those few words.

            • Gosman 2.3.1.1.1.1

              Hence why I asked the follow up question – Can you give me an example of a culture where this is the case?

              • r0b gave you plenty, very generously, imo – were they not enough for you? You didn’t respond sensibly to his comment, save some trite dig, so I can’t see value in offering other examples, in expectation of similar treatment.

                • Gosman

                  R0b gave me zero examples

                  • Really?
                    You wanted ” A culture that puts people ahead of money… an example of a culture where this is the case?” and r0b offered (amongst others), ” Within current “western” economies the charitable and volunteer organisations (interesting contemporary example the gift economy and open source movements).”

                    Am I missing something here? Is that not an example of what you asked for?

                    • Gosman

                      Oh so you are stating the charity sector and open source community are a ‘culture’ and not just a sub set of the mainstream. Interesting idea that I disagree with. I was specifically meaning system level culture not a subset of the mainstream. However even those examples place monetary values on what they do. Charities are all about raising cash for the particular cause. Open Source allows people to develop commercial applications and/or services. You can’t avoid money in modern society nowdays.

                    • AB

                      Robert, Gosman knows exactly what the statement means, he just doesnt agree with the sentiments expressed. Or more likely, he’s worried that an ethical re-awakening that results in widespread allegiance to principles such as our obligation to the common good, might not serve his interests particularly well.

                    • Thanks, AB, I see. I was finding Gosman’s evasiveness alluring, but his most recent comment, where he disputes the meaning of “culture” in order to continue his line of argument, is so blatantly disingenuous that I’m now bored with him.

                    • Gosman

                      I’m quite willing to use your definition of culture. I just pointed out it isn’t mine. I stated that even on your definition of culture those groups use money to help drive what they do.

                    • ” I stated that even on your definition of culture those groups use money to help drive what they do.”
                      So?
                      The discussion is around “A culture that puts people before money” (my bold)
                      Your reframing of the debate is what, pointless? evasive? disingenious?
                      Now you’re flapping your strawman around, ” those groups use money to help drive what they do.”

                      Pffffft!

              • Grafton Gully

                An example of a government putting the health of it’s people ahead of money.
                https://indue.com.au/dct/

              • weka

                Pre-colonisation Māori. Most indigenous cultures I’ve looked at.

                “There is little meaning in the statement “A culture that puts people before money”.

                Actually, in some cultures it has distinct meaning, you need to get out more Gosman. But I think you are proving a point, in the dominant culture within NZ now we demonstrably don’t put people before money, that’s the political point.

                • Gosman

                  I’ll call you on that. Name me the culture and how money is somehow not important.

                  • “A culture that puts people before money”.

                    ” …how money is somehow not important.”

                    Pfft! Worse than feeble, Gosman.

                    • Gosman

                      But that is why it is meaningless. How do you determine if a culture is putting money before people? If I have a child that requires treatment costing 1 billion dollars a year following your logic they should get the treatment. However then there is likely to be no money for the 100,000 children who need treatment only costing 1000 dollars a year. Unless you magic up more money you can’t pay for both and pretending you have a system that can is disingenuous.

                    • weka

                      if anyone here thought you were genuinely interested they’d probably go to the trouble of explaining. But to me it looks like you are just bored and arguing from a pretty stupid position of not only ignorance about how traditional cultures work, but how nonsense arguments that keep changing the goal posts to suit yourself.

                    • Agreed, weka. He’s toying for his own amusement.
                      Ho hum.

                  • Incognito

                    “Name me the culture and how money is somehow not important.”

                    You’ve already twisted the question to suit you, haven’t you?

                    • Gosman

                      But as soon as you place ANY importance on money you acknowledge it’s inherent scarcity and the opportunity costs involved with using it. A culture that places people before money would have to break out of that trap.

                  • weka

                    I’ve already named one culture, and no-one has said that money is somehow not important, but interesting that you think “A culture that puts people before money” = “money is not important”. You really are showing a pretty low social intelligence here Gosman, but I guess it does reflect your politics quite well. Money is da bomb.

                    • Gosman

                      Money is but a reflection of value. When it comes to value stating that you put people above value makes no sense. If you state money is no object then you place no value on money at all and it will lead to a situation of hyperinflation like in Venezuela, Zimbabwe, Serbia and Weimar Germany.

                    • weka

                      no-one is saying those things, but by all means keep on arguing with yourself.

                  • Incognito

                    @ Gosman at 3:10 pm:

                    Indeed, you have twisted the question to suit yourself.

                    I don’t follow your reasoning why importance=inherent scarcity, especially not the adjective. So, I don’t see that “trap” of yours but keep digging 😉

                    • Gosman

                      It is quite simple. If you acknowledge money has importance then you acknowledge the concept that you can not use it for all the things you want to do. Hence why you will be forced to make a decision about what it should and shouldn’t be spent on. As soon as that happens you end up making decisions that can be described as “Putting money before people”

        • Bruce 2.3.1.2

          Akha, Lahu are a couple of cultures Ive met that don’t care about money . Seem to be doing ok.

      • r0b 2.3.2

        Historically, cultures that created welfare states. Currently, cultures with high taxation and comparatively low inequality. Culturally, tribal forms of social organisation. Within current “western” economies the charitable and volunteer organisations (interesting contemporary example the gift economy and open source movements).

        • Gosman 2.3.2.1

          We have a quite generous welfare state in NZ. You may want it to be more generous but that is a different matter.

          • DoublePlusGood 2.3.2.1.1

            Given our levels of poverty and that welfare is below subsistence levels we don’t have anything remotely resembling a ‘quite generous welfare state’

            • Gosman 2.3.2.1.1.1

              Welfare is below subsistence levels is it? Where is the actual evidence for this then considering a number of people have been living on welfare on a long term basis.

              • weka

                subsistence doesn’t mean most people die Gosman, it means they exist at a level where they can never get ahead. Some beneficiaries are at subsistence, others are below that.

                It’s pretty well known that base benefit rates are set below what is considered liveable, that was deliberate. It’s why there are supplementary benefits, and the administration of those is what makes the current welfare punitive not generous. Plus Labour cut the hardship grant in the 2000s that basically ensures poverty long term. None of that is in contention.

                • Gosman

                  And you have evidence that people on long term benefits never get ahead?

                  • weka

                    I didn’t say that no long term bene ever gets ahead. I said that in general that’s the situation because the system was designed that way. IME the ones that get ahead have assistance and luck. Generally that comes from outside of the system. Sometimes it comes from within the system because amazingly despite the intention of Nact, there are still compassionate and resourceful people working with the system. The odds are stacked against that though.

          • weka 2.3.2.1.2

            “We have a quite generous welfare state in NZ. You may want it to be more generous but that is a different matter.”

            Speaking of meaningless statements.

            NZ runs a punitive welfare state now. It’s been a while since I would describe our welfare as generous even in stingy RW terms. We’re way past that point.

          • Skeptic 2.3.2.1.3

            What part of NZ are you living in where there’s this “quite generous welfare state”? Compared to pre-1991 benefit levels, the current levels hardly qualify for the word “welfare” – subsistence is more appropriate. The current benefit levels/superannuation levels are so far behind the livable wage level worked out by household budget experts, you could triple them and still not get there – no wonder poverty and third world diseases are rife in the country that once lead the world in looking after it’s citizens. As for comparatively low inequality – well, best not go there – not on this site.

            • Gosman 2.3.2.1.3.1

              If you think a welfare state is restricted to benefits then you don’t really understand the term.

              • Skeptic

                Grew up in NZ welfare state sonny!!! – saw it dismantled by greedy bastards – same pricks who are in power at the moment. Am doing my bit to put something back so my grand kids have some semblance of a chance. = What’s your excuse for undermining the intent of this website with stupid petty remarks like that one?

                • Gosman

                  What was the size of government social spending as a percentage of GDP when you were a kid and what is it now? I’ll give you a clue, it is probably higher now.

                  http://www.theglobaleconomy.com/New-Zealand/Government_size/

                  • Skeptic

                    Spoken like a true ACT Party member – get off this website you right wing troll!!

                    • Gosman

                      Can you not answer the question? It seems quite easy for you to find out. How much of GDP was spent on social spending when you were a child and how much is spent now?

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      “Social spending” is the same as “government spending”.

                      The fact that Gosman tries to make a separate distinction here is informative. He means the “undeserving”, but he thinks he’s being clever.

                      Let’s play along 😈

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    It was ~33% in 1999. It was ~33% in 2008. It is now ~30%.

                    That’s for “government spending to gdp”, not “government social spending” because “government social” is a tautology.

                    I say lift it back up to ~33-34% so that social services can be properly funded, and smash the SOE model with extreme prejudice: let civil servants serve rather than pretending they’re entrepreneurs.

                    • Skeptic

                      Here’s another stat for you Gosman.

                      Prior to 1991 – the year the Employment Contracts Act was rammed through by your mates, NZ had the highest per capita rate of voluntary sector workers – by voluntary I mean everything from social services, church support, surf life saving, sports coaching, organised working bee, Lions, Jaycees, etc – roughly 1.2m of us (The total workforce at the time was roughly 1.75m), Again roughly, two-thirds were male. Guess how many there were after your “market forces ” mates had finished fucking up NZ internal economy and fairly equitable wealth/income ratio? Just over 50,000 – not a stat you can be proud of eh!

                      If you really are interested in just how badly those “Knights of the Round Table” did stuff this country up – go read Hansard – the Parliamentary reports done about a decade or so later documenting fully the decline of NZ voluntary sector and the countless billions it saved the taxpayer – gone for good – oh jolly well done you clever bastards – all in the name of “market forces will provide any necessary solutions”. Yeah right! Well it didn’t – not by a long shot. It never has and never will because it’s based on greed and selfishness.

                      Guess what else Gosman – Adam Smith noted the exact same fact when he wrote Theory of Moral Sentiments a year after he wrote Wealth of Nations. It’s as true today as it was in 1777. I guess your mate Milton Friedman forgot that when he wrote Free to Choose – but then American education has always been a bit deficient on social history – and economists -especially dogmatic economists, are the worst.

                      So you can take your GDP percentages which in no way fully count all the factors that run a country and shove them where the sun don’t shine, because they’re irrelevant – especially to climate change – which by the way is the topic for discussion.

          • left_forward 2.3.2.1.4

            ‘…quite generous welfare state in NZ’.
            A dubious opinion, particularly given we are certainly a country with very high inequality.

            • Gosman 2.3.2.1.4.1

              Our inequality levels are actually around the average for the OECD. They certainly are not high by World standards.

              http://www.oecd.org/social/inequality.htm

              • left_forward

                You forgot to mention the associated narrative:

                over the past few years, income inequality levels have remained at historically high levels. Across OECD countries, the average Gini coefficient of disposable household income reached 0.318 in 2014, compared to 0.315 in 2010. This is the highest value on record, since the mid-1980s.”

                More spurious than dubious now.

                • Gosman

                  Yeah, we have higher inequality than we did in the 1980’s. So what? Was our economy better off? Did we have lower crime rates? Was our society more inclusive and dynamic. I think the answer to those questions are no?

                  • left_forward

                    Thanks for the concession – but your indifference to inequalities is a little sad, but explains why you are ‘on a different tangent’ to the people who engage on this site, who are generally passionate about reducing inequalities.

                    The economy isn’t an organism is it? Its a man-made system (a process for the exchange of goods) – its not alive or dead.
                    So how can it be any better or worse off?

                    • Gosman

                      Let me put it this way. The economy in places like Zimbabwe and Vennezuela (where they generally practice policies like the ones you support) are worse off than NZ’s. So yes, an economy can be better or worse off.

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      @Gosman: Let me put it this way: why don’t you link to an example of the sort of “policy” you’re talking about, then link to an example of Left_forward supporting that policy.

                      Put up or shut up Gosman.

                    • Gosman

                      https://oxfamblogs.org/fp2p/venezuela-latin-americas-inequality-success-story/

                      Inequality being reduced under Chavez.

                      Here is a link to an article claiming Zimbabwe is doing the same

                      http://www.chronicle.co.zw/zimbabwe-a-rich-country-tackling-inequalities-unlocking-wealth/

                      I believe that is a policy left_forward supports isn’t it? The following certainly suggest he or she is

                      “Thanks for the concession – but your indifference to inequalities is a little sad, but explains why you are ‘on a different tangent’ to the people who engage on this site, who are generally passionate about reducing inequalities.”

                    • One Anonymous Bloke

                      Sorry Gosman, I gave you far too much wiggle room.

                      Link to an example of a specific act passed into law by Venezuela’s Parliament, and also link to Left_forward supporting it.

                      Stop being so lazy. New Zealand is not Venezuela. The NZ Left has a better economic track record than the National Party.

                      Lift your tiresome lame game.

      • Incognito 2.3.3

        Bhutan

  3. Carolyn_nth 3

    NZ should be very well placed for more renewable sources of energy. People who have wind and solar power in their homes and community should be able to feed that into the national grid, for compensation and not be penalised by the powercos.

    Re-nationalise the power companies in the national interest.

    Build energy efficient homes and cut out the investor and speculator profiteering.

    A comprehensive national strategy to favour mass transit development, electric powering of transport, more rail services and sea transport for freight. More water transport using, in part, wind power (sails). More support for walk and cycle ways for short journeys.

    Change the culture from one focused on endless variations of shiny new, constantly updated toys. Develop a culture of things built to last; and community sources for leisure and recreation, rather than it being so individualist and privatised.

    • Gosman 3.1

      Why won’t any political party commit to renationalisation of the energy sector do you think?

      • left_forward 3.1.1

        A very destructive RW, neo-liberal agenda that will be very expensive for the country to put right. Can’t just make a law and fix it – these former assets are now of course in private hands.

        • Gosman 3.1.1.1

          Just but them back. It isn’t difficult. Use taxpayers money to do so. If you offer enough then people will be glad to sell.

          • left_forward 3.1.1.1.1

            By golly you’re right! – greed will always prevail.

            • Gosman 3.1.1.1.1.1

              You think they are worth more than what they are in private hands so it seems like a no brainer to me. Buy them back from their current owbers and set up some sort of Energy super social agency. For some reason no political party is pushing that idea though.

              • left_forward

                Excellent LW policy Gossman!
                Lets you and I go hand in hand to the Ngats HQ and show them our shared aspiration for a fairer and more rational social policy (you don’t have energy shares yourself do you?).

    • left_forward 3.2

      Drat – got distracted by Gosman again –
      I meant to say – I completely agree with you – well said Carolyn.

  4. esoteric pineapples 4

    “A decade stuck in second gear”

    More like reverse

  5. Anne 5

    Some nice twitters and images here.

    Like this one:
    Everyone make sure you stock up on canned spaghetti, pineapple and pizza bases…

  6. Heather Grimwood 6

    The final plea of your quote Anthony resounds with me!
    Also though, I agree wholeheartedly that we need heroes/heroines who are NOT afraid to stand up against bullies on many fronts to enable survival of the planet. What use being on it if we don’t value and support these people, or indeed join their ranks so producing the desired political culture.

  7. Ad 7

    So long as Labour and the Greens don’t overdo ghoulish ambulance-chaser, Cyclone Cook could win them the election.

    • weka 7.1

      I’ve been wondering about that too. Maybe not this one event, but a series of things now that are creating disquiet.

    • DoublePlusGood 7.2

      Large scale wrecking just means that the government gets to announce fancy looking (but useless) rebuild projects, so I doubt it.
      It takes time for the full scale of total incompetence to be felt, so the government will probably be ok until after the election. After all, they’ve utterly bungled the Christchurch rebuild and it hasn’t adversely affected their votes in Christchurch, barring maybe a small change in Christchurch East.
      Edgecumbe will still go heavily for National in this election (46% at the one polling booth on the day last election).

      • Ad 7.2.1

        I don’t wish disaster on anyone.
        But election year media is all politics.

        This is English’s first proper test as PM. High stakes.

  8. So, sort of low-key ghoulish ambulance chaser would do it?

    If it looks like Cyclone Cook will win the election for the Left, Bill and his Dirty Crew will denounce it as a a screaming left-wing conspiracy theorist and raid its home while it’s away.

  9. Gosman 9

    I’ll give an example of why the term “A culture that puts people ahead of money” is a platitude.

    Take a plan to create a mine in an area of ecological sensitivity but one in which has been economically depressed for a very long time (Much like the West Coast). The idea of a culture that puts people ahead of money would seem to lead to a no brainer decision to deny that plan. But what about the people who are desperate for work? Surely providing them meaningful work is putting their needs first. Maybe these people would be better off moving to someplace else though but then the area becomes devoid of people which I thought we were trying to put first. Then how about we pay them to stay put and create jobs in some sort of ecologically sound way? But to pay for that you need to raise taxes on other people who you should be thinking of putting first. Suddenly you are in a situation where you are putting the needs of one group of people over the needs of another group to get the money to help achieve your goals.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1

      Your example is drivel.

      Settlements don’t happen by random chance. The environment itself dictates where they arise.

      What are all the people in your example doing before becoming miners? Apart from getting lectures from the likes of you about how they should move to somewhere there’s more work, that is.

    • Ad 9.2

      NZ is close to weaning itself off the quarry-enclave economy that kept it settled and prosperous for a century.

  10. Michael 10

    This is weather, isn’t it, just like the Wahine storm? I believe anthropomorphic climate change is an operating cause on our planet’s weather but it is important not to overplay one’s hand. It might be better to say that we’ll probably see events like this more often in coming years and decades.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1

      I prefer to take Kevin Trenberth’s word for it:

      The answer to the oft-asked question of whether an event is caused by climate change is that it is the wrong question. All weather events are affected by climate change because the environment in which they occur is warmer and moister than it used to be.

      Note the difference between “caused by” and “affected by”.

    • weka 10.2

      how many floods in the NI in the past 6 weeks?

  11. Bruce 11

    I hear the spin on reports of this storm , similar to the one in 1968, its happened before therefore no climate change.

    • No climate change before 1968, ’cause no factories, cars, agriculture, aircraft in those far, far off days.

      Lordy!

    • Skeptic 11.2

      “no climate change” – oh really? –

      Why is it then that out of the roughly 1.2 scientist involved with oceanography. climatology, atmospherics etc, etc and so on, about 98% have convincing and unequivocal proof that Earth’s climate is changing rapidly and severely with extreme weather becoming worse by the year. And why is it that this 98% agree that it will continue to do so until at least 2050 – provided we all take action now in certain areas? And further warn that a tipping point from which there is no return is 6 degrees temperature rise?

      And the other 2% are bought and paid for by the fossil fuel industries.

      Sorry Bruce, but your spin is sadly outweighed by facts. I read an interesting article a while ago saying that for $1 we don’t spend on combating climate change today, our children will pay $10, our grandchildren $100 and our great-grandchildren $1000 each. There are categories for this expenditure broken down into direct costs, indirect costs, and research costs, covering everything from disaster relief, increased insurance premiums, relocation costs, infrastructure costs, new medicines, new crops, new diets etc.

      Interestingly the article concludes that if we do nothing now, those of us who campaigned will be remembered (electronic records are forever) as heroes, while climate deniers will be disowned by their descendants, (in much the same way anyone called Hitler changed their name by Deed Poll) and their graves visited to deposit some unmentionable material after their gravestones have been kicked over and smashed up.

      Still want to be a climate change denier Brucey?

  12. Bruce 12

    sorry was being sarcastic. my comment was about how the media by quoting the 1968 storm was making out that things have not changed.
    The brucey bit i dont appreciate . you could buy some bugsolutely cricket pasta and do something affirmative to counter cimate change.
    cheers

    • Cheers, Bruce. Mistakes like that are easily made. Your comment about the spin you detected was a good one as is your pasta advice 🙂

    • Skeptic 12.2

      Yeah – add my apologies for going off the deep end too. Still even if it was sarc – it was certainly an excellent chain yank – got me going. Nice one

  13. Tamati Tautuhi 13

    Why do we keep feeding the Troll-Gosman just ignore him and he will go away.

    PLEASE STOP FEEDING THE TROLLS-VERY UNPLEASANT READING-HURTS THE BRAIN.

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    Jonathan Coleman cannot resort to his ongoing litany that the Ministry of Health’s $38 million budget blunder is an error on paper only, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “He might keep saying it’s a ‘technical error’ but the reality ...
    11 hours ago
  • Labour to invest in public transport for Greater Christchurch
    Labour will commit $100m in capital investment for public transport in Greater Christchurch, including commuter rail from Rolleston to the CBD, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “As the rebuild progresses, there are huge opportunities for Greater Christchurch, but ...
    14 hours ago
  • Green Party will repeal solar tax
    It’s ridiculous for an electricity distribution monopoly to apply a charge on solar panels but worse than that, it’s harming our effort to tackle climate change. Hawke’s Bay lines company Unison last year announced a new solar charge for their ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes
    1 day ago
  • English fails the character test over Barclay
    Bill English is hoping this scandal will go away, but he is still dodging important questions over his role in covering up for Todd Barclay, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    1 day ago
  • Government must apologise for Christchurch schools stuff-up
    The Ombudsman’s findings that the Ministry of Education botched the reorganisation of Christchurch schools after the 2011 earthquake are damning for an under-fire National Government, says Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins. “The Ombudsman has found the reorganisation of schools in ...
    1 day ago
  • Government’s multinational tax measures weak
    The Government’s proposals to crack down on multinational tax avoidance, by its own admission only recovering one third of the missing money, means hardworking Kiwis will bear more of the tax burden, says Labour’s Revenue spokesperson Michael Wood. “The Government ...
    1 day ago
  • World Refugee Day – we can do our bit
    I’m really proud that yesterday, on World Refugee Day, the Greens launched an ambitious plan to increase the refugee quota to 5000 over the next six years. Of those places, 4,000 will be directly resettled by the government and another ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    1 day ago
  • PM’s leadership in question over Barclay affair
    The Prime Minister must belatedly show some leadership and compel Todd Barclay to front up to the Police, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “Twice today Bill English has been found wanting in this matter. ...
    2 days ago
  • Another memory lapse by Coleman?
    The Minister of Health ‘couldn’t recall’ whether the Director General of Health Chai Chuah offered his resignation over the Budget funding fiasco involving the country’s District Health Boards, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark. “In the House today Jonathan Coleman ...
    2 days ago
  • Bill English needs to come clean over Barclay
    Bill English needs to explain why he failed to be upfront with the public over the actions of Clutha-Southland MP Todd Barclay, following revelations that he knew about the secretly recorded conversations in the MP’s electorate office, says Labour Leader ...
    3 days ago
  • Minister, show some backbone and front up and debate
    Rather than accusing critics of his Te Ture Whenua Māori Bill of telling ‘lies’, Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell should show some backbone and front up to a debate on the issue, says Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri. “Te ...
    3 days ago
  • Equal pay for mental health workers
    Today, mental health workers are filing an equal pay claim through their unions. Mental health support workers do important and difficult work in our communities. But because the workforce is largely female, they are not paid enough. It’s wrong for ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    3 days ago
  • Nats’ HAM-fisted housing crisis denial
    National’s decision to knowingly release a flawed Housing Affordability Measure that underestimates the cost of housing is the latest evidence of their housing crisis denial, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    4 days ago
  • New Pike footage builds compelling case for mine re-entry
    New footage of the Pike River Mine deep inside the operation, revealing no fire damage or signs of an inferno, provides a compelling reason to grant the families of Pike River’s victims their wish to re-enter the drift, says Labour ...
    4 days ago
  • Labour will get tough on slum boarding houses
    The next Labour-led Government will legislate a Warrant of Fitness based on tough minimum standards to clean out slum boarding houses, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. “It’s not acceptable for New Zealanders in the 21st Century to be living ...
    4 days ago
  • Green Party tribute to Dame Nganeko Minhinnick
    Haere ngā mate ki tua o paerau; te moenga roa o ngā mātua tupuna. Haere, haere, haere. It was with a huge sense of loss that we learned of the death of Dame Nganeko Minhinnick yesterday. The Green Party acknowledges ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    6 days ago
  • Urgent answers needed on DHB funding
      Jonathan Coleman must come clean and answer questions about what actual funding DHBs received in Budget 2017, says Labour Health Spokesperson David Clark.   ...
    7 days ago
  • Treasury puts Māori Land Service on red alert
    A damning Treasury report raises serious questions about the delivery of Te Ururoa Flavell’s proposed Māori Land Service, giving it a ‘red’ rating which indicates major issues with the project, says Ikaroa-Rāwhiti MP Meka Whaitiri.  “Treasury’s Interim Major Projects Monitoring ...
    1 week ago
  • Economy stalling after nine years of National’s complacency
    The second successive quarterly fall in per person growth shows the need for a fresh approach to give all New Zealanders a fair share in prosperity, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. ...
    1 week ago
  • Kiwi kids deserve much more
    All Kiwi kids deserve so much more than the impoverished picture painted by the shameful rankings provided by the UNICEF Innocenti Report Card, says Labour’s children spokesperson Jacinda Ardern. ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Zone a precursor to a total nuclear weapon ban
    New Zealand’s nuclear-free zone, legislated by Parliament in 1987, is something we all take pride in. It’s important, however, that we don’t let it thwart its own ultimate purpose – a world free of nuclear weapons. That goal must be ...
    GreensBy Kennedy Graham
    1 week ago
  • English must confirm we still stand by our principles on UN resolution
    Bill English must tell New Zealand whether we remain in support of the UN Security Council resolution on Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory, says Labour Leader Andrew Little. “After Foreign Affairs Minister Gerry Brownlee’s evasive answers to repeated questions on ...
    1 week ago
  • Māori party drop the poi on Māori health
    The Māori Party have dropped the poi when it comes to supporting Ngati Whakaue and Māori interests in Bay of Plenty by allowing an iwi owned and operated service Te Hunga Manaaki to be brushed aside in favour of a ...
    1 week ago
  • Labour to invest in Whanganui River infrastructure
    Labour will work in partnership with the Whanganui Council to repair and redevelop the city’s Port precinct in advance of planned economic development and expansion. To enable Whanganui’s plans, Labour will commit $3m in matching funding for repairing the Whanganui ...
    1 week ago
  • Parihaka: an apology
    An apology only works for healing if it is sincere and if it is accepted. We teach our children to apologise and to be genuine if they want to be forgiven. On Friday, June 9 at Parihaka, the Crown apologised ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    1 week ago
  • Survey shows many international students plan to stay in NZ after study
    Most international students in New Zealand at PTEs (private training establishments) who have a plan for themselves after study intend to stay in New Zealand to work. This shows how low-level education has become a backdoor immigration route under National, ...
    1 week ago
  • Councils step up as Nats drop the ball on housing crisis
    Phil Goff’s Mayoral Housing Taskforce is another positive example of councils stepping up where National has failed on housing, says Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    1 week ago
  • Time for a breather on immigration
    Labour will introduce moderate, sensible reforms to immigration to reduce the pressure on our cities, while ensuring we get the skilled workers our country needs, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. “New Zealand is a country built on immigration. ...
    1 week ago
  • Inaction puts Māui dolphins at risk
    Conservation Minister Maggie Barry was at the United Nations Oceans Conference in New York last week, trying to convince the world that the New Zealand Government is doing a good job at protecting our marine environment.  Yet last week after ...
    GreensBy Eugenie Sage
    2 weeks ago
  • National unprepared as immigration runs four times faster than forecast
    National has been caught asleep at the wheel by record immigration that has outstripped Budget forecasts, says Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • First home buyers shouldn’t carry the can for National’s failed policies
    The introduction of tighter limits on lending to first home buyers would see them paying the price for the National Party’s failure to recognise or fix the housing crisis, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Nine years of denial and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Motel bill blows out as Nats fail to deliver emergency housing
    Minister Amy Adams has admitted at select committee that National has now spent $22m on putting homeless families in motels as it fails to deliver the emergency housing places it promised, says Labour Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister, how out of touch are you?
    What was going through Jonathan Coleman’s head in the Health Select Committee this morning when he claimed he was unaware that an estimated 533,000 people have missed out on a GP’s visit in the last 12 months due to cost, ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Divided we fall
    I’m getting pretty sick of the politics of division in this country.  The latest example was yesterday’s comments from NZ First leader Winston Peters having a good go in the House at driving up fear and loathing towards people of ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s Electoral Amendment Bill to enhance democracy
    Democracy will be enhanced under Labour’s Private Member’s Bill which will have its First Reading today, says Labour’s Local Government spokesperson MP Meka Whaitiri. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Police underfunded despite rise in crime
    As crime continues to rise dairy owners are scared for their lives and communities reel under a record increase in burglary numbers, it has now been revealed that Police received less than three quarters of their bid in this year’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Road pricing years off, public transport investment needed now
    With road pricing still years away, Labour will step up with investment in public transport to ease Auckland’s congestion woes, says Labour’s Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Call to protect Easter Sunday in Auckland
    Auckland’s Labour MPs are backing the community to protect Easter Sunday by retaining current trading restrictions in the city, says Labour MPs Aupito William Sio and Michael Wood.  “The Government’s weak and confusing decision to delegate the decision over Easter ...
    2 weeks ago
  • $2.3 billion shortfall in health
    The funding needed for health to be restored to the level it was seven years ago to keep pace with cost pressures has widened to a massive $2.3 billion, says Labour Leader Andrew Little.  “We used to have a health ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Catherine Delahunty: My Mataura River visit
    On June 1st the Greens swimmable rivers tour visited the Mataura river and communities connected to it. All we need now is a Government willing to set clear strong rules and support the new conversation about measuring our success by ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty
    2 weeks ago
  • How the Social Security Bill has been affecting single mothers across New Zealand
    This week we’ve been hearing stories of how section 70A of the Social Security Bill has been affecting single mothers across New Zealand. In particular, we have heard how a victim of sexual assault, who became pregnant by her attacker, ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie
    3 weeks ago