Cullen puts tax cuts in context

Written By: - Date published: 2:38 pm, February 7th, 2008 - 53 comments
Categories: labour, tax - Tags: ,

In a speech today to the Auckland Chamber of Commerce Cullen has further differentiated the role of tax cuts under National and Labour.

What was interesting about Cullen’s speech is that it wasn’t really a speech about tax cuts. It was a speech about (much broader) economic sustainability. Essentially it pitted National’s vaporware ‘tax cuts’ against Labour’s record and future plans on ‘skills and productivity, wages, innovation, exports, savings, infrastructure AND tax cuts’.

The PM has previously branded National an economic ‘one trick pony’. Cullen’s speech continued that theme.

Cullen left no doubt about his intentions: “Labour will deliver tax cuts because it is fair money that we do not need to meet our obligations to New Zealanders should not be held indefinitely in crown accounts.”

Increasingly short on wiggle-room, National’s response is likely to be twofold:

First, “Cullen’s made you wait eight years for a tax cut”. Second, “we don’t believe he’ll deliver”.

Neither is a credible political response. What this shows is a National Party unwilling to debate on the actual issues of the timing, shape and affordability of tax cuts. They haven’t outlined any kind of guidelines of their own, let alone an actual policy. On this and other important issues, we’re continually told “the policy is coming”. People’s patience is running out and an off-the-cuff policy on crab pots doesn’t cut it.

To use lines like these seems even more laughable when it turns out that, wait for it…

  • National in government have never ever cut the top tax rate.
  • National in government have never ever cut the corporate tax rate.
  • And National in government have never ever cut the tax rate on savings.

I wonder if the PM might have been being too charitable.

What do you call a pony without any tricks? A trickless pony? A no-trick pony? A gluestick?

Suggestions in comments please.

53 comments on “Cullen puts tax cuts in context”

  1. Santi 1

    “What do you call a pony without any tricks?”

    What do you call a minister (Cullen) without any credibility on tax matters? A blatant liar!

  2. all_your_base 2

    Rewriting the question does not earn credit santo. D- must try harder.

  3. Steve Pierson 3

    How is Cullen lying? Santi did you bother to read the speech or are your lines based on your prejudices?

  4. Daveo 4

    I don’t think Labour should be cutting taxes when there are still major social issues to deal with, but if we have to have them then I guess it’s better Cullen than Key.

  5. Should The Standard really take such delight in pointing out the following?:

    # National in government have never ever cut the top tax rate.
    # National in government have never ever cut the corporate tax rate.

    Counterpoised to this, is the fact that both the Fourth Labour Government and the Fifth Labour Government are instead the ones to cut taxes for the wealthy! So you guys seem to be saying over the last few months that “tax cuts are bad”, but “only Labour gives tax cuts for the rich”! Very interesting… Or is the new strategy to start saying that “tax cuts are good” now that Labour are promising even more of them?!

    I also see that Labour has announced their new found enthusiasm for private sector delivery of public projects. But wasn’t it The Standard that criticised National some time ago for the Nats’ private-public-partnership approach? I guess it’d be time for you guys to start selling the wonders of using the private sector now…

    I wonder if you’ve ever read “Animal Farm”? For some reason this blog reminds me of it from time to time.


    The posters have their own opinions. This is a multi-poster blog site run as a coop.

    There is no actual position of “The Standard” – well apart from when I want to kill off dad4justice or something like that. Half the time I don’t agree with the poster’s and I sysop the site. I’d expect that they are the same with each other.

    If you want to look for incoherence in opinions then look at the psuedonym of the poster. It is at the top of the post, if you’ve never bothered to look at it before. Making a blanket statement about a multi-poster blog having an opinion is just stupidity on your part.


  6. East Wellington Superhero 6

    Hey guys,
    I have a question that you might be able to help me with.
    How do you spell “u-turn”?

  7. East Wellington Superhero 7

    Oh, and the public/private partnership in West Auckland is pretty classic too.

    Maybe we could rename Labour as “National lite”. Considering how much they’ve moved in the last 20 years it seems apt.

  8. Tane 8

    Hey Bryce, I agree with you on that one – I don’t think Labour should be cutting taxes and I don’t like PPPs. Unfortunately I’m too busy at the moment to do any posting. The trouble you have with labelling The Standard as having a position is that we don’t – we tend to bounce off each other and share similar views, but don’t take any one post as representative of all of us.

    In a_y_b’s defence, I think he was pointing out the hypocrisy in constantly calling for tax cuts and then voting against them when the opportunity arises.

  9. Steve Pierson 9

    I don’t like PPPs either and the announcement was only that the steering group for the tunnel project would consider a PPP. Frankly, I don’t see how it would make any economic sense.

  10. BeShakey 10

    Bryce – I took the point to be that National’s attacks on Labour’s credibility delivering tax cuts, and the supposed contrast with National’s desire to deliver tax cuts isn’t borne out by political history.

    Without knowing the positions of the Standard authors in detail, it seems at least possible to both oppose tax cuts, and believe that history suggests Labour has a history of delivering tax cuts while National does not.

  11. gobsmacked 11

    Of course, some people like to cut their own taxes:

    Funny how a corporate suit provokes less outrage on the right than the bogeyman benefit bludger. Despite the millions of dollars’ difference.

  12. AncientGeek 12

    Actually now you mention it.

    Did they ever change tax rates downwards? I’m sure that someone dropped a tax rate from 33 cents in the dollar to 31.5 cents a decade or so ago. Can’t remember who that was.

    I know that the 4th labour government managed to drop my father’s nominal top tax bracket from about 60 cents in the dollar to 33 cents.

    That would be an interesting exercise – when have the Nats in government ever dropped tax rates?

    Personally I don’t think that neither should be dropping tax rates unless they have covered the deficit that we’re likely to get when we get the superannuation bulge at or after 2030. It is easier for everyone to pay for that obligation in small amounts over time, than to suddenly either have to jack up tax rates or cut benefits later.

  13. all_your_base 13

    Thanks BeShakey, well read. Tane too!

  14. Charlie Tan 14

    Those National front cocksuckers on kiwiblog make me so angry!

  15. Billy 15

    “Those National front cocksuckers on kiwiblog make me so angry!”

    That’s the way, Charlie. Show them how to conduct a well-mannered, grown up debate.

  16. James Kearney 16

    It’s called spin-busting Bryce. He’s taking National’s carefully honed attack lines and deconstructing them for us, and I’m glad he’s doing it.

  17. dancer 17

    i haven’t paid particular attention to the work of PPPs but i did remember that we already had provisions for their existence – so let’s not pretend it’s totally new for Labour to talk in these terms:

    Paul Swain (Minister of Transport)Public-private partnerships are very important for New Zealand. They have been very, very successfully operated in other parts of the world. Before I hear all the comments that they will not work, the particular clauses in this legislation are based on the Melbourne link where lease arrangements are used to attract public-private finance in order to get a project built. (Hansard, 4 Nov 2003)

    I know the stringent conditions were the target of criticism, including tolls only where there was an alternatice route. But i did also spot this suggestion that current roads should be tolled. Do you think the speaker would still support that view?

    John Key: In the Transport and Industrial Relations Committee I argued vehemently that existing roads should be tolled.(Hansard, 4 Nov 2003)

  18. OK – I take the point that a number of commentors have made about The Standard not being a monolithic political voice.

    And, yes, I too enjoy the spin-busting that The Standard does… Whoops, sorry, I should say: “I too enjoy the spin-busting that individual authors in their own right do on this multi-post blog site”. But if you’re going bust-the-spin, you better be prepared to live with the contradictions that this raises about your own party.

    Tane – I’m glad to see that we agree about tax cuts and PPPs. But I have one genuine question about that (which I don’t expect an answer on right at the moment, as you’re busy): considering your opposition to these important issues, why don’t you ever post anything on this site about things that you disagree with Labour about? I’m not suggesting that you have any responsibility to do so, or even that such posts should be frequent, but wouldn’t it make The Standard a bit more interesting and credible as an independent voice if there was an occasional post of dissent against the party line?



    “your own party” – The posters here have admitted that they vote for different parties. I presume you’re talking about the NZLP. I think I’m the only person at the standard who has stated that they are a NZLP member. Most of the poster’s are far more left than I am. But the NZLP is a broad based party.

    There are posts that have critized the NZLP policy in whole or part, you might want to scan back. And I can’t remember a post that said anything about who to vote for.

    There are far more posts stirring the right – but they do provide a lot of targets for stirring.


  19. The Double Standard 19

    Lynn – which author are you? Tane? Base? Bill? Or are you providing the official Party voice here now?

    [lprent – I don’t post. Time I had a look at your comments methinks. I seem to remember the moderators having problems with your trolling previously]

  20. gobsmacked 20

    I would have thought that a headline post describing Helen’s big speech last week as “Dull” was not exactly following the party line, Bryce.

  21. The Double Standard 21

    Gobsmacked – ever hear of tokenism?

    It’s pretty clear to any reader that Teh Standard is a Labour Good/National Bad blog. The occasional minor criticism of H1 doesn’t really change the theme.

  22. gobsmacked 22

    Bryce used the word “occasional” too. Point proved, thanks.

  23. r0b 23

    I would have thought that a headline post describing Helen’s big speech last week as “Dull’ was not exactly following the party line, Bryce.

    Not forgetting also the advice here recently to vote green!

    I’m only a commenter here, but I’ve also fessed up to being an active member of the Labour party. I’m of the opinion that Citizens should Participate in Democracy.

    But I have my criticisms of Labour. I think they have been too timid in their three terms in office. I would have liked to have seen more action on the environment, and a return to student grants (instead of loans).

  24. gobsmacked 24

    Comrade Rob, come with me.

    Don’t worry, your next-of-kin will be informed.

  25. The Double Standard 25

    Gobsmacked – What point – that you are an idiot?

  26. The Double Standard 26


    Remarkable that you are now moderating this blog and adding your opinion to comments without being an author. You must be a pro hacker eh? How long before you start silently editing comments?

    Feel free to label those that do not agree with your socialism ‘trolls’ if it makes you feel better.


    There is a level in WordPress called ‘Administrator’.

    The moderators and posters are ‘Editors’. They tend to ask nicely, give warnings, and ban on a semi-voluntary basis, ie they moderate.

    I’m the Administrator and I’m not known for being moderate – ask dad4justice. I get interested when I see people whose sole purpose seems to be to disrupt the site. At the comment level, I define that as they never contribute to the discussion, but appear to spend their time simply trying to make discussion impossible and to provoke flamewars.

    I’ve just scanned your comments back to december. I think you are borderline disruptor, so I’ll leave it to the moderators for the moment.


  27. Dean 27

    r0b said:

    “I’m only a commenter here, but I’ve also fessed up to being an active member of the Labour party. I’m of the opinion that Citizens should Participate in Democracy.”

    Unlike the Labour party, who have decided that 130 odd MPs know better than 80% of New Zealanders regarding the anti smacking bill. Not even a referendum will sway them – they know best.

    I guess if elected dictatorships are your bag then it’s definitely democratic, but you can hardly call a bill pushed through as a favour to a minor party – in return for favours – which faces opposition from 80 per cent of the voting public democracy in action, can you?

    And how about those tax cuts? Oh, the quotes from Helen and Michael that could be bought up now. Key’s dead rats must taste a hell of a lot better than Helen’s right about now, thats for sure.

  28. The Double Standard 28

    Lynn – gee, how generous of you. How many people have you banned so far? [BTW I think this is a legitimate topic of discussion since the authors here claim that Farrar only bans those he disagrees with. ]

    [lprent – exactly one. dad4justice. He was posting very stupid comments with zero content using a number of psuedonyms. Sometimes his psuedonyms would argue with each other.

    I’ve started adding clarifications to comments that comment on this site, especially the ones that repeat opinions that have been previously asked and answered]

  29. r0b 29

    I regret that I have but one lifarrrrrrrghhhh……..

  30. Dean 30

    Lynn, is there any chance you can do a D4J style comment moderation for TDS?

    [lprent – I could. But I don’t think that he warrants the effort based on what he said in his comments. His burst of about 10 comments across a number of posts within a short space of time definitely attracted my anti-trolling attention. Had to go into the database to see them – the moderators deleted them.]

  31. Tane 31

    From memory Lynn hasn’t banned anyone. The people currently banned are Insolent Prick and The Prophet for repeated spamming, disruption and attacks on the blog owners, and Dad4Justice for, well, acting like Dad.

    Commenters from both left and right have been warned for their behaviour and had their comments deleted.

    Since moderation began the tone of conversation here has improved significantly, for both left and right.

    [lprent – no I’ve definitely banned d4j. His comments arriving in my mailbox for moderation have been ‘interesting’. However they got so interesting they started to go into the spam folder.

    Actually you’re right – I didn’t ban him. Someone else did – I just enforced it permanently]

  32. r0b 32

    Unlike the Labour party, who have decided that 130 odd MPs know better than 80% of New Zealanders regarding the anti smacking bill. Not even a referendum will sway them – they know best.

    Hang on – if memory serves – that bill progressed because of an agreement brokered by young John Key didn’t it? Isn’t he the one that knows best?

  33. Dean 33

    “Hang on – if memory serves – that bill progressed because of an agreement brokered by young John Key didn’t it? Isn’t he the one that knows best?”

    Key isn’t the one telling people a referendum echoing 80 per cent of New Zealander’s opinions is worthless because 130 MPs voted for it. But by all means keep blaming him if you wish – it seems to be doing Labour the world of good in the polls. Just dont let Helen on the radio again.

  34. r0b 34

    Key isn’t the one telling people…

    I must have missed this one Dean, would you mind providing a link to the original quote that you are refering to? Ta.

  35. Dean 35

    Helen said it on Radio Live, being interviewed by Willie Jackson, in response to him questioning her about her opinion on a referendum regarding the anti smacking bill. He asked her if she’d be willing to adhere to the results of a referendum given the polling numbers on such a large sample.

    She said no, she wouldnt, and that 130 odd MPs were right to pass the bill. Democracy, to the leader of the Labour party, only happens once every election cycle. Between times? It’s a dictatorship, no matter what the law is that’s being passed.

    Sorry I can’t provide you with any quites or sources ad verbatim just now, it’s nearly dinner time. But I’ll take a look later.

  36. Tane 36

    Just a note, there are not 130 MPs, let alone 130-odd.

  37. Dean 37

    “Just a note, there are not 130 MPs, let alone 130-odd.”

    Fair enough, my typo.

    The point still stands.

  38. gobsmacked 38

    In 1999, 82% voted, in a citizen’s initiated referendum, to reduce the number of MPs to 99.

    Why did this not become National party policy? Why did they ignore the wishes of 82% of the voters?

  39. Dean 39

    gobsmacked, you’re absolutely right. That is unacceptable.

    But don’t pass the buck. If this is the only defence you have then it’s pretty useless. National are bad and did it before is wearing pretty thin when Labour are doing exactly the same things.

  40. Tane 40

    Hey Bryce, I’m a busy guy and I do this in my spare time, so I don’t get to post as much as I’d like. When I do get the time I usually prefer to have ago at the Tories. Of course I have my issues with Labour, but I guess I don’t see it as my priority to attack them in the limited time I have.

    You’re right though in that the left does need to be critical of Labour, and if you have a look through my posts I think you’ll find I very rarely give them any unqualified praise. I’ll bear your comments in mind though.

  41. gobsmacked 41

    Two differences though, Dean:

    1) There hasn’t yet been a referendum. There may not be one, but in any case I doubt there will be 80% plus in favour (we’ll see), and I doubt the government (whoever it is) would ignore it completely (again, can’t know yet).

    2) The 99 MP referendum was smart, because it was specific. The planned referendum is not smart, it is vague. It could reasonably be argued that it endorses the status quo (the Key-Clark compromise). The wording could mean almost anything.

  42. Pascal's bookie 42

    ” He asked her if she’d be willing to adhere to the results of a referendum given the polling numbers on such a large sample.”

    What polling numbers are you talking about Dean?

  43. AncientGeek 43

    Dean: We don’t live in a pure democracy, and no-one in the world does. It is one of those nice theoretical constructs like an anarchist community, or a stable isotope past uranium 238 with a very long half-life.

    What we live in is a representative democracy. The difference between the two is that a representative democracy only expects a small proportion of the population (the representatives) to become highly informed on the issues of the day and the ramifications of each decision. A pure democracy would require that every voter was fully aware of the issues and the ramifications before they voted.

    This is clearly not the case in the referendum you’re after, and our representatives in parliament overwhelming voted for (only seven voted against) the Child Discipline Act, I can’t see any reason why a representative democracy should take notice of an ill-informed referendum.

  44. r0b 44

    Well the other Standardistas have pretty much buried that line of attack Dean.

    Democracy, to the leader of the Labour party, only happens once every election cycle.

    Representative democracy, as AncientGeek so clearly explained.

    I would point out, however, that for Key it seems that policy only happens as determined by the election cycle. Witness the dead rats. Why student loans? Because we lost the last election…

  45. outofbed 45

    you must be ancient indeed to impart such wisdom oh mighty one

  46. AncientGeek 46

    outofbed: to quote my father “but not senile yet, my son” just before he whipped my arse playing chess. He didn’t need section 59 as protection.

    On the 99 MP referendum. From memory the same thing happened there. Almost every MP voted for the Electoral Act 1993 to be passed Hunting for confirmation… Looks like I’d have to dig into Hansard for that one. Anyone got a link?

  47. The Double Standard 47

    “Had to go into the database to see them – the moderators deleted them.”

    I’m confused. Are moderators deleting my posts now? Unless I’m missing something I have only posted in this thread today (until just now on Kiwisaver)

    I assume you are looking at enough details to separate fake double standards from real ones?

    [lprent – it records IP numbers]

  48. Dean 48

    “Witness the dead rats. Why student loans? Because we lost the last election ”

    Cough, cough, tax cuts.

    Talking about dead rats isn’t exactly a good idea with Cullen’s latest revelation now, is it?

    And on the topic of representative democracy, plenty of other countries with such have binding referendums. I expect that’d let the haters and wreckers have too much power though, right?

  49. r0b 49

    Cough, cough, tax cuts.

    Nasty cough you got there Dean. You should try and get out in the fresh air more.

    Talking about dead rats isn’t exactly a good idea with Cullen’s latest revelation now, is it?

    Why? Labour isn’t against tax cuts. They are the party that just delivered company tax cuts. Who voted against those again? Hmmm – it was National wasn’t it.

    Anyway, I needn’t bother, ickystinky already nailed this one:

    Kiwiblog and our own chorus from the Right pews are on-message today that Cullen’s confirmation of Labour’s plans for significant and ongoing tax cuts is a U-turn. As if a Labour change of heart might somehow countenance Key’s wild flip-flopping. But in my book saying, “we will not do something until we can afford it,’ and then saying, “OK, it looks like we can afford it’ doesn’t seem like a U-turn. In fact, it just looks like plain fiscal management. Of course, it WOULD be a bit of U-turn if Labour was implacably and ideologically against tax cuts (which is the starting point for DPF’s argument). But tax cuts have been made under Labour! Which party last cut corporate taxes?

  50. Micah68 50

    That’s Rich
    The Tories just don’t get it do they? Making assumptions about low income people without ever having known what it is like to choose between school shoes and school lunches. In last nights “The Star’ Katherine Rich writes how Kiwis are feeling the pinch due to recent inflation pressures. Naturally this is all the fault of Labour’s policies and in particular Dr Cullen’s over taxation and poor fiscal management.

    read more

  51. Dean 51

    “Why? Labour isn’t against tax cuts. They are the party that just delivered company tax cuts. Who voted against those again? Hmmm – it was National wasn’t it.”

    National voted against them for some reason or another. I don’t quite recall what it was, but it was bound to be a silly one.

    But you can’t call a 3% tax cut anything more than a partial offset against increased costs such as a 4th week of holiday or compulsary and escalating Kiwisaver contributions. Now, no offence, but you can’t do this unless you’ve decided that you’ll ignore costs for an employer and instead concentrate on the parts that agree with your opinion the best.

    [lprent – sorry about the delay. d4j moderation trap. I must say he is persistent]

  52. Dean 52

    Lynn – never, ever apologise for delays in moderation because of a D4J moderation policy or process. I’m happy to be trapped in it if it means the likes of him are dealt with.

    [lprent – NP]

  53. Murray 53

    Fucken hell, is Micky going to give me a tax cut? Don’t do it Micky, it will probably hurt you more than it will hurt me.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Simon Bridges: the 15 March Christchurch massacre and winning at any cost
    . . Just when you thought Simon Bridges couldn’t sink any lower – he has. After the March 15th  Christchurch terror attack, the (current) Leader of the National Party issued strong committments to support urgently needed gun law reform; “We will be ready and prepared to be constructive and to ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    13 hours ago
  • Only the least intelligent students, with bad parents, will attend the nonsense climate strike
    We all know that bad parents simply don’t care about their children’s education. Most truants have loser parents, and grow up to be involved with crime, or in low paid employment usually like their parents. The nonsense so-called “climate strike” coming up will be attended mostly by the least intelligent ...
    An average kiwiBy
    23 hours ago
  • Professional Internet Trolls being used to push manmade climate change lies
    Is the terrorist Organisation Greenpeace and the loony Green parties around the World hiring professional internet trolls? I have noticed a trend lately where if you post research, news articles or even comments that show the manmade climate change scam to be just that, you are immediately attacked, often within ...
    An average kiwiBy
    23 hours ago
  • Climate Change: Strike!
    Today is the first day of the global climate strike. Led by schoolkids, people all around the world are going to protest to demand action on climate change. New Zealand isn't doing it till next Friday (join us!), but if you want to get active early, there's plenty to do ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change: Squandering our opportunity?
    The Herald has a story today about the 400 MW of wind power currently under construction. Good news, right? Except that none of it is being driven by policy (instead, its about replacing Contact Energy's Taranaki Combined Cycle gas-fired power plant, due to shut down in 2022), and most of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Protect The King!
    To Protect and Serve: When the Prime Minister finds herself enmeshed in the coils of a full-blown political scandal, her colleagues and party comrades have only one priority: to release her as swiftly – and with as little lasting injury – as possible. Is this what Jacinda Ardern’s colleagues and ...
    1 day ago
  • The rot at the top.
    When military leaders cover up and lie to elected civilian authorities, the foundation of democratic civil-military relations is undermined because it is those authorities who are entrusted to hold the military accountable to the public that they mutually serve. But this is only true if civilian political authorities take their ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Challenging the voting age in court
    The Make It 16 campaign to lower the voting age is launching this afternoon, and they have already announced plans to challenge the law in court:The campaign, named "Make it 16" will launch at Parliament on Friday, with plans to take their case to the High Court, testing the rights ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Israel’s elections herald a long siesta
    by Daphna Whitmore The long years of Netanyahu’s reign are drawing to an end. For years he has epitomized reactionary zionism as he oversaw hundreds of thousands of Jewish settlers seize land in the West Bank. There are now 700,000 settlers, putting an end to the myth that Israel was ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Petrol companies promise prices will come back down once peace is restored to the Middle East
    BP, Z and Mobil all insist that petrol price hikes are temporary, “in a very literal sense.” The nation’s major petrol providers are trying to allay customer fears over prices, promising that they’ll move to lower them again “immediately” when the Middle East is returned to its formerly peaceful state. ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • All Blacks unveil boat for Rugby World Cup 2019
    South African coach Rassie Erasmus says he has no idea what they’re going to do about the boat. In a highly anticipated press conference this afternoon, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has finally unveiled the team’s boat for its Rugby World Cup 2019 campaign. In a press conference that went ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
    The Operation Burnham inquiry continued to question senior NZDF staff today, and their shoddy coverup over their knowledge of civilian casualties continue to fall apart. If you recall, first, we were asked to believe that it was all a series of "mistakes and errors": a senior officer with multiple degrees ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
    The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) had part of its committee stage yesterday. its a generally tedious bill about the nitty-gritty of local government reorganisation. But it includes a clause making the Local Government Commission subject to the Ombudsmen Act, and hence the OIA. Great! Except of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

No feed items found.