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Daily review 03/05/2019

Written By: - Date published: 5:30 pm, May 3rd, 2019 - 55 comments
Categories: Daily review - Tags:


Daily review is also your post.

This provides Standardistas the opportunity to review events of the day.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Don’t forget to be kind to each other …

55 comments on “Daily review 03/05/2019 ”

  1. The Chairman 1

    Labour falls short once again.

    The Welfare Expert Advisory Group has recommended 42 changes to the welfare system – the Government has delivered on just three. Stating, they could not deliver on every recommendation at once, hence change would take years.

    • The Chairman 1.1

      What the Greens have to say about Labour's shortfall:

      After three decades of neglect, today’s announcements are small but necessary steps toward fixing our broken welfare system…


      • Dennis Frank 1.1.1

        Rare for me to have to defend Labour, but you seem to have left NZF out of your analysis! Replace Labour with coalition in both comments works for me…

        • The Chairman

          Feel free to add their response if you wish.

          And yes, it would be interesting to know what impact NZF played in Labour's response. Nevertheless, this seems to be one Labour and the Greens are fronting, hence I strongly feel for the Minister having to defend this piss poor effort.

          • mickysavage

            Um this is the initial response. It does not mean that nothing else will happen.

            Why is it that the left and the right use the same tactics to diss the government?

            • The Chairman

              Indeed it is. And what a poor initial response it is. Hence, being dissed should have been well foreseen and expected. Especially coming off the complete dumping of a CGT. If they didn't expected disappointment from this, they are are out of touch.

              They better up their game in the Budget or supporters will be further disappointed.

              • mickysavage

                Ever heard about the medium term?

                • Chris

                  Yes, but Labour's been promising on welfare for almost 30 years.

                • The Chairman's just annoyed that the overwhelming mandate for radical left-wing reform delivered by the nation's voters isn't being implemented. Or, The Chairman's a disingenuous bullshitter, take your pick depending on how delusional you are about this government's electoral mandate.

                  • Robert Guyton

                    The latter's my pick. The Chairman's an intentional underminer.

                • The Chairman

                  Meanwhile, people go cold and hungry filling our hospitals, resort to crime creating social harm and filling our jails or end up in further debt. And some just give up, adding to our growing suicide list.

                  This is a problem that requires urgent action now.

                  • McFlock

                    I agree entirely.

                    The trouble is that without the BRR labgrn would have had "tax& spend! Bad with money! Will destroy the economy!" throughout the campaign, rather than "holes" everyone said were imaginary. So even a couple of percent there would give us a nat govt.

                    Also, without NZ1, the coalition government wouldn't exist.

                    So those are what stops us having a radical government. Try for labgrn next time, and bate thy manly concern in the meantime.

                    • The Chairman

                      Labour have fiscal scope to do more without breaking the BRR. Moreover, spending on the poor now would create wider health and social savings going forward.

                      And from what I can gather, NZF was/is supportive of the report. Additionally, I've yet to see Labour blame NZF for this latest shortfall and failure to deliver.

                    • McFlock

                      whatever. I count two pre-budget announcements (statsnz and welfare) and you're talking about how the govt has "fiscal scope to do more". Duh: that's the rest of the budget.

                    • greywarshark

                      The willingness of Rip Van Winkles to believe falsehoods which connect them and maintain them in the style to which they have been accustomed, means that Gnats will continually mass on the sidelines, and even invade the pitch, looking for any excuse to unseat Labour Coalition. They are like a mafia group, our people who owe allegiance only to themselves. I suggest that our integrity as a society is failing and falling.

                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sicilian_Mafia# They have built up their group successfully. Do we have a nascent group in NZ? Is there something that ordinary citizens can learn and adapt to for honest, thriving living conditions.

                      Cosa nostra – our thing – Mafia have also been known as The Honoured Society. We have criminals who have operated under false credentials, people who steal and commit violence, and can get away with it because of their standing in the community, almost the start of an honoured society.

                    • McFlock


                    • The Chairman

                      The Government has been spending less than its self imposed BRR therefore has fiscal scope to do more than this piss poor effort.


                    • McFlock

                      And if they were spending more you and soimon would be decrying their financial mismanagement.

                      Maybe the coalition can do better. Maybe they can negotiate better to satisfy individual part priorities and run closer to the BRR that helped them snatch victory. Maybe they can even take more of a risk against economic forecasts.

                      But I do not believe your concern to be offered in good faith.

                    • The Chairman

                      And if they were spending more you and soimon would be decrying their financial mismanagement.

                      Can't speak for "soimon". But as far as I'm concerned it all depends on how much more is being spent and what it is being spent on.

                      For example, spending more on reducing poverty now is astute spending as the savings it produced going forward would outweigh the cost of doing so.

                      Therefore, failing to address this now is financial mismanagement.

                    • McFlock

                      I stand corrected. You managed to be concerned both ways: the coalition government is simultaneously spending not enough and too much.

            • Chris

              A big part of the problem is parts of the left defending the government despite its behaviour. The constant litany of excuses for Labour's inaction on welfare is astounding. A commenter on here, for example, defended criticism of Labour's refusal to lift basic benefit rates by referring to the annual 1 April CPI increases – for two years running! – and despite it being pointed out both times that these increases are required by legislation.

              • Rosemary McDonald

                Today's best comment. Thank you Chris. smiley (although there is little to smile aboutwink)

              • SPC

                The government has even failed to move the CPI increase from the average to the CPI on necessities (the actual costs faced by those on low incomes).

                • greywarshark

                  That's a point SPC. Inflation is a basket of expenditure on defined items. A drop in air transport costs may bring down the annual figure, but as at one time, a large rise in price of green vegetables put it up for the people whose need for food is bigger than their want for air transport.

                  The media don't seem to put up useful information for the people as much as they used to. Otago University has done a price movement comparison since 1972 for a set number of food items that a household would be likely to buy.


                  Perhaps we should start regularly reading the Otago Daily Times, one of the independent city papers of New Zealand. https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/healthy-food-costs-still-rise

                  The 2018 survey showed:

                  The estimated weekly food cost for a Dunedin family of four included an adult male ($68.36), an adult female ($57.99), adolescent boy ($71.39) and 10-year-old ($49.83) was $247.57 a week.

                  Dr Mainvil, who is a senior lecturer and a registered dietitian, said most of the Dunedin costs came from fruits and vegetables (29%), meats/proteins (29%), and dairy (15%).

                  If there could be a move to everyone having at least a wide bucket growing a few vegs micro-managed I think we would get better health. Groups meeting regularly and making bread with each other from bulk purchased flour and also biscuits for the treats, would help with the filling up, and being able to buy pieces of bulk cheese and plain yoghurt that each person flavoured with jam would mean good dairy and lower sugar. The lower income people need to be able to access ‘living groups’ where you get awhi and come away feeling happy and hopeful.

                  The present economic-driven society would try to put a price on the above feelings, perhaps so they would fit into a well-being measure, but they are priceless.

                  There is an old pop song, Little things mean a lot. And when you are struggling, knowing that there are helps out there for you if you can just get to them, gives a lift up, one step at a time.

                  • SPC

                    Note how decisions made in the 1990's were deliberate to obscure the fact that the rate at which benefits were adjusted was less than the rising costs faced, so that they fell in real value, even after the cuts made earlier in that decade.


                    Despite us knowing this, we still adjust benefits by an average rate designed to minimise the annual adjustment to benefits. Last year necessities went up 1.8% and the average CPI 1.4% was the measure used to increase the benefits – thus another real cut in value.

                    • Chris

                      There have been similar discrepancies over the years. One was something like a 1% CPI versus a 4% cost of living increase. Basic benefit rates used to be tagged to the cost of living which stopped in the 1970s – completely illogical unless the intention is to cut benefits in real terms.

                      The lower the CPI increase the greater likelihood the resulting basic benefit rate increase brings absurd outcomes, like a reduction in accommodation supplement greater than the increase to the basic rate.

        • soddenleaf

          oh… this new applet doesn’t like me.

          If Frank’s were a serious debater he’d point out that lazt media are at fault when they cast labour as the govt, lab only got in the mid 30s. But it’s just lazy journalist on naff radio who make the story about lab, not about how all parties need to agree.

  2. Dennis Frank 2

    Looks like somewhat of a popular uprising in the UK local body political scene: https://www.bbc.com/news/topics/ceeqy0e9894t/england-local-elections-2019

    Tories lost 442 seats so far, Labour lost 79. Greens up 42, from 6 last time. LibDems up 304. Independents up 215, UKIP down 54.

  3. patricia bremner 3

    The Chairman @ 1, Unfortunately they have had to deal with myrtle rust and mico plasma bovis, the discovery of under funding in the health system, helping the homeless and recognising the hidden unemployed, starting traing and apprentice schemes and a first year free for any tertiary education.

    They are putting two billion a year back into the super fund trying to expand the Housing NZ build and increase State Housing.

    They are trying to do their best for the Muslim community after Christchurch, while finding the threats in society.

    Along the way they have limited Loan Sharking and wheel clamping fees.

    They have worked with the mining families, replaced roads and bridges washed away by storms.

    They have provided more for those in poverty, but it has to be agreed to by New Zealand First so is less than Labour and the Greens hoped for. This is the difficulty of Coalitions where the major party in Government can not win a vote in the house. PM Ardern has commented "Consensus is my job". CGT was a case in point where agreement didn't happen.

    This is quite a change from National's "What housing crisis?" :They need to make better choices" :The youth of NZ are useless" etc.

    This Government is not perfect, but boy it is a huge improvement on the last lot!! It has been 2 action packed years, with more to come. I see the big money is coming out to fight for their "rightful place". So I hope the left get their funding ready.devil

    • Rosemary McDonald 3.1

      I see the big money is coming out to fight for their "rightful place". So I hope the left get their funding ready.

      Yes, they do stump up with more enthusiasm than 'lefties' in support of the Parties of the Worthy and Deserving, probably because their Parties deliver on election promises.

      In days gone by even the strugglers would chip in a bob or two to support a local candidate because sometimes they would actually deliver for the poor.

      Not now though. One promises to be tough on the idle poor, and delivers.

      The other pretends loving kindness for the poor and delivers more money to get tougher on the idle poor.

      Arbeit mach frei.

      Sweet naff all for those who can see no end to the punitive treatment of those who simply cannot commit to paid work due to health and disability.

      The invalids. The incurables.

      Pretty much more of the same.

      • patricia bremner 3.1.1

        Rosemary, to compare this Government with the Nazis is unfair and untrue. There is a directive from the top and new training aimed at assisting those who visit Winz.

        A friend's daughter who works for Winz says there are people 50+ looking for work, At Winz there was talk they were considering taking on some older people with work experience to assist others get ready to apply for positions, especially as some had not had to apply for a job for twenty years, and needed skills updated.

        Perhaps this is part of that new thinking. I did not hear them say it was aimed at those who could not work.

        Perhaps some of what we are hoping for may be in the budget. I say we, as I am a disabled person aged 77.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          You will have read the Report, Patricia?


          Considering those on the Supported Living Payment make up 53% of those on the Main benefit it is surprising that this group are last to be discussed in the Executive Summary…they limp in on page 18.

          Now, by any measure page 18 makes pretty grim reading.

          Unfortunately even the Working Group could not focus for more than a nanosecond on those on the SLP who will most likely never be able to commit to work, even part time.

          Even this section of the Report emphasizes how it is through getting into paid work that a beneficiaries lot will improve.

          Work will make you free.

          I will be convinced that this government is less like the last when they actually step up and start treating this particular group of beneficiaries with greater compassion and at least a modicum of respect.

        • Chris

          The history of Labour's position on welfare since reneging on their promise to reverse the 1991 benefit cuts tells a different story.

      • Psycho Milt 3.1.2

        Arbeit macht frei. "Mach" isn't a word. If you're going to misuse other people's languages in a wildly, gratuitously inappropriate comparison of the NZ government with the Nazis, at least trouble yourself to get the words right.

        • Rosemary McDonald

          Oops. Running on very little sleep at the moment. Ambulances and A&E in the wee hours of the morning and I shall never make good on the time or the lost sleep. I shall go away and beat myself up over a spelling mistake.

          Now…'gratuitously inappropriate comparison with the Nazis'…if you're going to go all Godwin.

          Shall we have a discussion about the lives of Kiwis forced to live at the mercy of the State?

          Of course you too will have read the Report?

          You will know from the report that the dire circumstances, the insecurity that especially those on the (un) Supported Living Payment have to endure has not just developed under this particular government. Nor can the Previous Mob take the blame/credit entire.

          Oh, no, siree. This has been a cross- party long term plan. There has been subtle and not so subtle messaging from all political parties that Work is the answer to most of the ills of the underclasses. And while most of us can agree to that idea to a certain point…none of the parties have ever specifically addressed the circumstances of the person who experiences the catastrophic decline in fortunes when ill-health or permanent disability (not supported by ACC) affects them and their family.

          No government has done anything to ease this particular brand of discrimination in over forty years.

          The people for whom work is an impossibility are criminally neglected by our welfare system, and are thrown on the scrap heap of utter hopelessness.

          This working group belabours the 'supported into work' narrative and skims over those who most likely will never work again. They failed to convince this Government in the two months since handing the report over that the needs of this group demand prompt attention.

          Today's announcement will have offered no hope for those for who no amount of carrot or stick will enable them to be liberated from dire poverty by securing employment.

          • McFlock

            The low mortality rate suggests you're being a bit over the top. /sarc

            I'll be reading the report over the next few weeks. I suspect a number of NGOs will be aligning their campaigning with the report, identifying which recommendations are achievable with suitable direct pressure on the government and which recommendations need to be lobbied to the public first.

            • Rosemary McDonald

              Take them to the movies…

              • McFlock

                If it were that simple it wouldn't have taken so long to even get enough voters to accept child poverty existed as a problem (rather than bad individual parents).

                Left wing movies have been produced since the neoliberal experiment started. They only preach to the choir.

    • Ad 3.2

      All of that list is Business As Usual for any NZ government.

      • patricia bremner 3.2.1

        Ad, why did the previous Government not do that then?

        • Rosemary McDonald

          …why did the previous Government not do that then?

          Because it was easy, and in their nature, to continue the work of the Previous Incumbents.

    • The Chairman 3.3

      @patricia bremner

      Mycoplasma bovis? Grant Robertson publicly committed to throwing as much money as it takes at the problem. A problem the country could cope with.

      Therefore, it's shameful Labour aren't as committed to addressing poverty, which will also go a long way in addressing health and other social problems.

    • CHCoff 3.4

      To not have a govt. that doesn't like NZ and it's general citizenry was an achievement but it's turned out quite abit better than that.

    • Wayne 3.5


      Not much evidence of "expand the Housing NZ build and increase State Housing".

      So far this is the area of biggest fail by the government. In fact I would be surprised if they build as many houses this financial year (July 2018 to June 2019) as National did in their last year.

      • Molly 3.5.1

        … or indeed sold, or emptied during its term in office.

      • Chris 3.5.2

        Utterly disingenuous as usual.

      • Pat 3.5.3

        a question for you Wayne…if as you suggest there is so little difference between Labour and National why is it so critical to you (and your party) that Labour are not in control of treasury?…is it perhaps the perks of office?…surely nothing so base as that?

  4. Ad 4

    Tax report.

    Justice overview.

    Reserve Bank reform.

    Welfare review.

    Transport safety review.

    Greenhouse gas advice.

    Less a government, more a toilet paper manufacturing plant.

  5. CHCoff 5

    Congratulations Jacinda Ardern & Clarke Gayford, a very good representative couple for NZ

  6. Sacha 6

    On this govt being timid: https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/on-the-inside/388435/tim-watkin-government-is-running-out-of-chances-to-be-transformational

    So as part of their coalition deal, Labour and the Greens commission this report. They get the transformational advice most of them would have wanted. How do they respond? Welfare Minister Carmel Sepuloni agrees the welfare system is not working. Marama Davidson agrees the welfare system is not working. And then they commit to ignore the report's big recommendations.

    • The Chairman 6.1

      Great article you linked to, Sacha. It hit the nail on the head.

    • alwyn 6.2

      This report certainly explains why they dropped the story about getting married into the news cycle. They want something, anything, that will keep this Welfare Report out of the headlines tomorrow. What will they do next week when the news is just as bad for the idiots who comprise our Government?

    • Rosemary McDonald 6.3

      Then there’s the Greens. National would not support even these few reforms promised, so they have the power to demand more their coalition partners. They have the power to get the wins New Zealand First has achieved on labour reform, three strikes and the CGT. Yet they are backing Labour’s cautious approach and promising to back these changes. That’s a very odd political calculation.

      Very, very odd. I'm simply not understanding the Green's game plan. If they actually have one. After Metiria, and the near groundswell of support her message received, I expected them to do more, or at least something, in the social just sphere.

      If Labour is genuine in it's aim to be transformational and address the rank inequality and the Greens had a smidgen of spine, then combined they'd surely be able subdue Winston on a few issues?

      If they really cared.

      Maybe completely off base here but I suspect there is a lack of cohesion in the Green ranks, especially with the younger ones. Jan Logie has done well, and…?

      • Sacha 6.3.1

        They really seem to have lost their comms ability and Labour is not selling their vision well enough either. Both better lift their game a whole lot around the Budget.

      • higherstandard 6.3.2

        "Very, very odd. I'm simply not understanding the Green's game plan. "

        You've been around a long time Rosemary, I'm sure you've learnt that for all politicians their own interests trump those of their party and the public.

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