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Elitist Nats divorced from everyday Kiwis

Written By: - Date published: 11:00 am, April 15th, 2011 - 49 comments
Categories: dpf, food, scoundrels - Tags: , , ,

Farrar on Treasury’s expensive dinners:

“I’m all for responsible use of credit cards, but running a story about spending $95/head at dinner entertaining the Executive Director of the World Bank is ridicolous [sic].Foxglove is a medium priced restaurant.

$95 doesn’t mean there were bottles of expensive wine drunk. $20 for an entree, $40 for a man [sic?] and $15 for a dessert is $75 so  arguably they had one bottle of $60 wine”

What an out of touch fuck.

Maree is meant to feed four people for a week on $200. Farrar says she should just economise if money runs tight.

John Whitehead and two World Bank shmoos chowing down for $300 a meal on our dime? Sweet as.

Also, $90 per head is “medium-priced” in whose world?

National’s pollster adds:

“Should we take the World Bank Executive Director to Uncle Chang’s instead?”

When old women are eating cat food to make ends meet, why not? Do the elitist bastard good to have to eat  amongst the middle-class, at least, for once.

PS. Idea we should spend a fortune to feed someone because they happen to be World Bank Executive Director (whatever that is) reminds me of the best rebuke of elitist airs I know:

Gandhi wore his dhoti for an audience with King George V of England.

When asked how he could possibly contemplate meeting the monarch clad in nothing but a length of cloth draped over his loins Gandhi simply said, ” Why not? The King wears enough clothes for the two of us.”

PPS. This was written a few days ago. Since then new stats show the price of bread is up 32% under National. Rome’s elite used to distract and placate the headcount with panem et circenses. Bread and circuses. We’ve got the circus alright. Key is head clown. But now even bread is getting too pricey for many.

49 comments on “Elitist Nats divorced from everyday Kiwis ”

  1. Jim Nald 1

    Thus the public watch Key changing
    from Hero to Nero

    🙂

    • ianmac 1.1

      OOps Jim. Just been reading about Nero. In his stint of 15 years taxes lowered, no wars, Rome urban renewal, music and poetry revived.
      Still “Hero to Nero” has a great ring to it. 🙂
       
      High prices for bread!
      High prices for milk!
      High prices for meat!
      High prices for fruit and vegetables!
      High prices for petrol!
      Wages too low!
      NAct is the Government. Key promised a better deal. No excuses. Failed!

  2. Tigger 2

    Oh my god, I agree with Farrar – sort of!  Whitehead is a good CEO and this isn’t an alarming amount nor unreasonable given who he is entertaining.  There is mis-spending in government but this isn’t it – it’s a circus.
    I’d far rather see less of this crap and more about CERA, urgency, Petrogras…

    • todd 2.1

      I’m not sure what is more important, the ability to feed yourself properly or the use of urgency to ram through laws that could restrict your complaints about not being able to feed yourself properly.

      While the public is expected to cut costs all over the place and live on the bare minimum even if they’re working full time, it is not appreciated that the elitists carry on with their debauchery.

      When the Commissioner of Police uses the word malingerers to describe his own wayward Police officers, when the prime minister sends the Navy against Greenpeace and local iwi, when National ministers duck and cover and do not answer questions, when a musician is arrested for singing a song, when even their own fervent bloggers start speaking out against the National regime and when there is no confidence in the Government…

      What people eat might not seem consequential. However it is never a good idea to ignore a basic necessity that is not being met while others are over-indulging at our expense.

      • Tigger 2.1.1

        Ignore?  No.  Give it the time it deserves, yes.  The media has beaten up the CE expense issue, often at the expense of other stories that matter more.  Sorry, but if a reporter’s time is going to looking over CE expense reports vs attending select committees, for example, I know where I’d rather see their time.
        And heck, the restaurant staff need to work…it’s not like the money is going down the drain.
        I continue to worry that the left gets distracted by this small stuff while being unable to get traction on the big stuff.

        • todd 2.1.1.1

          Consider the fact that John Key gets $45,000.00 more per anum than Gillard while NZ falls further and further behind Aussie in nearly every respect. Meanwhile the disparity within New Zealand continues to grow and grow. Such things as being able to buy food are not little things Tigger, they are important and something we must get right.

  3. Peter Rabbit 3

    “When old women are eating cat food to make ends meet, why not?”

    I would love to know what sort of cat food these old women are buying that it is a cheaper option  than “human food”.

    The cheapest I can find  is Foodtowns Homebrand at 91c for a 400g tin vs 75c for a 420g tin of their Homebrand Baked Beans.  While I take nothing away from the point that food is expensive (because as member of a family of 5 I know it is) but the whole cat food side of this story seems to be nothing more than crap

    http://www.foodtown.co.nz/#url=/Shop/ProductDetails%3FStockcode%3D18178%26name%3Dhome-brand-cat-food-seafood-basket

    http://www.foodtown.co.nz/Shop/ProductDetails?Stockcode=47682&name=home-brand-baked-beans-in-tomato-sauce&search=baked%20beans

    • Tigger 3.1

      You need to compare catfood to other canned or fresh meat…comparing it to beans is, well, an apples vs oranges situation.

      • Peter Rabbit 3.1.1

        Tigger while I accept your point mine is that food that has been manufactured for human consumption is available at a lower price point than pet food.

        For less than 50c difference you can obtain tinned tuna.

        http://www.foodtown.co.nz/#url=/Shop/ProductDetails%3FStockcode%3D324092%26name%3Dhome-brand-tuna-yellow-fin-in-oil%26search%3Dfish

        The options available for low cost meals are not limited to Pet Food supplies.

      • Blondie 3.1.2

        I don’t want to detract from the actual point but….. would it really kill people to eat beans instead of meat?

        I’ve been vegetarian for several years now and it sure does help with the budget.

        Plus it’s interesting that my daughter is apparently the only kid in her class who hasn’t had food poisoning at some point or another – as well as being the only vegetarian.

        Beans/tofu etc are full of protein.  Iron is easily sourced in leafy greens.  I’m not sure that the same can really be said for sausages and luncheon.

    • Bright Red 3.2

      clearly she wasn’t eating cat food. clearly it’s all made up because your internet search proves it.

      • Peter Rabbit 3.2.1

        No clearly indicates that other food options were available to her for the same or lower cost than cat food.  Therefore before there are judgements made around it further information is needed as to why she was eating catfood.

        • todd 3.2.1.1

          Perhaps she had a cat, and ran out of food with only the cat food available. She might have needed to survive on cat food for a few days until her pension arrived or perhaps it had been cut. Since we are being hypothetical, perhaps it was a choice between eating cat food, her cat or nothing at all. Perhaps she was not able to get to a food bank or had been turned away because of high demand.
           
          The fact of the matter is that she ate cat food because that was the only option. The boy ate a cockroach because he was hungry and there was no food available. You do realize that there are many families that do not have enough money to buy food. Saying they had options when they clearly did not is rather arrogant and diminishes responsibility of somebody who should be held accountable.
           
          Accountability is one of those words the Government does not have in its vocabulary. They can always blame Labour instead of trying to resolve the issues. Who gives a shit if kids go hungry it’s Labours fault. Labour seems more like a scape goat than an opposition party these days. What a sad state of affairs.

          • Gus 3.2.1.1.1

            Lets be honest Todd, Accountability is something ALL governments lack no matter what side of the political fence they sit.

    • ianmac 3.3

      Peter Rabbit. The fact that this topic has arisen shows that the rising costs do make it tough for some. Catfood and Cockroaches. Symbols of concern. (And by the way try tinned meat V catfood rather than beans.

    • Lanthanide 3.4

      Maybe, just maybe, she didn’t actually buy the catfood herself? Maybe, just maybe, she got a food parcel, or otherwise came to be in possession of can of cat food? Perhaps she has a cat?
       
      Then, what do you know, she doesn’t have any money to go out and buy more food. With nothing left in the house, she is forced to eat the only food-like substance she has to hand – cat food. That or eat her shoe leather.
       
      Gee, now that wasn’t so hard to imagine, was it?

      • Peter Rabbit 3.4.1

        And maybe she eats catfood because she likes it or gambled away the rest of her money or some other reason.

        My point as stated above media have put this information out there with no clarification and people are just accepting it as gospel when clearly there are alternative food options available to her which are meant for human consumption for the same or lesser prices.

        Perhaps instead of speculation some real facts around the incident would be nice.

  4. tsmithfield 4

    “John Whitehead and two World Bank shmoos chowing down for $300 a meal on our dime? Sweet as.
    Also, $90 per head is “medium-priced” in whose world?”

    Maybe the World Bank execs should have been taken out to KFC.

  5. Tom Gould 5

    It’s cheaper than $7000 a head for a feed eaten by a guy who thinks eating cat food is a lifestyle choice.

  6. tsmithfield 6

    PB: “Maybe they can pay for their own bloody food. Fucking moochers.”

    Given that we’ll probably need these execs to bail us out if Labour ever get into power again, 🙂 don’t you think it would be a good idea to treat them nice while they’re here?

    I would think that $90 per head is at the bottom end of what international VIPs would be accustomed to, so it probably isn’t excessive given the context. Comparisons with a solo mother are silly. These execs get a government hand out of $90 each. Maree gets a government hand out of $43k per anum.

    • Bright Red 6.1

      the worldbank doesn’t lend money, the IMF does. If we need them, it will be because National has borrowed billions to fund tax cuts.
      “I would think that $90 per head is at the bottom end of what international VIPs would be accustomed to”
      And so we should be pandering to the tastes of elites, eh?

  7. Yeah, I agree with DPF. This is a senior civil servant and a relationship of value to the country. If you’re going to get this hysterical and high-minded, the time you spent writing this blog post is time you could have spent working for charity that would have helped feed the starving. So shame on you too.

    • Bright Red 7.1

      a) please explain the value to New Zealand in this expenditure. Exactly how do you think that a fancy dinner helps the country?
      b) this is clearly being used as a microcosm of wider elitism. But, being an elitist, you wouldn’t get that
      c) first you say an expensive dinner is no big deal then, without having a clue how Zet spends his/her spare time, you condemn them for spending 15 minutes writing a blog post rather than working for charity during that time. Which is it? Is every action that doesn’t directly aid the poor to be condemned or is not?

  8. Pascal's bookie 8

    I would think that $90 per head is at the bottom end of what international VIPs would be accustomed to

    I’m sure they feel entitled to all sorts of things that are nice to have.

  9. randal 9

    was Roys closed?

  10. Herodotus 10

    This post for me sums up what is wrong with many on the left… Small mindedness. $90 pp for senior execs is not over the top for a dinner.
    Are all here also happy with the bolly that the then min of Auck spent?
    There are times not to accept such beatups of nothingness ( and I include much of the past spending by MP’s on all sides of the divide). All this does is dilute any real issue that is raised at a later date as it has been preceeded by issues like this.
    Re the pet food, if that is an issue then attack the cause – benefit payments but mixing the 2 just displays that many have no idea of priorities and what are the issues of concern.
    The men concerned (and Mp’s and the like) are making huge decisions onour behalf do not let pettinenss get in the way of what matters.. !!!

    • todd 10.1

      Let’s compare then: While the poor are forced to eat cockroaches and cat food the elitists continue to dine out at our expense when they are easily able to afford to feed themselves. When you say priorities; I place people being able to afford food the number one priority. I certainly do not place free meals for the rich on a list of priorities at all. Your obvious worshiping of hierarchy, which has caused such disparity is obvious and ultimately misplaced.
       
      Even with MP’s and the like requiring meals, their wages can obviously meet those costs. That one meal you think is insignificant can feed a starving person for a week. I suppose starvation is insignificant if you’ve never had to feel its touch yourself. Let me get this clear… in your eyes Herodotus, the poor deserve to starve because MP’s make huge decisions? Many of those same decision you believe make the elitists deserving, result in horrendous negative social dynamics in our communities… So how deserving are they really, while the poor continue to go without?

      • Herodotus 10.1.1

        “While the poor are forced to eat cockroaches and cat food ” forced I believe you are overstating the situation.  Let me review milk, petrol, cheese etc are at similar price levels as in 07, so Todd you accept the levels of expenditure of the past from Mp’s and Civ Servants when as mentioned food costs are at todays level???
        You stil do not appear to get it, if benefits, wages etc are inadequate then attack the real problem, you are just as Nero was accused of doing when a certain fire hit Rome.
        What do you say then of MP’s and their entertainment allowance of $13k p.a. thast they do not even have to present chits to validate in order to claim this.
        In conclusion find the cause and fix it, complaining about a few $$ being spend for what may have been great value depending upon the outcomes.
        Do not be like Lab of 08, and experience the real world. I for one do not begruge this expense, if you do then I expect you will be calling for most senior civil servants and all MP’s to resign that is if you are consistant with your comments.
        If you want real disconnection then $1b for Obama to campaign to be reelected is obscene, not this.

        • todd 10.1.1.1

          What is there to overstate? The facts are simple enough. You either accept the facts like myself or you decline to realize that there is a problem.
           
          As for your claim that inflation has not resulted in less buying power since 2007, you must be somewhat blinded by the elitist meme that you espouse. Benefits, wages etc are inadequate because people like John Key and Bill English think that priorities lie elsewhere… They have far less concern for people eating properly than they do for their bank balances.
           
          The outcome was that a few rich people had another free meal at our expense. Comparing such things to the campaign spend of Obama is ridiculous and irrelevant; you deserve my contempt for such a stupid argument.

          • Herodotus 10.1.1.1.1

            Todd- your blinkered vision and misplaced fixations are astounding. 
            “Benefits, wages etc are inadequate because people like John Key and Bill English think that priorities lie elsewhere” so what was Labours excuses, they also had different priorities?? Another case of symptoms and not causation
            I never stated that inflation has not resulted in less buying power. Just commented that many items of expenditure that people are commenting towards today are at similar $ levels as of 3 years ago. With inflation milk, cheese, petrol are at lower levels in real terms today (perhaps not literally tomorrow)
            “Benefits, wages etc are inadequate because people like John Key and Bill English think that priorities lie elsewhere” more symptoms. It has nothing to do with accepting that we are progressing down a low wage economy and as a country we are saddled with debt and negative current accounts.
            LOOK at the CAUSES, not a few $ for a lunch. 

            • todd 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Heroditus, your excuses and misplaced insults are typical of National’s head in the sand mentality. Passing the buck does not solve the problems… It also does not absolve National from their responsibilities. There is relevance in this issue whether you like it or not. The cause for people going without the basic necessities can be squarely placed at Nationals feet, the same people who are getting a free lunch at our expense. Your reasoning is flawed on so many levels, I find it somewhat difficult to understand what your stumpy troll fingers are writing.

    • Bright Red 10.2

      “This post for me sums up what is wrong with many on the left… Small mindedness.”
      can you say ‘microcosm’?

      • Herodotus 10.2.1

        thanks BR I will in future substitute should a post ever require. Always a good day if you can improve tomorrow on what you can learn from today !! 😉
        I await your next gem to improve with !!!

  11. this is clearly being used as a microcosm of wider elitism. But, being an elitist, you wouldn’t get that
    I get that Michael Cullen spent $1500 dollars when he took the Australian Treasurer out to dinner in 2008, something The Standard authors had no particular problem with, other than to complain about the media beating up stories about credit card expenses.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/politics-news/glance-ministers-credit-card-expenses-3583454

    • todd 11.1

      Two wrongs don’t make a right.

      • higherstandard 11.1.1

        But according to this site two rights always make a wrong.

        • lprent 11.1.1.1

          Ah I think that was a misquote. I believe it was

          “Two Wongs don’t make a Worth”

          Some kind of question about the performance of National party cabinet ministers?

          • todd 11.1.1.1.1

            Pansy Wong – Corruption resigns

            Roger McClay – Fraud

            Steven Joyce – DNC (did not complete) Education

            Phil Heatley – Corruption resigns

            +

    • lprent 11.2

      The Standard authors had no particular problem with, other than to complain about the media beating up stories about credit card expenses.

      Ummm. I don’t remember any particular story about that. A link would be helpful to isolate which author you’re talking about.

      You know – just to prevent your statement for being regarded as being that of a simple-minded hack making statements without any sense of proportionality. In fact something rather like what you seem to be asserting that Zet is doing.

      As your statement stands you are effectively saying that I (as a author on The Standard) have done made such statements – which I haven’t. That is when I start getting moderation itches to suggest strongly that people read the about and the policy before I start educating them about being precise.

      (in other words don’t act like a fool where it comes to things I will moderate)

  12. My point is that neither are wrong. The author’s points is – as always – that it’s wrong when it happens under National but not when it happens under Labour, which is just hackery as usual.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      I find such expensive meals by the politicals as wrong no matter who’s in power.
       
      That said, I don’t think that $90 each is excessive. We do, after all, want our politicians fed and they’re probably a little too busy to cook their own meals.

    • daveo 12.2

      I feel a lot better about high ranked civil servants and pollys getting a fancy feed under a government that also looks after ordinary working kiwis than one that tells poor folk to tighten their belt. It’s the hypocrisy that makes it different I guess.

  13. Galeandra 13

    Have to agree that the issue as addressed here  seems to be a beat-up which is a pity because it distracts us from the central issue which is widespread hidden poverty. The problem with sensationalising the issue in the World Bank/catfood/cockroach stories is that those who want to can ignore the theme  and excuse their indifference by picking on the disproportionateness or exceptionality  of the examples used.

    Given Dim Post’s attitude to The Standard over the long term, and McLachlan’s cheerful fomenting of mischief in that regard, I’m surprised that he even visits here anymore. Still, it was nice that he was able to go back a few years (again) to show that Labour did it too. Hackery as usual.

  14. Kevin Welsh 14

    So, why couldn’t he pay for his own? I doubt very much that he doesn’t have an expense account. Or, even better, why not take him home for a home-cooked meal?

  15. Tsmithfield you too are an out of touch – with reality. You know damn well the point is the hypocrisy of Farrar saying $95’s Ok for a meal for some and then complaining about families cutting back. There’s also a big f***ing gap between $95 and KFC or didn’t you know that. People like you make me laugh in your one eyed blindness to defend this stinking f**ing government.

  16. MrSmith 16

    Don’t you love the way the Right’os always roll out the child’s reply of “But they did it first” !!!

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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Friction and the Anti-lock Braking System
    Yesterday afternoon I had to call on my car’s anti-lock braking system (ABS). For reasons best known to its driver, a car pulled out of a side road right in front of me while I was driving home after work, and I needed to stop in a hurry. I rather ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    3 days ago
  • The Inside Word: New Zealand Quarantine
    There are a fair few misconceptions about conditions within New Zealand’s Quarantine Hotels. Madeline Grant’s misplaced accusations being one prominent example, though she is not alone. Today, I thought I’d share the inside word, so to speak. A friend of mine has recently returned to New Zealand from overseas, and ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: ASA: Let’s not talk about this
    Last week, major newspapers carried a full-page ad as part of the campaign for a "No" vote to the referendum question about supporting the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill. The ad was authorised by the SAM NZ Coalition, which takes its name from a controversial American anti-cannabis group and includes ...
    3 days ago
  • This is not kind
    New Zealand has a serious homelessness problem, due to skyrocketing rents and a lack of state houses. One of the ways we stick a band-aid on it is to put people up in motels. Previously, they were charged full commercial rates, saddled with odious debt due to the government's failure ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Wokies are the establishment
    by Ani O’Brien In the absence of a better word with which to refer to the rabid activists who claim progressivism while demanding adherence to an increasingly prescriptive set of political beliefs, I call them “woke”. With its roots in Black American slang, the term originally denoted a person or ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • How to strengthen the post-isolation Covid rules
    Over the weekend, the Ministry of Health reported a case of Covid-19 in Auckland that is not related to the current Auckland cluster. Before we start to panic, here’s how I think the case happened and how we can strengthen our current border controls. The new Covid-19 case is someone ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    4 days ago
  • Neuralink and You: A Human-AI Symbiosis
    Becky Casale Elon Musk reckons his Neuralink brain implant is much more than a medical device–that one day it will drive a symbiosis between humans and artificial intelligence. “Good morning! I’m Dr Benedict Egg and I’ll be supervising your Neuralink insertion today. Do you have any questions?” “Yes, Doc. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • Liam Hehir: Our obsession with American politics
    Many New Zealanders take a strong interest in US politics, with the death of Supreme Court Judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg being the latest example. Liam Hehir wonders if it very wise for New Zealanders to get so worked about it.   Many politically engaged New Zealanders are now furiously ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    4 days ago
  • COVID: Back to Level 1
    After stamping the Coronavirus out via strict lockdown between March and May, New Zealand went through a good three months without any community cases. Then a local outbreak in Auckland rather buggered things up last month. Auckland’s been in level 3 and level 2.5 for the past six weeks. ...
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Climate injustice
    Who's causing our skyrocketing emissions? As with most of our other problems, It's the rich: The wealthiest 1% of the world’s population were responsible for the emission of more than twice as much carbon dioxide as the poorer half of the world from 1990 to 2015, according to new ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Good riddance
    The border closure and resulting lack of foreign slave-workers is driving the fishing industry out of business: One fishing company is effectively out of business while others are bracing for large financial hits as the deepwater New Zealand industry, unable to get skilled foreign workers into the country, have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #38
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... The tipping points at the heart of the climate crisis Many parts of the Earth’s climate system have been destabilised by ...
    4 days ago
  • Anyone for Collins?
    In the absence of national public opinion polls, we have had to make do in recent weeks with other guides to voter intentions. Those guides, such as the Auckland Central poll, the incidence of google enquiries and the responses to Vote Compass questions, have suggested, not unexpectedly, that Labour is ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • Crusher’s fiscal malfunction
    Crusher Collins - National Party leaderWe all know that the National Party is desperate to gain some traction during this election campaign and have been throwing pretty much everything at the Labour Party in order to try and undermine Jacinda Ardern and what the Coalition Government has achieved. But unfortunately ...
    4 days ago
  • Much of the commentariat’s reporting of the most recent GDP figure was misleading and unhelpful. The prize for the stupidest remark about the GDP figure for second quarter 2020 (2020Q2) released on Thursday (17 Sept) goes to Judith Collins, whose response to Grant Robertson’s comments indicated she did not ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • Love and Hate as Complementary Revolutionary Acts
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh goloing@gmail.com (19/09/2020) Che Guevara said that a true revolutionary is motivated by love i.e. love of the oppressed, the poor, the children dying from preventable illnesses. This phrase of his is true but has been used by reformists and their more hippy wing have taken advantage ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #38
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, Sep 13, 2020 through Sat, Sep 19, 2020 Editor's Choice Get to Net-Zero by Mid-Century? Even Some Global Oil and Gas Giants Think it Can Be Done A report by a ...
    5 days ago
  • Tax cuts for all!!! (except you, you, and you)
    With the National Party this week announcing a new policy of tax cuts to spice up the election campagin. MyThinks went along to the launch and afterwards we spoke to the party’s finance spokesperson Paul “Golden Touch” Goldsmith. MT: Thanks for speaking to us Mr Goldsmith. PG: No. Thank you. ...
    My ThinksBy boonman
    6 days ago
  • Great Waves Washing Over New Zealand
    Always to islanders danger Is what comes over the seas ‘Landfall in Unknown Seas’ (Allen Curnow)Six economic issues external to New Zealand, which will greatly impact upon us. 1.         The Diminishing Global Dominance of the US. Since 1941 America has dominated the world economically and politically. Probably it could ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand has role to play in resolving crisis on ‘geopolitical fault line’, Helen Clark says
    By Geoffrey Miller New Zealand should continue to champion human rights in Belarus amidst an ongoing crackdown on protests by the country’s regime, former Prime Minister Helen Clark says. Protests in the country often referred to as ‘Europe’s last dictatorship’ erupted after the country’s disputed presidential elections on August 9 ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    7 days ago
  • Euthanasia referendum: How to cut through the emotions
    Jacqui Maguire, registered clinical psychologist This podcast episode highlights how difficult it is to have effective conversations about euthanasia due to how polarised people’s views are. I’m a clinical psychologist, with a passion for science communication. In early 2020 I founded the podcast Mind Brew, with an aim to make psychological ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • Why we need cameras on boats
    In case anyone needed further convincing, there's another example today of why we need cameras on fishing boats: reported seabird bycatch doubled during a camera trial: Commercial fishers operating off Auckland's coast around vulnerable seabirds are twice as likely to report accidentally capturing them when cameras are on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Graham Adams: The religious right’s campaign to spike the euthanasia referendum
    In the leadup to the euthanasia referendum, an array of conservative Christian political organisations is running an expensive campaign to sow doubt about the safety of assisted dying. Graham Adams argues that these religious forces know that Christian arguments aren’t convincing the public, but that it is in the public ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    7 days ago
  • Opportunistic looting
    The National Party has spent the last six months acting horrified at the cost of supporting people through the pandemic and banging on about how the debt must be repaid. So what was their economic policy released today? Massive tax-cuts for the rich, of course! National has walked back ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Uncomfortable Choices.
    Dangerous Times: This will be the choice confronting those coming of age in the 2020s. Embrace Neoliberalism’s belief in racial and sexual equality; adopt its secular and scientific world view; and cultivate the technocratic, multicultural, global outlook required of those who keep the machinery of hyper-capitalism humming. Or, throw your ...
    7 days ago
  • Tony Burton: Covid and benefit payments
    It would be a great time to reform the benefit system, according to former Deputy Chief Economic Advisor at the Treasury, Tony Burton. He argues the complexity of benefit system means that it’s failing to achieve its difficult three core objectives, which form an “iron triangle”.   New Zealand’s benefit ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    7 days ago
  • Talking tax: How to win support for taxing wealth
    Tax Justice UK, September 2020 Serious tax reform is on the political agenda for the first time in decades due to the coronavirus crisis. As this debate hots up it is important to understand what people think about public spending, wealth and tax. Tax Justice UK, along with Survation and ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    7 days ago
  • Getting Tough.
    Not Mucking Around: With upwards of 800 dead from the virus’s resurgence in the Australian state of Victoria, leniency is not on Premier Daniel Andrews’ agenda. The Victorian Police are cracking down hard on the protesters the Australian press has labelled "Covidiots".IMAGES OF POLICE, some in riot gear, others on ...
    7 days ago
  • Media Link: Nuclear strategy, then and now.
    Although I had the fortune of being a graduate student of some of the foremost US nuclear strategists of the day (1970s) and later rubbed shoulders with Air Force and Naval officers who were entrusted with parts of the US nuclear arsenal, I seldom get to write or speak about ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Chinese List.
    News that Zhenhua Data, an arm of China Zhenhua Electronics Group, a subsidiary of the military-connected China Electronic Information Industry Group (CETC), maintains a list of 800 New Zealanders on a “Overseas Key Information Database” that contains personal information on more than 2.4 million foreign individuals, has caused some consternation ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Things that grow fast, and things that surprise us
    Marie Becdelievre January 2020. The number of news article mentioning coronavirus exploded and anxious voices whispered about a global pandemic. Whisper? To me, it was only a whisper. I tend to learn about the world through non-fiction books, conferences, and academic research rather than news and social media, so ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #37, 2020
    2,082,476,000,000,000 Viability of greenhouse gas removal via the artificial addition of volcanic ash to the ocean  (not open access, unfortunately) walks us through the numbers on a particular means of CO2 removal, addition of volcanic tephra to the ocean. The mechanism is straight chemistry and the cost is fully an order of ...
    1 week ago
  • Barbados to become a republic
    Barbados is planning to remove the queen as head of state and become a republic in time for the 55th anniversary of its independence in 2021: Barbados has announced its intention to remove the Queen as its head of state and become a republic by November 2021. [...] Reading ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Party Like It’s 1989: Bait and Switch is a Bad Look, Mr Hipkins
    At the 2017 election, the New Zealand Labour Party promised a Fees Free Policy for tertiary students. Basically, it would make the first year of university education free in 2018, with a second year in 2021, and a third in 2024. It also promised to restore Post-Graduate access to the ...
    1 week ago
  • Will the tropics eventually become uninhabitable?
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz What is the impact of temperature increases in the tropics? ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A first-hand look: What it’s like to live in a 2020 California wildfire evacuation zone
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Daisy Simmons It felt like 100 degrees in my in-laws’ Grass Valley, California, kitchen, but at least the lights were on and for the moment we were safely “distanced” from the Jones Fire. We’d just finished dessert, after pizza and a movie ...
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 is not the only infectious disease New Zealand wants to eliminate, and genome sequencing is...
    Nigel French, Massey University Genome sequencing — the mapping of the genetic sequences of an organism — has helped track the spread of COVID-19 cases in Auckland, but it also plays an important role in the control of other infectious diseases in New Zealand. One example is Mycoplasma bovis, a ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A flaw in our electoral transparency regime
    A key part of our electoral funding regime is a requirement for some transparency around donations, on the basis that if we can find out who has bought our politicians (typically after we have voted for them) then everything is alright. There are a lot of problems with that regime ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Don’t Steal This Book
    On “In Defense of Looting” Matt Taibibi takes an entertaining look at this generation of woke activists and how they compare with Abbie Hoffman the iconic anti-Vietnam war counter-culture figure of the 1960s On Thursday, August 27th, the same day Donald Trump formally accepted the Republican nomination, National Public Radio ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Carbon prices must rise
    When Parliament introduced the Emissions Trading Scheme, it was worried that carbon prices might get too high. So it introduced a "fixed price option", allowing polluters to pay the government $25 in the place of surrendering credits. The result was predictable: after we were thrown out of international carbon markets ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Disclosure
    The government will finally be requiring large New Zealand companies to disclose their climate change risks: New Zealand finance companies will be made to report on climate change risk, Climate Change Minister James Shaw has announced. The policy will force around 200 large financial organisations in New Zealand to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Tackling the hard issues – trust and relationships
    By Claire Grant, Genomics Aotearoa Communications Manager Community consultation is becoming an increasingly important aspect of research programmes in New Zealand, and with that comes the art of relationship building. Engagement between scientists and user-groups is certainly nothing new. But as stakeholder involvement becomes more of a requirement for science, ...
    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
    1 week ago
  • Equality Network – September Newsletter
    Read the Equality Network newsletter here ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • The Left’s Lost Allies.
    Rebels In A Wrong Cause: The truly frightening thing about Jami-Lee Ross’s and Billy Te Kahika’s success in persuading thousands of New Zealanders that Covid-19 is just another trick, just another way of stealing away their power, is realising just how many of them once marched at the Left’s side. ...
    1 week ago
  • Legal Beagle: Low-Hanging Fruit
    In a couple of months, the 53rd Parliament will meet in Wellington, and approximately 120 MPs will be sworn in, many of them for the first time.They will all have political goals, some aligning with their party platforms, some not, some complex, and some simple, but they will gain one ...
    1 week ago
  • Closing the Gap thinks that Labour’s proposal to raise the top tax rate is great but………
    Media Statement For Immediate Release 10th September 2020 The income and wealth inequality lobby group, “Closing the Gap” thinks the Labour proposal a great start says Peter Malcolm, a spokesperson for the group. But they need to be aware of what many of the rich do and of what do ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: No nonsense
    ACT is pushing a "no-nonsense climate change plan". What does it involve? Repealing the Zero Carbon Act and Emissions Trading Scheme, reversing the fossil-fuel exploration ban, and allowing mining on conservation land. In other words, repealing any policy which might actually reduce emissions. Which is the very definition of nonsensical. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • My Climate Story: Coming full Circle
    This blog post is a follow up to my recap of Al Gore's Climate Reality Leadership Training I recently participated in. One of the exercises we were asked to complete was to write about our respective "Climate Story". This is a slightly updated version to the one I had submitted during ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Primary sector exports and jobs up again
    Primary sector exports and jobs are up again, demonstrating the sector’s underlying strength amid the COVID-19 global pandemic and US-China trade war, and supporting New Zealand’s economic recovery. Stats NZ today reported New Zealand’s merchandise exports in August were up 8.6% on a year ago, driven by an increase in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Clean energy future for more schools
    Schools across Aotearoa New Zealand will be supported by the Government to upgrade to run on clean energy, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. The Minister has allocated $50 million from the Clean Powered Public Service Fund to replace, or convert, coal boilers in schools with clean ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Building business strength with digital tools
    New training and tools for digital commerce will give small businesses, especially in the tourism sector, the support they need to adapt and innovate in a COVID world. Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis and Small Business Minister Stuart Nash have announced details of how $20 million digital capability funding set aside ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • New pest lures to protect nature
    The Department of Conservation (DOC) is investing $1.4 million to develop new predator lures that would be game-changers for trapping and surveillance towards a predator-free Aotearoa, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage, announced in Christchurch today. The proposal is to develop long-life lures attractive to a range of predators—rats, mustelids ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Support for innovative Pacific education responses to COVID-19 needs
    Supporting new and creative Pacific education practices as part of our COVID-19 response and recovery is the focus of a new $28.5 million Pacific Education Innovation Fund announced today by Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa.  “There is already an incredible amount of innovative and creative work going on in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Eligibility expanded for COVID-19 leave support
    The expanded scheme will cover: People who have COVID-19 like symptoms and meet the Ministry of Health’s criteria, and need to self-isolate while awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test. People who are directed to self-isolate by a Medical Officer of Health or their delegate or on advice of their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Seasonal work visa available to more people
    The Government is putting in place a range of immigration policy changes to help fill labour shortages in key industries while ensuring New Zealanders, who have lost jobs due to COVID-19, have the chance to find new employment. “Two key sectors we are moving to help are horticulture and wine ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • More border exceptions for critical roles
    The Government has established class exceptions for border entry for a limited number of veterinarians, deep sea fishing crew, as well as agricultural and horticultural machinery operators. “Tight border restrictions remain the backbone of the Government’s border strategy to protect New Zealand against COVID-19 and ensure New Zealand citizens and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Crown will not appeal Dodds v Southern Response decision
    The Crown will not appeal the Court of Appeal decision in the Dodds v Southern Response case, Grant Robertson announced today. “Southern Response will be paying the damages awarded by the Court to Mr and Mrs Dodds shortly. The Crown was already meeting their legal costs for this appeal. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Crucial PGF investments for Northland
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing nearly $30 million in a diverse range of projects that will create immediate and long-term jobs and lift economic and social outcomes for Northland and its people. Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones made the announcement today in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • $27million investment in global vaccine facility
    The Coalition Government has committed to invest $27 million in COVID-19 vaccine development through the global COVAX Facility, Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The COVAX Facility is a key part of our COVID-19 Vaccine Strategy to obtain safe and effective vaccines. It allows us to invest in a high-quality, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government backing Māori landowners
    The Government will provide up to $1.69 million through the One Billion Trees programme to Māori landowners to make their whenua more productive through the planting of forests, both native and exotic, and improve economic and environmental outcomes, Forestry Minister Shane Jones has announced. “Around 1.5 million ha of land ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New tools to make nature more accessible
    People planning to head outdoors now have a resource that lets them know how accessible an area is for people with varying levels of mobility, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. The Halberg Foundation, Sensibel, and the Department of Conservation (DOC) have launched Accessibel, a new tool which helps ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • PGF makes Māori history more accessible
    One of the most significant battle sites of the 1860s Land Wars will receive $2.96 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to improve the site and help tell the New Zealand story to visitors, Māori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. Nanaia Mahuta ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Making it official: The journey of te reo Māori | Kia whakapūmautia: Ngā piki me ngā heke o te r...
    The journey towards recognising Māori as an official language and taonga has been captured as a web series and launched today during Te Wiki o te Reo Māori, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “Te reo Māori is a living language, and understanding its significance, and pathways to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Better-than-forecast GDP reflects decision to protect New Zealand
    Today’s better-than-forecast GDP figures show the expected impact of the decision to act quickly to protect New Zealanders from the global COVID-19 pandemic. GDP fell 12.2% in the June quarter from March, reflecting decisions to close New Zealand’s borders and enter Alert Level 4. “This result was better than the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Boost for COVID-19 related Pacific education needs
    The Government is investing $39.7 Million over four years to support the educational needs of Pacific learners and families in the regions hardest hit by COVID-19, with Auckland getting an immediate boost, Associate Minister of Education Jenny Salesa says.   “Like all New Zealanders Pacific families want learners to do well ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • More resources for kiwi conservation
    New Zealand’s goal of 100,000 kiwi by 2030 is being helped by an extra $19.7 million in funding to accelerate iwi and community efforts to protect kiwi, Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced. “$19.7 million of Jobs for Nature funding is being invested in kiwi conservation activities including increased predator ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Improving access to affordable electricity
    Ensuring New Zealanders can get the best deal on their electricity takes a step in the right direction today with the South Island launch of the EnergyMate pilot run by the Electricity Retailers’ Association, says Minister of Energy and Resources, Dr Megan Woods. EnergyMate is an industry-led programme providing coaching ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government achieves 50 percent women on state boards
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter announced today that the Government has reached its target of 50 percent on women on state sector board and committees – setting a new record level of women on state sector boards. “This Government is committed to having more women in leadership roles - ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Record transport investment to help economic recovery and save lives
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford released today the final Government Policy Statement on land transport (GPS) 2021 which outlines the planned $48 billion investment in services and infrastructure over the next decade. “The final GPS supports our Government’s five-point plan for economic recovery by confirming our record investments in transport infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Advancing clean energy technology
    Three ambitious and cutting-edge research programmes that will lift New Zealand’s advanced energy technology research capability over seven years, have been supported by Government today, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The projects will each receive a share of $40.7 million investment from the Strategic Science Investment Fund. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Major milestone reached in Pike River Re-entry
    The critical area for forensic examination known as Pit Bottom in Stone has been reached in what is a major milestone for the Pike River re-entry project, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little announced. “The infrastructure located in Pit Bottom in Stone is of very significant interest in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Economic recovery guides Govt response to retirement income policy review
    The Government is working on how New Zealand’s retirement income policies and settings can best support Kiwis in light of the COVID-19 economic recovery, with the help of the Retirement Commissioner’s latest review, Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said. “The Retirement Commissioner’s three-yearly review into New Zealand’s retirement ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Iwi community hub opens in Murupara
    A new digital hub and development centre in Murupara will be instrumental in growing the region’s productivity, said Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau at the official opening of two community initiatives today. “I’m pleased to be here celebrating a significant milestone for two projects set to make a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PREFU shows economy doing better than forecast
    PREFU shows economy doing better than forecast Unemployment to peak at 7.8%, down from 9.8% forecast in the Budget Year-to-June accounts show tax revenue, debt and OBEGAL better than forecast Global forecast downgraded as COVID-19 second waves and uncertainty grows Balanced plan to support critical public services, manage debt and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Spruce-up for Ōtaki community facilities
    The Kāpiti Coast town of Ōtaki will receive $1.4 million in Government funding for two projects providing scores of jobs for locals while improving community facilities, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The Māoriland Charitable Trust will receive a $900,000 Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) grant to upgrade the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF funding for Jobs for Nature programme
    The Provincial Growth Fund will provide $11.88 million to fund fencing and waterway projects nationwide that will improve the environment and create jobs in their communities, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. “These projects will create more than 100 jobs nationwide with work starting within the next couple ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Procurement to promote jobs, Māori and Pasifika businesses and sustainability
    As part of the COVID-19 recovery, the Government has strengthened its procurement rules to ensure its annual $42 billion spend creates more jobs, uses more sustainable construction practices and results in better outcomes for Māori and Pasifika, Government Ministers announced today.   Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford says the $42 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Timaru’s Theatre Royal to be upgraded and new heritage facility built
    The Government is supporting a major upgrade of Timaru’s iconic Theatre Royal and the construction of a new connected Heritage Facility museum and exhibition space with $11.6 million from the Government’s Infrastructure Fund, Jacinda Ardern announced today. “We heard the call from the community and the council. The Theatre Royal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • District Court judge appointed
    Chrissy Montague (formerly Armstrong), barrister of Auckland has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Wellington, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Montague commenced practice in Auckland in 1987 and went into general practice dealing with Wills, Estates, Trusts, Conveyancing, Relationship Property ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Approval given to Commercial Film and Video Production Proposal
      A Proposal to provide for the development and operation of commercial film and video production facilities in areas of Christchurch has been given the go ahead. Hon Poto Williams, Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, has approved the Proposal, which was prepared and submitted by Regenerate Christchurch. Minister Williams ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting a thriving wānanga sector to benefit Māori learners
    As part of the Government’s focus on building closer partnerships with Māori and enhancing the quality of, and access to, Māori medium education, a payment of $8 million will be made to Te Wānanga o Raukawa in partial recognition of its Waitangi Tribunal claim (WAI 2698), Associate Education Minister Kelvin ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Jobs for Nature boosts efforts to restore Kaimai-Mamaku
    The Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage has announced a $19 million investment over four years in an important forest restoration project involving a partnership between the Department of Conservation, iwi/hapū, the Bay of Plenty and Waikato Regional Councils, community conservation groups and organisations such as Forest and Bird across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand first in the world to require climate risk reporting
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