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Farmers given a chance. I think National will screw it up for them.

Written By: - Date published: 8:11 am, October 24th, 2019 - 21 comments
Categories: bill english, Economy, jacinda ardern, Judith Collins, nz first, politicans, Politics - Tags: , , ,

One of the less endearing traits of National is their ability to screw almost anything up for short-term advantage regardless how it impacts those that they are purportedly trying to protect. Usually this comes from the results of in-fighting within the party.

Luke Malpass and Henry Cooke outline the emissions deal in “Government sets deadline for farmer emissions“. Unsurprisingly when you look at the political analysis, a lot of it concerns the probable infighting and short-term maneuvering of factions inside National.

The Government will announce plans on Thursday to make New Zealand the first nation in the world to fully fold agriculture into an emissions pricing scheme, with a comprehensive price on greenhouse gases introduced by 2025.

Stuff understands the Government will do this by accepting an agricultural sector proposal to give it those five years to develop a farm-level pricing mechanism separate from New Zealand’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), which the sector opposes. Farmers will pay no additional levies or charges in the meantime.

If this new scheme is not established, agriculture will be folded into the ETS by default in 2025 – a “backstop” measure neither the Government nor the sector wants to use. It could even be brought in as early as 2022 if the Government at that point felt agriculture was not moving fast enough.

I expect that having political meatheads around like Judith Collins will encourage sabotage of the agreement – as she has been doing for months now.  Unfortunately for such fools of National, there are some teeth at the back of the deal.

If this deal fails to produce a result of a viable scheme and eventual results, then the farming community will be tossed into the Emission Trading Scheme. 

Now I’d point out that the agricultural community and I both detest the ETS – but for different reasons.

Personally I think that the ETS was doomed from the start because it wasn’t suited to the purpose of reducing emissions. A simple tax on emissions  might be a blunt instrument, but it would have forced changes in the economic behaviour of consumers. The ETS was just a pork-barrel of exemptions, exceptions and outright fraud like the dodgy as shit overseas carbon credits that flooded and largely destroyed the market.

The farmers seem to have always taken several viewpoints. From the scientific illiterates unwilling to accept the basic science at all. Through to those who considered that the ETS provided no room for individual farmers to reduce their emissions (and thereby gain advantage over their neighbours).

There have been improvements by individual farmers even without the incentive of a ETS or whatever arrangement comes out of this deal. But it is patchy and overall the nett emissions from agriculture has been rising rapidly as a whole, even faster than their increases in production.

The primary reason that I can see is because the agricultural community appears to have been as fractured, incoherent, and only united in their opposition to the ETS. They sure as hell haven’t shown any signs of actually doing anything particularly positive except when forced to by local or central government. I’d be happy to be proven wrong in that assessment. But it has been noticeable in the last two decades that while every other sector of the economy as a whole has been steadily cleaning up their act while improving productivity, agriculture as a whole seems to have been both in denial and actually getting worse as they intensify production.

This political stalemate has been in place in the early 2000s when Bill English was riding a tractor around parliament’s steps being a  misogynist dickhead in a suit. The nett effect of agricultures dithering and National’s encouragement of it is that agriculture as a whole has escaped any real incentive towards reducing  emissions.

In the meantime, the rest of the population has been getting short on patience with the freeloading and head up the arse attitudes of the whole agricultural community as we pay for their stubborn and short-sighted attitudes.

While agriculture is an important revenue earner for the economy, it isn’t a high profit centre undeserving of special treatment. We export around 17x as much food by weight as we consume inside the country. The impacts of agriculture cause severe issues for many  other industries, especially profitable ones like tourism, while also raising costs of water treatment 

But if anyone cares to look at the profitability or even the employment and wages of our overseas agricultural earnings for the economy, it is pathetic compared to just about every other revenue sector from tourism to my tech sector – all of whom actually pay (albeit underpay) for their greenhouse emissions. 

Well agriculture now gets their chance to show their stuff and come up with something that incentivises their sector to reduce their greenhouse emissions – which are nearly half of New Zealand’s total emissions

Admittedly that ETS backstop initially won’t be as bad as it should be. NZ First has negotiated a deal that will negate the initial costs by 95%. But that really isn’t going to last. There isn’t much tolerance for further dithering by agriculture.

I’d suggest that the agricultural sector start by figuring out a way of keeping some of the more stupid short-term parasites from National from screwing up the focus. To meet this kind of deadline agriculture needs to do some serious work on the issue and stop  time wasting stupid stunts. 

There is also a pretty good political analysis by Cooke and Malpass in “Farmers get time, Ardern gets support for elegant climate solution

21 comments on “Farmers given a chance. I think National will screw it up for them.”

  1. Sanctuary 1

    "…Farmers given a chance. I think National will screw it up for them…"

    Farmers won't need the National party to screw it up for them.  The industrial-agricultural complex will agree to this for entirely public relations purposes with no intention whatsoever of adhering to their side of the bargain. 

    The industrial-agricultural complex  will simply calculate that if Labour wins next year then they'll still have to do nothing because it is most likely that they'll get a National government no later than 2026 that'll simply cancel the emissions scheme for farming. 

    Sure, there is a overlap of one year between 2025 and 2026, but you can bet your bottom dollar that for that awkward period the industrial-agricultural complex will simply whip up a rural rebellion and you also put the house on Labour caving to that rural rabble rousing quicker than you can say "careerist neolib backdown". 

    Basically, the industrial-agricultural complex has just got itself a five year window to ensure they elect a National government that will obligingly allow they to do nothing.

    The left never learns.

    • lprent 1.1

      Entirely likely, although I suspect that National as a mostly coherent organising force (compared to any of the agricultural organisations) will act as a cohesive force to bind all of the wastrals of agriculture together.

      But the end result of this politically is that agriculture will have had the chance that they urging since the early 2000's to try to do something effective their way. If they fail, or have National fail it for them – then they will have no defense when the rest of NZ shoves them into some thing very restrictive and designed to force rapid change.

      I'm sure that some of them and their children remember the effect of that kind of rapid change from the mid-1980s. I know that my partner does.

      Personally I am so glad that I decided at the end of the 1970s that SMPs were going to really damage agriculture, and avoided going off looking for a farming career. 

      The point is that farmers who are interested in having a farming industry survive in NZ need to look at this deal closely and figure out how to make it work. They aren’t a very profitable industry for NZ. As a country we don’t need 17x our requirements in food production if they aren’t profitable. They need to learn to be more productive with higher margins offshore. And they need to have less downstream pollution and wastage affecting profitable industries.

      Agriculture isn’t going to get too many more chances.

      • Dukeofurl 1.1.1

        Profitable  farming is there just they are expert at 'reducing taxable income ' through deductions and other means to come up with  very little income that can be taxed.

        A family farm  will be leased to the next generation, the lease payments  being set  so its   enough to wipe out any  tax. No capital gains or gift duty mean wealth is transferred tax free.

      • OnceWasTim 1.1.2

        "……. then they will have no defense when the rest of NZ shoves them into some thing very restrictive and designed to force rapid change"

        You mean as in something like a torture chamber or waterboarding?

        Think what that could do to the bleached teeth, collagen and botox synthetics.

        (Pardon and humble apologies in advance @ lprent, but I'm currently reading "How to be a Dictator: The Cult of Personality in the 20thC)

        • lprent 1.1.2.1

          I was thinking more about the removal of SMPs
          https://teara.govt.nz/en/government-and-agriculture/page-9

          However, the next six years were traumatic for farmers. The dollar was floated in March 1985; high interest rates drew money into New Zealand, raised the dollar's value, and reduced returns to exporters, who were usually paid in US dollars. The government phased out most support for agriculture, including fertiliser subsidies, tax concessions, concessionary interest rates, and help controlling rabbits and noxious weeds. Crown agencies began to charge for services such as meat inspection, animal health inspections, quarantine and farm advisory services.

          https://teara.govt.nz/en/government-and-agriculture/page-8

          From the late 1970s New Zealand faced low prices for its products and difficulty securing export markets. There was a stockpile of sheep meat. By the early 1980s, government support for agriculture was equivalent to 30% of the total output from farming.

           

    • That_guy 1.2

      Both you and the industrial-agriculture complex are assuming that there will be no significant climate-related events that change people's minds. Both assumptions are probably false.

      Extreme weather events do change people's minds (https://www.stuff.co.nz/science/116397981/extreme-weather-linked-to-greater-public-trust-in-science). There will be more of them (https://www.ipcc.ch/documentation/).

  2. Sabine 2

    "…Farmers given a chance. I think National will screw it up for them…"

    Farmers have a decision to make. And one would hope that their own wellbeing is dictated by something else then Paula Benefits need for another 1000$ pair of shoes, or No Bridges sad attempts at humor. 

    Really. One would hope. If not, then maybe Farmers are fully responsable for the shit they care to overlook and pretend is not soiling their living room. 

  3. Climaction 3

    If farmers don’t see this as the olive branch they have always requested to come to the party and help, they’re deluded.

    5 years is an extremely reasonable timeframe to get what needs to be done, done

    • lprent 3.1

      They only really need to demonstrate some reasonable progress towards doing something substantive over the next 5 years.

      But that would be more than they have managed as a group on the last 20. So far they really have only demonstrated how to increase irritation at stupid obstructionism.

      Oh well – off to work.

      • Climaction 3.1.1

        Better late than never seems to be an overriding principal the fight against climate change. Better than blaming a sector for the past when it can change. Unlike coal 

  4. Dukeofurl 4

    What is weird is that Farm  greenhouse gases are counted as part of NZs emissions but the tax payer covers the cost  now.

    What is new is the source of the emissions having to  pay directly.

    This should be the approach taken, saying its only removing government subsidies to  farmers.

  5. marty mars 5

    "Well agriculture now gets their chance to show their stuff…"

    Yeah like they did with cleaning the waterways – can't swim in them, can't drink from them.

    What a joke – such weakness and disregard for the future of this country and people.

  6. Stuart Munro. 6

    It's always a problem with communities, that they are prone to be captured by self-serving spivs, instead of talented leaders. It is not that there are not plenty of farmers who have been paying some attention to the environment, trying out new ways of reducing their impacts, or diversifying to less extractive, higher value products like organic milk. But these have not been the public voices of the rural sector. The noisy ones have been the crude production mentality crowd, the cheap foreign labour dependent seigneurship, not the quality innovators who can create a sustainable high value future. I'm not hopeful – the dumb captured our fisheries long ago – and they're not coming back anytime soon.

    • cleangreen 6.1

      Yes Stuart,

       

      I live in the country mostly now around farmers with our 10 acres with our pet sheep, using organic systems mainly, and farmers are trying to adapt.

      The industrial policies were quite ingrained in them until five years ago we saw as they followed the usual dosing of sheep with heavy use of vaccines, and sheep dipping, and then using fertilizers with toxic chemicals that are bad for our river runoff systems.

      Now we see them using other more natural methods of saving our waterways so we give them a hands up for this.

      Problem was becoming far worse when we saw the arrival of big “factory farming”

      They are the ones that Government really should be going after now as they are polluting far more than is known according to what we are witnessing now.

      • tc 6.1.1

        Agreed, common sense is to not flog the land and is mostly prevailing as an obvious move for the next gen's succession and wellbeing.

        These larger group owned entities with farm managers, targets and practices that are driven from head office require attention.

        I'm still seeing a fair few unfenced waterways in my travels also aside from when rivers n streams rise and the herd ends up defacto in the waterway.

    • Very true @ Stuart Munro. But then when a few of the

      " the cheap foreign labour dependent seigneurship" are involved with exactly the 'skillsets'  we supposedly require, they're subjected to the "computer says NO" mentality and are ushered out of the country as quickly as possible so that a few "self-serving spivs" can be parachuted in to take their place

  7. Peter 7

    "The agricultural community appears to have been as fractured, incoherent, and only united in their opposition to the ETS"?

    And while the agricultural community appears to have been as fractured, incoherent, and united in their opposition to the ETS, are they also united in a pro forma, knee jerk way in their opposition to the Labour Party?

     

    • lprent 7.1

      When I've been around farmers, I've generally found that they just didn't like politicians very much.

      However they did like local roads (preferably paved), didn't like unions much (including their own industry bodies), and were relatively morally conservative.

      So they tend to vote for current local MP and NZ First or National rather than being united against Labour.

      You may not be able to understand the distinction.

      Consider as a difference that unionists are ideologically united against National in their members self interest (with good reason). But often not supporting Labour. They tend to want more radical surgery than Labour, as a broad based party, can provide.

      Farmers are more self-interested in getting things that agree with their world view or that benefit them, but not particularly united against Labour. It is just that not that many of them vote Labour. Actually I suspect that more vote Green than vote Labour for the same reasons.

      But these days the number of rural voters voting NZ First is rising. That is because there is a pretty solid core of people in the rural regions who like the old-style moral and economic conservatism that NZ First has rather than approach of the urban National neo-liberals.

  8. gnomic 8

    "One of the less endearing traits of National"

    National actually has some endearing traits? I seem to have missed them during several decades of observation. And they seem to be going downhill in that regard under current management. Slimy attack ads for example.

    Have to agree about ETS however, never could see how this was other than a scam aimed at avoiding any meaningful action.

     

     

  9. WeTheBleeple 9

    Due to the numbers it may seem our Farmers are largely recalcitrant old farts but the fact is I read reports every day of new Farmers, organisations and initiatives coming on board to tackle water purity and carbon emissions. These Farmers are who other Farmers WILL listen to. These are salt of the earth hard working owner/operators who are reducing overheads alongside herd numbers, yet keeping profitability despite the calamitous naysayers. 

    Now, some Farmers I've met are despicable human beings, but also, some builders, artists, businessmen, unemployed, etc etc. The bashing of the group in general is akin to racism where we hate them for the cut of their gib, looking no further than the red bands and stubbies to pour scorn upon. 

    Seems to me that those old school everyone else is a fool type of Farmers will be called out/dragged in (to ETS) or shut down, and the sensible ones will get to keep the farm. I see no problem here as these are the loud and vocal haters and bullies who'll keep everyone in the dark ages as they're superstitious and stupid. There's a fair few but I'd wager a minority once their thrall is broken. Obviously it'd be nice to see more rapid change, but pragmatism raises its ugly head once again, as the alternative (a National Government) is about as useful to the planet as a Trump Presidency.

    In the interim, how are we townies adapting our land use? Still mowing the lawn every week? Got the cides to kill anything that looks to alter our perfect landscapes? I see armies of petrol driven petrol appliance wielding workmen everywhere every day cutting grass and trees down, constantly the truckloads of mulch, rarely ever a trailer of trees…

    The separation of progressive vs pigheaded farmers needs to occur. As a united front they're a 'too big to fail' type problem for NZ. This legislation, though it may seem toothless at first, can do such a thing. I hope we townies can differentiate between the two, encouraging and backing those who sorely need it, and keeping close watch on the mongrels to drop them in the hole of their own making when the time comes.

    • I suggest as a refresh from the toxic farmers stories – listen to Country Life on Radionz, they are usually lovely people and even if not, it is helpful to understand what their latest battle is – pests, early frosts, rain at the wrong time etc.   We need to have rules we insist on that all are expected to follow, and get stuck into the nasties.    And look after the ordinary farmers as even the National Party, the supposed farmers party, doesn't give a cowpat for rural people's needs except to make a show for publicity.

      https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/countrylife

      Country Life takes you down country roads to meet ordinary people achieving their dreams. We live in a beautiful country…

      Friday 9pm and Saturday 7am

      That will stop us having to wash our mouth out with soap.   (Teacher did that to me at school when I was little, the nasty.)

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    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • The freshwater mussel housing crisis: eviction by invasive weeds?
    Tom Moore Traditionally a food source and cutting tool, freshwater mussels/kākahi are now widely valued as water filters that help clean our waterbodies and maintain ecosystem health throughout Aotearoa. The improvement they provide in water quality can make it easier for other animals to live in streams and rivers, as ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Back it up Luxon: endorsing the destructive past is not actually the way forward
    And to think he gave all the potential goodwill away with that moronic, cult-like statement (repeated ad nauseam by many National hardliners) that Key is quite simply “the greatest PM we ever had”… Installation complete: this was nothing ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Good riddance
    National MP and former Conservation Minister Maggie Barry will not seek re-election next year. Good riddance. Because in case anyone has forgotten, barry is a bullying thug who terrorised both public servants and fellow MPs. She is one of the people who makes Parliament a toxic workplace, and our country ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: D-Day
    The Zero Carbon Bill is back in the House today for its second reading. While this isn't the final stage, its still effectively D-Day for the bill. Because today, at around 5pm, is when we're going to find out if it has a majority, whether National will support it or ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Winston is right
    Winston Peters is in court today, suing a bunch of former Minister and civil servants over their pre-election leak of his superannuation repayment. He's characterised the leak as malicious, and said that it is repugnant that his information was passed on to Ministers to use for political advantage. And he's ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Media impartiality
    Sky's economics editor, Ed Conway has posted a Twitter thread responding to a claim that - as far as I can see - Labour never made:
    Are NHS operation cancellations at an all-time high? That's the impression you might have been left with if you read this story from the ...
    1 week ago
  • Finish what’s on your plate
    Murray Cox Do I have to finish my favourite genome? That’s an often-asked question. Geneticists generally strive to produce high-quality genomes that sequence every last gene, making full use of the state-of-the-art technologies coming on stream. Sequencing DNA means determining the order of the four chemical building blocks – called ...
    SciBlogsBy Genomics Aotearoa
    1 week ago
  • Gainful Employment: A Cautionary Tale.
    Transformative Politics: The idea is to turn each recipient into an unwitting accomplice in their own transformation. From interested observer to hyped-up activist, sharing our messages promiscuously with ‘friends’. You’ll be part of an ever-expanding circulatory system, Jennifer, for the ideas that will win us the election.”JENNIFER SKITTERED her chair ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand should not fund bigotry
    Two years ago, the Cook Islands government announced that it was planning to join the civilised world and decriminalise consensual homosexual sex between men. Now, they've reversed their position, and decided to criminalise lesbians into the bargain:Two years ago, in a step welcomed by many people including the gay and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More tyranny in Australia
    The boycott is a fundamental tool of protest. By choosing who we buy from, we can send a message, and hopefully change corporate behaviour. Historically, boycotts have been effective, for example over apartheid in South Africa and Israel, in forcing divestment from Myanmar, and in ending bus segregation in the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Submission for rationality and science against the assaults of pre-modernism and post-modernism
    Jan Rivers spoke at the Abortion Legislation Select Committee in favour of the bill, but in opposition to calls from other submitters to exchange the word ‘woman’ for ‘person’ throughout the bill. Jan is a supporter of the feminist group Speak Up For Women and has recently written an excellent ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • My loyal readership of … Cam girls and Pornbots?
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    1 week ago
  • Worth repeating forever
    There have been three polls since the election was announced, and I will shamelessly steal YouGov / UK Polling Report's Anthony Wells' summary of them:Survation – CON 34%, LAB 26%, LDEM 19%, BREX 12%, GRN 1% Ipsos MORI – CON 41%, LAB 24%, LDEM 20%, BREX 7%, GRN 3% YouGov ...
    1 week ago
  • Lutte Ouvriere on the explosion in Chile
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    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Wage theft – I’m fucking over it.
    Today, a worker contacted me asking if she could go to the police over her employer stealing thousands of dollars from her in unpaid wages. The employer also did not pay this worker’s taxes or student loan which amounts to tax fraud. As a workers rights activist, who founded the ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • On The Rebound.
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered, They're Yours: Is there any person more vulnerable than a jilted lover on the rebound? Or, anything more certain than that the charmer, the predator, the glib spinner of lies and promises will seek such broken people out? Yes, of course, he will love every one of ...
    1 week ago
  • Rabbi urges congregation to vote against Corbyn
    Though Jonathan Romain is a fairly high profile Rabbi, writing in several papers and popping up on TV and the radio, this story doesn't seem to have made it to the Guardian yet, so I'll take the unusual step of linking the Stephen Pollard edited Jewish Chronicle:Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • My absurdly optimistic prediction
    There's an election afoot, and that is when noted opinion formers such as myself get to make wild fools of ourselves by pretending we have the faintest idea what will happen.So, here is my absurdly optimistic prediction:Labour - 285Conservative - 262SNP - 53Lib Dems - 20PC - 5Ireland - 18 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • October ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image Credit: Increase Social Media Traffic & Website Traffic I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A mountain of a challenge in banning glyphosate
    Belinda Cridge I was reading my son a story last night. A great tale of derring-do of five mountaineers scaling the Matterhorn for the first time. One in the party had tried six times previously and failed, this was the last attempt before winter closed another season. They tried a ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • This government has a problem with secrecy
    As introduced, the Zero Carbon Bill included an expansive secrecy clause, which would have covered virtually all decisions by the Climate Change Commission over our most important policy area. The Ministry for the Environment admitted this was a mistake (or as they put it, an "oversight"), and the select committee ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A small New Zealand songbird that hides food for later use provides insights into cognitive evolutio...
    Rachael Shaw, Victoria University of Wellington When we think about animals storing food, the image that usually comes to mind is a squirrel busily hiding nuts for the winter. We don’t usually think of a small songbird taking down an enormous invertebrate, tearing it into pieces and hiding these titbits ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Referenda on Euthanasia – NZ First’s Victory – or a Major Miscalculation?
    . . NZ First’s success in putting the euthenasia bill to a public referenda may not be the victory they believe it to be. They may even have sounded the death-knell for a second Labour-NZ First-Green coalition. On 23 July this year, NZ First MP, Jenny Marcroft, submitted a Supplementary ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn the Mighty vs BoJo the Clown
    Interesting contrasting pictures in the Guardian:Corbyn gets the classic positive shot - low angle and a clear background, making him look authoritative (of course, being Corbyn, he doesn't do authoritative very well).Where as Johnson gets pictured with children at some sort of mad-hatters' tea party:Begging the question, who is the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Public health, externality, and vaccination
    Paternalism is contentious. Arguments for state action to protect us from ourselves are fraught. I come down pretty heavily on the anti-paternalism side of the argument, but I’ve heard respectable defences of paternalism. But policy around vaccination is hardly paternalistic. There’s a clear market failure that could be pointed to ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Happy Halloween
    Its Halloween, so its time for annual pumpkin trepanning and chocolate eating ritual. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Twenty thousand leagues under the sea
    I’ve been reading Jules Verne’s novel Twenty thousand leagues under the sea, considered as one of the very earliest science fiction stories. In brief, Monsieur Aronnax and a couple of sidekicks are taken prisoner by Captain Nemo and his mysterious crew and treated to an underwater voyage around the world ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Disclosing the risks
    The climate crisis is going to mean some pretty big changes in our country, both from its impacts and the policies required to address them. Most obviously, whole suburbs are going to be underwater by 2100, meaning people and businesses are going to have to relocate to higher ground. But ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • MPI fails again
    Yesterday a dairy company was fined $483,000 for repeatedly failing to report listeria in its facility. Its a serious fine for a serious crime: listeria is a serious disease, and they were effectively trying to kill people with it. But there's another story hidden in there, and its not a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Gay Men Address Gender Identity
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    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • National’s Going Gangbusters.
    Criminal Enterprises: Gangs are not welfare institutions. Nor are they a substitute for the family their members never had. They are ruthless, violent, criminal money-making machines. That is all.OKAY, first-things-first. Gangs exist for one purpose – and only one. They are a sure-fired, time-tested institution for making crime pay – ...
    2 weeks ago
  • “Action for Healthy Waterways”: Some big ticket actions that the Government has neglected
    Prof Nick Wilson, A/Prof George Thomson, A/Prof Simon Hales, Prof Michael Baker The NZ Ministry for the Environment has produced a valuable discussion document with many good ideas for improving the health of waterways in New Zealand. But there are important gaps. In this blog we consider three big-ticket items ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • ADHD and fluoride – wishful thinking supported by statistical manipulation?
    Finding reality needs more than wishful thinking. The problem is that statistical arguments often provide a jargon to confirm biases. Image credit: Accurate Thinking Versus Wishful Thinking in Gambling I worry at the way some ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    4 days ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    4 days ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    5 days ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    1 week ago
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Closer cooperation with Korean horse racing industry
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters met with Korea Racing Authority Chairperson Nak Soon Kim in Seoul today to discuss closer cooperation between the New Zealand and Korean horse racing industries. As part of the visit to the Seoul Racecourse, Mr Peters witnessed ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Otago to lead digital creativity
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10 million to establish Otago as the centre of New Zealand’s creative digital industry over the next ten years, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “The initiative will bring us closer to the vision of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Young Otago students encouraged to take on forestry careers
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF)’s skills and employment programme will help young Otago people into long-term forestry careers, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Ara Mahi will invest $63,000 in the 2020 school year to support eight 17 and 18 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF backing Dunedin’s waterfront ambitions
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will support local plans to revitalise and stimulate economic development opportunities in Otago, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The four Regional Economic Development Ministers have approved an in-principle investment of $19.9 million towards the region’s ...
    2 weeks ago
  • M. Bovis eradication progress welcomed
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is pleased to have received the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) report on the Coalition Government’s Mycoplasma bovis eradication efforts, which shows significant progress in the fight against the disease. New Zealand First Spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, says the report’s findings ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF boosts Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development Hon David Parker, Minister for Trade and Export Growth The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing to support economic growth opportunities for Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sectors, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Trade and Export Minister David Parker announced today. Almost $20 million ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister Peters discusses Pacific challenges and denuclearisation in Seoul
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters and his South Korean counterpart, Kang Kyung-wha, discussed in Seoul today opportunities to work more closely in the Pacific and the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Mr Peters and Minister Kang confirmed New Zealand and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF supports high speed broadband for marae at Parihaka Pa
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development  Hon Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Māori Development The three marae in the historic Parihaka Pa complex in Taranaki have been upgraded to high speed broadband with the support of the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Connecting the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advancing Pacific Partnerships 2019 launched
    Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence Minister of Defence Ron Mark will today launch the Advancing Pacific Partnerships 2019 Defence Assessment  during a speech at Te Papa.  The Assessment outlines how Defence will partner with our Pacific Island neighbours and invest in Pacific regional security architecture. The Plan aligns with the Coalition ...
    2 weeks ago
  • PGF funding could transform Gisborne company into “beacon of employment” in two years
    A new Provincial Growth Fund investment could create about 80 new jobs in Gisborne over the next two years, turning a local small business into a “beacon of employment” in the process. Regional Economic Development Parliamentary Under-Secretary Fletcher Tabuteau said the PGF’s Te Ara Mahi funding stream would provide $1.6m ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Two years of progress
    This week, we’re taking action on climate change, expanding trades education – and celebrating two years of progress! ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs to visit the Republic of Korea and Japan
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week. “The Republic of Korea and Japan are two of New Zealand’s closest partners in the region with whom we share common values and ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand to lead Bougainville Referendum Regional Police Support Mission
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters has announced today that New Zealand is leading a police support mission in Bougainville as the region prepares to vote in a non-binding referendum on its political future. “New Zealand has accepted an invitation ...
    3 weeks ago
  • We’re taking action on climate change
    “I refuse to accept the challenge of climate change is too hard to solve.” – Jacinda Ardern ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Shane Jones annoyed at “elevated sense of entitlement from a lot of immigrant leaders”
    New Zealand First MP Shane Jones is defending Immigration New Zealand (INZ) after it instructed officials to stop granting visas as an exception to instructions. He has also lashed out at immigrant leaders upset with the tightening of the rules, saying they had an “elevated sense of entitlement”. Members of ...
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand public likely to vote on euthanasia bill thanks to NZ First
    A change to the End of Life Choice Bill was passed in Parliament, meaning if politicians decide to vote for the law it must be approved by the public first. A binding referendum was a condition insisted on by New Zealand First, and Jenny Marcroft’s supplementary order paper (SOP) successfully ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Tairāwhiti Workforce development projects get $1.6m PGF boost
    Fletcher Tabuteau, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), through its skills and employment programme, Te Ara Mahi, is investing a further $1.6m into Tairāwhiti’s workforce development, said Parliamentary Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau. “This PGF funding follows on from significant PGF investment earlier this ...
    3 weeks ago
  • NZ First welcomes primary sector support for climate change plan
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says the Government’s steps to reduce farm livestock emissions are necessary and timely. Today the Government and farming leaders announced a plan to measure and price emissions at the farm level by 2025. “Many farmers ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Racing Industry destined to be on-track
    Racing Minister Winston Peters welcomes the tabling of the Racing Industry Transition Agency (RITA) 2019 Annual Report in Parliament today. He says the 2019 Annual Report marks the point when New Zealand’s racing industry’s decline was arrested and a turnaround started. RITA’s 2019 Annual Report recorded an industry net profit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • New Zealand firefighter support to Queensland
    The New Zealand Government is today sending 21 firefighters to help fight the ongoing catastrophic Australian bushfires. “The fires in Australia are in some of the toughest, most challenging conditions ever,” says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin.  “As of yesterday morning, there were 100 active bushfire-related incidents across Queensland and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Supporting all schools to succeed
      More frontline support for schools through a new education agency, as part of a redesigned Ministry of Education More support for principals and school boards including through a new centre of leadership and local leadership advisor roles New independent disputes panels for parents and students Management of school property ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Reform to support better outcomes for Māori learners and whānau
    The Government’s reform of the Tomorrow’s Schools system is a watershed moment in education and an opportunity to create meaningful change for ākonga Māori and their whānau, Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis said today. “Last year through Kōrero Mātauranga | Education Conversation, Māori teachers, parents, ākonga, whānau, hapū and iwi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Infrastructure pipeline growing
    Infrastructure Minister is welcoming the first of many updated project pipelines from the newly established New Zealand Infrastructure Commission today. The New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga, has released an expanded pipeline of major capital projects – another crucial step towards delivering better infrastructure outcomes. “The first iteration of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Tighter firearms law to further improve safety
    Tougher gun laws designed to improve public safety through firearms prohibition orders are proposed in a new document released for public input. Police Minister Stuart Nash says firearms prohibition orders (FPOs) would give new powers to Police to ensure high-risk individuals come nowhere near firearms. “We have already prohibited the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New TVNZ chair & directors confirmed
    Andy Coupe has been confirmed as TVNZ’s new Board Chair. “Mr Coupe has strong commercial and capital markets experience and TVNZ has benefited from his technical knowledge of business and finance, as well as his extensive governance experience,” the Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Kris Faafoi said.  Andy ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Hutt Road cycle path officially opened
    Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter today officially opened a separated pathway, following the completion of the Kaiwharawhara Stream bridge, which will improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians along Hutt Road.  The $6.8m Hutt Road project provides a separated path for cycling and pedestrians, the replacement of informal parking ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Announcement of new Ambassador to Russia
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of career diplomat Si’alei van Toor as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Russia. “I’m pleased to appoint Ms van Toor to this position. She brings a wealth of experience to the role having previously served as Senior Trade Adviser to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update
    The Treasury’s 2019 Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) will be released on Wednesday December 11, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Coalition Government will publish the 2020 Budget Policy Statement at the same time, outlining the priorities for Budget 2020. Further details on arrangements for the release will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Giving a Boost to Kiwi small businesses
    A new initiative to better support small businesses through hands-on mentoring and advice has been launched by the Minister for Small Business. The first event in the Kiwi Business Boost series of regional workshops and online tools has been launched in Wairoa by Stuart Nash. “The Business Boost initiative combines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Nearly three quarters of Rolleston connected to UFB
    The latest Quarterly Connectivity Report shows that more and more New Zealanders are moving to Ultra-fast Broadband (UFB), with Rolleston having the highest uptake at 74 per cent, as at the end of September. “This means that nearly three quarters of Rolleston’s households and businesses have moved to ultra-fast services. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Historic day for landmark climate change legislation in New Zealand
    The passing of the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill will help ensure a safe planet for our kids and grandkids, the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw said today. The landmark legislation which provides a framework to support New Zealanders to prepare for, and adapt to, the effects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Release of Oranga Tamariki Practice Review
    The review of Oranga Tamariki practice around the planned uplift of a Hastings baby in May shows significant failings by the Ministry and that the planned and funded changes to shift from a child crisis service to a proper care and protection service need to be accelerated, Children’s Minister Tracey ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Minister wishes students success in exams
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins has wished students the best of luck for this year’s NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams which start tomorrow. Around 140,000 students will have participated in 119 NCEA and New Zealand Scholarship exams by the end of the exam period on 3 December. “I want to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New High Commissioner to the United Kingdom announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of Bede Corry as New Zealand’s next High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. “The appointment of a senior diplomat to this important role underlines the significance New Zealand places on our relationship with the United Kingdom,” said Mr Peters. “The United ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Police recruits making Auckland safer
    An innovative approach to boosting the number of frontline Police has seen 20 new officers graduate from one of the uncommon training wings in Auckland. Police Minister Stuart Nash says the graduation of 20 constables today means that 1,765 new Police officers have been deployed since the coalition government took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Over 1.2 million hours of community work helps local communities
    Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the 1.2 million hours of community work completed by offenders in the last financial year has helped local communities right across the country. “Community work sentences are a great way for people to pay something positive back to society. There is a massive benefit to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Te Huringa o Te Tai – Police Crime Prevention Strategy
    "A pathway for Police in leadership with Iwi Māori, to achieve the aspirations of Māori whānau." Police launch of Te Huringa o Te Tai, Pipitea Marae,  Thorndon Quay, Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou. Hello everyone, warm greetings to you all. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Kiwis getting higher pay
    Working New Zealanders are getting more in their back pockets under the Coalition Government’s economic plan. Stats NZ data today shows average weekly ordinary time earnings are up by $83 since the Government took office. This shows that working New Zealanders are getting higher take-home pay, and that employers are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More support for schools to reduce energy consumption and environmental impact
    The Government is supporting schools to cut down their energy consumption and reduce environmental impacts, with a quarter of all schools having their lights replaced with LEDs, a sustainability contestable fund and a plan to improve the environmental sustainability of all schools in the future. Education Minister Chris Hipkins and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand’s manaakitanga highlighted in China
    Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis heads to China on Friday to lead the New Zealand Government presence at the China-New Zealand Year of Tourism closing ceremony. The ceremony will take place at Canton Tower in Guangzhou on Sunday 10 November. “The Year of Tourism has been mutually beneficial for both New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Climate change research boost
    Should we plan for drought or deluge and how is CO2 released from the ocean’s floor? Several climate change projects were given a boost in the latest Marsden Fund investment of $83.6 million, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods said today. “Climate change is long-term challenge that requires out-of-the-box ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Significant progress on Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)
    Leaders of 16 countries negotiating the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) have announced the completion of negotiation on the text as well as agreement on virtually all market access issues between 15 countries. The leaders said they will work with India to resolve its outstanding concerns in a way that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Learn how to stay safe on World Tsunami Awareness Day
    Civil Defence Minister Hon Peeni Henare says World Tsunami Awareness Day today (5 November) is a chance for all New Zealanders to learn more about the tsunami risk in our regions and the right actions to take to stay safe. “All of New Zealand’s coastline is at risk of tsunami. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Formal recognition at last for paramedics’ frontline medical role
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