web analytics

Fed Farmers -stunning specificity to bring dollar down

Written By: - Date published: 12:38 pm, October 27th, 2009 - 36 comments
Categories: farming - Tags:

lamb_chop_hand_puppetHave a listen to Sean Plunket’s interview this morning with Fed Farmer’s economic spokesperson Philip York. Fed Farmers is calling on the government to cut spending to rein in the rising NZ dollar.

FF: Well there’s going to have to be some tough decisions made. They’re going to have to look seriously at everything they do…(there’s) a lot of departments that are no particular use to the country.

SP: Could you name some?

FF: I can’t um…there’s all these departments that tell you what you can’t do rather than what you can do…you know…

SP: Could you name just a couple of those for us?

FF: Well it’s probably quite difficult….

Mr York then lights upon a new MAF scheme to trace and identify livestock as an ‘illogical’ spend (I’m guessing this has something to do with the country of origin in food debate) but finally hits his stride with what’s really causing all this trouble for the economy – welfare.

To be honest, I’ve come to expect a little bit more from Fed Farmers in recent years. But at least they’re providing comic relief.

36 comments on “Fed Farmers -stunning specificity to bring dollar down ”

  1. Clarke 1

    FF’s view of the world is particularly hilarious when a decent portion of the ~$100 billion the country will have to borrow through until 2050 is made up of subsidies to farmers under the shiny new National Party Emissions Trading Scheme.

    From this we can conclude that farmers don’t do irony. Or logic. Or maths. And certainly definitely not media training.

  2. Tigger 2

    This reads like the transcript from the Daily Show…

  3. rocky 3

    I’m guessing this has something to do with the country of origin in food debate

    Actually I think they’re talking about a system to track individual animals to food products on the market to make disease tracking much easier.

    • Tammy Gordon 3.1

      Cheer Rocky. You would have thought Fed Farmers might have backed something like that 🙂

    • Herbert 3.2

      Just to add to this, where I live (Sth Korea) the major mobile phone companies are introducing a service where you can track each peace of meat that you buy from the supermarket. By scanning the bar code on to your mobile phone you will get each piece of meat’s history, from farm(where, when born) to factory(when slaughtered and by what compary)and who is the marketer. Guess FF are not interested in the Sth Korean market. Mind you I do see lovely photos of cows in a luch NZ paddock eating lovely green grass – no palm nut kernals in sight!

  4. paul 4

    well the exchange rate is a real issue – not just because it’s high but because it bounces up and down so much it’s pretty hard to plan ahead – my take home pay has gone down by 30% since the beginning of the year – NZ’s such a small economy that we bounce around in the wake of the bigger ones – we’re at risk at the moment because the exchange rate is already so high that if the RBNZ starts to raise interest rates to head off any inflation it’s going to push it even lower as the carry trade floods in again.

    That’s probably not sustainable long term, what we’ll see is exports shutting down, imports rising to the point where our balance of payments gets a bit too far out of whack, then another rush for the door by the carry trade $$, our dollar crashing again and the start of a new cycle …..

    I’m not an economist, I don’t know what the solution is – cutting welfare certainly wont change any of the things I’ve mentioned above … fixing our $ to a larger economy may be a long term solution but it means a loss of sovereignty and probably chains out government’s hands in ways we on the left may not be happy with

    • James 4.1

      Well, I still like Tobin Tax (there’s a 3 hour window when ours is the only open forex market) and making the Approved Issuer Levy variable. None of these is going to make the banks happy or become politically sexy.

      • George.com 4.1.1

        The Fed Farmers seem a little out of touch eh. What has kept our dollar high for a number of years is iflows of money and higher interest rates. It has been a ombination of several factors such as hot money, a housing binge, oil prices and maybe govt spending has played some part. But you know, tinkering with govt spending ain’t going to have a major impact on the dollar. NZ actually needs to kill off much of the desirability to trade our dollar. I don’t expect however Fed Farmers to divert much from their neo-liberal free market approach. They are after all, like a dog thnking how nice thistles are whilst simultaneously sitting on one and howling about the pain. On the tobin tax, I wa told last week that Brazil ha srecently introduced something similar on foreign capital transfers. Th CTU has also released its alternative economic policy and it looks well reasoned, worth a look on their website http://www.union.org.nz

    • Clarke 4.2

      There’s a very good piece of analysis and some very concrete recommendations over on Red Alert.

      And here’s the background presentation (PDF): http://www.pec.org.nz/wp-content/files/Lets-look-again-at-monetary-policy.pdf

    • Draco T Bastard 4.3

      Easy solution to the carry trade – put GST on financial transactions or bring in a Tobin tax.

  5. Walter 5

    FF call for drastic govt. spending cuts, National’s ‘modest’ cuts look reasonable.

    Hide calls to privatise all of ACC, National’s modest privatisation proposal seems balanced.

    Shirtcliff (what’s his name again?) calls to bring back FFP, National’s modest shift in electoral system appears sensible.

    If someone else says I should kick your head in, will you thank me for a simple punch in the face?

  6. Federated farmers were done like a Christmas turkey this morning. However, I think that it was primarily an issue of media training, rather than substance. Their chap could have simply repeated the Government’s original line about a line-by-line assessment of departmental expenditure and avoided the department-closing and welfare-bashing corners into which he was herded. He could have projected his government-cutting message far more effectively.

    What is important is that another major National-supporting group is showing real irritation about Mr Key’s ‘centrism’. Yet there is no political imperative for Mr Key to move in that direction at all; indeed, his polling might fall if he became too explicitly ideological.

    The neo-liberal agenda is, therefore, extending on a piecemeal basis (ACC, Supercity, for example), in tune with general government behaviour.

  7. randal 7

    hey guys lay off federated farmers.
    they are like little people you know.
    if you keep picking on them they will cry foul.
    we are only little people.
    in that case give ’em a good kick.

    • James 7.1

      Lots of farmers are little people, and some are corporations with 20+ farms.

      Federated Farmers is a national organisation that broke New Zealand’s first response to Kyoto.

      Farmers deserve encouragement to do the right thing; if someone steps into the ring wearing the FF label, they should play the game like everyone else.

  8. Zaphod Beeblebrox 8

    Seems like cuts to welfare are the universal panacea to everything. FF are right that its a problem that we need to do something about- but they really need to get a better insight about waht to do about it.
    If I were them I’d talk to Hickey and Oram.

  9. Red Rosa 9

    Maybe if farmers practiced what they preached, and reduced their own levels of debt, they would be spared the looming cash crunch on many dairy and sheep and beef farms this autumn.

    Interest charges are the single biggest expense on both the average NZ dairy farm, and the average NZ sheep and beef farm.

    Interest charges on many farms far outstrip crucial items like fertilizer, R&M and wages. Interest for the current season on the average dairy farm could be ten times ACC charges or local body rates, items which FF spend so much time whingeing about.

    The Crafar fiasco is just an extreme example of a farm sector which has become addicted to easy credit.

    Come on Feds, get those budgets into line and show us how it’s done! Might even help the balance of payments.

    • Mark M 9.1

      Red Rosa

      interest and other debt payments are commonly the biggest payments for most New Zealanders wether it be for houses , cars boats , plasma tv,s etc.
      The difference with Farmers is there debt benefits us all with jobs and export income which is valuable in providing some money to buy the plasma tv,s and cars etc.

  10. torydog 10

    Yep the only way to sort NZ’s problems are to get rid of benefits……and then have loads an loads of people begging and stealing to survive, also get them living under bridges and in bins (not in Remuera)…that will certainly solve all of our problems…

    Typical wonderful thinking from the right…….

    Oh and lets not forget….all those kids that are born to solo mothers…..just sell them on to Madonna!!!!

  11. George D 11

    Brazil just last week put a 2% tax on capital inflows. NZ would be wise to follow, as it suffers from all the same problems. We’re an agricultural (primary production) led economy spectacularly exposed to foreign currency flows, and thus have more in common with developing countries than we might like to think. Most developing countries’ central banks have learned from the Asian Financial Crisis of 97-98, and moved to protect themselves. Ours haven’t, and we’re still paying the prices of higher interest rates and currency volatility.

    Funnily enough, even the Financial Times endorses it.

  12. Robert Winter
    October 27, 2009 at 1:25 pm
    “Federated farmers were done like a Christmas turkey this morning. However, I think that it was primarily an issue of media training, rather than substance. Their chap could have simply repeated the Government’s original line about a line-by-line assessment of departmental expenditure and avoided the department-closing…”
    I tend to agree with Roberts assessment of Phil Yorks performance this morning, preparation is vital if you want an interview to stay on topic. Despite the mauling he recieved at the hands of Plunket the message is still relevant , just poorly executed.English is hiding behind the statement ” the US dollar is weakening , we cant do a thing about it”. This attitude is crippling the productive and export sectors, this isn’t about farmers crying hard up , this is about farming losing the ability and confidence to reinvest in our biggest export earner.I’m not saying reigning in Government spending is the total solution , but it is part of it, stop jumping on a opportunity for Feds bashing and try and see what they were trying o say at least. Wasn’t a good look tho , I must say.

  13. snoozy 13

    Federated Farmers have had credibility at times of late, like a genuine representative of our essential primary industries, not a National bunny.

    Like Johnny wanting to by-pass our biosecurity measures to look good to his buddy Kev…

    screwing the rest of the country and the people that keep your infrastructure running isn’t going to be the best way to keep the wheels turning.

    Didn’t the razor gang find nothing or little to cut?

    or is it pensioner housing and libraries again?

  14. Adrian 14

    Stop worrying about FF, they are getting less and less relevant to the farming community, their membership is falling every year and those that get elected to local and national office are generally considered to be boofheads by the better educated and market and enviromentally aware sucessful farmers. I heard the interview and I actually thought it was a piss-take. The fact that it was genuine was even funnier. Interestingly they (the boofheads) don’t seem to be aware of the ease of traceability such as Herbert in South Korea pointed out earlier. Now that ignorance is real scary.

    • Mac1 14.1

      At an election meeting hosted here last year by Fed Farmers, a similar thing happened where an overseas born farmer wanted to know what we were going to do about “all these race based laws”. I challenged him as to what they might be, could he please give some examples. After five minutes of excruciatingly bad sarcasm and over-acting, he came up with ‘Maori seats’.

      At the same meeting, when FF were told that the government had done well with the purchase of the St James’ Station, with a fair price agreed by both sides, did the farmers present congratulate the former farmer owner for negotiation of a good price in appreciation of his property rights? Were they overjoyed by his success and reassured that Crown purchase of land would be fair and equitable?

      Funnily enough, no…….. they turned on him and accused him of facilitating a possible increase in the cost of crown rentals.

      Both stories are examples of a narrow, restricted and blinkered world view. Farmers at another meeting further south denied global warming was a possibility. The winter had been particularly cold where they lived. They had no idea, or didn’t want an idea, that extreme local seasonal events were actually symptoms of change in global weather.

      I hope that you are right, Adrian, and farmers’ leaders are indeed unrepresentative of their occupation. Certainly they represent those who turn out for political meetings, in my experience.

  15. Galeandra 15

    Ignoring his poor interview, was his thesis on the money? Surely central to the problem is hedging in our currency by overseas investor/speculators, with subsequent proft taking? Does running or reducing a budget deficit make any difference over the short term usually favoured by such speculation?

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 15.1

      If you think that private debt and currency speculation doesn’t exist you might have a case. Could it be that Fed Farmers don’t realise that hot money flows in to take advantage of our interest rates and that private individuals borrow to fuel our property bubble? Or is it that the solution to all our problems is to eradicate welfare? Will we cease to be the tenth most traded curency then?

  16. Sam 16

    What an idiot.

  17. prism 17

    How confusing to hear such stuff from FF as on Morning Report. If The Onion was doing a satire of NZ political thinking it could sound much the same. There is a connection with the FF statement and the educational testing regime being introduced and the slashing of night school budgets. This will ensure simpler basic education suitable for farmers and rugby players, and stop encouraging these smart-alec academics and inventive types to waffe on about new ideas that you have to think about and which may never amount to anything. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, and if it does break blame it on someone else – like the guvment, or bewrocrats.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Better care for babies with tongue-tie
    Babies born with tongue-tie will be assessed and treated consistently under new guidelines released by the Ministry of Health, Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. Around 5% to 10% of babies are born with a tongue-tie, or ankyloglossia, in New Zealand each year. At least half can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago