web analytics

Fran pumping Brash for productivity taskforce

Written By: - Date published: 11:34 am, July 8th, 2009 - 18 comments
Categories: national/act government, workers' rights - Tags: , , , , , ,

A few weeks ago the NZPA reported that the Government had agreed to establish a taskforce to “work on ways to close the productivity gap between Australia and New Zealand”. The taskforce would be selected by ACT leader Rodney Hide and would be announced within the month. The story then sank without a trace.

So it was interesting to see Fran O’Sullivan in the Herald today pumping Don Brash, of all people, to lead the working group:

Hide’s people now say the chair of the advisory group may be announced next week when the Act leader gets back from holiday. A couple of names have been under consideration.

Political sources suggest they are former National leader and Reserve Bank Governor Don Brash and former Treasury secretary Graham Scott.

The political drum goes that Hide had all but secured support for Brash to chair the group – right down to suggesting who else should be among the membership. But Bill English – who has employed Scott as his “purchase adviser” – preferred his former Treasury boss (the Finance Minister was a Treasury analyst before entering politics) over his former party leader.

Anyone who’s seen Alister Barry’s In a Land of Plenty will understand the bitter irony of appointing Don Brash to lead a taskforce dedicated to raising wages. This is a man, after all, who advocated lowering wages and abolishing the minimum wage, and whose actions as Reserve Bank governor helped create the trans-tasman wage gap in the first place.

According to Fran, Bill English is opposed to Brash’s leadership out of personal bitterness:

Those of an unkind bent are saying that English – whom Brash toppled for National’s leadership – does not want him running the ruler over New Zealand’s economic performance against its largest neighbour.

Bullshit. It’s well known that English and elements of the National caucus and ACT have a fundamental disagreement over how to increase productivity. English is understood to favour a more moderate and collaborative approach, while ACT and its sympathisers in the National caucus want to use “productivity” as a cover to return to the slash and burn of the reform era.

Fran, naturally, is pushing the ACT line and trying to frame English as simply being bitter about losing to Brash. In reality, this is a battle between the pragmatic arm of the Right who want to implement their agenda gradually, and the ideological zealouts from the ACT end of the spectrum who want to kickstart the revolution whatever the cost.

18 comments on “Fran pumping Brash for productivity taskforce ”

  1. slickrick 1

    from that same article – “Nearly nine months into this Government’s (first?) three-year term, nothing has emerged”

    Now there’s a telling use of brackets. Fran’s faith in this government is diminishing fast.

  2. Some pretty sneaky wording in that article too:

    Yet before becoming Prime Minister, Key made huge political capital out of the fact that New Zealand’s income on a GDP per capita basis had slid markedly during his predecessor’s near nine years in power.

    Except he didn’t talk about GDP per captia, it was always about closing the wage gap between NZ and Australia.

    Throughout Labour’s time as government the wage gap was steady, and closed slightly. In the previous 15 years of the kind of neo-liberal economic policy that Fran dreams about we went from having higher wages than Australia to significantly lower wages.

  3. Frack-checker 3

    Fran’s got that wrong. GDP per capita increased markedly when Labour was in power. It’s down about 4% over the last year though.

    Maybe she meant GDP per capita relative to Australia but like Jarbury says, we managed to keep pace with them under Labour.

    • ghostwhowalks 3.1

      Not its not. Its about + 3% on an annual basis to this time last year.

      http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/keygraphs/Fig2.html

      • Frack-checker 3.1.1

        ghost. Think about what your claim was: that after five quarters of the economy getting smaller and the population growing, the size of the economy per person is bigger. That doesn’t make any sense.

        Even the graph you point to has GDP down 1%. Add 1% Population growth and GDP per capita is down 2%. But that’s the annualised measure. It looks better because part of the 2008 March year includes quarters when GDP was still rising.

        Look at March Quarter 2008 GDP per capita and March Quarter 2009 GDP per capita; http://www.stats.govt.nz/NR/rdonlyres/C387541D-BC8A-4011-AE2F-7C9AB226D877/41915/gdpmar2009alltables.xls

        Q1 2008 GDP $34 billion
        Q1 2009 GDP $33 billion

        nearly 3% down, add 1% population growth – 4%

        • ghostwhowalks 3.1.1.1

          I looked at the excel table behind the graph which showed each quarter.

          And then added each quarter. Not sure you can do that as adding % is often a no no.
          But what you was doing was taking -1% for the last quarter and multiplying for the previous year, which is very misleading

          • ghostwhowalks 3.1.1.1.1

            There isnt 1% population growth per qtr. Lucky if that is for a whole year.

            Plus I was using official figures and for last year on one quarters there was 3% increase in total GDP
            Yours are just quesses

          • Frack-checker 3.1.1.1.2

            Sorry, ghost, you’ve misinterpreted the data you’re reading.

            Those figures you added together are the annual change in GDP (it says so in the top left-hand corner of the table). What that is the change in GDP between the four quarters ending that quarter and the four quarters preceding them.

            So you don’t add them together, you just take the last one, if you’re looking for year on year change in GDP. If you want the difference between GDP in the latest quarter and the same quarter a year ago you can’t use that table, you have to go to Stats.

            My numbers aren’t guesses – they are from Stats, follow the link I gave you.

            The GDP in Q1 2008 was $34 billion, the Q1 GDP in 2009 was $33 million.

            Population growth between those two quarters was 1%, again check stats.

  4. Mike Collins 4

    I would be happy with either of them.

  5. Zaphod Beeblebrox 5

    More interesting was the part of the article which talks about the difference in economic forecasts between Aust and NZ. If this turns out the be true, both the Nats and especially Act’s economic credibility will not last long at all.

    Will be interesting to see how Key and English respond when Australia starts growing whilst NZ is going backwards.

  6. I think you’ve taken O’Sullivan out of context when you say: “According to Fran, Bill English is opposed to Brash’s leadership out of personal bitterness:”

    O’Sullivan’s very next sentence is: “Frankly, both English and Brash are better than that.”

    • Eddie 6.1

      She’s trying to position English so that he has to let Brash chair it or risk looking like he’s driven by personal bitterness.

  7. Red Rosa 7

    National will be hung out to dry on ‘Closing the Gap With Australia’.The real gap openened up under the previous National government, and Labour managed to narrow it, marginally.

    Now it is widening again, as the Oz economy rolls steadily on. Shaken somewhat of course, but currently one of the better performers in the OECD.

    The main reason for this is the different export mix, and there has been more than enough analysis over the years to tell us this.

    The real question is ‘What are we going to do about it?’ There has never been a convincing answer to this question over the years, and it is unlikely that Don Brash or Graham Scott are going to provide one now.

    A simple table of current and past GDP per head for Oz and NZ, updated quarterly, will keep National nailed to this rash election promise. It will be another factor spelling its doom for the next election.

  8. randal 8

    cut to the chase.
    according to someone from a gubmint deepartment on rnz this morning:
    proportionately more new zealanders are employed than in any other oecd country,
    new zealanders work longer hours than anyone else,
    new zealanders work harder than anyone else,
    yet we 9th from the bottom on the oecd list.
    why is that?
    can anyone explain that?
    if you got brash, english, keys and hide in a room could they explain that?

  9. ghostwhowalks 9

    we dont have oil or we arent part of the EU and we are too small to have a decent manufacturing base anymore ( remember when we had that and we were way up the list).

    Norway is streets ahead of Sweden , guess why

    Ireland is mile ahead of NZ,
    1) belongs to EU,
    2) has a lot of money gos through their banks to avoid tax in Europe or US.
    eg Google invoices all its web advertising revenue through an Irish subsidiary, worth a few $bill. Microsoft is moving more in this direction. Plus all the big London ‘investment’ banks run their back office ( and revenue )through Dublin

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Speech to AI Forum – Autonomous Weapons Systems
    AI Forum New Zealand, Auckland Good evening and thank you so much for joining me this evening. I’d like to start with a thank you to the AI Forum Executive for getting this event off the ground and for all their work and support to date. The prospect of autonomous ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • New Zealand boosts support to Fiji for COVID-19 impact
    Aotearoa New Zealand is providing additional support to Fiji to mitigate the effects of the current COVID-19 outbreak on vulnerable households, Foreign Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta announced today. “Recognising the increasingly challenging situation in Fiji, Aotearoa will provide an additional package of assistance to support the Government of Fiji and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Round 2 of successful energy education fund now open
    $1.65 million available in Support for Energy Education in Communities funding round two Insights from SEEC to inform future energy hardship programmes Community organisations that can deliver energy education to households in need are being invited to apply for the second funding round of the Support for Energy Education in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • New Ngarimu scholarships to target vocational training
    Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis today announced three new scholarships for students in vocational education and training (VET) are to be added to the suite of prestigious Ngarimu scholarships. “VET learners have less access to study support than university students and this is a way to tautoko their learning dreams ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Recognising the volunteers who support our health system
    Nominations have opened today for the 2021 Minister of Health Volunteer Awards, as part of National Volunteer Week. “We know that New Zealanders donate at least 159 million hours of volunteer labour every year,” Minister of Health Andrew Little said in launching this year’s awards in Wellington. “These people play ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Drug Free Sport supported to deal with new doping challenges
    Drug Free Sport New Zealand will receive a funding boost to respond to some of the emerging doping challenges across international sport. The additional $4.3 million over three years comes from the Sport Recovery Fund announced last year. It will help DFSNZ improve athletes’ understanding of the risks of doping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Government support for South Auckland community hit by tornado
    The Government is contributing $100,000 to a Mayoral Relief Fund to support Auckland communities impacted by the Papatoetoe tornado, Acting Minister for Emergency Management Kris Faafoi says. “My heart goes out to the family and friends who have lost a loved one, and to those who have been injured. I ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Celebrating World Refugee Day
    World Refugee Day today is an opportunity to celebrate the proud record New Zealanders have supporting and protecting refugees and acknowledge the contribution these new New Zealanders make to our country, the Minister of Immigration Kris Faafoi said. “World Refugee Day is also a chance to think about the journey ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Face to face meeting delivers significant progress on NZ-UK FTA
    New Zealand and the UK have committed to accelerating their free trade agreement negotiations with the aim of reaching an agreement in principle this August, Trade Minister Damien O’Connor announced. “We’ve held constructive and productive discussions towards the conclusion of a high-quality and comprehensive FTA that will support sustainable and inclusive trade, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government taking action to protect albatross
    New population figures for the critically endangered Antipodean albatross showing a 5 percent decline per year highlights the importance of reducing all threats to these very special birds, Acting Minister of Conservation Dr Ayesha Verrall says. The latest population modelling, carried out by Dragonfly Data Science, shows the Antipodean albatross ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Adoption laws under review
    New Zealand’s 66-year-old adoption laws are being reviewed, with public engagement beginning today.  Justice Minister Kris Faafoi said the Government is seeking views on options for change to our adoption laws and system. “The Adoption Act has remained largely the same since 1955. We need our adoption laws to reflect ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Wider roll-out of cameras on boats to support sustainability and protect marine life
    Up to 300 inshore commercial fishing vessels will be fitted with on-board cameras by 2024 as part of the Government’s commitment to protect the natural marine environment for future generations.  Minister for Oceans and Fisheries David Parker today announced the funding is now in place for the wider roll out ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Plan for vaccine rollout for general population announced
    New Zealanders over 60 will be offered a vaccination from July 28 and those over 55 from August 11, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. The rollout of the vaccine to the general population will be done in age groups as is the approach commonly used overseas, with those over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand introduces Belarus travel bans
    New Zealand has imposed travel bans on selected individuals associated with the Lukashenko regime, following ongoing concerns about election fraud and human rights abuses after the 2020 Belarus elections, Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta has announced. The ban covers more than fifty individuals, including the President and key members of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ economy grows driven by households, construction and business investment
    The Government’s efforts to secure the recovery have been reflected in the robust rebound of GDP figures released today which show the economy remains resilient despite the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Grant Robertson said. GDP increased 1.6 percent in the first three months of 2021. The Treasury had ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Milestone 250th tower continues to improve rural connectivity
    The Government has welcomed the completion of the 250th 4G mobile tower, as part of its push for better rural connectivity. Waikato’s Wiltsdown, which is roughly 80 kilometres south of Hamilton, is home to the new tower, deployed by the Rural Connectivity Group to enable improved service to 70 homes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria to lift on Tuesday
    Following a further public health assessment of the COVID-19 outbreak in greater Melbourne, New Zealand’s Quarantine Free Travel pause with Victoria has been extended to 11.59pm on Tuesday 22 June, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins says. It has been determined that the risk to public health in New Zealand continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister mourns passing of Dr Sir Ian Hassall
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is mourning the passing of Dr Sir Ian Hassall, New Zealand’s first Children’s Commissioner and lifelong champion for children and children’s health. As a paediatrician Sir Ian contributed to a major world-first cot death study that has been directly credited with reducing cot deaths in New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • APEC structural reform meeting a success
    APEC ministers have agreed working together will be crucial to ensure economies recover from the impact of COVID-19. Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs David Clark, chaired the virtual APEC Structural Reform Ministerial Meeting today which revolved around the overarching theme of promoting balanced, inclusive, sustainable, innovative and secure growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Digital hub to boost investment in forestry
    A new website has been launched at Fieldays to support the forestry sector find the information it needs to plant, grow and manage trees, and to encourage investment across the wider industry. Forestry Minister Stuart Nash says the new Canopy website is tailored for farmers, iwi and other forestry interests, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government continues support for rangatahi to get into employment, education and training
    Over 230 rangatahi are set to benefit from further funding through four new He Poutama Rangatahi programmes, Minister for Social Development and Employment Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “We’re continuing to secure our economic recovery from COVID by investing in opportunities for rangatahi to get into meaningful employment, education or training ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NCEA subjects up for consultation
    The education sector, students, their parents, whānau and communities are invited to share their thoughts on a list of proposed NCEA subjects released today, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. This is a significant part of the Government’s NCEA Change Programme that commenced in 2020 and will be largely implemented by ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Major investment in plantain forage programme aims to improve freshwater quality
    The Government is backing a major programme investigating plantain’s potential to help farmers protect waterways and improve freshwater quality, Acting Agriculture Minister Meka Whaitiri announced at Fieldays today. The Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures (SFFF) fund is contributing $8.98 million to the $22.23 million seven-year programme, which aims to deliver ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • America’s Cup decision
    The Minister responsible for the America’s Cup has confirmed the joint Crown-Auckland Council offer to host the next regatta has been declined by the Board of Team New Zealand. “The exclusive period of negotiation between the Crown, Auckland Council, and Team New Zealand ends tomorrow, 17 June,” said Stuart Nash. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Food and fibres sector making significant strides towards New Zealand’s economic recovery
    The Government is backing the food and fibres sector to lead New Zealand's economic recovery from COVID-19 with targeted investments as part of its Fit for a Better World roadmap, Forestry Minister Stuart Nash said. “To drive New Zealand’s recovery, we launched the Fit for a Better World – Accelerating ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to He Whenua Taurikura – New Zealand’s annual hui on countering terrorism and violent...
    Check against delivery Can I begin by acknowledging the 51 shuhada, their families and the Muslim community. It is because of the atrocious violent act that was done to them which has led ultimately to this, the start of a dialogue and a conversation about how we as a nation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Cost of Government Southern Response proactive package released
    The Government has announced the proactive package for some Southern Response policyholders could cost $313 million if all those eligible apply. In December, the Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission, David Clark announced a proactive package for SRES claimants who settled their claims before October 2014. It trailed the judgment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • First period products delivered to schools
    The first period products funded as part of the Government’s nationwide rollout are being delivered to schools and kura this week, as part of wider efforts to combat child poverty, help increase school attendance, and make a positive impact on children’s wellbeing. “We know that nearly 95,000 9-to-18 year olds ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New support to reduce emissions from public building and construction projects
    Government agencies are getting new support to reduce carbon emissions generated by construction of new buildings, with the release of practical guidance to shape decisions on public projects. The Ministers for Building and Construction and for Economic Development say a new Procurement Guide will help government agencies, private sector suppliers, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • He Whenua Taurikura: New Zealand’s first Hui on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism
    The Prime Minister has opened New Zealand’s first hui on Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism, which is being held in Christchurch over the next two days. The hui delivers on one of the recommendations from the report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into the terrorist attack on Christchurch masjidain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to inaugural Countering Terrorism Hui
    E aku nui, e aku rahi, Te whaka-kanohi mai o rātou mā, Ru-ruku-tia i runga i te ngākau whakapono, Ru-ruku-tia i runga i te ngākau aroha, Waitaha, Ngāti Mamoe, Ngai Tahu, nāu rā te reo pohiri. Tena tātou katoa. Ki te kotahi te kakaho ka whati, ki te kapuia, e ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Campaign shines a light on elder abuse
    A new campaign is shining a spotlight on elder abuse, and urging people to protect older New Zealanders. Launched on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the Office for Seniors’ campaign encourages friends, whānau and neighbours to look for the signs of abuse, which is often hidden in plain sight. “Research suggests ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Farewelling sports administrator and philanthropist Sir Eion Edgar
    Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson today expressed his sorrow at the passing of Sir Eion Edgar – a leading sports administrator and celebrated philanthropist who has made a significant impact both within and beyond the sport sector. “Sir Eion’s energy, drive and generosity has been truly immense. He leaves ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to apologise for Dawn Raids
    The Government will make a formal apology for the wrongs committed during the Dawn Raids of the 1970’s. Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration enforcement policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families. The raids to find, convict and deport overstayers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Humanitarian support for Bangladesh and Myanmar
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced that New Zealand is providing NZ $8.25 million in humanitarian assistance to support refugees and their host populations in Bangladesh and to support humanitarian need of internally displaced and conflict affected people in Myanmar.  “Nearly four years after 900,000 Rohingya crossed the border ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Poroporoaki: Dame Georgina Kamiria Kirby
    E Te Kōkō Tangiwai, Te Tuhi Mareikura, Te Kākākura Pokai kua riro i a matou. He toka tū moana ākinga ā tai, ākinga ā hau, ākinga ā ngaru tūātea.  Haere atu rā ki te mūrau a te tini, ki te wenerau a te mano.  E tae koe ki ngā rire ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Feedback sought on future of housing and urban development
    New Zealanders are encouraged to have their say on a long-term vision for housing and urban development to guide future work, the Housing Minister Megan Woods has announced. Consultation starts today on a Government Policy Statement on Housing and Urban Development (GPS-HUD), which will support the long-term direction of Aotearoa ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clean car package to drive down emissions
    New rebates for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles start July 1 with up to $8,625 for new vehicles and $3,450 for used. Electric vehicle chargers now available every 75km along most state highways to give Kiwis confidence. Low Emission Transport Fund will have nearly four times the funding by 2023 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Progress towards simpler process for changing sex on birth certificates
    The Government is taking the next step to support transgender, non-binary and intersex New Zealanders, by progressing the Births, Deaths, Marriages and Relationships Registration Bill, Minister of Internal Affairs, Jan Tinetti announced today. “This Government understands that self-identification is a significant issue for transgender, non-binary and intersex New Zealanders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Crown speeds up engagement with takutai moana applicants
    The Crown is taking a new approach to takutai moana applications to give all applicants an opportunity to engage with the Crown and better support the Māori-Crown relationship, Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Minister Andrew Little says. Following discussions with applicant groups, the Crown has reviewed the existing takutai moana application ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago