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Garner on Key vs Clark

Written By: - Date published: 11:44 am, March 26th, 2016 - 124 comments
Categories: helen clark, john key - Tags: , ,

Attracting a fair bit of comment this morning – Duncan Garner:

The flagging fortunes of a leader chasing a legacy

Key has no time for losing – runs a mile from political disasters, like they never actually happened. The flag result is a disaster for him. But it’s also not. He’ll say, ‘Oh well, we gave you a chance, we move on’. But this was his idea. It was his baby. It’s an entirely own goal. And the people said, No thanks John. The public’s given him a bloody nose, but that’s all he got.

So why did Key pursue a flag change in the first place? Because this was supposed to have been his legacy project – a lasting symbol of his lasting contribution to the country. … So what is it? Does he have one? Not really.

He brought in tax cuts and sold half our assets. That’s not creating a legacy. Perhaps borrowing money and being a happy-go-luck prime minister may end up being what we remember him for long-term. His Government has borrowed close to $60 billion for future generations to pay back. That’s $8.5b for every year they have been in office. … His legacy is that he could end up being the most popular prime minister of all time. A man with few economic options, so he traded on his personality.

On the other hand, Labour and its support partners had golden economic times while in power. They delivered interest-free student loans in the form of an election bribe that National criticised – then embraced – in office. Labour also gave us Kiwibank, paid parental leave, KiwiSaver, Working for Families, civil unions, a ban on smacking children, and legalising prostitution. Now that’s a legacy. The highest praise possible is that none of this has been dismantled by National.

For all the talk of nanny state and voters eventually turning toxic on Helen Clark she can look back on her time in power with pride. She set a clear path and used every inch of her formidable personality to make things happen.

John Key may still be swamped with selfie requests in shopping malls, but that’s not the definition of a great leader. Key has enjoyed a tonne of political capital and the disappointing thing is that he hasn’t used it for any meaningful, lasting project. Surely that’s not good enough for a man driven by a deep ambition.

Ouch. Read the full piece for plenty more.

124 comments on “Garner on Key vs Clark”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Key’s legacy will be attempting to remove the Union Jack from our flag, as a way to distance ourselves from our colonial past. At the same time, he brought back the Knights and Dames honours, in a step back towards out colonial past.

    • mosa 1.1

      A TONNE OF POLITICAL CAPITAL!!!!
      That sums up how Key and his cohorts have got away with appalling deceptions and other outrageous acts
      He more than ant other PM in recent memory has had a hell of a lot of political rope and the infamous Brand Key is still very much a potent force that wont easily give the game away
      I have been watching NZ politics scince 1984 and i cannot recall a PM that has had the inflated popularity that this man has had all re enforced by a compliant media that includes news on the net
      If he had used this amazing gift for the benefit of New Zealanders instead of behaving like a born to rule arrogant fool who engages in nasty character assinations of his opponets and blatantly deceives every time he opens his mouth and puts through policies that are paid for by massive money contributions on a promise that the status quo remains is not governing in the intrests of New Zealanders unless you are financially independent then you get a reward paid for by hard working kiwis and foreign banks who we will be paying back for decades and as for CHCH look at who got the contracts for the rebuild
      A lot of kiwis have been had big time and dont even know it and will vote for more next year and then for the female version after that.

      • Mosa 1.1.1

        Garner has had an awakening for reality how amazing
        Yet be was one of those agitating for tax cuts under Clark 2004-5 and later in her term
        He was accusing them of stealing from NZers and not cutting taxes
        Unlike National they re invested and funded public services and the pension fund
        Bit rich to be praising her now after he put the boot in more than once

  2. RHT 2

    Shouldn’t the headline say Garner?

  3. Need to change your headline – “Garner”, not “Gower”!

  4. BM 4

    I think Duncan Donuts is having a bit of a troll.

    • North 4.1

      “John Key may still be swamped with selfie requests in shopping malls, but that’s not the definition of a great leader.” Wow ! That’s akin to saying he’s predominantly an unctious construct. What took you so long Duncan ?

      Overheard, the Man-Child PM in Hawaii on phone to Audrey Young……..”There’s none of it’s my fault Audrey you know that now make sure you get that across. Yes John, yes John…….”

      • gsays 4.1.1

        aye, the latest wannabe on the latest cooking or home renovation soap opera gets swamped for selfies too.
        that aint a high bar that has been set.

    • Rob 4.2

      It takes a troll to recognise
      Of course there are those other trolls that inhabit our main stream media
      Did someone say Audrey???

    • Rob 4.3

      It takes a troll to recognise
      Of course there are those other trolls that inhabit our main stream media
      Did someone say Audrey???

  5. Old Tony 5

    I don’t see it that way. Labour had the golden weather; did some good things (kiwisaver) and some lousy things (student loans). Left a fragile economy ready to tank when the hard times turned up. Managing through those hard times and the Christchurch earthquake without suffering the disruption which has characterised most of the western world is quite an achievement. I doff my hat to Key (and English) for that success.

    • mickysavage 5.1

      Ever hear about the global financial crisis. Do you understand it was the fault of a bunch of greedy rapacious merchant bankers and not Helen Clark and Michael Cullen. Do you understand that National’s sole response has been tax cuts and borrowing heavily?

      DO you remember how unemployment in NZ was before the GFC the lowest in the western world and Cullen had paid of all the debt?

      I can’t make out if you are just stupid or trolling.

      • Old Tony 5.1.1

        I don’t mind what conclusion you draw actually.

        The economy was heading into recession prior to GFC hitting home.

        But you are missing the point a smidgen. I am less concerned with bagging Clarke and Cullen and more concerned with making the point that given the circumstances Key and English haven’t actually done too bad.

        Steady as she goes, while not disrupting people’s lives by winding back social assistance in response to the worst economic challenges in 80 years, coping with an earthquake, and increasing real benefit levels looks pretty good to me.

        • lprent 5.1.1.1

          Problem is that they did absolutely nothing to make anything better for future generations.

          The Clark government fostered the development of what is now a very large exporting tech sector. It was really tiny in the 90s. Now i think it is one of the biggest employers as a sector. High paying jobs and future prospects from a deliberate policy started in 1999. That was done at a time when we weren’t in a favourable economic position. It was a deliberate act of foresight.

          National gave us more exposure to selling more bulk commodities – with the inevitable results. Price went down. Ad you point out, National are the muddle along party who have no foresight.

          That is why their characteristic political attribute during my lifetime has been to accumulate debt for me to pay back, and produce nothing substantive to show for it.

        • Keith 5.1.1.2

          Steady as she goes Old Tony? You mean borrow like theres no tomorrow, frozen public service expendature and useless flag campaigns that cost a fortune. And how could i forget, filthy destructive smear campaigns ticking away. Yes real steady alright.

          The earthquake was essentially self funding with EQC and insurance and they’ve milked the growth it gave for all it was worth, delaying the rebuild to keep what growth it can give so these no hopers have some veneer of economic credibility.

          National got in and were going to mine national parks, flood vast swaithes of land for irrigation, drill for oil and provide the nation with fibre optic broadband. All they achieved was ministers on the take remaing right where they are, debt and asset sales.

          Like the Captain of the Titanic, you can keep your doomed steady as she goes, NZ needs better than useless!

        • Foreign waka 5.1.1.3

          May I say that the dealing with the need of Christchurch after the earthquake no less than 4-5 years ago is nothing short of disgraceful. Full stop, enough said.
          BTW – NZ has the only admirers of that approach whereas any other comment worldwide would join me. Its a rort and it smells a mile away.

        • Mosa 5.1.1.4

          National= Status Quo and not doing a hell of a lot because it will upset vested interests
          Progress is only initiated by the left
          English couldn’t keep his hands off Kiwisaver he surprised though by not eliminating the employer contribution
          There is always post 2017 for that

        • ropata 5.1.1.5

          The Quakes were a test of National’s character, John Key’s legacy could have been rebuilding an entire city, but instead he and his cronies allowed a frenzy of demolition and disaster capitalism and let insurance companies cheat their customers.

          Key grew up in a state house, another wonderful legacy of the First Labour Government, and continued by both parties for decades. But his legacy to needy Kiwis is a mass state housing sell-off, a disgraceful leap down the inequality rankings, and making Auckland the second least affordable city in the WORLD

        • Lloyd 5.1.1.6

          The sad thing, Old Tony, is that every New Zealander would have been much better off now if the economic policies of the former Labour government had been continued through the period when John Key has been running our economy down.
          The economic multiplier of the benefits which have been cut are much greater than any economic multiplier of tax cuts to the wealthy.
          We would of course have been better off if all education had been freed up and we would all be benefiting now from the dividends of those companies that John Key has sold for a couple of years worth of profits.
          The wishy-washy mess that John Key’s government has turned our economy into was saved from ignominious disaster by the insurance pay-out on Christchurch and the good luck of the Chinese baby milk boom at the same time the EU milk production rules were still in force. Those props are now falling out and unfortunately many kiwis are about to receive a nasty gift from John’s incompetence.

      • J Ryan 5.1.2

        Who do you think you are dickysavage? Some guru of wisdom? That someone expresses another opinion and you bullet them. What a dick. Listen idiot, I clearly remember when Clarke came into power. The timing couldn’t have been better. The world economic cycle spiralled upwards and Clarke and Cullen boasted to the uninformed of their great skills running the NZ economy. The town fool could have achieved this as the cash was simply filling the government coffers. They used the excess funds to buy votes and laden the country with debt.

    • Brendon Harre -Left wing Liberal 5.2

      National has had economic good times -a commodity boom -high dairy prices -the best terms of trade. What have they achieved? It didn’t even pay off their first terms tax cuts for the rich -they have run years of deficits.They placed all their bets on the success of milk powder exports and the gamble hasn’t paid off.

      National has spent more money on their pork barrel Roads of National Significance than they have on the Christchurch rebuild. Mostly the rebuild has been funded by Cantabrians private insurance -not the nation’s taxpayers.

      What is National’s plans for tackling Christchurch’s over reliance on construction and a failing dairy sector? Canterbury’s tourism and foreign student industries haven’t recovered to its pre-earthquake level, while in the rest of country -tourism and foreign student education are doing well. http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/-/media/ReserveBank/Files/Publications/Bulletins/2016/2016feb79-3.pdf

      What is the government doing about the misallocation of investment in the form of scarce investment capital being wasted on sending Auckland house prices ever higher?

      This government is superficial and runs away from the tough issues -where is the PM -Hawaii?

    • Draco T Bastard 5.3

      Left a fragile economy ready to tank when the hard times turned up.

      Bullshit.

      Labour, despite clinging on to the failed capitalist free-market dogma, actually did leave a strong economy behind. National has come along after that and trashed it – as they usually do being the total ideological ignoramuses that they are. Haven’t got a thought amongst the lot of them.

      Managing through those hard times and the Christchurch earthquake without suffering the disruption which has characterised most of the western world is quite an achievement.

      Key, English and National haven’t managed anything except the media spin.

    • Stuart Munro 5.4

      $120 billion in debt says “no financial skills whatsoever”.

    • whateva next? 5.5

      Merryl Lynch was actually mentioned in the recent fantastic film :”The Big Short”….spells out why we had the collapse Key/English is supposed to have “steered us through”. Check it out, then think again if Key deserves ANY thanks.

    • gsays 5.6

      hi tony,
      ” Managing through those hard times and the Christchurch earthquake without suffering the disruption which has characterised most of the western world is quite an achievement. I doff my hat to Key (and English) for that success.”

      i agree, to be compilcit in helping insurance companies not meet their end of the bargain without getting faeces on their hands, take a fair bit of manipulation and skullduggery.

      • Old Tony 5.6.1

        The response to the Christchurch earthquake is an interesting issue and one on which I am loathe to comment given the its obvious sensitivity.

        However, for me the starting point is that the a rolling sequence of earthquakes broke the support models for a single event on which our system was based. There was always going to be incredible complexity as a result and I am not surprised five years on disputes continue.

        The governments response of spending vast chunks of taxpayers cash in addition to EGC funds was extremely generous. Especially helpful was the purchase of red zone properties at government valuation to allow people move on. It was recognised as such by the Christchurch electorate in 2011 and all credit to them for that.

        I am not in a position to comment authoritatively on the actions of the insurance companies. However I found John Campbell’s advocacy campaign simplistic and hysterical.

        All the best to those still struggling.

        • pat 5.6.1.1

          “I am not in a position to comment authoritatively on the actions of the insurance companies. However I found John Campbell’s advocacy campaign simplistic and hysterical.”

          Are you in a position to comment on the actions of the government agencies EQC and Southern Response?

    • NZJester 5.7

      Labour used that golden weather to put this country in a nice financial position with our debts paid off and a nice stream of cash due from the SOEs.
      Key and his cronies immediately screwed all that up to borrow money for a tax cut for the rich we could not afford and then they went after stuffing up the cash flow from the SOEs by selling off as many shares in them as they could to rich National supporters for a pittance of what they would have brought in.
      National while claiming they would not increase taxes went and did a dirty tax swap that hit the poor of this country the hardest by increasing GST while lowering PAYE so that the poorest in this country ended up with even less spending power than they had before as the pittance extra they received from the lower PAYE was less than the extra cost added to weekly essentials like housing, food and power.

      The two biggest legacies of this current National government are growing every day and that is the huge debt burden they have given this country, as well as the increasing gap between the cost of living and those on the minimum wage.

    • Chuck 5.8

      Spot on Old Tony. Key has directed NZ through some pretty hard times…that is why he is as popular now as he has ever been. A significant number of NZ’ers see Key as a safe pair of hands.

      • Draco T Bastard 5.8.1

        Key has directed NZ through some pretty hard times…

        And made the majority of people worse off while rewarding the rich for being rich.

        It’s policies like that that destroy entire civilisations.

      • Stuart Munro 5.8.2

        Yes, Key has guided most of NZ into very hard times – 3-400 thousand children in poverty – and of course their parents – over a million people living lives of quiet desperation. This is Key’s legacy – all that remains is for him to reap the whirlwind.

      • Don't worry. Be happy 5.8.3

        Ackshully when I hear a right wing twat witter on about Key having “safe hands” his fondling of young womens’ ponytails and jokes about “feeding the chooks” come unbidden to mind. Sick making and embarrassing poor excuse for a man.

    • Rob 5.9

      Well that tells us
      Christchurch eq $45B
      Much spent locally every $ of wages around 30%
      Paid back to govt and every penny spent carries 15% back to govt
      They have done well out of us poor bs who have to live in Christchurch

      • vto 5.9.1

        Exactly.

        John Key’s government has been a net beneficiary out of the earthquakes.

        Wake up old tony, your ignorance on that one issue weakens all else you spout

      • vto 5.9.2

        Exactly.

        John Key’s government has been a net beneficiary out of the earthquakes.

        Wake up old tony, your ignorance on that one issue weakens all else you spout

      • Keith 5.9.3

        And didn’t Key milk it for all it was worth looking sooo magnanimous, sooo Presidential. Fast forward several years later the job is far from done and Key is nowhere to be found.

      • Foreign waka 5.9.4

        It was the corporate balance sheet against human misery…
        You Can Easily Judge the Character of a Man by How He Treats Those Who Can Do Nothing for Him. Malcolm S. Forbes

    • Steve Withers 5.10

      Without National’s unsustainable and counter-productive tax cuts, NZ would have been even better positioned to meet the challenges of the global economy, address the disaster in Canterbury and avoid more debt while at the same time being able to afford the infrastructure costs that population growth is imposing…….and more besides.

      National’s entire approach to growth is to implement a failed economic philosophy that has degraded and undermined the middle class everywhere it has been tried…..to the cost of all and to the global economy.

      Obvious to everyone but a National Party supporter.

    • framu 5.11

      you doff your hat to english while forgetting that he praised cullens economic management

  6. Gangnam Style 6

    “Key has enjoyed a tonne of political capital and the disappointing thing is that he hasn’t used it for any meaningful, lasting project. ” – Yep, Hooton has been banging on about that for years, that’s why those guys all went off him.

    • mosa 6.1

      Where is the kiwi Bernie Sanders hiding ?
      He is the only one advocating for those trapped in financial enslavery and in underpaid jobs being exploited for their labours and with no rights, and in fear of their employment situation
      Quite a large block of the population everywhere and here and with voting rights if someone would just come forward and speak for them like Bernie is doing now
      Wouldnt that liven things up, the prospect of a serious challenge to the aristocracy that controls the status quo and has the policy programe to advance it credibly
      Those with the least always give the most that still applies here in the 21st century

  7. dv 7

    But did Key have much of a choice? Not really. He had to steer us through a global financial meltdown, collapsing tax revenues and a massive Christchurch earthquake. There was little option.

    Little option?
    TAXcuts
    SCF?

    • mickysavage 7.1

      The only “steering” he engaged in was borrowing heavily and giving tax cuts to the rich. And you should ask the good people of Christchurch what they think of the Government’s handling of the build.

      • Muttonbird 7.1.1

        Yep, dear old Tracey Watkins scratched around at the bottom of the barrel and came up with the government’s handling of Christchurch as John Key’s legacy.

        Seriously.

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/78265500/political-week-john-keys-top-five-regrets-on-the-flag

      • Redelusion 7.1.2

        To be fair none of them are gods, they both did some good things, did some bad things, did nothing, I think most people don’t expect to much from government be left or right, time marches on, governments come and go, most people just get on with it and don’t make who is on power the centre of their life or framing of every conceivable event. This is in contrast to many who comment here. No matter what who’s ever in power willl be the devil in carnate to the opposition and the extremes of left and right, ie JKDS or HKDS. Like wise the play things of the news media personalities at the time.

      • NZJester 7.1.3

        If Labour had been in power then Christchurch would have been restored to a proper working city by now and the people would not have been shut out from their democratic rights like they have been under National. National has the city under a non democratic government appointed crony dictatorship.

        • dv 7.1.3.1

          Delusion
          List three good things these Nats have done

          • UncookedSelachimorpha 7.1.3.1.1

            1) Tax cuts for the rich
            2) Threw public cash at wealthy private investors to cover their bad investments
            3) That ponytail thing

            Who could ask for better??

            • gsays 7.1.3.1.1.1

              without going into pike river, huge changes to employment conditions and what is our national debt now?

            • Foreign waka 7.1.3.1.1.2

              You forgot the gambling deal, the sheep debacle etc..

      • odysseus 7.1.4

        Not so sure about this criticism of borrowing. If we don’t borrow then are we not advocating more austerity?
        Be careful what you wish for.

    • Muttonbird 7.2

      SCF will be Blinglish’s legacy. Even John Key can’t take that away from him.

      • dv 7.2.1

        Key is/was the PM though, but fair enough.

        • Muttonbird 7.2.1.1

          Don’t get me wrong, I’d love for Key (hell, anyone!) to be held accountable for that, the very worst episode in weak-kneed financial incompetence in New Zealand history, but as Garner says, the prime minister runs a mile from bad news…

          …look at where he is today, for example.

      • Stuart Munro 7.2.2

        I’m sure Key got a cut.

        • dv 7.2.2.1

          The interesting thing was that Scales were sold to a neighbour of Keys cheap.
          It was then sold for a big profit.

          • Stuart Munro 7.2.2.1.1

            The interesting thing to me is that the whole of SCF was treated like a bankruptcy – but without any judicial process whatsoever. Scales was only part of the spoils of the dirtiest rip-off in NZ history.

      • Lloyd 7.2.3

        Aw, flag it.

  8. mac1 8

    Interesting timing of his piece. He criticises Key for dumping tough news on Easter Weekend, and then writes this tough criticism of Key to have it published at Easter.

    I have commented before on what Key’s legacy will be. I don’t think history will be fully admiring of his 9 years.

    I say nine years partly as my hope but also because there’s a lot of stuff happening or being mooted which indicates end times for this National government and therefore a new urgency to further the agenda before November 2017- tax lowered, selling off more assets such as KiwiBank, attacks on school/local authority/health board democracy and autonomy, water allocation capture, and so on.

    As part of this planning and urgency, did others note the curious description of the new G-G as being able to take advice? Are Key and his successor needing a compliant G-G to call an early election, or for some other purpose?

    • Craig H 8.1

      I don’t think National will be able to do that much in terms of asset sales – they have to get either the Maori Party or Peter Dunne to vote in favour, and I don’t think either would be interested.

      • mosa 8.1.1

        Dont bet on it Craig !!!!!

      • Craig H 8.1

        26 March 2016 at 1:11 pm

        I don’t think National will be able to do that much in terms of asset sales – they have to get either the Maori Party or Peter Dunne to vote in favour, and I don’t think either would be interested.

        Really, Peter (Mr 0.022%) Dunne will be interested in anything if it keeps his snout in the trough.
        The worst political parasite ever and there has been many.

        It will be a day to celebrate the day he gets the heave ho.

    • Ffloyd 8.2

      mac1.I did notice that comment and mentioned it to my husband. We thought it sounded like she has agreed to be ANOTHER compliant, I will do exactly as you say John sycophant. Hopefully this does not turn out to be the case.

  9. RedLogix 10

    Placeholder Prime Minister.

  10. RedBaronCV 11

    Lets not make any excuses for the Nacts.
    They inherited an economy in excellent shape -able to withstand the GFC. Nact did not have to reduce income tax rates, push up Gst and fund these changes with endless borrowing. We have had the best terms of trade in many a decade squandered and unfettered immigration keeping unemployment up which is a drain on the taxes we do pay.
    Labour made their own golden weather with the economic policies followed – the Nacts in the 90’s also did what they have just done again -kept the economy in permanent unneeded recession for their own ideological reasons.

    The flag referendum shows just how how much support they have lost although they are very busy spinning to try to avoid this conclusion

  11. whateva next? 12

    When Garner laid into Collins it had the desired effect, so I am all for Garner’s piece (unusually)

  12. alwyn 13

    Is this the same Duncan Garner so beloved by commenters here who say things like

    “And poorly thinking opinionists like Duncan Garner”

    Open mike 01/02/2016


    “gleefully taking the rancid bait which Garner dropped.”

    Duncan Garner and the great Christmas beatup


    “Garner shows yet again hes a shit stirring shock jock with ratings to boost.”

    Duncan Garner and the great Christmas beatup


    “Question….Is Duncan Garner being paid the minimum wage or living wage when he writes propaganda like this?”

    Open mike 15/11/2015

    Isn’t it amazing how people’s opinions of the man can change so fast?

    • b waghorn 13.1

      You know what it means when the likes of garner rip into key. It means the wind has changed !

      • whateva next? 13.1.1

        Exactly, and Alwyn I did make mention of not usually being a fan of Garner, as b waghorn suggests there is a sea change.Yay

    • Lanthanide 13.2

      A stopped clock is sometimes right, even if it’s mostly wrong.

    • tc 13.3

      My opinion of garner is unchanged, let’s see if he can keep up the critique after Joyce and co start in on his handlers via murky mark Weldon.

      This rates just as much as a dogwhistle, smear etc and is an obvious piece that any punter could right so easy work for duncs.

      Let’s see if he keeps at the emporers new clothes or reverts to type like a good mediawonks employee.

  13. b waghorn 14

    In 30 years key will be remembered for being a dirty toxic politician who pulled girls hair and thinks a country is a company.

    • Stuart Munro 14.1

      In thirty years all going well, Key will not be remembered at all. Only an automated popup will remind the minister of justice that he has a mere twenty years left to serve.

    • Foreign waka 14.2

      I don’t think so, as always people will always remember the good stuff never the bad. Don’t get me wrong here, this is a neutral statement but one has to ponder what the future holds. Remember that the current discussion is about automation of workplaces. The division between the wealthy and the struggling rest will be getting wider and this time it will be tech billionaires vs third world country workplaces. Clouds are rolling in…and Key will be a faint memory from the “good ol’ days”.

      • b waghorn 14.2.1

        I can’t recall reading anything positive about thatcher or muldoon yet I’m sure they weren’t a 100% bad or wrong.

  14. DS 15

    Funny thing is – no-one has ever been able to point to something Key has done, and say “I like him because he did that”.

    On the other hand, he’s widely hated among his opponents precisely because of the things he has done (his Government’s handling of Education is the worst since the Muldoon era), the asset sales, and so on. And let’s not even talk about the spying.

    What I think you’re seeing is that his supporters like him because his policies haven’t hurt them. He’s just a “funny, relatable guy who is offside with a bunch of commies.” Those supporters (most of whom are middle-class home-owners whose property values have sky-rocketed) have no comprehension of what it’s like to be the other half of the country.

    • Olwyn 15.1

      +1 – That’s a good, insightful comment DS. All helped along by a compromised media.

    • Chuck 15.2

      “On the other hand, he’s widely hated among his opponents…” think about that for a moment, are you suggesting KDS is in play? They “hate” his popularity for sure…after 3 elections they (his opponents) are still facing an up hill battle to win the respect of a good number of the NZ voting public. The more they “hate Key” the stronger he gets, because while it gees up the troops it puts off the average NZ voter.

      The point that keeps on coming through reading post after post here, is the general disrespect for the average voter…as in they are stupid, ill informed, why don’t they see Key as we do (baby eating Wall street monster etc). No doubt the reply’s will be that the average voter is stupid…that mind set will get Key a 4th term.

      • DS 15.2.1

        It’s not about disrespecting the NZ voter, it’s that Key operates a 40/30/30 strategy.

        40% of the population get tax cuts and increased property values.
        30% of the population get utterly screwed (this being the section that hates Key’s guts).
        30% of the population are on the fence, but all Key needs to do is get a third of them – which he can do with his (highly-effective) PR machine and the media.

        You know, divide and conquer. I’m not saying the 40% are stupid or ill-informed, just that vanishingly few of them have a smidgen of empathy for their fellow citizens.

        • Chuck 15.2.1.1

          While I would beg to differ on some of what you have written above, I do agree the last 30% are the “swing voters” not really in any camp – left or right. Its up to Labour to lift their game to present a creditable alternative to National to swing those votes their way.

          PR machine is bread and butter for any political party, and the media will always smell blood in the water when a ill thought out policy or statement is released, be it a National or Labour / Green one.

          • Olwyn 15.2.1.1.1

            You are sidestepping DS’s point. DS is saying that the people who don’t like Key are able to say what he’s done to make them dislike him. The people who like Key however, are not hurt by what he has done, and think he is funny and likeable, but they cannot point to anything he has done that they admire.

            • Chuck 15.2.1.1.1.1

              Olwyn, no I am not sidestepping DS’s point. I commented “I would beg to differ on some of what you have written above”

              To be a little clearer then…those who dislike Key are in the main activists of the left. They will always find reasons to dislike Key, and thrive on it. I would think the 30% who DS said “hated Keys guts” would be more like 5%…the other 25% simply vote along their personal beliefs of being more left or maybe Green.

              People who like Key do so for there own reasons…and they may or may not “admire” him. But at the end of the day they think he is a safe pair of hands, specifically looking at what the alternative was for the last election.

        • pat 15.2.1.2

          only change id make to that would be to swap the percentage for the first and second cohorts….”I’m not saying the 40% (my opinion 30%) are stupid or ill-informed, just that vanishingly few of them have a smidgen of empathy for their fellow citizens. this statement is bang on the money”….and that statement is bang on the money.

      • Rodel 15.2.2

        I know quite a few Tories who detest Key.

  15. WWF is a disgrace not a legacy and a policy that Labour should be deeply ashamed off. It is nothing but a subsidy for low wages from employers on the backs of the taxpayer. Of course Key has not got rid of it and never will as he thinks it’s wonderful. It gives the employers of this country a great opportunity to pay pathetic wages that don’t cover basic living expenses. The whole foundation of Labour was a fair days work for a fair days pay. It certainly was not a fair days work for a pittance that sends you to the welfare office to beg for a top up to simply enable you to pay for,the essentials in life. Seriously, can you imagine Kirk or Savage settling for that bullshit? Now they were great Labour Party Prime Ministers. Employers should be paying a fair wage, not expecting the taxpayer to top it up and the fact that a Labour Party implemented a policy that enabled them to get away with this is a complete disgrace!
    Clark was not a great Labour Party Prime Minister, Clark had other agendas and economically was more right winged then Key. She did nothing about the ECA Act, in fact, name one economic policy that she reversed that was implemented by the previous razor gang Bolger government? Tell me what objections did she make about Douglas whilst she sat in the Labour Party cabinet when he was the finance minister? A legend my arse!!!

    • BM 16.1

      Key can’t get rid of WFF, if he even raised the idea he’d get booted out of parliament and that goes for any other politician from any party

      That was the most disappointing thing about Clark, she wanted to be the Kim Il-sung of NZ and fuck the consequences.

      • Rodel 16.1.1

        Quote BM
        “That was the most disappointing thing about Clark, she wanted to be the Kim Il-sung of NZ and fuck the consequences.”
        What nonsense ! So dumb!

        • TheBlackKitten 16.1.1.1

          But it’s the truth. That women was a control freak, refused to allow any other Labour Party members to grow and then left for better pastures at the UN. Unfortunately for NZ, she left the Labour Party with no one capable of being leader because she refused to have a bar of any competition for her job. End result is Key getting in election after election because the opposition is so dam ineffective.

          • Rodel 16.1.1.1.1

            No. It’s not the truth.
            Also….”That woman..That woman..” sounds like 1950’s misogyny or the lame ‘Helengrad’ insults of the last century

      • sabine 16.1.2

        so John Key things that Parliament is above the Treaty, but he is not man enough to dis-establish WFF?

        http://www.newshub.co.nz/politics/key-parliaments-wishes-supreme-over-treaty-2016032108#axzz43ynZ2R00

        that weak he is? Really? Are you telling us that Clark has had a bigger set of balls then Key? 🙂

        • TheBlackKitten 16.1.2.1

          It’s quite simple. He will never ever get rid ofit because it benefits employers, just as rental subsidies benefit investors. Do you really think a National Party will get rid of something that benefits employers? The crying shame of it is that it was implemented by a Labour government. I bet the corporates laughed all the way to the bank and thanked Clark for that one.

          • sabine 16.1.2.1.1

            no Millsy, he will never get rid of it, because it would loose him votes. Fact is that there are a lot of families that have access to WFF. Fact some even have one Parent not go to work lest they loose WFF. Now I don’t have children, but i get to essentially pay for middle class families via my taxes so that the Mum can stay at home.
            And in general I don’t have an issue with it. But to say that WFF only benefits employers paying shit wages is short sighted. It also allows some families to manage on one good wage.

            If it were for me, WFF would be scrapped altogether, and the first 25.000$ earned would be untaxed. As that is the minimum for anyone to eek out a wretched existance without trimmings.
            But then no one asks me.

            However I still believe that Clark has ovaries made of brass, while all key has to show for is scrambled eggs.

            • TheBlackKitten 16.1.2.1.1.1

              So are you saying you prefer tax payers to pay a liveable wage rather than the employer because that is what welfare wages are and there is no getting around that cold hard fact.

      • Foreign waka 16.1.3

        Jumping on a passing wagon? Clark has used the taxes that have been cut under Key to finance this. If you point out one side, than give it some balance please.

        • TheBlackKitten 16.1.3.1

          But you still are not addressing the point that employers are failing to pay a wage that enables the employee to pay for the basic essentials. Another words, they are not paying a fair pay for a fair days work, the tax payer is. So the taxes Key cut were financing employers low wages. Another words, it was really a win for the employer and nobody else. Only a Tory would support that.

    • DS 16.2

      [i]name one economic policy that she reversed that was implemented by the previous razor gang Bolger government?[/i]

      You might have missed it, but the Clark Government:

      – Repealed the Employment Contracts Act (the Employment Relations Act ain’t perfect, but at least it mentions the word “union” and doesn’t get us blacklisted by the ILO).
      – Restored ACC’s monopoly on workplace cover.
      – Renationalised the railways and Air NZ.
      – Set up Kiwibank (credit to the Alliance for this), in the face of enormous opposition from the financial sector.
      – Increased the top rate of income tax to 39%.

      Sure, Clark didn’t undo the 1980s, but she certainly rolled back the 1990s.

      • My, my how grateful for the crumbs we should be. Fact that NZ still had low wages in comparison to the cost of living after nine years of a Labour government seems to have missed you completely. Sorry but I expect more from a political party that was based on providing a economy of a fair days pay for a fair days work. And the top tax break, lets be realistic, that only penalised the middle class, the rich don’t do paye tax. So what exactly did she do as a Labour Party Prime Minister about the greedy corporates that have been feeding of the rest of us like vultures for the past 30 years? What did she do for middle NZ economically? As I said, she was a disgrace for a Labour Party Prime Minister and does not hold a candle on the greats such as Kirk and Savage who actually did something for the average joe.
        And WFF and rental subsidies, they only benefit investors and employers so exactly who was Clark really representing? As I said, that women was as right winged economically as Key, if not more so.

        • DS 16.2.1.1

          You asked for “one policy” Clark reversed from the Bolger years. I gave you a laundry list. Rather than admit you were wrong, you are now trying to shift the goalposts.

          I’m sure Clark wished she could have waved a magic wand and doubled worker’s wages. As it was, her Government had an excellent record on the minimum wage, and reduced unemployment to a fraction of what it had been previously. Because politics can only ever be the art of compromise – do you not recall the financial sector throwing its toys out of the cot in the winter of 2000? Labour invariably faces severe institutional issues when in office, simply because of the power of its opponents. 1999-2008 is (mostly) a legacy to be proud of.

          • TheBlackKitten 16.2.1.1.1

            So you are essentially telling me to be grateful for the crumbs because it’s the best that they can do due to the powers that be? I wonder what situation we would be in if Savage or Kirk had adapted that attitude. Sorry but that’s what needs to be tackled, the powers that be should not be in a position to hold such power that they can dictate as they do.

            • RedLogix 16.2.1.1.1.1

              I can only reinforce what DS is saying.

              Some years back I had 30 min or so having a beer with Cullen one on one. He answered quite a few of my questions, but the thrust of it was exactly as DS says … that essentially that there really is an Establishment elite, and they do wield substantial power to constrain what governments can do.

              It’s only during periods when the Establishment has taken a major hit for some reason, the Great Depression, or a disaster like war, earthquake or industrial catastrophe that with luck and timing can leaders like Savage push through with major reforms.

              And for what it’s worth the 70’s were unusual times. Kirk enjoyed a few brief years of a nation receptive to social change, a door which has been firmly slammed shut ever since.

              The Establishment’s interests naturally lie with the 1% and left wing govts always face a head-wind from them.

              • Anne

                He answered quite a few of my questions, but the thrust of it was exactly as DS says … that essentially there really is an Establishment elite, and they do wield substantial power to constrain what governments can do.

                I only wish some of the excessively anti-Labour protagonists on this site were around the political scene 30-40 plus years ago because if they were… they should know exactly what Cullen is talking about. The classic British comedy show “Yes Minister” and its successor “Yes Prime Minister” were on the mark. I remember a former Labour Cabinet minister in the Kirk/Rowling govt. telling some of us about the enormous opposition he faced when trying to introduce a measure to control the rapidly increasing prices of goods and services (including petrol) of the day. He managed to push something through then Muldoon came along and immediately wiped it from the statute books – as he did numerous other progressive measures taken by that Labour government.

                • But the difference is that at least he tried and did not accept alternative weak fixes which is what WFF really is to the low wages issue. Sure, it was wiped out but it was wiped out by Muldoon but the Labour Party had still done the right thing and had done what the party was founded on which was fighting for people’s economic concerns. WFF is a weak pathetic fix by a weak pathetic Labour Government that lost its way and forgot what it’s foundations were – looking out for people’s economic concerns and a fair days work for a fair days pay.

              • DS

                Even someone like Savage ran into problems.

                – The sheer exhaustion the First Labour Government went through in setting up the public health system (over the threat of a doctor’s boycott) meant that they never included the dentists in the system.

                – There was a capital strike driven by business in 1938, resulting in a balance of payments crisis. Finance Minister Walter Nash had to go cap in hand to London to ask for a loan (over John A. Lee’s objections). World War II solved the crisis, so it tends to get forgotten.

                • Perhaps, but they still made the attempt for fairness and made huge differences to people’s lives. Just imagine if they had instead accepted weak alternative fixes like WFF. How would we be living today?

              • Before, wages used to the cover basic essentials but now they don’t. WFF is needed for low wages as a top up, another words the taxpayer pays and the rich don’t but get the benefits of cheap labour. You really wonder what actual progress has been made. So we have gone backwards since the days of Savage and Kirk and you say that they were only lucky to get their policies through due to the Great Depression and the establishment being weakened by that. Well I say if this is true then we better start thinking of another way because this one is not working and to simply accept that it is the way things are and implement policies like WFF is weak and is exactly what the establishment would love.
                Perhaps Savage and Kirk did catch the establishment at a weak moment but those men still had strength and determination for change for the better of the people just as the slaves in the southern states had strength and determination for freedom and fought for it and did not accept weak alternatives which is what WFF is.
                I doubt very much if Savage or Kirk were in Clarks position that ither would have rolled over and implemented a weak pathetic fix such as WFF for the low wage issue. They would have least made an attempt for something that was fair and WFF is not fair to the people. Let’s be real, those men had the people’s interests at heart and had a real passion to fight for a better life for the average joe and that motivation gave them strength to do what they did against the establishment. Clark had other agendas that fired her passion and fighting and dealing with the economic concerns for the middle was not one of them and that is really why we ended up with WFF.

    • Whispering Kate 16.3

      I’ve always thought that WWF was a terrible idea. Why did it become such a burden for employer’s to pay for their workers. I was always told that if you can’t build your business so that you can afford to pay for your staff then you shouldn’t be in business. This WWF is just making tax payers pay the top up wages in lieu of the employers.
      I am glad you bought that up Blackkitten – subsidising the bosses – what an awful situation when so many people are on such low wages these days, that they have their taxes going into topping up what the employers should be contributing.

      Also, the employer’s contribution into Kiwi Saver has been reduced.

      • Sacha 16.3.1

        WFF is a wage subsidy for incompetent employers, yes. Exactly as designed. Why Labour did not tackle the underlying problem, I don’t know.

        • vto 16.3.1.1

          WFF is exactly welfare for employers who don’t pay a decent days wage for a decent days work…

          It is cheaper to may minimum wage than it is to keep a slave ….

          truth

          disgusting pigs

    • red-blooded 16.4

      “She did nothing about the ECA Act, ”

      Bullshit! While Clark’s government didn’t reinstate compulsory unionism or the awards system, they did significantly wind-back the extremes of the ECA. The right to collective bargaining was reinforced, unions were enabled as the sole bodies enabled to bargain for a collective group, unions were given the right to enter workplaces, rights to basics like lunch breaks were spelt out… Not Nirvana, but not nothing.

      • Not nivana but yes it was nothing. Despite 9 years of a labour government NZ wages were still pathetically low and that is due to no representation for workers. She did a bit here and a bit there to make it look as thou she was doing something. But you can do all you like but it will always be the end result that matters. The end result after nine years of a labour government was that Contracts in the workplace were still the norm and our wages were still low in comparison to the rest of the world and many at the time were flocking to Australia due to better wages and a higher standard of living. Now I am no Key fan and I am not saying for one second he does any better, but what I am saying is that Clark did not act and do what a Labour Party Prime Minister should have done the ECA Act. Put it this way – what do you think would have happened to the ECA act if Kirk or Savage had come to power? My bet is s lot more than what happened to it when Clark came to power.

  16. Well Key has left a legend. One where no one part from rich Chinese can afford to buy a house in Auckland…..

  17. ropata 19

    😂 nice pic

    John Key's #Legacy #nzflag #nzpol pic.twitter.com/Mldy4ms2Je— FUN McFunface (@nzsaysfun) March 27, 2016

  18. gnomic 20

    The problem we have here is that Aotearoa is only nominally an independent self-determining nation. In reality it is merely a branch office of various multinational corporations and the big banks and latterly super rich foreign nationals. The supposed government merely determines trivial matters such as the rate of the spurious minimum wage, and authorises ever increasing surveillance. Much of the citizenry live a subsistence lifestyle while the bourgeois gloat over the ever increasing value of their trashy dwellings inflated beyond any realistic appraisal of their worth. Immigration ensures that the working people race each other to the bottom on working condition and wages. There is no brighter future. Key and the rest of the gang have mortgaged the country’s future so as to remain in power. Their legacy will be horrific. Key Detestation Syndrome is utterly rational unless you are profiting from the whiteanting of this country as so many are. Tribulation impends.

    1175-1225; Middle English < Latin trībulātiōn- (stem of trībulātiō) distress, trouble, equivalent to trībulāt (us) (past participle of trībulāre to press, squeeze, derivative of trībulum threshing sledge, equivalent to trī-, variant stem of terere to rub, crush + -bulum noun suffix of instrument) + -iōn- -ion

    • Incognito 20.1

      +1

    • One Anonymous Bloke 20.2

      Immigration ensures that the working people race each other to the bottom

      No, it doesn’t. The deliberate dismantling of union rights does though.

    • ropata 20.3

      NZ would be able to attract more skilled immigrants if salaries weren’t so shit and housing so unaffordable. People need a good reason to uproot and move down here at the arse end of the world, lifestyle alone isn’t enough. And with polluted rivers, gridlocked roads, potential earthquakes, and epidemics of burglary, obesity, domestic violence, inequality etc we aren’t exactly living the dream

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  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why municipal waste-to-energy incineration is not the answer to NZ’s plastic waste crisis
    Trisia Farrelly, Massey University New Zealand is ranked the third-most-wasteful country in the OECD. New Zealanders produce five times the global daily average of waste per person – and they are getting more wasteful, producing 35% more than a decade ago. These statistics are likely to get worse following China’s ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    1 week ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    1 week ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    2 weeks ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • New high tech traps will reduce the need for 1080 poison
    New Zealand First are celebrating the announcement of an investment of $3.5 million into five new trapping devices. These are a range of bait and trap devices, all designed to be left unattended for long periods of time. NZ First conservation spokesperson Jenny Marcroft says that this latest development will ...
    13 hours ago
  • Cowboy clampers will be stymied
    Clayton Mitchell, Spokesperson for Consumer Affairs The ‘wheel clamping’ Bill that will cap clamper fees to $100 passed its third reading in Parliament today. New Zealand First welcomes The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill to combat predatory wheel clamping behaviour in what is currently a largely unregulated business. Cowboy clampers are: gouging ...
    2 days ago
  • Mental Health Commission back on track
    Jenny Marcroft, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its first reading in Parliament. “Today’s progress takes serious action on the mental health and addiction crisis the country is facing,” says New Zealand First Health Spokesperson Jenny Marcroft. “The re-establishment ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand’s key assets are not for sale: national interest test delivered
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries Today the Government announced the delivery of the promise to protect New Zealand interests by applying a new National Interest Test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. This further strengthening of the Overseas Investment Act will ...
    2 days ago
  • National interest test added to protect New Zealanders’ interests
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high-risk assets to overseas buyers. Under current Overseas Investment Act (OIA) rules, assets such as ports and airports, telecommunications infrastructure, electricity and ...
    2 days ago
  • Electoral law breach allegations
    Rt Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First Allegations raised this morning by Stuff Limited / Fairfax concern a party matter but I am confident that New Zealand First has operated within electoral laws, now and for the last 27 years. Declarable donations were declared to the Electoral Commission. Our ...
    3 days ago
  • Wayne Brown hits back at critics: Ports of Auckland has to move
    The chairman of the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy (UNISCS) working group, Wayne Brown, has hit back at critics of his group’s recommendations to relocate the Ports of Auckland cargo operations to Whangarei’s deepwater port of Northport. The working group's recommendation to close Auckland waterfront to all but cruise ...
    3 days ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    4 days ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    1 week ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    1 week 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks 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 ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Milestone of 1800 new Police officers
    The Coalition commitment to add 1800 new Police officers to frontline policing has been achieved with the graduation of 59 constables from the Royal New Zealand Police College today. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters say today’s graduation means 1825 new Police have been deployed all ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • PM appoints business leaders to APEC Business Advisory Council
    Ensuring APEC work gets input from diverse New Zealand business and trade interests is behind three new appointments to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says. Rachel Taulelei, Malcolm Johns and Toni Moyes have been appointed to represent New Zealand on the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • PM speech notes for Trans-Tasman Business Circle
    Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa. Thank you for having me to speak today. To start, I’d like to acknowledge Sharron Lloyd, the General Manager of the Trans–Tasman Business Circle, the partners for this event Westpac’s  David McLean, and Derek McCormack from  AUT, and, of course ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Otago Regional Council given deadline for freshwater management plan
    A four-month investigation by former Environment Court judge Professor Peter Skelton found that Otago’s freshwater planning system is not fit for purpose to manage the region’s rivers, lakes and aquifers and that the Council has inadequate rules for the taking of water and the discharge of nutrients.   “Existing planning provisions ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • LGNZ Rural and Provincial Sector Speech
      Introduction Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This is the first opportunity I’ve had to speak to an LGNZ meeting since the local elections, and I’m delighted to see the fresh faces of newly elected mayors. To returning mayors here today, as well as chief ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • New Zealand to attend G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Japan
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters departs New Zealand today to attend the G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Nagoya at the invitation of this year’s G20 President, Japan. “This is the first time New Zealand will attend a G20 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and we are deeply honoured that it is at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Ambassador to the European Union announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced the appointment of diplomat Carl Reaich as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to the European Union. “The Ambassador to the EU is one of the most important and senior roles in New Zealand’s foreign service, advocating for New Zealand’s interests with the EU institutions,” Mr ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • New inventions boost Predator Free 2050 effort
        Innovation and technology are behind five new tools to give nature a helping hand by helping eliminate predators, funded through the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Minister for Conservation Eugenie Sage and Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “The new tools will be trialled in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • APEC 2021 Bill passes first reading
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation 2021 (APEC 2021) Bill in Parliament today. The temporary bill supports New Zealand’s security preparations for hosting the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum in 2021. “APEC is the leading economic and trade forum ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Making progress for our kids
    The Government is making progress on improving the wellbeing of the one million New Zealanders under the age of 18,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on World Children’s Day. The Government has today recommitted to the most widely ratified human rights treaty in history – the United Nation’s Convention on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Māori women in business contribute to our economy, whānau and communities
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter has released a new report celebrating the contribution of Māori women in business across Aotearoa New Zealand. “Māori women are leaders in our communities, they employ many people and support our economy and our communities,” Julie Anne Genter said. The report, Ngā wāhine kaipakihi: ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Two schools on the way for Omokoroa
    Four parcels of land have been bought in Omokoroa, in the Western Bay of Plenty District, for an education facility that will accommodate both a primary and secondary school on a campus-like facility, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. Two parcels were acquired from private land owners and two were ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Families Package helps over 1 million New Zealanders in first year
    1 million New Zealanders warmed by the Winter Energy Payment 36,000 families bank the Best Start Payment in first year 6,000 more families received the Family Tax Credit, 220,600 in total   They receive an increase too – from an average of $117 to $157 a week for Inland Revenue clients, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Clamp down on wheel clamping passes third reading
    New rules to clamp down on overzealous wheel clamping and extortionate fees charged in order to release a vehicle have passed their final stage in Parliament today. The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill has now passed its third reading. “These changes mean $100 will be the maximum wheel clamping ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill passes first hurdle
    An independent Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission is a step closer after it unanimously passed its first vote in Parliament today.  The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill lays the groundwork for establishing the Commission as a fully independent crown entity – delivering on a key recommendation of He Ara ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Boosting border security with electronic travel authority – now over 500,000 issued
    We’ve improved border security with the NZeTA, New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority, which helps us to screen travellers for border and immigration risks off-shore before they travel to New Zealand. It was launched in August and became mandatory on 1 October 2019. More than 500,000 NZeTAs have been issued since ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Plan of action to protect seabirds
    A proposed national plan of action to reduce the number of seabirds caught in fisheries is being circulated for public feedback. Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage say New Zealand is a global centre of seabird diversity with about 145 species in our waters. It has more ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • National interest test added to overseas investment rules
    The Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. Associate Finance Minister David Parker said under current Overseas Investment Act rules, assets such as ports and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New housing part of support for Kaumātua
    The Government is building special housing to accommodate one of Aotearoa’s greatest taonga- our kaumātua, says the Minister for Māori Development, Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Speaking at a National Kaumātua Service Providers Conference in Rotorua today, the Minister reinforced the importance kaumātua play in maintaining and passing on mātauranga Māori, knowledge, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Forestry helps prisoners into jobs
    Eleven men from a pilot forestry training programme for prisoners in Northland now have full time jobs or job offers upon release, Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis and Forestry Minister Shane Jones announced today. The ‘release to work’ programme was a collaboration between Te Uru Rākau and the Department of Corrections, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Reform of public service a step closer
    Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins today introduced into Parliament a Bill that will make it easier for the public service to tackle the biggest challenges facing Governments. The Bill represents the most significant change in the public service in 30 years. The State Sector Act 1988 will be repealed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Donations scheme to relieve pressure on families
    The families of more than 416,000 students will be better off next year as their schools have signed up to the Government’s donations scheme, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. The scheme will see almost $62.5 million in additional Government funding go to schools nationwide next year. “I’m really pleased ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Further support for Samoan measles outbreak
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced further support as the Government of Samoa responds to a serious measles outbreak. “New Zealand will deploy a further 18 vaccination nurses, bringing the total to 30 working in Samoa over the next four weeks,” Mr Peters said. “A New Zealand Medical Assistance ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech to the Child Poverty Action Group 2019 Summit
      Fa’atalofa atu, malo e lelei, Kia ora koutou katoa Thank you to the Child Poverty Action Group for asking me to be here today to provide an update on some of the things that have been happening across my the social development portfolio.  Can I firstly acknowledge the vast ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Annual Conference
    ***Please check against delivery*** Good morning everyone. It is a pleasure to be with you this morning to open this year’s New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Conference and AGM. Firstly, thank you Dr Alan Jackson, NZTR Chair for your introduction. And let us acknowledge also: The NZTR Board; Dean McKenzie, Chair ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Fairer rules for tenants and landlords
    The Government has delivered on its promise to the over one million New Zealanders who now rent to make it fairer and more secure, Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Kris Faafoi has announced today. Both renters and landlords will benefit from the suite of practical changes to the Residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Two decades of marine protection celebrated at Te Tapuwae o Rongokako in Tairawhiti
    A marine conservation milestone - the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve - is being celebrated today at a community event in Tairāwhiti/East Coast attended by the Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “The creation of this marine reserve in November 1999 was a game ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Food industry asked to step up fight against obesity
         The Government is asking the food industry to step up work to tackle obesity including reducing sugar, fat and salt in their products, better information for consumers, and tighter restrictions on advertising to children. Health Minister David Clark and Food Safety Minister Damien O’Connor have responded to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Modern emergency care for Queenstown area
    ew, modern emergency department and outpatient facilities at Queenstown’s Lakes District Hospital mean better emergency care for the growing tourist mecca’s visitors and locals, says Health Minister David Clark. Today Dr Clark officially opened the hospital’s redeveloped Emergency Department and Outpatient facilities. The new facilities include: •    An extended Emergency Department ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Contraception important for New Zealanders
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter says today’s release of sexual and reproductive health data reinforces the significance of the Government’s commitment to providing free or very low-cost contraception. The Ministry of Health today published statistics from the Ministry of Health’s 2014/15 Health Survey. “It is important people can make ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • NZ medical staff and measles vaccines going to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that at the request of the Samoan Government, New Zealand will be providing further support to Samoa as it faces a worsening measles outbreak. “In response to a request from the people of Samoa, New Zealand is providing 3000 measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
    “The new Disability Action Plan 2019–2023 moves us towards the inclusive and accessible New Zealand that this government has committed to,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today.  “The Action Plan was designed by disabled people, their family and supporters, the disability sector and government agencies. It will ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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