Give the people what they want

Written By: - Date published: 8:46 am, March 26th, 2009 - 39 comments
Categories: economy, Environment, transport - Tags: ,

Stephen Joyce keeps saying the reason he has slashed investment in public transport to build more roads is that he is giving the people what they want. He says most people get to work in a car, so people must want cars.

What wonderful logic. Imagine if we hadn’t introduced public health-care or public education because, after all, everyone (well, everyone who could afford it) was using private health and education so that must be what the people want. The government would never have built airports because everyone was using ships and therefore they must be happy with it that way.

I wonder if Joyce has been on a train or a bus recently. I doubt it. If he had been, he would have seen they are full to overcrowding. The only reason more people aren’t using public transport is that it’s full.

Meanwhile, motorway traffic is down. It dropped when oil prices when sky-high last year, and if you drive to work you know it isn’t as bad as it was before. Petrol is still expensive, and it’s about to start going up again with the oil price.

Give the people what they want. The people want public transport.

39 comments on “Give the people what they want ”

  1. vto 1

    Give the people what they want. The people want inexpensive and comfortable private transport actually, silly.

  2. ieuan 2

    Yeah vto and they don’t want to have to find a park for it, or put petrol in it or pay to maintain it. Or have any other cars on the road, or have speed limits or stop at red lights.

    • vto 2.1

      you said it ieuan. Understanding the wants of the person in the street I have always felt is a weak point in the left approach to things. This thread typifies that.

      • r0b 2.1.1

        Don’t be daft vto, Labour is all about ordinary people, ordinary workers, and what they want.

        For example, the person in the street wanted tax cuts. Would have had them under Labour, but under National the tax cuts go to the person in the Limousine.

        • vto 2.1.1.1

          r0b, one of the main reasons good business people make lots of moola is because they understand and provide what the people want. These good business people are generally of the right. imo the reason those of generally left persuasion dont make as much moola is because they dont understand what people want.

          This moola-making ability, or lack of, is a sign of an understanding of the people.

          A subtle but real difference in what you are saying.

          • r0b 2.1.1.1.1

            This moola-making ability, or lack of, is a sign of an understanding of the people.

            Oh please. By this criteria all those wall street bankers and AIG executives have the best understanding of ordinary people. They must do, they make the most “moola”. They must understand people better than the people themselves, and the organisations that represent them like unions. Seriously, this is one of the most bizarre arguments you have ever put forward.

          • vto 2.1.1.1.2

            r0b, in reply to your reply. You may well consider it bizarre but I don’t. the story goes like this.

            The only way to make money is to get people to give it to you (it cannot be stolen or forced in the long picture). People will only give you money if you give them something in return. And this is the crux – you must understand what the people want, and give it to them, otherwise they will not give you the money. As such, those that given money the most understand what people want the most.

            It is very simple.

          • Pascal's bookie 2.1.1.1.3

            Your own insight into what the people want seems to miss the point that not all the people have ‘making as much money as I can’ as their life goal.

            If everyone did want that, then your observation might make sense, but perhaps people on the right are more focussed on making money than people on the left. Perhaps lefties use their knowledge of what people want in other ways. That you missed this, is in context, pretty fuckn funny.

          • r0b 2.1.1.1.4

            Being. Very. Simple. Doesn’t. Make. It. Right.

            And this is the crux – you must understand what the people want, and give it to them, otherwise they will not give you the money

            Useless parasitic activities like gambling on the stockmarket and trading “sophisticated” financial instruments doesn’t involve understanding people (wall street bankers). Using political influence to get massive government funding via “no bid contracts” doesn’t involve understanding people (the American “military industrial complex”). Getting trillion dollar bailouts from the government doesn’t involve understanding people (wall street bankers again). Exploiting a monopoly position doesn’t involve understanding people (Bill Gates). Being good at one particular thing and / or having a really smart agent doesn’t involve understanding people (Paris Hilton, Hollywood celebrities or sports stars).

            The amount of money you have is no kind of measure of insight into the lives and wants of ordinary people.

          • vto 2.1.1.1.5

            p’s b, who said anything about money as everybody’s life goal?? My point was very specific and nothing to do with that.

            r0b, who said anything about the “amount of money you have”?? My point concerned making money. different things. You can also point out the odd area that does not fit but the theory holds (and you are wrong re celebs and stars and agents and even financial traders and especially Gates. Gates in fact fits the theory to a tee (exploiting the monopoly position came well after). think about it).

            Seems this has, quite understandably, scratched a nerve. The left always thinks it has the monopoly on people. I disagree. The left does not understand what people want as well as other factions in society.

            The left likes to think it knows – and usually proceeds thereafter in busybody fashion telling everyone what they should be doing. Last govt classic example. This thread classic example (telling people they should be taking the bus – thinking that people want the bus over private transport. ha ha)

          • Felix 2.1.1.1.6

            It’s true that celebrities and their agents understand “what people want” and how to make money from it but that doesn’t help your case that this is a good way to set policy which actually benefits anyone.

            Quite the opposite.

          • Pascal's bookie 2.1.1.1.7

            You didn’t mention it vto, but it is a presuppostion needed to make your theory work. Think about it.

            You are using the amount of money someone has made as a proxy for how much they understand people. It’s an interesting point, and might have some validity in comparing how some businesses understand people better than others . But to say that therefore righties understand people better than lefties do simply because they tend to make more money, presupposes that righties and lefties are equally motivated to be in business and to try and make as much money as they can. If you don’t assume that, then how can you use the amount of money they make as a meaningful proxy for how much they understand people?

            If lefties are not in fact motivated as much as righties to make money in the first place, then why would you use the amount of money they make as an indicator for anything?

          • r0b 2.1.1.1.8

            Seems this has, quite understandably, scratched a nerve.

            Yes, statements that are demonstrably wrong do that to me!

            The left always thinks it has the monopoly on people. I disagree. The left does not understand what people want as well as other factions in society.

            Right, rich people (simply by virtue of being rich) understand the lives wants and needs of the workers much better than the workers understand themselves. Makes perfect sense.

            The left likes to think it knows – and usually proceeds thereafter in busybody fashion telling everyone what they should be doing.

            The right likes to think it knows – and usually proceeds thereafter in busybody fashion limiting the choices of workers, cutting the social services that provide choices to low income earners, locking ever more people up in ever more prisons, and introducing laws to control personal decisions regarding drug use and the ultimate personal choices relating to sexuality, marriage and abortion.

            Enough banging my head against a brick wall – toodles.

          • vto 2.1.1.1.9

            A point true p’s b. This theory of mine stemmed from watching biz people at work and trying to work out how they did it. And that is what resulted – that they understand what people want and give it to them, because that is the only way people will give them the money they want.

            Latching it to the reverse may not so easily follow as you say. Perhaps I stretched the theory a little to fit. But I don’t think so. Biz definitely understands what people want (generally right folk).

            So, does biz make a person ‘right’ or does a ‘right’ person make a better biz?

            Also, the harsh world of business is the best of proving grounds for understanding that understanding.

            my brain is starting to hurt…

          • vto 2.1.1.1.10

            r0b, you have given broad general statements but no evaulation or anything to support those statements. You are usually full of detail and decent argument in support. Toodles.

  3. toad 3

    The absolute stupidity of National’s draft amended Government Policy Statement on Land Transport is astounding. I’ve blogged about it in the context of coastal shipping here (yes – coastal shipping is officially designated “land” transport).

    There are just seven days left for people to make submissions – they close on 2 April. I couldn’t find the draft on-line, so have uploaded it here (PDF). The funding allocation is on page 4.

    Compare it to the (somewhat) more sensible Government Policy Statement developed by Labour (PDF). The funding alocation is on page 18.

    So get the submissions rolling in to gps@transport.govt.nz.

  4. Tigger 4

    If people want private transport why are National reducing the amount spent on upkeeping roads. I’m right – that’s what they’re doing isn’t it? If I’m supposedly wedded to my car you can damn well be sure I want decent roads to drive it on – not just new roads but old roads that aren’t full of potholes.

    • MikeG 4.1

      It’s called running down the infrastructure, just like they did in the 90’s.

      • BLiP 4.1.1

        Its also called the fraudulent marking down of state assets in preparation for sale at discount prices to Goober’s off shore mates. Harbour Bridge tolls, anyone?

  5. Clarke 5

    I really don’t see the point in submitting on the GPS – the Road Transport Forum paid $30,000 to National’s election campaign to get exactly this policy, so better ideas and sensible logic from mere members of the public won’t even get a look in. Sending Joyce a submission is a fruitless waste of innocent A4, IMHO.

    Given National has a long and illustrious history of selling policy positions, perhaps the shipping industry (or the locomotive manufacturers) would be better off simply purchasing the policy they want, just like the roading lobby.

  6. toad 6

    Clarke – I think we do need to make submissions, just so we can later attack them for ignoring them. If we don’t, they will just say “hardly anyone submitted on it, so people must be happy with it”.

    I know the submissionw will have little influence over it, but they are important politically. Don’t need to be particularly detailed or involve a lot of research though.

  7. So out of $8.559 billion of total transport funding, we see that public transport services and infrastructure only gets $767 million – that’s around 9% – utterly pathetic! When it comes to “new infrastructure”, which is what we’re really talking about as necessary you end up comparing $134 million for new public transport with $3.496 billion for new roads. Wow, twenty-six times the funding for new roads than new public transport. How is that balanced?

  8. Well since you mentioned it vto, I wouldn’t mind a helicopter for getting to work in.

  9. Matthew Pilott 9

    I don’t think people want “inexpensive and comfortable private transport” per se, vto.

    I could say that many people want more money, and that would, on the face of it, seem to be an accurate, simple, and uncontestable statement (although it’s not everyone’s goal as has been elucidated above, but for the sake of the argument I’ll just say that if you hand out hundreds you’ll find quite a few takers).

    According to your simplistic (sorry, but it is) reasoning, the government should print more money.

    We all know what happens there – existing money becomes worth a lot less. So people have more money, fewer wealth. Perhaps people want greater wealth, or the freedom from constraints imposed by a severe shortage thereof. As r0b expounded – simple doesn’t make it right.

    So, on topic – do people really want “inexpensive and comfortable private transport”? No – they want to be able to get around efficiently and quickly, with a minimum of fuss. The type of transport for many commuters, for example, is secondary to the benefits offered by the type of transport. They don’t care if it’s a car, bus or unicycle – it needs to meet their requirements – and I bet private wouldn’t come in the top 5 for about 95% of commuters – not when you’ve got fast, efficient, cheap, convenient, comfortable, reliable, sustainable and so on.

    So, vto, I think you’ve taken a very simplistic look at it – but you’re clearly not alone. National is right behind you with ‘people drive cars so people want to drive cars’.

    If A does X, it does not follow that A wants to do X – Y might just not be an option.

    For a Government that harps on about choice, where’s my choice here? Stephen Joyce just chose for me – thanks a bunch, Hollow Man.

    I’m not sure you can say the Left is bad at identifying what peole want, vto.

    • vto 9.1

      Clearly, killing and MP, there is a practical limit. But, killing, if some person could supply people with a cheap, easy to use, non-polluting, etc helicopter then that person would literally make a killing. Because they understood what the people wanted (and supplied it). You fit my theory perfectly!!

      MP, you may be right in that many people would actually prefer a fantsatic public transport mode. I would guess tho that this would be to do with convenience and other factors as much as anything else. i.e. it is not quite what they want, but its the best in the circumstances. So my initial comment still stands – people want inexpensive, convenient, non-polluting, comfortable private transport over inexpensive, convenient, non-polluting, comfortable public transport. Why not aim for that then?

      • Draco T Bastard 9.1.1

        Considering that everyone having their own car and using it daily is massively expensive then surely the answer is cheap and comfortable mass transport. Everyone can afford it and it’s sustainable unlike everyone having their own car.

        The practical limits are simply that everyone can’t have everything they want. Sure, people got rich trying to achieve just that and now we’re heading toward a man made ELE.

      • QoT 9.1.2

        So I presume we’re starting with free state-supplied parking spaces for all, moving to massive subsidization of petrol and/or R&D into renewable fuel for cars, PLUS artifical intelligence so I don’t have to think about where I’m driving, plus one carpark per person within easy walking distance of everywhere they may need to go, plus imbuing private transport with the ability to get cheaper the more you use it?

        I think it might be just a wee bit more efficient to invest in electric light rail, personally.

        • vto 9.1.2.1

          You two illustrate my point exactly. Subject to those factors (cost, convenience, etc) being able to be satisfied, people want private transport not public.

          The practical aspect comes in with being able to satisfy those factors. And clearly they cannot always be. At the moment. Hence people may want public transport, not because that is their desire but because it is the best trade off between wants and practicalities.

          And on a practical note – I will bet 2c that most all cost, convenience, pollution, congestion, etc factors will be satisfied within a lifetime from now. Reason? People want easy inexpensive correct private transport. Any takers?

          • Snail 9.1.2.1.1

            do I get you aright, vto—yer want the nano franchise for enzed asap. 🙂

          • vto 9.1.2.1.2

            A-ha! See, it is already happenning…

          • QoT 9.1.2.1.3

            I did? By … establishing why making private transport equal even to current standards of public transport will be ridiculously difficult?

            vto, I hate to break it to you, but I do not desire cheaper private transport. I don’t like driving. And if your response is going to be “well, within a lifetime you totes won’t have to drive your own cars” then clearly we’re going to be living in the kind of super-utopia where everyone’s such a pack of cuddly Ubermensch that they won’t need to avoid public transport for fear of The Underclasses.

            You continually insisting ACTUALLY PEOPLE TOTALLY WANT PRIVATE TRANSPORT THEY DO THEY DO THEY DO doesn’t make it so.

          • vto 9.1.2.1.4

            QoT, re your last sentence of course I have no proof other than my own anecdote. It would be very interesting to see a survey on this question though would it not? Something like… all tings being equal would you want to travel by public or private transport?

          • Felix 9.1.2.1.5

            It’s probably not useful to get all binary about this stuff, there are all kinds of ways people want to move around. Mass transit is great for moving a lot of people in one direction at the same time every day and that’s an important part of the solution, city loop buses are another, but I don’t see private vehicles disappearing any time soon.

            The way we use them and the way we own them will probably change dramatically though.

            This is really interesting – if I were living in the city I’d definitely be joining up. I might anyway depending how my plans this year play out, if I’m visiting Auckland regularly it could be well worth it.

          • Pascal's bookie 9.1.2.1.6

            Something like all tings being equal would you want to travel by public or private transport?

            We could ask that, and I’d bet you’d be right. But what would’ve we learned? Nothing useful IMV.

            Perhaps a more useful question might be:

            Assuming global warming is most likely to be a problem that we should be doing something to mitigate, and that public transport is more efficient, and that we aren’t going to suddenly cure congestion and parking problems with magic, does it make sense for the government to spend more money on public transport, rather than less?

            perhaps that’s too long. How about:

            seeing how in’t real world all things aren’t equal, should we choose the smarter option over the dumber one?

          • vto 9.1.2.1.7

            interesting felix interesting. The wonder of private enterprise – looking for a solution for people’s needs and wants.

            P’s b, or… “If effects on the environment could be mitigated and the roads not too crowded and the cost not too high then would you prefer a brrmm brrmmm car over a putt putt bus?”

            Something would be learned. What people want. Then private enterprise would (and already is) go flat out trying to satisfy the environment matters, the congestion issues and the cost issues.

            It may sound all pie in the sky discussion but that what this site is for at times, no?

            And it’s only 3 issues ! easy peasy. Glass is half full brothers and sisters.

  10. Matthew Pilott 10

    vto, in response to my initial comment you seemed to write off public transport with nary a second thought. It can be good, it’s not necessarily hugely expensive, and it’s a good way to do things, in tandem with our extensive road networks (see felix, not either/or…).

    As said – you have something in common with National (and Joyce).

  11. gingercrush 11

    Give the people what they want. The people want public transport.

    And you know that how? That statement by itself is fine.Of course most people in New Zealand want public transport. But until we get good quality information that states that we’ll never know how much they want. For instance, do people want the same amount of money spent on roads as they do public transport. So far there isn’t an answer to that. Do they want more spent on public transport than roads. Do they want less spent on public transport than what is spent on roads. How do New Zealanders want to pay for public transport. I’m sure there is that information somewhere. But even further to that. How does New Zealand feel about freight being largely transported via roads.

    I really think for most New Zealanders, indeed more than merely most would rather continue to see substantially more spent on roads than public transport. And for most New Zealanders they will always use private vehicles than public transport.

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      Well, I suppose the government could take an actual survey rather than just saying we want more roads.

      I really think you’re wrong and, this comes back to practicality, it’s not possible for everyone to have private transport.

  12. jarbury 12

    For the foreseeable future of course we would have more money spent on roads across the whole country than on public transport. You ain’t going to ever see a “Gore Metro”.

    However, for a place like Auckland clearly most of the transport initiatives in the future need to be public transport. We simply can’t build many more motorways here – with the Waterview Connection likely to be the last remaining viable link. With the population going to continue growing until maybe 2060 or 2070 – maxing out perhaps at around 2.5 million – Auckland is going to need to provide more transport capacity. This will HAVE to take the form of public transport, unless we want to completely ruin the city by building wider roads, more motorways and so forth. Two tracks of rail carries the same number of people as twelve lanes of motorway – it seems pretty obvious what the most space-efficient method is.

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    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Farmers get what they wanted – for now
    Since entering office, National has unravelled practically every climate policy, leaving us with no effective way of reducing emissions or meeting our emissions budgets beyond magical thinking around the ETS. And today they've announced another step: removing agriculture entirely. At present, following the complete failure of he waka eka noa, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Presumed Innocent?
    The blue billionaireDistraction no interactionOr movement outside these glazed over eyesThe new great divideFew fight the tide to be glorifiedBut will he be satisfied?Can we accept this without zoom?The elephant in the roomNot much happens in politics on a Monday. Bugger all in fact. Although yesterday Christopher Luxon found he ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on our doomed love affair with oil and gas
    What if New Zealand threw a fossil fuel party, and nobody came? On the weekend, Resources Minister Shane Jones sent out the invitations and strung up the balloons, but will anyone really want to invest big time in resuming oil and gas exploration in our corner of the planet? Yes, ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    4 days ago
  • Building better housing insights
    This is a guest post by Meredith Dale, senior urban designer and strategist at The Urban Advisory. There’s a saying that goes something like: ‘what you measure is what you value’. An RNZ article last week claimed that Auckland was ‘hurting’ because of a more affordable supply of homes, particularly townhouses ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    4 days ago
  • Putin would be proud of them
    A Prime Minister directs his public service to inquire into the actions of the opposition political party which is his harshest critic. Something from Orban's Hungary, or Putin's Russia? No, its happening right here in Aotearoa: Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced the Public Service Commission will launch an ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths
    This is a repost from a Yale Climate Connections article by SueEllen Campbell published on June 3, 2024. The articles listed can help you tell fact from fiction when it comes to solar and wind energy. Some statements you hear about solar and wind energy are just plain false. ...
    5 days ago
  • Juggernaut
    Politics were going on all around us yesterday, and we barely noticed, rolling along canal paths, eating baguettes. It wasn’t until my mate got to the headlines last night that we learned there had been a dismayingly strong far right result in the EU elections and Macron had called a ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Numbers Game.
    Respect Existence, Or Expect Resistance? There may well have been 50,000 pairs of feet “Marching For Nature” down Auckland’s Queen Street on Saturday afternoon, but the figure that impresses the Coalition Government is the 1,450,000 pairs of Auckland feet that were somewhere else.IN THE ERA OF DRONES and Artificial Intelligence, ...
    5 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on post-colonial blowback.
    Selwyn Manning and I discuss varieties of post colonial blowback and the implications its has for the rise of the Global South. Counties discussed include Palestine/Israel, France/New Caledonia, England/India, apartheid/post-apartheid South Africa and post-colonial New Zealand. It is a bit … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Policy by panic
    Back in March, Ombudsman Peter Boshier resigned when he hit the statutory retirement age of 72, leaving the country in the awkward (and legally questionable) position of having him continue as a temporay appointee. It apparently took the entire political system by surprise - as evinced by Labour's dick move ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • PSA: NZ's Richest Company, Zuru, Sucks
    Hi,Today the New Zealand press is breathlessly reporting that the owners of toy company Zuru are officially New Zealand’s wealthiest people: Mat and Nick Mowbray worth an estimated $20 billion between them.While the New Zealand press loses its shit celebrating this Kiwi success story, this is a Webworm reminder that ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 10
    TL;DR: The six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty in the past day to 8:36 pm on Monday, June 10 were:20,000 protested against the Fast-track approval bill on Saturday in Auckland, but PM Christopher Luxon says ‘sorry, but not sorry’ about the need for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • In Defence of Kāinga Ora
    Given the headlines around the recent findings of the ‘independent’ review of Kāinga Ora by Bill English, you might assume this post will be about social housing, Kāinga Ora’s most prominent role. While that is indeed something that requires defending, I want to talk about the other core purpose of ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    5 days ago
  • Baby You're A Rich Man
    “How does it feel to beOne of the beautiful peopleNow that you know who you areWhat do you want to beAnd have you traveled very far?Far as the eye can see”Yesterday the ACT party faithful were regaled with craven boasts, sneers, and demands for even more at their annual rally.That ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Stopping a future Labour government from shutting down gas exploration
    A defiant Resources Minister Shane Jones has responded to Saturday’s environmental protests by ending Labour’s offshore oil exploration ban and calling for long-term contracts with any successful explorers. The purpose would be to prevent a future Labour Government from reversing any licence the explorers might hold. Jones sees a precedent ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #23
    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 2, 2024 thru Sat, June 8, 2024. Story of the week Our Story of the Week is Yale Climate Connection's Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths, by ...
    6 days ago
  • Fission by the river
    This is where we ate our lunch last Wednesday. Never mind your châteaux and castles and whatnot, we like to enjoy a baguette in the shadow of a nuclear power plant; a station that puts out more than twice as much as Manapouri using nothing more than tiny atoms to bring ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Fact Brief – Is the ocean acidifying?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is the ocean acidifying? Acidification of oceans ...
    7 days ago
  • 20,000+ on Queen St.
    The largest protest I ever went on was in the mid 90s. There were 10,000 people there that day, and I’ve never forgotten it. An enormous mass of people, chanting together. Stretching block after block, bringing traffic to a halt.But I can’t say that’s the biggest protest I’ve ever been ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Josh Drummond's Columns
    Hi there,I wanted to put all of Josh Drummond’s Webworm pieces all in one place. I love that he writes for Webworm — and all of these are a good read!David.Why Are So Many “Christians” Hellbent on Being Horrible?Why do so many objectively hideous people declare themselves “Christian”?Meeting the Master ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    7 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday soliloquy and weekend Pick ‘n’ Mix for June 8/9
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: On reflection, the six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty this week were:The Government-driven freeze in building new classrooms, local roads and water networks in order to save cash for tax cuts is frustrating communities facing massive population ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The no-vision thing
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • When Journalists are Disingenuous
    Hi,One of the things I like the most about Webworm is to be able to break down the media and journalism a little, and go behind the scenes.This is one of those times.Yesterday an email arrived in my inbox from journalist Jonathan Milne, who is managing editor at Newsroom.I don’t ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Me, elsewhere: Just say you’ll do the thing
    Wrote something over at 1/200 on a familiar theme of mine: The way we frame the economy as a separate, sacred force which must be sacrificed to, the way we talk about criminals as invaders who must be repelled, the constant othering of people on the benefit, people not in ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted
    A nice bit of news today: my 4600-word historical fantasy-horror piece, A Voyage Among the Vandals, has been accepted by Phobica Books (https://www.phobicabooks.co.uk/books) for their upcoming Pirate Horror anthology, Shivering Timbers. This one is set in the Mediterranean, during the mid-fifth century AD. Notable for having one of history’s designated ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministerial conflicts of interest
    Since the National government came to power, it has been surrounded by allegations of conflicts of interest. Firstly, there's the fast-track law, which concentrates power in the hands of three Ministers, some of whom have received donations from companies whose projects they will be deciding on. Secondly, there's the close ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The 2024 Budget Forecasts Are Gloomy Prognosis About The Next Three Years.
    There was no less razzamatazz about the 2024 Budget than about earlier ones. Once again the underlying economic analysis got lost. It deserves more attention.Just to remind you, the Budget Economic and Fiscal Update (BEFU), is the Treasury’s independent assessment and so can be analysed by other competent economists (although ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • A government that can't see twenty feet ahead
    There are two failings that consistently characterise a National government. One is a lack of imagination, the other is their willingness to look after their mates, no matter what harm it might do to everyone else.This is how we come to have thousands of enormous trucks carving up our roads. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • A post I hope is incorrect
    In May, we learned that National MP David MacLeod had "forgotten" to declare $178,000 in electoral donations. Filing a donation return which is false in any material particular is a crime, and the Electoral Commission has now referred MacLeod to police, since they're the only people who are allowed to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Māori Cannot Re-Write New Zealand’s Constitution By Stealth.
    The Kotahitanga Parliament 1897: A Māori Parliament – at least in the guise of a large and representative body dedicated to describing the shape of New Zealand’s future from a Māori perspective – would be a very good idea.THE DEMAND for a “Māori Parliament” needs to be carefully unpicked. Some Pakeha, ...
    1 week ago
  • Cowpats and Colonials.
    Dumbtown, is how my friend Gerard refers to people like ZB listeners - he’s not wrong.Normally on a Friday I start by looking at Mike Hosking’s moronic reckons of the week which he vomits down the throats of his audience like helpless baby birds in a nest, grateful for the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on cutting the sick leave of vulnerable workers
    Should sick leave be part and parcel of the working conditions from Day One on the job, just like every other health and safety provision? Or should access to sick leave be something that only gradually accumulates, depending on how long a worker has been on the payroll? If enacted ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Move: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    So long as we live in a democracy, economic policy can never be anything other than social-democratic.“HEH!”, snorted Laurie, as he waved his debit card over the EFTPOS machine. “Same price as last week. I guess budgets aren’t what they used to be.”“I wouldn’t know,” replied the young barman, wearily, ...
    1 week ago
  • In Search Of Unity.
    Kotahitanga: New Zealand’s future belongs to those who do not fear a nation carved out of unity and solidarity, and are willing to trust the carvers. Some New Zealanders will be required to step up, and others, perhaps for the first time in their lives, will be expected to step ...
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 7-June-2024
    Welcome to another Friday roundup! Here are some recent links and stories that caught our eye, perfectly timed for your watercooler discussions and weekend reading. As always feel free to share more in the comments. Our header image this week is by Patrick Reynolds, and shows Te Komititanga from above. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 7
    As Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, ACT’s Brooke van Velden is fronting proposed changes to sick pay regulations and The Holiday Act. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Did we boil the oceans by cutting pollution?
    Lowering aerosol emissions from shipping has altered clouds, with potentially drastic effects. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: Here’s the top six news items of note in climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, and a discussion above between Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer:New evidence is increasingly pointing at efforts ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #23 2024
    Open access notables Abrupt reduction in shipping emission as an inadvertent geoengineering termination shock produces substantial radiative warming, Yuan et al., Communications Earth & Environment: Human activities affect the Earth’s climate through modifying the composition of the atmosphere, which then creates radiative forcing that drives climate change. The warming effect ...
    1 week ago
  • Fragments
    The best observation I’ve read this week about the deep, profound harm Trump is doingTrump has hurled threats and smears at witnesses, jurors and the judge (including his family)... [he] has tried to intimidate witnesses and delegitimize the New York courts as corrupt. In continuing to incite his mob (that ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • March for Nature
    Do do do do do do do doDo do do do do doDi di di di di di di di di di diNature enter me…In 2018 the Labour lead government banned new oil and gas exploration in Aotearoa. A change welcomed by those who care deeply for our environment and ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus and pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 6
    The Transport Minister is trying to push through urgent legislation that would allow him to change emissions standards for car imports without approval from Parliament, after only consulting car importers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Just as two major reports showed fossil fuel burning was warming the planet to dangerous levels and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • A Better Broadway: Act 2
    This is a guest post by reader Grant A, the second of a pair about how to fix Broadway. If you missed the beginning of the show, here’s the link to Act 1 from yesterday. Yesterday, I discussed changing traffic circulation around Broadway in Newmarket. This included implementing a car-free ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • National breaks another health promise
    National has broken another manifesto health promise, apparently to save only $550,000. It will now train an additional 25 med students next year rather than the 50 it promised. This comes on top of the delays caused by National’s coalition partners in pushing ahead with the Waikato Medical School and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Climate Adam: Coping as the world’s best known climate scientist
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Katharine Hayhoe is quite possibly the world's most famous climate scientist. She's produced wide ranging research, and communicated climate change with ...
    1 week ago
  • SIS “evidence” isn’t, again
    Back in 2016, then-Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne cancelled a New Zealand woman's passport, claiming she was a terrorist. The basis for his decision was a secret briefing by the SIS, which claimed that if she was allowed to travel, the woman would "engage with individuals who encourage acts of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • As Low As You Go
    Taking you as low as you goAs low as you goA sense of Déjà vu this morning. How many times have I begun a newsletter, “just when you thought they couldn’t go any lower…” Only for the groundhog to reappear, more pissed off than the day before.Another day with headlines ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago

  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at Government House in Wellington today.  “I was pleased to welcome Premier Li to Wellington for his first official visit, which marks 10 years since New Zealand and China established a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Mr Luxon says. “The Premier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
    The coalition Government is taking action to reduce the gender pay gap in New Zealand through the development of a voluntary calculation tool. “Gender pay gaps have impacted women for decades, which is why we need to continue to drive change in New Zealand,” Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
    The coalition Government is boosting funding for Rural Support Trusts to provide more help to farmers and growers under pressure, Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson announced today. “A strong and thriving agricultural sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy and one of the ways to support it is to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
    Spending on contractors and consultants continues to fall and the size of the Public Service workforce has started to decrease after years of growth, according to the latest data released today by the Public Service Commission. Workforce data for the quarter from 31 December 23 to 31 March 24 shows ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
    Thank you to the Law Association for inviting me to speak this morning. As a former president under its previous name — the Auckland District Law Society — I take particular satisfaction in seeing this organisation, and its members, in such good heart. As Attorney-General, I am grateful for these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • 25 years on, NZ reaffirms enduring friendship with Timor Leste
    New Zealand is committed to working closely with Timor-Leste to support its prosperity and resilience, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “This year is the 25th anniversary of New Zealand sending peacekeepers to Timor-Leste, who contributed to the country’s stabilisation and ultimately its independence,” Mr Peters says.    “A quarter ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Inquiry requested into rural banking
    Promoting robust competition in the banking sector is vital to rebuilding the economy, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “New Zealanders deserve a banking sector that is as competitive as possible. Banking services play an important role in our communities and in the economy. Kiwis rely on access to lending when ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Ministry for Regulation targets red tape to keep farmers and growers competitive
    Regulation Minister David Seymour, Environment Minister Penny Simmonds, and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard have today announced a regulatory sector review on the approval process for new agricultural and horticultural products.    “Red tape stops farmers and growers from getting access to products that have been approved by other OECD countries. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government to reverse blanket speed limit reductions
    The Coalition Government will reverse Labour’s blanket speed limit reductions by 1 July 2025 through a new Land Transport Rule released for public consultation today, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  The draft speed limit rule will deliver on the National-ACT coalition commitment to reverse the previous government’s blanket speed limit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Chair appointments for NZSO, CNZ and NZ On Air
    Minister Paul Goldsmith is making major leadership changes within both his Arts and Media portfolios. “I am delighted to announce Carmel Walsh will be officially stepping into the role of Chair of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, having been acting Chair since April,” Arts Minister Paul Goldsmith says.  “Carmel is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government focus on long-term food, fibre growth
    Food and fibre export revenue is tipped to reach $54.6 billion this year and hit a record $66.6b in 2028 as the Government focuses on getting better access to markets and cutting red tape, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones say. “This achievement is testament ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt consulting on cutting red tape for exporters
    A new export exemption proposal for food businesses demonstrates the coalition Government’s commitment to reducing regulatory barriers for industry and increasing the value of New Zealand exports, which gets safe New Zealand food to more markets, says Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The coalition Government has listened to the concerns ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand and Philippines elevating relationship
    New Zealand and Philippines are continuing to elevate our relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “The leaders of New Zealand and Philippines agreed in April 2024 to lift our relationship to a Comprehensive Partnership by 2026,” Mr Peters says. “Our visit to Manila this week has been an excellent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Paid Parental Leave increase to help families
    Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, Brooke van Velden says paid parental leave increase from 1 July will put more money in the pockets of Kiwi parents and give them extra support as they take precious time off to bond with their newborns. The increase takes effect from 1 July 2024 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Defence increases UN Command commitment
    The number of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel deployed to the Republic of Korea is increasing, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today.  NZDF will deploy up to 41 additional personnel to the Republic of Korea, increasing the size of its contribution to the United ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand to attend 'Summit on Peace in Ukraine' in Switzerland
    New Zealand will be represented at the Summit on Peace in Ukraine by Minister Mark Mitchell in Switzerland later this week.    “New Zealand strongly supports Ukraine’s efforts to build a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace,” Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Minister Mitchell is a senior Cabinet Minister and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Big step forward for M.bovis programme
    Farmers’ hard work is paying off in the fight against Mycoplasma bovis (M. bovis) with the move to a national pest management plan marking strong progress in the eradication effort, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The plan, approved by the Coalition Government, was proposed by the programme partners DairyNZ, Beef ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Build To Rent opening welcomed by Housing Minister
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Housing Minister Chris Bishop formally opened a new Build to Rent development in Mt Wellington this morning. “The Prime Minister and I were honoured to cut the ribbon of Resido, New Zealand’s largest Build to Rent development to date.  “Build to Rent housing, like the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Agriculture to come out of the ETS
    The Government will deliver on its election commitment to take agriculture out of the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS) and will establish a new Pastoral Sector Group to constructively tackle biogenic methane, Coalition Government Agriculture and Climate Change Ministers say. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand farmers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Luxon Tokyo-bound for political and business visit
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon will travel to Japan from 16-20 June, his first visit as Prime Minister.   “Japan is incredibly important to New Zealand's prosperity. It is the world’s fourth largest economy, and our fourth largest export destination.  “As you know, growing the economy is my number one priority. A strong economy means ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Bayly travels to Singapore for scam prevention meetings
    Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Andrew Bayly, travels to Singapore today to attend scam and fraud prevention meetings. “Scams are a growing international problem, and we are not immune in New Zealand. Organised criminal networks operate across borders, and we need to work with our Asia-Pacific partners to tackle ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More help for homeowners impacted by severe weather
    People who were displaced by severe weather events in 2022 and 2023 will be supported by the extension of Temporary Accommodation Assistance through to 30 June 2025. Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says the coalition Government is continuing to help to those who were forced out of their ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
    Removing the ban on petroleum exploration beyond onshore Taranaki is part of a suite of proposed amendments to the Crown Minerals Act to deal with the energy security challenges posed by rapidly declining natural gas reserves, Resources Minister Shane Jones says. “Natural gas is critical to keeping our lights on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand and Malaysia to intensify connections
    New Zealand and Malaysia intend to intensify their long-standing, deep connections, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “Malaysia is one of New Zealand’s oldest friends in South-East Asia – and both countries intend to get more out of the relationship," Mr Peters says.   "Our connections already run deep and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Ending contracted emergency housing motels in Rotorua
    The end of Contracted Emergency Housing (CEH) motels in Rotorua is nearing another milestone as the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announces it will not renew consents for six of the original 13 motels, Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka says. The government is committed to stop using CEH ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • First Home Grant closure exemptions
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