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Governing for their rich mates (again)

Written By: - Date published: 8:20 am, May 12th, 2013 - 242 comments
Categories: Economy - Tags: ,

Rob Stock at the Sunday Star Times reports that National plans to dump state housing on NGOs and flog land to developers.

From what I can gather from Nick Smith’s typically abstruse comments the plan seems to be to hand housing stock stock over to community organisations, and build infill housing on some current properties which provides an excuse to sell off other properties to private developers.

For the nat’s this is win, win, win. They get to walk away from any responsibility for the stock they push over onto community groups (and don’t think some of those houses won’t be sold as underfunded organisations find themselves short of the cash to maintain them), while simultaneously saving money by cramming statehouse tenants into ghettos and giving their rich mates land to spin into high gain developments.

As with their subsidies to big business, their attacks on workers’ bargaining power, their $2bn of tax cuts to the rich, their flogging of assets to the few that can afford them, their irrigation subsidies, and their social security cuts, National are governing for their rich mates again.

And once again it’s the rest of us who pay.

242 comments on “Governing for their rich mates (again)”

  1. geoff 1

    Was about to post that article in open mike. Interesting that the whistle-blower is a member of the National party.

    • karol 1.1

      Yes, Geoff. Sue Henry’s background and political affiliations are interesting. It appears that she lives in a state house in Glen Innes, and has been involved in the campaign against flogging them off.

      Local newspaper article on Stuff from 2011:

      Sue Henry normally fights for the housing rights of other Glen Innes residents but is now battling to stay in her own home of almost 40 years.

      She and her partner were told on September 26 they would be transferred out of the suburb next year because of a major redevelopment of 156 Housing New Zealand properties….

      Ms Henry says she and her partner will not move.

      Her partner was promised a state house in Clairville Cres as a returned serviceman in 1956 and was told he could live the rest of his life there, she says.

      He is now 87.

      I wonder how long she will saty a National Party member.

      • David H 1.1.1

        And if the card carrying members are choking over some of the ‘policy’ coming out of Wellington then the next election could be interesting. And I still wonder if the shit is getting too thick for Key, and is sticking way too easily, will he call an early election?

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 1.1.1.1

          Not really. This particular right-whinger looks like a typical Tory hypocrite. She’s only upset over the policy because it affects her. The others are busy telling themselves what a bludger she is right now.

          • red rattler 1.1.1.1.1

            One Ignorant Arsehole, pull your head out.
            Sue Henry has been a housing activist since the 1980s. Nothing to do with her personal situation.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 1.1.1.1.1.1

              She gives support and encouragement to The National Party in its ongoing betrayal of New Zealanders. Where was she when Don Brash was whipping up racial hatred? Ripped up her membership card did she? When that piece of trash Bennett attacked working Kiwis? Nope, she just kept right on supporting them, and now she’s going to find out exactly who she’s been supporting.

              A Tory gets fucked over by her own party and we’re supposed to admire her? Have a Tui.

              • Colonial Viper

                That’s just more bullshit.

                There are a lot of outstanding fine New Zealanders and good people who are National voters and National supporters.

                If an elderly woman is losing her home and all you can say is “serves her right for being a NAT” then screw you, mate.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  That’s you putting words in my mouth again. I think victims of the National Party deserve our attention and sympathy before its enablers get a look in.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  Let’s be clear about this: I am not celebrating her misfortune, I am questioning her motives and predicting that she will be attacked by her own side.

              • “A Tory gets fucked over by her own party and we’re supposed to admire her? Have a Tui.”

                No one is asking you to admire her. I am telling you to get your facts right and get off your high horse. She was fighting for state tenants rights probably before you were born.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  She happens to also have been a state tenant – if she were a minister we’d be discussing her conflict of interest.

                  You think a little schadenfreude isn’t a completely natural response to her predicament, good for you.

                  As for my “facts” I note at least one right wing website is attacking her already.

                  • xtasy

                    To be honest, I have met the odd “National Party card member” myself, and at least some of them are not genuine and committed Nat Party members, they somehow became members to use the access to get deeper insight into what the Nat Party is up to!

                    Yes, they did not seem to be true members at all in some cases, just kind of “smart spies” of alternative forces.

                    There may be others that have been members since Muldoon’s days or earlier, and who are simply still “members”, because once they saw National as their political home. They may not agree with present Nat Party policies, and somehow some of them may desperately hope for a change of direction for that party.

                    It sounds bizarre or naive, but there are such cases. So I would be a bit careful with rubbishing people like Sue Henry light-heartedly.

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      That had occurred to me, but a double agent must be seen to be hated lest they become a dead spy. Oops.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  If I may be allowed a martial metaphor, my enemy is a serial killer, whose favourite weapons are infectious diseases and deregulation. There will be plenty of time for sympathy with him when I have my foot on his throat.

          • Murray Olsen 1.1.1.1.2

            She’s fighting a crook housing policy. She wants people to have access to housing. I’ll stand beside her in that fight.
            I’d stand beside a homophobe who was losing his union rights or his job. I stood beside lesbians who love the market when they wanted bourgeois marriage rights.
            I will not insist that a person agree with me on everything before I’ll fight beside them on anything.
            At the same time, I would try to point out how the particular fight was part of a larger picture and take that person further. Personal reformism and revolutionary politics, maybe?

      • Visubversaviper 1.1.2

        I have a vague recall she used to be much much further left than that. I am sure I saw her at demos under the CPNZ banner in the 1970’s. Must have been her – the hair and the dress style havn’t changed since.

  2. Tigger 2

    They laud grous that can ‘do more’ than government. Of course some of these groups are religious and their help often comes with strings tied to a Bible. Wonder how few houses will go to secular groups…

    Honestly National, you are psychopathic in your hatred of government. It must be exhausting for you.

  3. Paul 3

    Government of the 2% for the 2%.

    I just don’t get it. I understand ( yet despise ) the greedy 2% who vote for their own interests which ensure they get richer at the expense of the rest of the population. These are the sociopaths let loose by neo-liberalism and by Ayn Rand’s warped philosophy.

    However, the other 98%. OK, we’ll ignore the top 10%…they might have a chance of hauling themselves up into the wealthy elite, although even they will have noticed by now, that social mobility is diminishing in NZ.

    Why do people on incomes just over the average vote for this government? There are now so many groups of the population who must have seen how this government operates that surely they can see behind the spin and lies, even with a media given the job of telling the 2%’s story.

    Why do people vote against their own interests?

    • IrishBill 3.1

      800,000 of them didn’t vote last time.

      • Paul 3.1.1

        Good point. However, I was not really referring to people who did not vote or voted against the government.
        I was meaning the people who actually voted for National. They got over 45% of the vote. I know that that’s not the real % of the population who support National, once you discount all those who did not vote, but it still amazes me that people do vote so clearly against their own interests in this way.

        • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1

          IMO blaming the media and blaming the voters isn’t going to wash.

          For starters, if you don’t look like a credible, capable government in waiting with the vision to frame and deliver quite different results to the incumbents, don’t expect people to vote for you.

          • Jenny 3.1.1.1.1

            I agree. There has to be a credible alternative, and one that when it gets in to power does not turn on its support base. Working people are harder on traitors than open enemies. When the choice is to be stabbed in the front, or stabbed in the back, most like to see it coming.

            • Colonial Viper 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Frankly, a lot of people don’t think that Labour has put in a sufficient effort to make up for the damage that Douglas/Prebble/Caygill et al did to the country, and as collateral damage, to the long term Labour brand.

              • ghostwhowalksnz

                Apart from yourself, name one other

                • Craig Glen viper

                  Me, and sadly Labour dont have the ability to even attack this Government. I watch as time and time again a Labour spokes person bungles media coverage. If you are going to attack, attack and then show the way forward.

                  • Alanz

                    Count me in too. When many of the Labour caucus members begin to open their mouth these days, the reflex is either to grit one’s teeth, grimace, avoid rolling one’s eyes or pray quietly to oneself.

                  • prism

                    Craig GV
                    +1

                    • ghostrider888

                      btw prism, God gets all the good lines, and the last word; old and fashionable references brought forward and noted modestly.

                  • Olwyn

                    Craig GV and the others on this thread, +1. I am heartily sick of Labour’s refusal to offer real hope to those who are being crushed by the government machine.The only resolve they have so far shown has been in defending themselves against left-leaning members. Their two big policy announcements, both of which speak predominantly to the middle class, have not been defended with anything like the same vigour. I cannot stop being shocked and saddened by this. I do not expect Labour to be extreme left, but I do expect it to be recognisably left. Furthermore, I cannot get over the dishonourable means by which those in control of the party have retained their control. It is as if they are determined to stifle rather than facilitate a left wing point of view.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      It is as if they are determined to stifle rather than facilitate a left wing point of view.

                      As that is what they do then I can only assume that is exactly what they intend to do.

                      Voting for Labour is not voting for a left party.

                • David H

                  Me too. They have failed woefully on that.

                • McFlock

                  Lol

                  You walked into that one, ghost 🙂
                  There are lots of people who would rather gnash their teeth at the decline of the Labour “brand” than build up a party that really does support their ideals, petulant though it might appear to you and I.

                  One of the vulnerabilities of socialism is when schadenfreude enters the mix to encourage “levelling down” rather than “building up”.

                  • Olwyn

                    Targeted criticism can actually contribute to building up a Labour Party that actually supports Labour ideals. Lobbyists do not just acquiesce in whatever a party comes up with, they put pressure on parties, and so too can criticism.

                    • McFlock

                      Definitely.

                      But I’m reading a post about National’s plans to eliminate the “state” from “state housing” and its de facto privatisation of assistance for the most needy, and the usual suspects have gone off on a tangent about how labour is shit.

                      This does not seem to me to be constructive criticism.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Labour isn’t totally shit, just a bit shit.

                      But thanks for your faboyism mr pretend to be neutral Alliance supporter.

                    • McFlock

                      yep, that’s the shit

                      edit: at least I can support my party and see that others aren’t bad.

                      You can’t even support the party you are a member of. Have you ditched your labour membership yet?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Funny thing is McFlock, the leadership of political parties absolutely love it when dissenters quit and they can have the ship all to themselves.

                    • McFlock

                      Ah. Sticking around out of spite then?

                      Big surprise.

                      Personally, I’d suggest you put your efforts into the Alliance, or maybe the Greens if you have a weakness for parliamentary parties. Something slightly more left wing than Labour has been for the last three decades.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Ah. Sticking around out of spite then?

                      yeah, that must be it McFlock, that must be it. Always good to see you doing your bit to clear house and spring clean for Labour. A party you admit has not been Left for decades but which you still jump in and defend oh so consistently.

                    • McFlock

                      Indeed.
                      Because even if labour aren’t as left wing as I’d like them to be, they will be a coalition partner in nz’s next left wing government. And there’s a good chance that government will be elected in 2014.

                      And I don’t get the impression that labour are as half as right wing or incompetent as you portray.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey if you like a party you should vote for them.

                    • McFlock

                      Oh, I have done. If the polls look close I go for labour to try to stop the nats (because lab are better than nats), if they’re a bit wider I vote alliance because they’re better than labour. I probably went labour last time.

                      One should always vote according to one’s principles. Not according to the name of the party.

                  • ghostrider888

                    that is the diference between “the ghost who walks” and “the ghost who rides.”

                  • ghostwhowalksnz

                    Its coming up to 30 years ago that Rogernomics began, but for some it will all ways be just yesterday

                    • ghostrider888

                      ae, still, I carry the working man inside my breast.(non-gender specifically) 😉

                    • Jim Nald

                      And the consequences and mindset persist and are being lived out moment to moment today.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hope you realise from this response how disconnected and out of touch you are.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Its coming up to 30 years ago that Rogernomics began, but for some it will all ways be just yesterday

                      You may have come through that time OK, but a lot of people and their children got seriously fucked up by it.

                      We’re still living through the impact of Rogernomics and Ruthanasia each and every day. For the people who notice this in their communities, the historical connection is not simply academic or historical, it’s very real.

                  • Craig Glen viper

                    National are able to set things up for their mates because Labour does nothing about it, McFlock wake up for Gods sake.

                    The Labour you cheer for Shearer and his lot are the ones busy pulling the party apart for their own selfish pursuit of power. If they cared they would have let literally the only Labour MP ( David Cunliffe) that gets any hits on National of his leash but no they are all to busy letting Shearer pretend he’s a leader. Mean while John Key one of the most useless PMs I have ever seen keeps stuffing the country.
                    I cant wait to see what bullshit excuses you come up with when Labour loose the next election McFlock.

                    • McFlock

                      […]literally the only Labour MP ( David Cunliffe) that gets any hits on National […]

                      The blinkers in that statement might provide the answer as to why, even if the rest of that sentence were true, many in labour might be concerned about the cultish support Cunliffe has acquired. To be fair to him, I think it’s more projection by fringe labour than any nefarious intent of his own.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You’re right McFlock. Labour has several MPs who routinely land good hard hits on this Government.

                      many in labour might be concerned about the cultish support Cunliffe has acquired.

                      Meh. I don’t think Cunliffe is going to get his photo framed up on peoples kitchen walls, but Shearer definitely isn’t.

                    • McFlock

                      Maybe not.

                      But shearer has a fair chance of being the next prime minister.

                      So how about that state house privatisation plan then, eh? Fucking tories.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      On this issue I’m looking forwards to some of those big hits from Labour you were praising them for. Can’t wait.

                      But shearer has a fair chance of being the next prime minister.

                      “Fair”? I hope you’re not already softening your lines this far out.

                    • McFlock

                      Softening? It’s a poll. Show me where I’ve said a left victory is guaranteed. One of us is getting as delusional as muzz – links would show everyone whether it’s me.

                      Like the ” those big hits from Labour you were praising them for” line – I merely said that saying cunliffe was “literally” labour’s only big hitter was cult-like.

                      Although off hand I seem to recall that Robertson, Ardern, Dalziel and yes, even Shearer have scored good hits against the government in the last month. Not to mention the greens, as well.

                      If you’d pulled your head out of your arse you might have seen them.

                    • Arfamo

                      The best way of telling whether anyone has scored good hits against the government is the polls. If no one remembers any “good hits” they aren’t good hits.

                    • McFlock

                      Bull. Polls are in the trends, not any single point – whatever the tv talking heads like to pretend.

                      I remember robertson getting key to say key had no clue – not to mention catching key lying to the house. And ardern delivering a fine speech on child poverty which made petulant bean look like a dick. And nzpower certainly stuck a taser up tory arse.

                    • The Al1en

                      It would appear the real opposition, according to worthiness of hits, are a waiter being called a dickhead and patrick dour.
                      That’s how bad Labour are. They are rotten and ineffectual.

                      I’d rather have a lobotomy than vote for the shower of shit that stole the legacy of generations of workers and under privileged.

                      The meek inherit the earth, the stupid and gullible get caucus 2013. That’s like pineapple lumps in the advert, minus the pineapple.

                      Viva fucking revolution, comrades.

                    • McFlock

                      hmmmm.
                      Yep.
                      I reckon that completes the red-foam-at-the-mouth collector’s set.

                      How about that housingnz privatisation plan, eh?

                    • The Al1en

                      “hmmmm.
                      Yep.
                      I reckon that completes the red-foam-at-the-mouth collector’s set.”

                      I know that no one likes the bloke who’s always right, but you’ve got to work out a more productive way of dealing with being wrong, or it gets real messy, real quick.

                      Every problem has a solution.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, look on the bright side.
                      If I’m wrong, the cunliffe crowd will be gloating for three years.
                      If I’m right, nz will have a left wing government in 2014.

                    • The Al1en

                      That’s an outcome, not a solution.
                      Try again, if you want, but you do know the answer, whether you admit it or not.
                      I don’t mind, either way.

                    • Arfamo

                      Well, look on the bright side.
                      If I’m wrong, the cunliffe crowd will be gloating for three years.
                      If I’m right, nz will have a left wing government in 2014.

                      The only thing that will make enough people vote for Shearer IMO will be if Key’s ripoff government manages to hurt mid and low income earners badly enough that a large enough group of voters will finally decide that anyone will be better than the Natzys.

                      And to score that win, they’ll have to have a credible campaign, someone who can look and sound sharp, think on their feet without shoving them in their mouth on every 2nd question from a reporter, and know how to address the carefully analysed vote buying promises the Natzy’s are likely to budget for and embark on in the lead up to the election, before resuming their sale of the country and its assets & citizens to the highest bidders.

                    • McFlock

                      Theallen: except for the people it helps.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Except for the people it helps.”

                      Haven’t at least 22 of caucus helped themselves enough already?

                    • McFlock

                      Arfamo: it’s not a presidential campaign.
                      It’s not even an election to form a one-party government.

                    • McFlock

                      Theallen:
                      What about the thousands of state house dwellers who will be shafted by the nats’ privatisation plan?

                      They win if the nats get booted in 2014.

                    • ghostrider888

                      can’t a man get a parallel line in white coats?

                    • Arfamo

                      Arfamo: it’s not a presidential campaign.
                      It’s not even an election to form a one-party government.

                      McFlock: Isn’t it? The last two basically were. And who’s our current “president”?

                    • The Al1en

                      “Theallen:
                      What about the thousands of state house dwellers who will be shafted by the nats’ privatisation plan?

                      They win if the nats get booted in 2014.”

                      Squeezing in to government with NZfirst again, and trust me, everyone loses.

                      You choose your way, but I want something better than skin of their teethers sacrificing principles in order to govern.
                      I like leadership, bull by the horns, up front in my face.
                      To this fucking day, and I’m totally genuine, I still don’t know what David Shearer stands for, politically or personally. I will not vote for that bullshit.

                      At the moment I advise all state home owners to vote Green, but minutes are weeks in politics.

                    • The Al1en

                      “can’t a man get a parallel line in white coats?”

                      Turns out he had a heart of glass, got union city blues, went to eat to the beat and was found hanging on the atomic telephone.

                    • ghostrider888

                      Apologies for hooking up a caboose; a multi-levelled train-wreck is a comin’

                    • McFlock

                      Arfamo:
                      No, it’s not.
                      And if the greens can stick to 12-15% it will be difficult to justify the presidential-style coverage. But co-party policy announcements, like nzpower, help too.

                    • McFlock

                      Theallen – a lab-grn-nz1 government would be worse than another key term? I disagree. But it would be worse than a labgrn govt. That’s why I don’t encourage people to vote nz1.

                    • Arfamo

                      Well it looks like my only option will be to vote Green then. Bugger it.

                    • ghostrider888

                      Wow.just wow! eidie eidie eidie a, eidie eidie eidie oh, only medium-rare Brutha.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Theallen – But it would be worse than a labgrn govt. That’s why I don’t encourage people to vote nz1.”

                      That’s the answer to that one sorted, now lets work on that Labour party poser (dual meaning very much intended).

                      That’s why I not only discourage people from voting Labour, it’s why I advocate actively campaigning to sort out their shit before it’s all very much far too late.

                    • McFlock

                      What’s the labour party poser, as in question?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      The only thing that will make enough people vote for Shearer IMO will be if Key’s ripoff government manages to hurt mid and low income earners badly enough

                      $1B+ of MRP money sliding around like loose change right now.

                      English has got a highly targeted but quite generous Budget planned for election year, that’s my bet. They still remember very well how free student loans won Clark the election.

                      They’re also going to be ramping Christchurch as hard as they can from now on, in order to get unemployment statistics wins.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Bugger it.”

                      Nah, you should be pleased with yourself, mate. You’ve broke the program.

                      It’s not like we’re wed for life, for better or worse to a party. If there’s a sexier, younger alternative out there, and it likes you back, this is one time you can have it all, guilt free.

                      And you didn’t even have to buy chocolates.

                    • The Al1en

                      “What’s the labour party poser, as in question?”

                      You’re obviously good at roll over, go on then, play dead as well 😆

                    • Arfamo

                      English has got a highly targeted but quite generous Budget planned for election year, that’s my bet. They still remember very well how free student loans won Clark the election.

                      They’re also going to be ramping Christchurch as hard as they can from now on, in order to get unemployment statistics wins.

                      I agree. That’s why they are pushing hell for leather to flog off other assets before next year’s budget. They need the money to buy those swinging votes for round two of privatisation of as much as they can.

                    • McFlock

                      If I’m rolling over, you’re dancing around an issue.

                    • The Al1en

                      “If I’m rolling over, you’re dancing around an issue.”

                      You’re prepared to give Shearer the benefit of the doubt, when he is clearly failing. If that’s not rolling over it’s giving in. You’re choice.

                      I’m dancing around nothing. I’m here, in your face arguing for what I believe in.
                      It’s simplified, as it has to be, but it’s right there for all to see.
                      No sidestep shuffle needed here, bruv.

                      “What’s the labour party poser, as in question?”

                      What is David Shearer?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You’re prepared to give Shearer the benefit of the doubt, when he is clearly failing. If that’s not rolling over it’s giving in. You’re choice.

                      Allow me to do my pseudo-McFlock:

                      It really isn’t about presidential politics, so Shearer’s specific performance doesn’t really matter that much. And regardless of Labour’s politics, it’s the Greens who will be providing the Left flavour to the next Government. What gets me though is why you would spend all this time wasting energy sniping at Labour when it is fairly likely that Shearer will be PM, when really it’s the Tories you should be hitting.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Allow me to do my pseudo-McFlock:”

                      You hum it and I’ll robot sing it 😆

                    • McFlock

                      Clearly failing?
                      If your perception is sufficiently polarised, maybe.

                      If I were a national party strategist, I’d not be certain of victory next year.
                      But as it is, I see a fair chance of a strictly labgrn government, with a better chance of the nats getting kicked out some way.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I think its quite likely LAB will get to form the government – but possibly requiring the help of NZ1 and Mana.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Clearly failing?
                      If your perception is sufficiently polarised, maybe.”

                      You know I live in space, right?
                      I can see the source of your denial from up here.

                      “I see a fair chance of a strictly labgrn government, with a better chance of the nats getting kicked out some way.”

                      I don’t, at all. Seen nothing that would even suggest that. Not even the Labour caucus believe it, cause it’s all over their faces like cheap aftershave – The scent of fail.

                    • ghostrider888

                      “Not Fade Away”, “Radiate”

                    • The Al1en

                      “Radiate”

                      All over the world.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      That’s quantum entropy for you.

                    • ghostrider888

                      well, I’ve stopped speculating at Q.Time; too depressing, only points with vision come from Greens (and carrots of course).

                    • ghostrider888

                      had me furried, had to have a stiffie, cup o’ tea; iron sharpens iron.

                    • McFlock

                      Cv- wow, this time your channelling is almost accurate. Shotgun sniping, eh?
                      With the tweak that it’s one thing to give labour fair criticism. It’s another thing to blow their imperfections out of all proportion.
                      But to almost immediately derail a thread against national in favour of blowing a few labour imperfections out of all proportion? That’s a special kind of “left wing”.

                      Practically the Judean People’s Front crack suicide squad.

                    • ghostrider888

                      “What is David Shearer?” Is that not a double-barrel Al1en?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Well I made just one mildly off topic reply under 3.1.1.1.1

                      GWWNZ challenged me on it to which many others responded.

                    • The Al1en

                      “What is David Shearer?” Is that not a double-barrel Al1en?”

                      Twin point phasers set on stun.
                      Something to do with refraction and the curvature of the worth.

                    • McFlock

                      “I see a fair chance of a strictly labgrn government, with a better chance of the nats getting kicked out some way.”

                      I don’t, at all. Seen nothing that would even suggest that. Not even the Labour caucus believe it, cause it’s all over their faces like cheap aftershave – The scent of fail

                      Wow, that’s dark.
                      I see the cyclical dip in polls now being a significantly higher labour base level than labour’s actual election result, never mind goffs 23% nadir.
                      I see a number of labour front benchers scoring hits against nats in the house, not least of which is the so-called “careerist” Robertson.
                      I see shearer improving, making competent speeches and sound bites.
                      I see some good policy being announced, and coordinated with future coalition partners.
                      And all this when the 2011 vote, bad as it was for the left, only gave the nats an ability to push through the worst of their policy by virtue of two rotten boroughs.

                      I mean, what in that list is wrong?
                      And knowing all that, how can you be so dark?

                      I can understand cautioning against counting chickens, but damn you’re dark.

                    • The Al1en

                      “That’s a special kind of “left wing”.”

                      If I may, the thread derail angle is weak. Especially as it’s gone un moderated thus far.
                      Are you really playing that card?

                      Happy to argue wherever I’m allowed, so either call the cops and demand justice 😆 or get slinging those hay makers and force open the debate until it’s starts to weep and smart and they take notice.

                    • Rhinocrates

                      McF: “I see…”

                      Well, if I stare at a bright light, I see all sorts of coloured afterimages slide across my field of view. If I dream… well, once I saw my cat driving a car. It was a British Racing Green Morris Minor.

                      Maybe in another six months I’ll see Shearer being competent, Robertson growing a spine or maybe a tabby-Burmese cross winning Le Mans? I guess I just need to give them time.

                    • The Al1en

                      “damn you’re dark.”

                      And always brighter for it.

                    • ghostrider888

                      credit where it is due, Al1en, your selection of terms is as good as, well, as good as anyone a round here. 😀 (refraction in particle Ular)

                    • ghostrider888

                      freakin’ New Zealand Rhino; less than 2 Degrees of calm separation sometimes. (split windows and low-lights).

                    • The Al1en

                      “credit where it is due, Al1en, your selection of terms is as good as, well, as good as anyone a round here.”

                      Bless your heart.

                      ” (refraction in particle Ular)”

                      Likewise your ‘confluence’ the other week.
                      I had to google, but turns out it meant the same as the conflux of my logic circuitry and monkey brain.

                      On planet of the apes, Cornelius gets the morning coffee, I bring the digestives.

                    • McFlock

                      “damn you’re dark.”

                      And always brighter for it.

                      I’m not so sure.

                      I’d hate to be convinced that nz was destined to be ruled by neoliberals for the forseeable future- especially if that issue was still too close to call.

                    • Rhinocrates

                      I’d hate to be convinced that

                      So you admit that for you, wishful thinking is rationale enough.

                      destined to be ruled by neoliberals for the forseeable future- especially if that issue was still too close to call.

                      There’s your problem right there. It’s not destined, but for it not to be destiny, there has to be difference, commitment and competence. Considering how awful, how stupid and venal this government has been, it shouldn’t be “too close to call”, it should be obvious, there should be a huge, unequivocal gap in favour of the opposition, but there isn’t, due to a lack of difference, commitment and competence.

                      Don’t blame the electorate unless you think they’re idiots – look at the so-called government in waiting and ask why they doubt them.

                    • The Al1en

                      “I’m not so sure.”

                      Luckily, I don’t need the back up, but thanks any way 😆

                      “I’d hate to be convinced that nz was destined to be ruled by neoliberals for the forseeable future- especially if that issue was still too close to call.”

                      Well, when we win, I’ll get you some autographed specs to help with the myopia.
                      Green and red tinted spectacles for all, yes bigee.

                    • ghostrider888

                      Arnie? Where do you forage for the background scripts and savannah sounds.’spose Jake can be found beneath the Alumniminium ladder.

                    • McFlock

                      Three decades of indoctrination needs to be thrown into the mix too, though.

                      And why aren’t the greens on 60%? Or the alliance? Why just rail against labour, each and every freaking post?

                    • The Al1en

                      “Arnie?”

                      No sorry, that was all me 😆

                    • The Al1en

                      “And why aren’t the greens on 60%? Or the alliance? Why just rail against labour, each and every freaking post?”

                      Each and every post I’m gonna have to call, ’cause that would make look like an internet nut with a grudge, but I’m happy to concede that I have no qualms or shame in putting the boot in where it’s deserved. Again, I shouldn’t really be held accountable because of Labour’s failings nor for pointing them out, but hopefully I’m keeping them raw as possible underneath the mickey mouse elastoplast.
                      The more that do it, the more they have to take notice.

                      Game fucking well and truly on, and they’re losing.
                      Labour are the biggest threat to not forming a left leaning government. The greens must be beside themselves, not to forget the 800,000 who didn’t vote last time out.

                    • Rhinocrates

                      Three decades of indoctrination

                      Oh, now it’s “indoctrination? The poor, stupid idiots. If only they were enlightened.

                      You can disagree with someone, but do you have to insult the intelligence of millions? They may be wrong, but give them some credit at least. They know a turkey when they see it.

                      I would like nothing more than a “left wing” government (well, actually, personally, I’d like lots more, some of it involving chocolate, but that’s irrelevant, and possibly disgusting). However, I see neither anything at all genuinely “left” or “government in waiting” on the so-called opposition benches.

                      Why just rail against labour, each and every freaking post?

                      Um, because they’re supposedly the “main” opposition party, with a history and a set of ideals, yet now they’re fucking lazy and have betrayed their fundamental principles, which they demonstrate at every opportunity perhaps?

                    • McFlock

                      Yeah, the “each and every post” was a bit much. But it does seem to be a common comment refrain with little relevance for the posts it appears in.

                      Game fucking well and truly on, and they’re losing.

                      You seem to know more than roymorgan.

                      Anyway, I figure a lot of crow will be eaten regardless of who wins in 2014.

                      That’ll be me for tonight 🙂

                    • Colonial Viper

                      What about the thousands of state house dwellers who will be shafted by the nats’ privatisation plan?

                      They win if the nats get booted in 2014.

                      Holding the current shitty state house/market rental status quo is now to be considered a “win”? This is typical of the low bar ‘small target mindset’ so evident in Wellington.

                      Then there are the $400K to $500K KiwiBuild houses to come available in the very outskirts of Auckland, that’s a “win” for these state housing clients too I suppose, if any can afford the $50K deposit that is.

                    • The Al1en

                      If you had the chance, in what ever reality, to go on Campbell live and tell the prime minister what was what, you would right? You’d go on there and demand he call an immediate general election because he has no mandate to pervert NZ as his government sees fit.
                      You’d give him examples of where he’s fucked up, lied, misled and protected fraudsters in his own government, and you’d do it with passion and conviction because deep down you believe our people are worth more than money, and above all else, our sense of fair play, our humility and way of life are not for sale.

                      Would you? I know I would.
                      Ask David Shearer if he’ll do it.

                    • McFlock

                      Holding the current shitty state house/market rental status quo is now to be considered a “win”? This is typical of the low bar ‘small target mindset’ so evident in Wellington.

                      Well, I guess it’s evident in Dunedin, too [shrug].
                      Yep, it’s better than the alternative for thousands of current HNZ tenants.

                      Then there are the $400K to $500K KiwiBuild houses to come available in the very outskirts of Auckland, that’s a “win” for these state housing clients too I suppose, if any can afford the $50K deposit that is.

                      Nice spin.

                      Let’s do a thought experiment here based on that data, though:
                      assuming that kiwibuild is labour’s only policy; and
                      assuming that all the houses built under kiwibuild cost half a million dollars (regardless of shifting land value or number of bedrooms) rather than half a mill being the projected highest fringe of the price range ;
                      What would be the effect for lower income families?
                      I suggest that 100,000 new half million dollar homes would depress the market so much that they’re not half million dollar homes any more. Which would depress lower housing strata in the market, too.

                      Sure, it’s not as big an effect as a plan to build 100,000 HNZ income-related rentals, and that busts your nut, but basically you’re once again bitching that the Kiwibuild 3/8 spanner isn’t a philips-head screwdriver..

                    • McFlock

                      If you had the chance, in what ever reality, to go on Campbell live and tell the prime minister what was what, you would right? You’d go on there and demand he call an immediate general election because he has no mandate to pervert NZ as his government sees fit.

                      And he would listen to me why?
                      I think he’d just point out that he got the most votes last election, that somewhere buried in all the fluff was something that could be deemed to describe whichever latest bit of evil he was proposing, and that therefore he had a mandate and I was a nutbar who didn’t understand the nature of democracy and who wanted to waste money on an expensive and pointless snap election, and that the last thing people wanted was to hear from more politicians. And he’d smile and wave, and 45% of the habitual voters would be impressed at how responsibly he handled an obvious madman. And I’d have to work back from that before even thinking about the next election.

                      Whereas if I, being in a position where I and several colleagues were regularly in the media gaze, consistently pointed out how he was fucking up, announced new policy over the coming months in concert with our natural coalition partners and slowly built my support base and skillsets prior to the next election, I might have a chance of winning it.

                      The fucker had three electoral gifts from god in his first term and barely scraped in. If he had the shame to call a snap election he would have done so by now.

                    • The Al1en

                      “an obvious madman.” 😆

                    • ghostrider888

                      not as mad as Jack The Hat 😀

                    • The Al1en

                      On ladies day at the races

                    • McFlock

                      yep. I thought I’d give you the chance to focus on the point rather than going for the petty evasion.

                      Failed dismally, didn’t you.
                      Care to address the point that moral outrage won’t work on key (because he’s a dick) and won’t work on the electorate (because key would earn brownie points for sticking to his guns in the face of it)?

                      Case in point – Penny Bright has a lot of good points to make and a lot of moral outrage. So do norml. Doesn’t get them too far though, does it.

                    • The Al1en

                      “yep. I thought I’d give you the chance to focus on the point rather than going for the petty evasion.”

                      Evasion, what rot. If you don’t think it’s the job of the leader of the opposition to actively oppose, then there’s nothing I can do for you.

                      “Failed dismally, didn’t you.”

                      Not yet.

                      “Care to address the point that moral outrage won’t work on key (because he’s a dick) and won’t work on the electorate (because key would earn brownie points for sticking to his guns in the face of it)?”

                      Honestly, read point one again, and if you don’t, won’t or can’t get it, then forget all about it.
                      Like doing nothing has been working out so well.

                      You can accept mediocrity, as is your want.

                    • McFlock

                      You seriously want the leader of the opposition to demand that key has no mandate and should call a snap election ? Even use the “pervert nz” line?

                      What do you think key’s reaction would be: “oh fuck you’re right, election in six weeks and I’m resigning”?

                      If not, how do you envisage the electorate responding – barricades in molesworth st?

                      The jerk would laugh it off, and earn points for doing it.

                    • Arfamo

                      The leader of the opposition is too young and hasn’t got enough members of his party in parliament to get away with that at the moment. And it wouldn’t work for Shearer either.

                    • The Al1en

                      “You seriously want the leader of the opposition to demand that key has no mandate and should call a snap election ? Even use the “pervert nz” line?”

                      Yes.

                      What do you think key’s reaction would be: “oh fuck you’re right, election in six weeks and I’m resigning”?

                      No, but then it’s not Key’s reaction I’m interested in, it’s the hundreds of thousands of 2011 absentee votes, waiting for a leader to stand up and inspire them to follow. It’s there where the next election is won or lost.
                      If you can’t see the benefits, you’re not even watching the same game.

                      “The jerk would laugh it off, and earn points for doing it.”

                      I guarantee the person that does it first will win more votes than they’ll lose.
                      Fucking amateurs.

                    • McFlock

                      it’s the hundreds of thousands of votes, waiting for a leader to follow. It’s there where the next election is won or lost.

                      Messianic tosh.
                      There can be no sudden moment of enlightenment among the masses.
                      The next election will be won by hard work, one meeting at a time, one interview at a time, one issue at a time. Momentum will build as an aggregate one way or another. There are no Saviours in a team – even Savage worked with others.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Messianic tosh.
                      There can be no sudden moment of enlightenment among the masses.
                      The next election will be won by hard work, one meeting at a time, one interview at a time, one issue at a time. Momentum will build as an aggregate one way or another. There are no Saviours in a team – even Savage worked with others.”

                      What are you on about? Messianic? For doing the job properly, by securing government in a famous left victory, saving the traditions and values that make/made us salt of the Earth kiwis.
                      You don’t need a saviour cause you appear to have no faith.

                      Lead and people follow, it’s your human nature. Show me a time it didn’t ever work when taking down a shit government, or at work, on the sports field, in the class room.

                    • McFlock

                      Yes. Multitudes just waiting for a leader to rally behind is indeed a messianic dream.

                      The big hole with it is that it rests entirely on the vision that hundreds of thousands of the nonvoters and floating voters are just waiting to hear the right words.

                      The saviour idea is fucked if the nonvoters have actually heard too many glossy words and actually have serious trust issues because of it. Hell, sudden dramatic words might just make them think “shit, just another playa”. In that case their trust needs to be regained slowly, and solidly. Not with one interview.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Yes. Multitudes just waiting for a leader to rally behind is indeed a messianic dream.”

                      800,000 votes waiting for a home, and you go all jesus and weird on me.
                      You know how much in % 800k votes is out of total population, yeah? Add that to Labours core 27-30 and say a little prayer of attrition.

                      “The big hole with it is that it rests entirely on the vision that hundreds of thousands of the nonvoters and floating voters are just waiting to hear the right words.”

                      And you think they are not? I get it.
                      You are wrong.

                      “The saviour idea is fucked if the nonvoters have actually heard too many glossy words and actually have serious trust issues because of it. Hell, sudden dramatic words might just make them think “shit, just another playa”. In that case their trust needs to be regained slowly, and solidly. Not with one interview.”

                      Glossy words 😆 Key, you’re shit, is glossy exactly how?
                      I can’t believe you put the last bit in, because it’s just so ‘madman’. 😉

                    • McFlock

                      800,000 votes aren’t looking for a home.
                      800,000 people have been burned, ignored an alienated so many times that they don’t vote any more.

                      Maybe some of them are waiting with bated breath to throw their vote at the first politician to sing the Internationale in the House. I reckon most of them have just thrown politics into the trash. I guess we’ll see who’s right over the next year and a half.

                    • The Al1en

                      “800,000 votes aren’t looking for a home.”

                      So they won’t find one in Labour.

                      “800,000 people have been burned, ignored an alienated so many times that they don’t vote any more”

                      Which is why they need to be appealed to and convinced this is the real deal. Their votes really do count, and it’s them, the dispossesed who can and will win the election.

                      If you don’t think it’s worth it, or in Labour’s best interest, and you concede there’s no one in Labour that can pull it off, then it’s a sad Labour party you advocate for.
                      To be fair, that crassness does sort of prove my point.

                    • McFlock

                      Actually, I agree entirely with your last comment.

                      We merely disagree on the best method of regaining the trust of the nonvoters. You think it lies in a single king-hit, I think labour has to work on it, with the greens, over the long term.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Actually, I agree entirely with your last comment.”

                      Well that’s progress, comrade.

                      “We merely disagree on the best method of regaining the trust of the nonvoters. You think it lies in a single king-hit, I think labour has to work on it, with the greens, over the long term.”

                      I didn’t say it had be a one off, or that was my preference. It isn’t.
                      Sustained all out assault and nothing less, but it has to start somewhere, some time.
                      That neither of the two current affairs programs, on this day of downright un- kiwiness, carried an interview with the leader of the opposition says it all for me.

                      Again, if you, in any reality had the clout to get on prime time and fight back, for what was right and decent, you would, yeah?
                      I know I would. Ask David Shearer if he will.

                    • McFlock

                      and in two interviews any leader of the opposition that swings the moral outrage too hard can’t top themselves and becomes at best boring, at worst a joke.

                      And in 18 months they’re a half-remembered joke.

                      You might want to see politicians slinging hyperbole every night on telly, but I think it’s a mistake to assume that particular desire is shared by people who choose not to vote.

                    • The Al1en

                      “and in two interviews any leader of the opposition that swings the moral outrage too hard can’t top themselves and becomes at best boring, at worst a joke.

                      And in 18 months they’re a half-remembered joke.

                      You might want to see politicians slinging hyperbole every night on telly, but I think it’s a mistake to assume that particular desire is shared by people who choose not to vote.”

                      Or 18 months of passion and conviction later, we don’t get saddled with a crooked king maker, because the king already made himself.
                      I know what I want and prefer.

                    • McFlock

                      The question is not what you want and prefer. It’s what most voters want and prefer.

                    • The Al1en

                      “The question is not what you want and prefer. It’s what most voters want and prefer.”

                      Well, according to you, 800k don’t want any thing, when I know they do, it just isn’t 2013 Labour.

                    • McFlock

                      Keep telling yourself that.

                    • The Al1en

                      “Keep telling yourself that.”

                      I’m covered, ta.

                  • Tim

                    “There are lots of people who would rather gnash their teeth at the decline of the Labour “brand” than build up a party that really does support their ideals, petulant though it might appear to you and I.”
                    Then there are others who are not quite so sentimental, and who simply believe there are already alternatives closer to the Labour they once knew. Some of them are trying to rebuild that brand – just under a different label from the one that has been hijacked.
                    That’d be the likes of me UNLESS Labour pull something out of the bag – and bloody quick too.
                    A vote is actually a very valuable thing. I’m sick of it being taken for granted.

                    • Rhinocrates

                      A vote is actually a very valuable thing. I’m sick of it being taken for granted.

                      Exactly, and yet every time a “Labour” front bencher speaks, that’s the subtext: “We own your vote, little people.”

                      On the other hand, there’s a hell of a lot of talent on the backbenches, such as David Cunliffe and Louisa Wall – but maybe that’s why they’re on the back benches….

                      I remember a satirical radio series in which a vain doctor had to leave his practise for a while, and said on departure, “Don’t do anything I can’t do.” That indeed seems to be the rule for Shearer and Robertson’s front bench now.

                    • felix

                      That’d be the likes of me UNLESS Labour pull something out of the bag – and bloody quick too.

                      Oh be fair Tim. Give them another six months, there’s a good chap.

                • Clockie

                  + Me too.

                  • Arfamo

                    But shearer has a fair chance of being the next prime minister.

                    That’s Labour’s biggest problem. By now, with all the shit that’s swirled around National and John Key in the last few months, any competent, articulate Labour leader should be showing up in the polls as having a damn good chance of being the next PM.

                    What do I know about Shearer? He’s a mumbler and a bumbler. He’s probably rich but doesn’t want people to know how rich. He failed to declare an overseas bank account he should have and his excuse sounded fake. His party failed to declare a massive bequest as a donation and their excuse sounds fake. If not fake, then abysmally stupid and incompetent. He wants to introduce a capital gains tax (good). He wants to raise the age of eligibility for superannuation to 67 (bad – may cost more votes than it gains). NZ Power is the only thing going for him at the moment.

                    • Rhinocrates

                      Earning votes by actually being a real, effective opposition with having… Wow!… a really different approach? Even perhaps competence? Effort even? Pah!

                      Elections are vending machines: keep inserting press releases and eventually government falls out. That’s all there is to it.

                    • GregJ

                      Arfamo…You forgot “Kiwibuild”…oh… wait a moment…as you were!

                • Murray Olsen

                  Me.

          • Macro 3.1.1.1.2

            “if you don’t look like a credible, capable government in waiting with the vision to frame and deliver quite different results to the incumbents, don’t expect people to vote for you.”

            QFT

          • Rhinocrates 3.1.1.1.3

            credible, capable government in waiting

            What’s that got to do with it? They think that it’s “their turn” and everyone’s a fool for not recognising their natural right, so I guess you’d better STFU, because you’re undermining their otherwise inevitable victory.

            Being a real Labour party, really fighting for workers and the underprivileged? Actually standing up for the marginalised? Ask Louisa Wall, who’s been shoved to the back benches for actually succeeding in being progressive, and Hipkins, who’s been promoted for being a vicious little arselicker and Grant Robertson who’s been nothing but a lazy apparatchik.

      • David H 3.1.2

        And how many his time? 1 million a mil 2? that will believe the bull that’s spouted by Key and Co?

    • North 3.2

      If I’m allowed one succinct response: because the rich own and control the media. That’s why.

      Forget all your fancy idealised shit about democracy and a free press.

      Noting Irish Bill above, the media owned by the rich not only controls (what and how much people know), it also distracts. That is part of its job. For the rich. Who own it. Easy.

    • mac1 3.3

      I’ve been musing about why this is, too.
      1. Identification. Somehow, I don’t understand why, poor people get to identify with being better off if they vote for tories and take comfort from that.
      2. Fear. Some poorer folks cannot express a left wing position around their work place or social environment for fear of blacklisting and loss of jobs. This means that the left point of view is not debated amongst the people whom it most would benefit.
      3. “Let’s give the other side a go” which was much talked about in 2008 for example.
      4. “Don’t vote. It only encourages them” was another slogan which kept that 800,000 that Irish Bill mentions away from voting at all.
      5. Media which were biased in their reporting.
      6. Media which were determined upon changing governments. I was told by a senior Labour politician that the Christchurch Press in 2008 was determined to change the government, and published accordingly.
      7. Media which did not address the substantive issues but which instead went for entertainment; such as vox pops, inane questions to candidates about their music preferences or who they’d invite to dinner, trivialising and short reports upon candidate meetings.
      8. The feeding of the formerly American only dream that if only I got Lotto/ struck it rich/got a good job then the voting citizen can participate in the life of the rich, and vote accordingly.
      9. Media which have been severely cut back in staff means that reporters are unable to do in depth stories. I have been asked to act as a photographer by my local paper since they wanted a photo of NZEI teachers demonstrating recently and thought as a well-known local political activist of the Left that I would be attending. They couldn’t find/employ a photographer. Needless to say, coverage of the issue was poor.
      10. Poor media skills of the Left and resulting poor coverage.

      11. Leadership struggles which portray disunity and promote disengagement.

      I read Joe Bageant’s “Deer Hunting with Jesus” in 2011 and wrote of it on the Standard then. He wrote of the underclass “ ‘held in bondage’ through education, religion and generational reinforcement.


      The way back for the majority to take control for Bageant was (p192) – “They came to power primarily through elections and can be dealt with in the same way: Anyone who wishes to displace them needs to become more engaged in electoral politics than just watching it on television. You need to become engaged and bring your friends. And your family.

      A critique of Joe Bageant’s thinking can be found here.
      http://www.thepoliticalscientist.org/?p=571#more-571

      • ghostrider888 3.3.1

        comprehensive mac 1 (and the links); yet the “real” jesus of the gospels is the ultimate revolutionary if understood through the lenses of thinkers like Barth et al; , the New Historicism and cultural materialism.

        • ghostrider888 3.3.1.1

          however, these ideas are certainly not dispensed to most of the congregational flock; sigh.

    • Roy 3.4

      Because John Key smiles and waves so nicely.

      • Janice 3.4.1

        And (according to my son) because he donates his salary to charity! (which one again).

        • felix 3.4.1.1

          He doesn’t. He has never said he donates his salary to charity. It’s a myth.

          • Janice 3.4.1.1.1

            I know that and you know that, but how do I get my thick son to see it?

            • David H 3.4.1.1.1.1

              http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/573560/Key-pledges-PMs-salary-to-charity

              And tell him to read the Article then ask him what the term ‘Good Chunk’ really means.

              • felix

                Could be 5%. Most people would probably consider that a “good part”. But “good part” doesn’t even have to mean a proportion at all. If he gave away 10 grand who would argue that it wasn’t a “good” amount?

                The other important clause is “charities and other good causes”. That could mean anything at all.

                $20,000 to the Waitemata trust and a couple of bucks on red nose day, and he’s technically told the truth. And doesn’t he just love technically telling the truth, eh?

                Who knows? All we know for sure is that:

                1: The popular myth states that he donates all of his salary to charity.

                2: He has never said anything of the sort.

                3: He likely gives some money to someone but no-one has any idea who or how much.

            • Jim Nald 3.4.1.1.1.2

              Ah but a trickster – who claims that to have integrity, there has to be a directness and fullness in one’s answers – can say that he donates his salary to charity while being cute and take the meaning of the phrase ‘charity begins at home’ on its face, quite literally.

              …. his home …… his home bank account.

              • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                Who’s “good” are we talking about here anyway?

                He pays tax on it doesn’t he? Pretty charitable if you ask me. /sarc.

          • TheContrarian 3.4.1.1.2

            He said:

            “I already donate a good part of the pay I receive as Leader of the Opposition to charities and other good causes. I will continue that practice should I become Prime Minister,” Key, above, told Sunday News.”
            http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/573560/Key-pledges-PMs-salary-to-charity

            EDIT:(I see DavidH posted the same)

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 3.4.1.1.2.1

              You aren’t getting the point are you? What constitutes a “good part” in John Key’s mendacious self-serving universe? Are you saying you believe this is something he’s being honest about?

            • felix 3.4.1.1.2.2

              Thanks Contrarian, that’s the one.

              He has never said he donates his salary to charity.

            • Murray Olsen 3.4.1.1.2.3

              I believe that Prime Minister Key donates a good part of the pay he receives as leader of the opposition to charities and other good causes. It’s probably 100%, at least.

              • felix

                Perfectly valid interpretation. Precisely technically correct.

                100% accurate and true.

    • paul andersen 3.5

      good question, many vote for where they would like to be(vote for the rich cause we will be there one day,,,, yeah right). many middle income earners are shameless climbers.

  4. Paul 4

    I agree with you about the media. Recently saw a film called ‘Shadows of Liberty’ that highlighted how the media are owned.
    However, you and I can see through at least some of the media’s clear bias and distractions. Surely people’s real life experience overrides what they read in the media. For example, the state asset sales spin about Mum and Dad investors would not be believed by families struggling to pay their bills. In Venezuela people voted for Chavez, despite a hostile media owned by the coroporations and the wealthy elite of that country.
    Or am I too optimistic?

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      Chavez had an agenda which was clearly and radically different to the neoliberals and the corporate investor class. He could also connect with ordinary people of the working and under classes and lead them to a standing ovation. He didn’t “get tough” with poor people and beneficiaries in order to gain credit with the comfortable chattering middle classes.

      The political economy that he presented to people was a mile apart from Business as Usual in Venezuela, not just a more people centred version of neoliberalism.

  5. IrishBill 5

    I don’t think it’s fair to blame the media. After all this post relies on a media story (there are biases in the media – opinion media in particular – but they go both ways).

    • Jenny 5.1

      That the story was broken by someone who is not a journalist, is a condemnation of our tame cat journos. Whatever happened to investigative crusading journalism in this country? Are they too scared to dare investigate the rorts of the rich and powerful? Are they frightened of speaking out of turn, in case their careers are wrecked? Much more easy to keep on pumping out that mass produced pap that passes as news.

      • IrishBill 5.1.1

        Someone gave a journalist with a tip off and they then went to the minister and forced him to admit to a policy of selling off statehousing. That’s good journalism.

        I know there’s this popular liberal view that all journos should be digging through archives and sitting in cars doing surveillance into the wee hours of the morning so they can break huge scoops in a totally “objective” way, but that’s not how it works.

        The key to being a good journo is talking to people, following it up with some research (which is often simply talking to someone else), and then presenting it in a clear way so it can be understood easily by the likes of us. Which is exactly what Rob Stock did.

      • Te Reo Putake 5.1.2

        “Are they too scared to dare investigate the rorts of the rich and powerful? ”

        Actually, they are employed by the rich and powerful. The few of them that are left, that is. Investigitive journalism in the papers or TV is just about history now, replaced by what the public really craves, round the clock updates on Justin Beiber’s twitter feed.

        • Paul 5.1.2.1

          The creation of an independent media is a necessary prerequisite for true democracy in New Zealand.
          There are examples of independent voices…Pilger, Fisk, Monbiot, Hager, Stephenson …but these are the exception not the rule.
          Far more typical are the Mike Hosking style journalist..openly owned by Sky City and not scared to show his preference for National. A wealthy privileged man overtly speaking for the privileged class.

  6. irascible 6

    Any one noticed this little gem from the UK? It sounds just like the mantra being bellowed by KeY and English with the echo chamber of Joyce & Ryall:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2013/may/11/young-recession-cheap-labour
    or this little BBC gem that demonstrates the inherent fault in the much vaunted PPP proposals being touted around by the “free-enterprise pimps”. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-22483690

  7. Bill 7

    If those community groups or charities were going to be structured as housing co-operatives, I would actually be welcoming the move. But they won’t be. They’ll be top/down ‘management’ models with the group/charity acting as landlord over occupants.

    That said, it will be interesting to see if any fleshed out proposal inadvertently creates the space that would allow for the development of genuine housing co-ops (ie, tennents acting similtaneously as landlords empowered by appropriate constitutions drawn up under the auspices of the Incorporated Societies Act, Charities Act or the Industrial and Provident Societies Act etc)

    • ghostwhowalksnz 7.1

      The same result as happened with residential homes for the aged, when the charity no longer wants to be ‘involved’ they flog off the assets to a private landlord and they pocket the capital gain

      • Bill 7.1.1

        Well yeah, but in a scenario where the residents are essentially paying rents to themselves through the legal entity they form and that entity then pays rates, mortgage or whatever …in other words, where the tennant and the landlord are essentially one in the same, the landlord is hardly going to hock off the assett. And even if some members want to ‘cash in/up’ the whole thing, a half way reasonable constitution would prevent that from happening.

        And since rent levels are set by the same people who are paying both the rent and servicing the mortgage and whatever, rents tend to be at a level that allows for maintenence and what not with no ‘add-on’ for profit taking.

        Done correctly, it’s a win/win situation.

      • Jenny 7.1.2

        There is a reason that the state took over social provision of housing from private charities in the early 20th Century.

        The phrase, “Cold as charity” captures the feeling that those who received this form of charity felt about it.

        Charity does more for the giver than the receiver. Diminishing the latter and glorifying the former.

        Also, as Nick Smith points out, so called charities have a better record of forcing tenants out into the private rental sector than housing New Zealand does. Something of course which will gladden the party of property speculators, increasing the competition for private rentals and allowing these harpies to jack up the rents even, more especially as they won’t have a bottom floor of state rentals to hold them back.

        “Cold as Charity” indeed.

        Just another money spinning racket for the undeserving rich living off backs of their tenants. And who now with the new avenue of charitable good works opened up for them can be knighted as Lords and Ladies in greater numbers to appear in the media as philanthropic benefactors of humanity instead of a sick rentier class of inhuman property speculators who push decent housing out of the reach of the majority.

        • ghostrider888 7.1.2.1

          Whatever happened to
          All the Shakespearoes…

          They watched their Rome burn.

        • Bill 7.1.2.2

          I agree that private charity is crap; ‘cold as charity’, as you say.

          But a housing co-op isn’t a private charity administering rented accomodation from ‘on high’. In housing co-ops it’s the tenants who are in charge. On the one hand they are paying rent. And on the other they collecting rent from themselves to pay outgoings and any ongoing costs associated with owning residential property.

          Let me put this another way. Many people have no chance in hell of raising a deposit for a house. And of those that can, a fair few then have difficulty servicing the mortgage and keeping up with other related outgoings.

          But when people organise themselves properly into discreet groups under relevent legislation, (so… not heirarchical trust arrangements that recreate the division between decision makers and those impacted by decisions), then the legal entity they form can give them the collective wherewithall to similtaneously be their own tenants and own landlords.

          Nobody in that scenario is ripping anyone off and nobody is getting ripped off. And becoming a member of ‘the society’ or whatever isn’t necessarily reliant on having x thousand dollars of deposit monies…but you must be a resident (or prospective resident) in one of the properties. So the security of owning and managing your own property falls within the reach of ‘everyone’. And given the collective nature of the beast, many ongoing costs are far easier to deal with.

          Plus. If the co-op wishes to increase the numbers of properties it owns and so empower more people, it can use existing collateral to do so.

        • Draco T Bastard 7.1.2.3

          Cold as charity

  8. North 8

    My God, Q + A. That spiv Botox Banks raving on about how “passionate” he is about education.

    God, or somebody, Save Us.

    Hurry up the Auckland District Court. Even more than Key, Botox Banks defines the Monty Pythonesque body politic which besets us. Please, interviewers everywhere preface every Botox interview with this very germane question – “Mr Banks, please explain how this interview is other than a pointless waste of time, since you and ACT are dog tucker aren’t you……..?”

    Why must we persist with this charade of Botox as a valid symbol of anything valuable or beneficial to New Zealand ?

    And I wish TV One would drop that useless baggage Susan Wood off at the airport with a one-way ticket. A thinly disguised helplessly “establishment” flibbertigibbet.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 8.1

      You should check out the Boris Johnston ( Bo-Jo !) interview on the BBC, its starts out with the question -“you’re a nasty piece of work ”

      http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/politics/4857900/A-nasty-piece-of-work-BoJos-awkward-interview.html

      • North 8.1.1

        Just looked at it Ghost…

        Must say the toff handled it pretty well. Botox wouldn’t handle the albeit much softer question I suggest. He’d go into the thin-lipped high-pitched screech and shortstep his little clay feet outa there. Whatever, he’d lose.

        My point is there’s hardly anyone who’d want to ask the question. And the few who might consider it germane and askable know they would suffer consequences at the hands of their bosses. Not in the script. So the pantomime goes on.

        I mean, if you’re on a pretty smart stipend and you do your drinking at Dida’s in Herne Bay with the rest of the puffed-up movers and shakers of the little pond of Auckland, why expose a pair of “unsafe hands”. Why risk the bucks, why risk pariahdom at Dida’s ?

        It’s almost a default pose when you’re partial and a shallow shit, to wit, Susan Wood.
        Anyway there’s plenty of time to put the boot in when the guy’s KO. Risky when he’s only TKO so leave it until he’s KO. As the flibbertigibbet Wood demonstrated on Q + A this morning re Gilmore. And she expects us to respect her ???

      • David H 8.1.2

        Oh to see Key in that predicament, with a Journalist who is not scared to do his job.

    • North 8.2

      Sorry, my comment at 8 above was meant to go to Open Mike.

  9. Roy 9

    Why does Nick Smith look like a heavy drinker who has had a small stroke?

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 9.1

      That’s how you rise to the top of the intellectual pile in the National Party.

      • ghostwhowalksnz 9.1.1

        Another national MP who had the ‘ Dont you know who I am’ mindset.

        Nick Smith once claimed when trying to influence a court witness, that because ‘he was an MP which is the highest court in the land’ it was Ok.

        Found guilty of contempt of court by two High Court judges, he has prospered as he has the support of the Catholic mafia in national,- English , Brownlee et al.

        And instead of becoming a pariah like Gilmore, there was an unprecedented attack on the Solicitor general , who referred the contempt action to the High Court

        • Paul 9.1.1.1

          How is it possible to be Catholic..where you follow Christian values about caring for the poor and believing it’s harder for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven etc and also vote for the National Party.
          Impossible to square those 2 belief systems.
          Be interested to hear English explain how he serves God and ‘mammon’.

    • ghostrider888 9.2

      please note the blue-ing of Keys’ nose, and I suggest that it is not from acetylenol

  10. DH 10

    I don’t think people realise how large the transfer of wealth is with housing or how big the problem really is. The following graph shows the increase in the value of housing stock in NZ. Some of the increase is new houses adding to the stcok but most is asset inflation;

    http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/keygraphs/Fig4.html

    To translate that graph it says total housing stock nationwide is worth $650 billion. A 10% increase in the nationwide median price equates roughly to a $65 billion increase in the value of houses, or to put that in it’s proper context a $65 billion tax free and unearned capital gain. If all capital gain was taxed at 28% that would be tax of $18 billion.

    Looking further at context in 12months house values rose nearly a third as much as our entire GDP. The lost tax on the unearned capital gains is about a third of the tax the Govt collects each year. It’s nearly double what Govt collects in company tax. It’s vastly more than what the Govt has been borrowing each year.

    These are gargantuan sums and people just don’t seem to appreciate the scale of it or how much wealth has been transferrred to a smaller & smaller group.

    Btw note the steepest slope on the house price graph was the Labour years. By allowing the massive housing inflation, which they easily could have halted, they did more to destroy the egalitarian fabric of NZ society than any Govt in my living memory. I’d like to know how often Helen Clarke and all the other property ‘investors’ in Labour have put the rents up to their tenants.

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      And a big problem is the debt levels that these asset price levels drive and vice versa. In the end, the banks are the only true, consistent winners. Everyone else just gets $500K mortgages; welcome to a life time on the capitalist treadmill.

      • DH 10.1.1

        Bollocks. It’s the speculators and asset owners who benefit the most. The key to property is that ‘investors’ aren’t investors at all. They’re investing only the deposit, the rest they’re borrowing. If someone buys a house on 10% deposit, and the price goes up 10%, they’ve made a 100% gain on their investment. Deduct the difference between rental income and interest payments, plus expenses, and it’s still usually well over a 50% return on investment. And they don’t even pay any tax on it! That’s what property is really about, too many people stupidly think that ‘investors’ own the whole house .

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1

          Sure, you’re talking about utilising leverage to make large tax free gains. And of course I recognise that is a big driver in speculative behaviour. But unless you recognise the underlying factor which is the banking sector and it’s massive credit creation allowing these levels of leverage, you’re never ever going to change this.

          By the way, negative geared asset speculators only prosper during asset price bubbles. The moment the momentum reverses and the music stops – they go immediately bankrupt. Mortgagee sale city.

          • DH 10.1.1.1.1

            “By the way, negative geared asset speculators only prosper during asset price bubbles. The moment the momentum reverses and the music stops – they go immediately bankrupt. Mortgagee sale city.”

            People need to learn what a bubble is. They’re called bubbles because they’re full of air, they expand and then burst, like a bubble does, leaving nothing but air again. If we’ve had a housing bubble it’s been expanding for a very long time because it’s never burst.

            You keep blaming banks when you’ve got it the wrong way around. It’s the people benefiting from asset inflation who are driving bank behaviour, they won’t put a halt to bank lending because they’re making too much easy money out of it.

            • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Nah you’re the one who has it the wrong way aroumd and I doubt that you will win me over. Steve Keen has done the modelling and banks are a critical facilitator in every housing asset price boom. The argument can be considered here:

              The key fact is this: banks supply money into the housing market via the creation of debt.

              If that debt (and hence money) was not created at ever increasing levels, it would not be possible to have true housing price asset bubbles.

              If we’ve had a housing bubble it’s been expanding for a very long time because it’s never burst.

              Oh just wait. In the mean time, track the level of mortgage debt growth in this country to the speed of income growth.

              • geoff

                You’re both wrong. It’s the lack of financial regulation that has caused the bubbles.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Ahem. We haven’t started discussing solutions yet, you’ve sorta jumped the gun.

              • DH

                “ah you’re the one who has it the wrong way aroumd and I doubt that you will win me over. Steve Keen has done the modelling and banks are a critical facilitator in every housing asset price boom. The argument can be considered here:”

                My point was that banks aren’t the ultimate authority over their actions. They can only do what Governments permit them to do. You blame banks for doing what banks do and always have done. Money creation by banks isn’t a new phenomenon so what’s the point of your argument?

                Geoff is more attuned to it. IMO the banks haven’t been regulated because the people who can and should regulate are doing very nicely for themselves under the existing system thanks very much. They know exactly what the problem is and they’re doing nothing about it. What other reasonable conclusion can be reached?

                Do me a favour & stop talking bubbles & booms, it’s lazy and misleading. Bubbles burst and booms bust, the NZ housing market has never suffered either in at least the last forty years.

                • geoff

                  Bubbles burst and booms bust, the NZ housing market has never suffered either in at least the last forty years.

                  So you’re saying the NZ housing situation isn’t a bubble?

                  • DH

                    I’ll put it this way. History says it isn’t. I’d like to think it is because bubbles burst and if it did burst you’d see house prices fall back to what they were when the bubble started.

                    Does anyone know when the housing ‘bubble’ began?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      I don’t know the answer but I believe that it would be relatively simple to identify with REINZ and Statistics NZ data.

                      The ratio you want to calculate is the ratio of median working income to house prices region by region.

                      Then correlate it with increase in private household mortgage debt. I would expect the correlation to be >0.5

                      Re: is it a bubble or isn’t it; you’ve chosen a definition which says that you can only identify bubbles retrospectively i.e. after they’ve popped.

                      That’s fine as a definition, but also not that useful. In addition there is a specific supply/demand problem for housing in Auckland which suggests that at least some of the house price increases there are very real, and not just speculative.

                • Colonial Viper

                  My point was that banks aren’t the ultimate authority over their actions. They can only do what Governments permit them to do. You blame banks for doing what banks do and always have done. Money creation by banks isn’t a new phenomenon so what’s the point of your argument?

                  Cripes mate, all I’m doing is pointing to the banks and their ability to create money as the root cause of the problem, and of course the Reserve Bank and the Government have many powers to constrain them and reorganise our monetary system.

                  If it makes you happier lets call the lack of effective Government banking regulation and monetary restructuring the root cause of the problem and the banks as mindless entities which simply do what is most profitable, then we can move on with the discussion.

    • Olwyn 10.2

      I think that up until almost the end of the Labour years, it was still possible to believe in “a maturing market economy” that would, with careful management, end up delivering many of the social goods that were lost in the changeover from Keynesian model. It was also still possible to believe, up to a point, that increasing house values would underpin an increase in productive businesses. It was only when the GFC kicked in that such thoughts showed up as illusory. Since then the neo-liberal establishment has largely opted for tyranny over persuasion. Yes, there is still PR, but the happy-ever-after promise is issued to an ever-decreasing group, and the scrapheap onto which people are thrown is no longer cast as temporary. That is why I am so disappointed with the present Labour Party; for their refusal to forthrightly oppose this increasingly overt tyranny, and their muzzling of anyone among their ranks who just might.

      • aerobubble 10.2.1

        The ideal is to unsettle National voters into seeing that a poorly developed Auckland hurts our economy, that greed without limit destroys rather than enhances the invisible hand, that free markets can only exist where society wants them and not where the particular market agents haven’t the money and/or power (like kids, like poverty, like disease, like safety ,etc).

        • Colonial Viper 10.2.1.1

          Except that a poorly developed Auckland is a gold mine of property development rorts and record house prices. What’s going to unsettle National voters about that?

          • aerobubble 10.2.1.1.1

            Gold mine for a few when the economy was trickling down, not any longer now banks are deleveraging and the world debt index places NZ near top. The divide and conquer paradigm works, since the right has been in ascendency because a lot of zombie thought it wise to mouth the same blather that seem to make the growth appear everywhere. Now that the cheap oil ticket is failing its all just a matter of waking a portion of the zombie plague up to their own interests.

      • DH 10.2.2

        They never really did change from the Keynesian model though. The fundamental platform of Keynes theory was that if you borrow money you’ll get economic growth from the spending of that borrowed money. The basic principle of the Keynes approach is to stimulate the economy with borrowed money and if it’s spent in the right part of the economy the growth will sustain itself without more borrowing & furthermore fund the repayment of the borrowed money. It’s essentially meant to be a kickstart effect.

        All Labour did was transfer borrowing from the Crown to the private sector, it was still Keynesian in effect. The growth we had was all debt-driven and I struggle to believe that people like Cullen didn’t understand or endorse that. The housing inflation spoke for itself, it was running hugely higher than the CPI and much higher than the increase in wages. How could they have missed it?

        • Olwyn 10.2.2.1

          I said, “almost up to the end of the Labour years.” It seems likely to me that housing inflation at first seemed to run in tandem with overall economic growth, and then spiralled out of control. By the 2008 election they were looking at ways to contain it and to come up with affordable housing, but they lost that election.

          • DH 10.2.2.1.1

            “It seems likely to me that housing inflation at first seemed to run in tandem with overall economic growth”

            But it didn’t, was only like that in Labour’s first year and that was inherited. Economic growth under Labour wasn’t even half of what housing inflation was. Look at the graph I linked to, it shows what house price inflation was over the Labour years.

            This one shows growth in GDP

            http://www.rbnz.govt.nz/keygraphs/Fig2b.html

            Economic growth was around 4% and housing inflation over 10%.

            • Colonial Viper 10.2.2.1.1.1

              A lot of property owning middle/upper middle class voters felt much wealthier. Why would you want to stop that effect?

              Beneficiaries, younger adults and those on lower wages got pushed out of the housing market, but meh. The people who mattered were happy.

              • geoff

                That’s why NZ is in big trouble. If it really were just the 2% against the rest of us then things would have changed. It’s more like the 30% (homeowners with small or no mortgage) against the 70% (massively indebted homeowners or renters paying huge prices)
                The 30% is loving the asset bubble (they stupidly feel richer) while the 70% is either struggling to stay above water or living in constant fear of interest rate rises.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Correct. The top 1% – 2% orchestrate things to suit themselves best, but they make sure that there is just enough trickle down to the next 10% to 20% to ensure solid support there.

                  And remember, average household income in this country sits over $80,000 pa.

                • DH

                  “The 30% is loving the asset bubble (they stupidly feel richer) ”

                  They’re not feeling richer. They are richer. These are houses that are either rented out or lived in rent-free. With asset inflation comes rent inflation which takes more money out of the pockets of renters and lines the pockets of rentiers. It’s a transfer of wealth on a massive scale.

                  • geoff

                    Quite possibly you are right, I’d like to know the actual figures around this, if it is even possible to get this kind of information.
                    Regardless, as long as people merely see dollar signs as their house prices inflate, there will be little appetite to pull the pin on this game and that will make the ending that much more dramatic.

                    Whether Auckland house prices skyrocket from here doesn’t really make much difference, the damage has already been done. Buying a first house has been a completely out of the question for many people in my generation for over a decade now.
                    It’s like the way Geoff Bertram describes the electricity market. The gentailers got away with upping their assets and prices for so many years, it doesn’t matter that the rate of price increase is now slowing or if it even started going backwards slowly. The damage has already been done over the past ten years and what actually needs to happen is to massively roll the price right back.
                    The same thing needs to happen with housing. Of course it wont happen for the reasons stated but something eventually has to give, doesn’t it?

                    • DH

                      Yup, agree entirely the damage really has been done. The wealth transfer was renters expending their earnings to pay off the rentiers mortgage plus the increasing rents driven by capital gain. Even if house prices fell slightly it won’t change who now owns a large percentage of the houses.

                      I think it will only give when renters outnumber homeowners, I wonder just how far away that is.

        • Draco T Bastard 10.2.2.2

          The growth we had was all debt-driven and I struggle to believe that people like Cullen didn’t understand or endorse that.

          I’m sure that they did and I’m sure that National understand it as well but they’re too wedded to a) perpetual growth and b) interest bearing bank accounts both of which force unsustainable growth.

          The real reason for the government borrowing is just to give wealthy people a safe place to put their money with a guaranteed return on it. After all, the government doesn’t really need to borrow as it can print the money and achieve the same stimulation.

  11. xtasy 11

    Housing NZ are already very much into the business of selling off land and houses they own, and so far it has been going to developers like in this following scenario in Onehunga, Auckland:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/8274918/Trail-blazing-social-housing-project
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/central-leader/8497562/Mixed-tenure-Onehunga-project-scaled-back

    There is opposition as neighbours fear for loss of their familiar living qualities by having some high rise, multi-level blocks of flats built near their homes, which are intended to house state tenants in very condensed projects.

    Existing tenants are driven from homes, to make room for new developments, or for having sections sold at high prices to developers. It has been and still is happening all over Auckland:

    http://www.hnzc.co.nz/about-us/news/nineteen-state-properties-to-be-sold-in-haverstock-road-sandringham
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10877991
    http://www.designgroupstapletonelliott.co.nz/ap.php?o=projects/1237769398
    http://blog.greens.org.nz/?p=27657

    Intensification is happening in a quite radical way for Housing NZ tenants, who are herded into 3 to 4 level complexes, where they live close to each other in small pigeo holes, separated by walls, floors and ceilings, that may not be sufficiently sound proofed. These will likely be the ghettoes of the future. The corporation gets returns from existing land and some homes, which they say they will re-invest. The type and quality of this “re investment” is an issue.

    So with the plans to hand over housing to NGOs, the Nats are going one step further down an agenda they have planned for years. Indeed, Housing NZ is going to rid itself of state tenants and focus more on “managing” the transition of state housing. As far as I have heard, there is apparently also a cap on new housing funded through the state, so no extra homes exceeding existing state housing numbers can be expected under this government.

    I notice with regret, that there is only some resistance, as tenants have been intimidated to not cause problems.

    http://www.maoritelevision.com/tv/shows/te-kaea?utm_source=brightcove&utm_medium=button&utm_campaign=share+this+video

  12. johnm 12

    The housing bubble shows all that’s wrong with NZ. Speculators on cheap bank money make a killing while our young people and workers get screwed up the economic butt. Another Neoliberal obscenity doesn’t gringo yankey john love it! And all the scum that hangs onto his arse! Key is an evil little toerag.

    • johnm 12.1

      How can the Prime Minister of New Zealand be an evil little toerag? Quite easy actually just be it and do it while the sheople are bamboozled by the money chasing self interested media who fuck the brains of the plebs. No wonder 150000 of our best and brightest have fucked off to Australia!

  13. ghostrider888 13

    staying Classy Al1en. hierarchically rent-controlled on multiple linear levels. anon. Danish.

  14. vto 14

    The Auckland housing package is proof complete that the free market private enterprise model has failed to provide.

    Yet they still follow it.

    Either ignorant or evil.

  15. vto 15

    One thing I’ve learned over too many years is to watch out for people who have one eye closed or open more than the other.

    Check out Nick Smith’s eyes in the photo.

    Cannot be trusted.

  16. Brian 16

    Business as usual then.

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    2 days ago
  • “Uncertainty” can be better solved with a better grasp of life’s inherent complexities…
    There is an article in The Conversation, written by Jeremy P. Shapiro (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University), about what he sees as the psychologically-based underpinnings of three main matters that seem to vex people all around the planet. The article is titled “The Thinking ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    3 days ago
  • Citizens vs the Rogue Deep State
    . .   Blogger Martyn Bradbury has won his case against unreasonable search and surveillance against the NZ Police; and subsequent Police attempts to produce evidence in secrecy, in a closed Court. His case highlights a disturbing growing trend in Aotearoa New Zealand for State power to be used against ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • Massey University’s free speech policy double-plus-good
    The Committee of Disobedient Women has intercepted an email from Dr Emma Eejut, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Massey University to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas. Dear Jan, Thank you for your courageous move.  I think 10 pages of blether** should tie any of the students game enough to try holding ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Unacceptable
    That's the only response to the findings of the Ombudsman's investigation into LGOIMA practices at the Christchurch City Council:My investigation identified serious concerns about the Council’s leadership and culture, and its commitment to openness and transparency. In particular, Council staff raised concerns with me about various methods employed by some ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • There is what corruption looks like
    NZ First seems to be nakedly trying to enrich itself from public office:A powerful New Zealand First figure helped establish a forestry company that then pushed for money from two key funding streams controlled by a New Zealand First Minister. An RNZ investigation has found Brian Henry, lawyer for Winston ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Escape from Manus Island
    Behrouz Boochani is an award winning author and journalist. He is also a refugee, who for the past six years has been detained in Australia's offshore gulag on Manus Island, and in Papua New Guinea. But last night, with the cooperation of the WORD Christchurch festival and Amnesty International, he ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • When World’s Collide.
    Different Strokes: If a multicultural immigration policy imposes no obligation on immigrant communities to acknowledge and ultimately embrace their host nation’s most cherished traditions and values, then how is that nation to prevent itself from being reduced to a collection of inward-looking and self-replicating ethnic and cultural enclaves?THE COALITION GOVERNMENT’S ...
    5 days ago
  • Could There Be Method In Massey University’s Madness?
    Protective Zone: Reading the rules and guidelines released by Massey University, it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that its governing body considers the whole concept of free speech a disruptive threat to the orderly imparting of orthodox academic knowledge.IN TRUE ORWELLIAN fashion, Massey University has announced its commitment to ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: We need more trees, not less
    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • 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
    5 days 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
    5 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    7 days 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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. ...
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Too Late To Change Capitalism’s Flightpath?
    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    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 If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks 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 ...
    8 hours 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 ...
    8 hours 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 ...
    9 hours 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 ...
    1 day ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    2 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 ...
    6 days 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 ...
    7 days 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
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    3 weeks 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
    3 hours 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
    3 hours 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
    8 hours 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
    8 hours 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
    10 hours 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
    12 hours 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
    14 hours 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
    1 day 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
    1 day 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
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  • Speech to the Child Poverty Action Group 2019 Summit
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