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Granny hugs the corpse of neoliberalism

Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, October 15th, 2012 - 59 comments
Categories: capitalism, energy, jobs - Tags:

Here’s Granny Herald’s genius plan for economic development: if Meridian can get more money for its power elsewhere, it should let Tiwai Point close. 3,000 jobs would be lost. Invercargill and Bluff would effectively be killed. But, hey, market forces! Problem is, if Meridian only considers its narrow commercial interests, it ignores the cost to the country as a whole.

But that’s always been the problem with neoliberalism. This quasi-religious belief that what is good for the one must ipso facto be good for the whole (or maybe that should be, what’s good for the one is all that matters, fuck the whole). That logic might be OK for the corner dairy. It might be optimal for small companies in perfect competition. But it isn’t OK for major companies in monopolistic situations. And it definitely isn’t OK for the Government. Remember, that’s what Meridian is – our government, an artificial division of our government, but our government all the same.

So, what Granny Herald is basically saying is that part of our collective wealth (the government) should behave with the logic of a corner dairy and attempt to maximise its own profits even if that hurts the rest of us (ie its owners) more. This is the madness of neoliberalism at its maddest – our company shouldn’t consider our interests when making its decisions.

None of this is to say that the country might not in fact be better off if the smelter closes and the cheap hydro displaces fossil fuel electricity production elsewhere. Point is, the decision should be made on what is best for the country – and the world come to that, if Tiwai closes it’ll just be replaced by coal-powered smelting in China – not what makes sense in the narrow lense Meridian’s books, which is nothing but neoliberal accounting artifice.

59 comments on “Granny hugs the corpse of neoliberalism”

  1. Georgy 1

    You cannot run a nation as if it is a commercial entity.

    Business people such as Key are the worst type of person to have managing our economy.

    We need people who have a strong sense of governance. Not profit. Good governance will allow and encourage profit in the right quarter. But there is a bigger picture than simply making a profit or running depts as cheaply as possible.

    • Reagan Cline 1.1

      Who defines the “bigger picture” and more importantly decides YOUR PLACE in it ?

      • McFlock 1.1.1

        Gotta love democracy for that job. It’s a contrary beast of a system, but it’s better than a plutocracy.

  2. tracey 2

    Hear hear. It is possible to be financially prudent without having a profit motive driving everything.

  3. stopthesubsidies 3

    We are paying vast subsidies in cheap electricity to keep Tiwai going, about quarter of a million for each worker http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10605697

    Why not tell Rio Tinto to sling its hook, put the $s into creating work for Bluff and save the wasted power for us to use? No need for more electricity generation, kicking out a plank in the ‘reasoning’ for the sell off.

    Seems to me that the Herald is right in this case in wanting to stop giving corporate welfare to a multinational.

    • Gosman 3.1

      We are in general agreement here.

    • deano 3.2

      maybe we would be better off if we had the power, rather than the smelter. But that is the question ‘would we be better off?’

      the question the Herald asks is ‘would Meridian be better off?’ That’s stupid. You don’t decide your hand’s actions on whether or not they make your hand better off, you ask whether they make you as a whole better off.

      • Gosman 3.2.1

        Are you trying to argue that the major actions of commercial enterprises in NZ need to checked against some sort of arbitary measurement of overall benefit to NZ as a whole?

        • ropata 3.2.1.1

          are you trying to argue that multinational corporations have no responsibility to the broader society in which they operate and reap vast profits?

          • Gosman 3.2.1.1.1

            Is Meridian a multi-national now? I had no idea.

            In relation to the question, NO I don’t agree that they have no responsibility to the wider society.

            I do think that trying to dictate what their MAJOR responsibility will be will lead to a shed load of negative impacts on the wider economy and society.

            Now, are you going to answer my question?

        • Lightly 3.2.1.2

          of course they should be. Corporations exist for the benefit of society, not the other way around.

  4. vto 4

    Look, the current batch of fools who believe in the free market have shown that they do not in fact believe in the free market at all.

    There was the perfect opportunity in Christchurch to let an entire city develop via the free market. You know, fully hands off. But what did they do? The biggest centrist intervention ever in NZ’s history.

    What they say and what they do are poles apart.

    • Gosman 4.1

      Are you stating you don’t believe in free markets? Is this the policy of any of the political parties represented in parliament because as far as I was aware they all believe in free markets. It is just the degree of freedom they disagree on.

      • vto 4.1.1

        Classic gosman. Avoid the point made. Why did the free market disciples not push to have a go at the biggest opportunity in the country’s history to prove that the free market works? They all ran like widdle scaredy cats …

        Why not gosman?

        • Gosman 4.1.1.1

          Ummmmm… which free market ‘disciples’ are you meaning here?

          The National party is certainly not the home of libertarian free market ideologues.

          Even ACT believes in regulation and co-ordination by elected officials. The Auckland supercity was implemented under the auspices of a previous leader of the party for example.

          I think you are attempting to set up a strawman argument here so you can feel good knocking it down.

          • vto 4.1.1.1.1

            ummmmmm…. let’s see ….. how about the free market disciple that has left the Christchurch red zone residents up to the free market. The market will solve the problem, said free market (when it suits) disciple Minister Gerry Brownlee.

            So why not the same approach with commercial interests as with residential?

            Or you can dodge this very simple question again ….

            • Gosman 4.1.1.1.1.1

              Because, like all mainstream political parties in NZ, the current National led Government believes in a mix of State intervention/co-ordination and letting market forces determining outcomes.

              You might like to see more involvement from the State but that is a matter of degrees I would suggest. If a person sharing such views were in power I could ask an equally asinine question about why won’t they advocate for the State to sort EVERYTHING out. Unless that is what you do advocate for. If so, more power to you Comrade.

              • vto

                Specific question dodged again.

                Useless

                • Gosman

                  Ah no.

                  The question asked was “So why not the same approach with commercial interests as with residential?”

                  and my answer was because the current Government believes in a mix of State and private sector approaches to problems.

                  Just because you don’t like an answer doesn’t mean it isn’t an answer.

                  • vto

                    bull.

                    specific.

                  • McFlock

                    lol
                       
                    the point is the fundamentally different “balance” the government has taken vis: rehousing poor people vs rebuilding the business district for its donors capitalist friends.

                    • Gosman

                      Or perhaps the Government has decided there are greater economic benefits to be had of taking a more interventionist approach in relation to Commercial enterprises in Christchurch than the Residential sector.

                      You say Po-tah-toe…

                    • vto

                      You say potato, I say pathetic apologist.

                      If your hunch is right then it is despicable that money gets put before people, in these circumstances. But not surprising as this government is filled with wankers and arseholes (try not to picture it folks).

                      Further, the fact that intervention is deemed to be required to achieve a better outcome is an admission that the free market would not be able to similarly provide. Thanks for the support for my initial contention.

                    • McFlock

                      either interpretation is what vto said in the first place.
                             
                      Fuck you’re a waste of time. 

                    • Gosman

                      Depends once again on your viewpoint. I have seen any number of decisions made by left leaning Governments supposedly to benefit ‘The people’ , (whatever that term actually means), that have had unintended consequences arguable much worse than the supposed problem they were put in place to resolve.

                    • McFlock

                      “lefties did it too” = irrelevant;
                      “unintended consequences” = irrelevant;
                      “viewpoint” = irrelevant.
                           
                      Relevant: the government which claims to support free markets and has embarked of a programme of privatising schools and prisons realises that the market cannot rebuild a commercial centre. That nactoids are hypocritical cocks.
                            
                      Do you have any relevant comment to make on that point, gos?
                           
                       

                    • Gosman

                      I’ve already answered that point. No main stream political party, (including ACT), advocates for a completely free market approach to all issues. Just as no mainstream political party advocates for a completely statist approach top all issues. To take such an absolutist position exposes your argument to ridicule.

                    • McFlock

                      So you see nothing inconsistent between National’s rhetoric and increased use of outside contractors in everything from analysis to prison operation, versus their behaviour when crap performance outcomes would adversely affect the corporate sector?

                    • Gosman

                      How can it be inconsistent when they generally take a horses for courses approach to most things in Government? It isn’t as if they get in to power and decide to privatise everything in sight. Even their asset sales programme they are attempting to implement is to sell minority stakes only. You could equally argue that this is inconsistent with your view that they are some ideologically pure right leaning party that favours the private sector over the State all the time.

                    • McFlock

                      not plausibly, especially given their “voting shares” sale debacle.
                                   
                      But anyway, your basic counter to vto’s point is that the nacts aren’t lying hypocrites, they just have no coherent economic philosophy or indeed economic plan?
                                
                       

                    • Gosman

                      That position is only valid if you think ALL mainstream political parties in NZ don’t have a coherent economic plan as they all support a mix of free market and State intervention to resolve perceived problems in the economy.

                    • McFlock

                      Maybe on planet key.
                           
                      In the real world it just seems funny how NACT see intervention as the best way to help their mates in the corporate sector, yet poor people have to go it alone. 

                    • Gosman

                      In your obviously biased view of the world. As previously stated the Government may well have decided that there were better economic returns from intervening in the commercial area in relation to Canterbury rather than supporting everybody. This is entirely consistent with National, (if not ACT), party philosophy.

                    • McFlock

                      It’s not consistent with their “smaller government” rhetoric and assault on the public service. Apparently the civil service is incapable of running anything in Wellington, but is the only mechanism capable of rebuilding a commercial centre (but not the accompanying residential suburbs).
                                
                      That’s not running different horses on their appropriate courses.  That’s having three horses in the same damned race, and switching numbers at the end to pretend that the one with the longest odds won.

                    • vto

                      Exactly McFlock.

                      I have heard nobody explain the point in this wee mini-thread and gosman has made a hash of it too. That is because there is no defence.

                      And here is another for non-Christchurch folk to ponder when considering the politics of post-earthquake Chch and its reflection on the realities of the wanker and arsehole-filled National Party…..

                      The red zoned residential property owners of Christchurch get paid out by rateable value whereas the central city commercial property owners get paid out by market value.

                      WHAT THE FUCK?

                      Explain that one gosman. There is a pin in your granny’s sewing basket for you to dance on I’m sure.

                    • vto

                      In fact, the lack of explanation around these issues is EXACTLY the same as how nobody has been able to explain how having foreign landlords is good for New Zealand (note – not reference to foreign investment, just foreign ownership).

                      Nobody has explained.

                      Nobody.

                      Nup.

                      Nada.

                      Nought.

                      Nothing.

                      No.

                      Not.

                      Never.

          • starlight 4.1.1.1.2

            Gosman, Act holds no credibility,roy morgan poll act are 0%.

          • thatguynz 4.1.1.1.3

            Hate to break it to you Gosman but the true “free market” is likewise a strawman…
             
            It exists in theory and fancy – not in practice.  Just like pure “socialism” and many other “ism’s”…

            • Gosman 4.1.1.1.3.1

              Good oh. Then you agree with my point. All we are really discussing here is degrees of free market versus State intervention.

              The current Government clearly favours a more free market approach in some areas but is comfortable with the State playing a leading role in others. Shock horror.

              • thatguynz

                As shocking as it may be – yes I do agree.
                 
                I don’t of course agree with the current government’s approach 🙂
                 

  5. Gosman 5

    I thought many of you lot were against corporate welfare, especially for a large foreign owned multi-national.

  6. tracey 6

    I just read tjis from kiwiblog in 2006.

    ” To put it baldly, Don’s major failing was that he was a very bad liar. Helen on the other hand is a first class liar. Now I should explain – I don’t mean deliberate totally incorrect falsehoods – MPs (including Helen) avoid those sort of lies as much as possible. It’s more the ability to obfuscate, to confuse, to even deceive the questioner. Don had the annoying habit of actually answering the questions people put to him, rather than answering the ones he wanted them to ask. The rare time he tried not to answer the question (often necessary), it was obvious – he was not skilled at such obfuscation. I don’t mean this quite as cynically as it sounds. MPs every day get asked questions which they don’t want to answer, and part of the skills required is to not give an answer which is unhelpful. For example if hypothetically a journalist asks what the Caucus position on nuclear ships is, the answer should be “no change to the current policy is contemplated”, rather than “Well we think the ban is daft, but its popular so 18 out of 29 MPs voted to keep the ban” The other weakness was, in my opinion, trying to be overly fair, and not not pragmatic enough. I don’t mean pragmatic policy-wise (The 2005 policy was relatively moderate) but pragmatic politically. The example here is the Exclusive Brethren, After it was revealed that some Brethren members had hired a private detective, the obvious political response was to use it as an opportunity to say one will not meet with the Brethren again.

  7. quartz 7

    The taxpayer is subsidising Rio Tinto’s electricity and emissions to a greater annual dollar value than Rio Tinto spends each year on labour. It would be sensible to tell them to f**K off and to use those subsidies to promote green growth in Southland along the lines that the WWF and BERL have suggested.

    Hell, the subsidies are so large you could offer every worker three years govt-funded redundancy (circa $300k) to soften the blow and still come out well ahead financially. With the added environmental bonus that you’d lose a large emitter and have a sh*tload of green electricity come on line. We’d probably all have to pay less on our power bills for a while too.

    • tc 7.1

      +1, this is exactly what should happen.

      Aluminium is a commodity under threat from cheap chinese gov’t backed supply, time to move on and sweep away another Muldoon ‘think big’ project that’s done nothing except feather Rio’s nest more so than NZ’s as a whole.

  8. Richard Down South 8

    Wonder how the herald would feel about a 1000% increase in the cost of paper (it’s possible in a free market)

    • Gosman 8.1

      If the NZ Herald was getting a reduced costs of newsprint and was only commercially viable as a result then they should seriously think about getting out of the Newspaper business.

      • tc 8.1.1

        They’re in the newspaper business ? I thought it was part of the NACT PR machine, gosh no wonder they’re struggling that explains alot Gossie.

        • Gosman 8.1.1.1

          Yeah, that would explain the series they ran on Poverty in NZ. All part of the cunning NACT plan to screw with your minds.

  9. captain hook 9

    maybe the the bonamia virus in Foveaux straight might go away now.

  10. Populuxe1 10

    A minor point: closing Tiwai wouldn’t kill Invercargill – it’s the hub for Southland farming. Bluff would suffer badly, true. I know South Island geography is fairly abstract to a lot of you, but at least try to be accurate.

  11. captain hook 11

    and where is this Free Market that you believe in?
    show me.

    • vto 11.1

      It’s in the fine print in the documentation around the loan given by little old lady ratepayers in the Selwyn District by their Council to the very large and wealthy dairy sector in Canterbury for an irrigation project to turn unirrigated farms into dairy farms worth 5 times as much.

      You see, the free market wouldn’t stump up to assist with this Central Plains Water scheme so instead they force a loan from little old lady ratepayers.

      It is also in the documentation of the NZX, the stock exchange, surely the final bastion of free market enterprise, whereby their failure to attract enough investment in the last 80-plus years to make a viable and successful trading place for businesses, that they have to take electricity companies from the taxpayer (cf ratepayer) to bolster their shortcomings.

      The free market ethos has failed in the sense and scale that disciples have believed. It will take them a while yet to either realise this or to wake up.

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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    5 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    6 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    6 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    6 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    6 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    6 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    1 week ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    1 week ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    1 week ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    2 weeks ago

  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago