Greens must not let ETS fail

Written By: - Date published: 2:20 pm, May 28th, 2008 - 45 comments
Categories: climate change, greens - Tags:

The Dompost reports that the Greens will not vote for the Emissions Trading Scheme if the introduction of transport fuels into the scheme and the end of free allocation of credits are delayed. Without the Greens, the Bill will probably not pass.

I have a lot of sympathy for the Greens’ position. The ETS is not all it could be as a scheme to tackle climate change. BUT it is the only game in town. If the ETS does not pass there will be no carbon pricing scheme. Don’t think for a second that National would introduce one. They want the ETS to fail and always have. When push comes to shove, National will always be on the side of the pollutors.

The Greens must be able to find some arrangement with labour to support the scheme in return for some policy concession – a subsidy on the construction of renewable power generation, for example, to encourage renewables and keep electricity prices down, or a major low-carbon technology research and development prpgramme.

It’s no use the Greens cutting off their nose to spite their face. Better to have the ETS in place as a foundation for climate change policy going forward than a policy vacuum.

45 comments on “Greens must not let ETS fail ”

  1. I think the Greens have to take a principled stand on this one and vote against the ETS. To do anything else would risk being perceived as being little more than “Labour lime”.

  2. T-rex 2

    Absolutely agree Steve.

    Brian, do you have any idea how transparent you are? National could make their fibre optic network out of you.

  3. Matthew Pilott 3

    If they vote against it, I’d see it as being analogous to Australia or the US refusing to ratify Kyoto – because it wasn’t a perfect treaty, they didn’t sign.

    Here’s the big news – nothing is perfect. In this case, they should take what they get (while being free, of course, to agitate for more), or NZ will have no useful legislation on the issue and the Greens will sacrifice a start towards their goals for the sake of making a stand.

    Bryan – how so? If this is the best ETS they can get, why not support it while working towards a better one?

    I never picked you for the “useless principled stand” kind of person.

  4. Lew 4

    Bryan Spondre: Since I believe you’re on record saying how climate change is bollocks, I fail to see why the Greens would take policy advice from you. A principled stand which resulted in the government being unable to pass the ETS bill would likely result in a National government refusing to consider such measures in their first term, and would relegate the Greens to the ranks of quixotic one-issue ideologues rather than bolstering their current reputation as flexible, co-operative, accessible politicians concerned with praxis. As Idiot/Savant said, perfect has been the enemy of good enough.

    I think the Greens are playing brinksmanship here – and I think Labour knows this and will partially concede to their agenda in the spirit of future collaboration. The question is whether the Greens are prepared to risk further jeopardising Labour’s election campaign by insisting on rolling back exemptions from the ETS. Is a strong ETS worth a National government?

    But I love the term `Labour lime’ – is it a BS original?

    L

  5. alex 5

    SP – agreed, Green should bite the bullet on the ETS.

    Also, why do Labour need the Greens for it to pass… I’m guessing this means NZ First are not supporting it… why not?

  6. Matthew/Lew: If this wasn’t election year then I would agree with you that the Greens might be better off going for a compromise. But I think the issue is rather like Winston’s rejection of the China FTA: a chance to differentiate themselves.

  7. alex. I understand the Maori Party is opposed, not sure why, and United Future is probably against but are dragging out their flip on it, like National was. I think NZF are for it. Don’t quote me, but i think that’s how they lie.

  8. Matthew Pilott 8

    Bryan – so it’s about playing the game, and not acting according to the interests of those who voted for them…?

    I actually doubt your premise Bryan – I don’t think environmentally conscious voters would be turned off by the Greens supporting a less-than-ideal ETS. I think they’d see it for what it is, bowing to pragmatism – and at least a tangible framework would be in place. That’s just a difference of opinion between us though, I doubt I can justify my thoughts on the issue any more reasonably than you could so we may have to disagree here!

    One big difference between Winston/FTA and Greens/ETS – the FTA was already going to happen, so Winson’s bickering wasn’t relevant. If the greens disagree, there may not be an ETS – a far more consequential disagreement!

  9. Joker 9

    Maybe we should give up the ETS and give This a try.

    Too many people for it to work in the UK but could be interesting here.

  10. mike 10

    The greens are desperate and are trying to look pricipled instead of like Labours lap dog.
    Any comprimise on the fuel tax introduction will be lept on by the Nats at a time when people are seriously struggling to pay the bills.

    It is playing the game Matt but this is election year.

  11. Edosan 11

    I doubt at the end of the day they will oppose it, but I think it’s important they put across their reservations to the public.
    National will want to hurry this in before the election so that they can blame any consequences on the labour administration should they get into power. If there are major problems with the ETS (becasue of its hurried nature) the Greens will have positioned themselves well for after the election as well.

  12. erikter 12

    Are you now advocating flexibility and malleability of principles in this case, the very same sin you accuse John Key of?

    The Greens have no choice but to stand their ground and reject the ETS in their current form. Otherwise, they will rightly seen and perceived by the electorate as Labour minions.

    The Standard’s pragmatism never ceases to amaze (when convenient, of course)!

  13. Stephen 13

    How do you balance that against being ‘independent’, but not getting anything done?

  14. Matthew: thats a good point about Winston and the FTA.

  15. Lew 15

    mike: “It is playing the game Matt but this is election year.”

    It hinges on how much support you think the Greens will gain if they refuse to support the ETS.

    Suppose that by `win’ I mean that Labour needs a coalition including the Greens to govern, but National can govern alone or with ACT only after the coming election. Let’s look at the possibilities:

    Scenario 1: Greens stand on principle, ETS doesn’t get passed, National wins. Cost: failure to implement core policy, weaker parliamentary influence. Benefit: seen as independent.

    Scenario 2: Greens stand on principle, ETS doesn’t get passed, Labour wins. Cost: 12 month delay on implementing ETS. Benefit: better ETS, much more parliamentary influence, seen as independent.

    Scenario 3: Greens accede and pass the ETS, National wins. Cost: weaker ETS than they’d like, weaker parliamentary influence. Benefit: Seen as independent, National could suffer if it repealed the ETS.

    Scenario 4: Greens accede and pass the ETS, Labour wins. Cost: Weaker ETS, not seen as independent. Benefit: Much more parliamentary influence, opportunity to improve the ETS, Labour would be somewhat indebted to them.

    The only scenario which sees the Green Party worse off than they are now is Scenario 1, which is one possibility from what all the righties are suggesting.

    erikter: “Are you now advocating flexibility and malleability of principles in this case, the very same sin you accuse John Key of?”

    It’s not the same. The Greens’ principles are known and declared, and as Edosan says they must make clear that they’re making a one-off concession to pragmatism. John Key’s principles are not well known and have never been firmly declared.

    At this point I think the government will throw the Greens a bone, making a minor but symbolic compromise on the ETS, and they will support it.

    L

    Captcha: `possible passage’. What the Greens want isn’t that the ETS ‘ passage be `possible’, it’s that it be guaranteed.

    Edit: Of course, there are other scenarios I haven’t canvassed here, such as the Greens being left out of parliament entirely or National needing a coalition to govern. These are an exercise for the reader 🙂

  16. Matthew Pilott 16

    The Greens have no choice but to stand their ground and reject the ETS in their current form

    Sorry erikter, that went right past me – how is voting towards an ETS going against the Greens’ principles?

    I’d be stoked if you can point to a passage in Green Party policy that explicitly states “The Greens are opposed to an ETS that is weakened from a previous iteration of said ETS” or similar, or I’ll have to accuse you of stirring…

    I haven’t personally accused Key of having any principles, let alone those of a malleable nature!

    Mike, does that automatically mean government should get nothing done in an election year, because all aspects of MMP have to be abandoned for a zero-sum attitude?

  17. Stephen 17

    Nice work Lew.

  18. dave 18

    The Greens need to be bit daring and inventive. Clark has committed herself to farmers and now the transport industry to defer the ETS. She needs to take a more direct approach.
    A carbon tax for farmers is needed. If they have spare cash it should go into cleanups now not buying shares or put in the bank to buy future credits for pollution. The ETS is a clumsy solution that invites speculation.
    The oil monopoly needs to be broken. I am for the state setting up a state oil company and doing swaps with Venezuela. A lower price would allow a carbon tax for electric rail and buses to replace cars.

  19. The ETS is not, as you state, “the only game in town”. There are plenty of better options, but Labour simply refuses to countenance them. How this is the fault of the Greens is beyond me. The Greens can get a lot better than this rotten old bone of a climate policy – I say they wait. They have nothing to gain from this legislation, other than a better relationship with slimy Labour politicians.

  20. “The Greens need to be bit daring and inventive”

    Labour needs to be daring and inventive. The Greens have plenty of innovative ways to tackle climate change without causing hardship to New Zealanders, but they’re consistently ignored. Of course, having Winston, Dunne and Anderton at the cabinet table is a recipe for disaster.

  21. I have to agree with Brian Spondre. The Greens aren’t Labour’s lapdog or NZ First’s poodle either. If Labour and the Greens both want a viable emissions scheme and NZ First won’t play ball, then that’s how it has to play out. NZ First can line up with National and any other party that doesn’t understand how important this is NOW.

    To be fair, a large mass of the public don’t know why this is important now (or very much about a huge number of things, to be honest)…..and maybe that’s how it has to go. Ultimately, voters have to get their ‘proverbial’ together and PAY ATTENTION. Otherwise anyone who gets too far ahead of them will be scapegoated at the first sign of difficulties and the whole thing will backslide. For the ETS to stick, the electorate has to be behind it. No use being ‘out in front’ and getting your head chopped off. If now is not the time then let voters wear the consequences for that. It’s their call and their responsibility. Governments shouldn’t be babysitters for the accidentally or willfully ignorant. Baby will have a tantrum and shoot government in the head.

  22. nommopilot 22

    from what I can tell the ETS may actually do the opposite of what it intends: taxes from small companies trying to make themselves sustainable go toward subsidising expanded industrial farming and transport.

    I think if the legislation is worth than not having a scheme at all then the greens are right not to vote for it. Jeanette’s interview the other day (National Radio, monday I think) was excellent in pointing out the weaknesses and putting forward the green’s case. Just because it’s the only game in town doesn’t make it worth playing.

    I’d link to it, but the radio NZ website crashes my firefox immediately for some reason…

  23. nommopilot 23

    some of Jeanette’s suggestions IIRC included bringing nem farm conversions into the ETS immediately, and fertilizer.

    of course, if fertilizer were included that might see some increased emissions costs on the beehive as well…

    (captcha: biased was)

  24. merl 24

    I second George Darroch.

    Labour is taking the Greens for granted by expecting them to follow this policy as the lesser of two evils.

  25. Lew 25

    I was going to ask Keith Locke this at Back Benches last night, but never got the chance: `Are you confident that if Labour fails to pass the ETS, National will pass a better one if elected to government?’

    I’d like to hear answers from some of you greenies. It seems to me like y’all are either supremely confident of a Labour win, or supremely confident of the bluegreens.

    L

  26. alex 26

    bluegreens, heh.

  27. erikter 27

    “Labour is taking the Greens for granted by expecting them to follow this policy as the lesser of two evils.”

    Indeed. And it’s all possible because of the Greens’ flexible principles and accommodating nature. They are ready to compromise … if the price and perks are right.

    The Green Party lust for power is stronger than its principles.

  28. T-rex 28

    Erikter, you are a troll.

    Lew – as a green voter, I’d like the greens to get the best they can out of Labour. If Labour wants their support, they SHOULD make some concessions! I forget the exact percentage, but if the greens won 6% of the party vote last time around that means they represent around 200,000 people.

    I’m not confident National will pass any useful form of ETS. If the existing ETS fails due to lack of support from the greens I will be supremely pissed, but I think Labour should make some concession to get their support.

    I don’t, however, think that transport emissions should form part of that concession. The political cost (given peoples obsession with petrol price and the “out of touch” label that’s already being applied to Labour) is far higher than the minimal benefit of the impact it will have on usage. My view? They should push for increasing the subsidy towards the solar hot water initiative as the carrot. That will directly lower emissions AND reduce power demand.

  29. erikter 29

    No, I’m not a troll T-rex. I’m just stating the obvious: the Greens have been Labour’s doormat most of the time, and have compromised, if not surrendered, at every turn.

    Your suggestion of subsidies for solar power is to be taken as another green joke. When the time arrives for that technology, it will accessible to the masses and there will be no need for a subsidy.

    Like it or not, you cannot control a capitalist market.

  30. T-rex 30

    “They are ready to compromise if the price and perks are right.

    The Green Party lust for power is stronger than its principles.”

    They gain no power by being “labours doormat”, so your argument is inherently flawed to begin with. Furthermore, how is voting in favour of legislation that’s aligned with green policy unprincipled?

    Your suggestion of subsidies for solar power is to be taken as another green joke. When the time arrives for that technology, it will accessible to the masses and there will be no need for a subsidy.

    You quite clearly have absolutely no idea of how to encourage promising fringe technology to becomes mainstream. The argument you make here is exactly the same as that which was made when Germany introduced feed in tarrifs for renewable energy – especially solar. Everyone who made it has since been proven wrong.

  31. T-rex 31

    Actually I’ve got a better idea – the greens should push for the formation of a small-scale energy equivalent of pharmac, and in doing so bypass all the gougers (your capitalists) who are obstructing large scale uptake.

  32. We’re now, by law, no more than five and a half months away from an election. Labour has already had to back away from a significant portion of its flagship Emissions Trading legislation. Would we not all be better off if the proposed legislation was parked until after the election? Then, once the dust of the campaign has settled, there may even be the opportunity for cross-party consensus.

    We are seeing daily that the EFA is bad law, and we know how rushed that piece of legislation was. The ETS is far too important for indecent haste. I am reminded of a Latin proverb from my schooldays – many, many years ago, which seems very applicable to the passage of this legislation – Festina Lente – hasten slowly.

  33. The ETS has been under development for three years.

  34. So why the rush now?

  35. Lew 35

    Inventory2: This is a strawman as well, since it’s not being rushed as Steve says.

    The idea of cross-party consensus has merit, though, since an ETS passed by grand coalition would be almost immutable to future governments’ tinkering. The question Labour and the Greens have to ask themselves before considering that road is how much they trust National to implement an ETS scheme strong enough to make a significant difference to NZ’s Kyoto obligations. At present I don’t think either party has much confidence in National, and given Key’s recent equivocations I can’t say I blame them.

    This might fly if Key was to release some firm ETS policy.

    “So why the rush now?”

    Because if Labour can’t win the coming election it’s likely to be now or never.

    L

  36. T-rex 36

    Inventory – Whatever happens, we’re also only 3 1/2 years from the point where we have to start paying for our emissions. Personally, I’d rather see polluters internalise the costs of their emissions sooner rather than later, so people have a direct incentive to reduce emissions sooner rather than later. Distributed responsibility (which is what exists without an ETS) rarely gets anything done.

    Personally, I remain unconvinced by the man-made global warming argument. But considering most of the short term emissions reduction actions make good sense regardless I honestly don’t care. We’re facing an electricity shortage and an oil shortage, and are beginning to see the effects of ongoing ocean acidification. Don’t you think it would be a good idea to start installing efficient lightbulbs, insulating houses, and switching to high efficiency transport now? And regardless of whether coal/gas power plants contribute to global warming, they definitely are finite in availability.

    The ETS creates an additional economic incentive to do what already makes environmental AND economic sense. By the time we run out of no brainer behaviour changes in 10 years time maybe we’ll have more of an idea of what our goals should be.

    You sound like everyone else from big industry. “We LOVE the idea of an emissions reduction scheme, and would be HAPPY to pay for it, we’re just a little concerned about its present ‘structure’. So, while unreservedly supporting the idea, we’re pretty keen to carry on externalising our costs onto the public at large for another few years”. I’m not sure if that’s your intention or not… but the arguments align.

  37. It’s not in a rush, it’s been ongoing for three years, it’s going through the legislative process at the normal pace. God, what a dumb statement.

  38. Steve/Lew – I accept that this has been a long process – my reference to haste concerns the push to get this passed into law before this Parliament dissolves. When the House returned two weeks ago, there were 37 sitting days left this year – assuming an elkection at the latest possible date. We’re now down to 28 days, in turbo-charged, election-focused, point-scoring mode. There’s no guarantee that Labour has the numbers to advance the Bill, so what temptation is there to offer “sweeteners” for support. The run-up to an election is NOT the time for legislation of this significance.

  39. Matthew Pilott 39

    Thus spoke Erikter:

    Indeed. And it’s all possible because of the Greens’ flexible principles and accommodating nature. They are ready to compromise if the price and perks are right.

    The Green Party lust for power is stronger than its principles.

    Your suggestion of subsidies for solar power is to be taken as another green joke. When the time arrives for that technology, it will accessible to the masses and there will be no need for a subsidy.

    Like it or not, you cannot control a capitalist market.

    I think you got called a troll for comments such as these. A little harsh perhaps, but then baseless sweeping generalisations can be construed as such.

    Comment one: You’re quite sure that none of the policies the Green Party hoped to implement have happened? Name a couple of their ‘bottom lines’ they’ve been rolled on.

    And I’m still waiting for the Green policy that says “The Greens are opposed to an ETS that is weakened from a previous iteration of said ETS’ from your last comment – that you didn’t back up.

    Comment two: Tell that to the Germans. Have a look at their use of wind and solar power, and ask youself why Germany is leading the world at production and installation – and why price of production ($/MwH) has dropped so much. Maybe you can’t control a capitalist market, but with the right moves you can heavily influence it (which is good, given the market is a god-awful failure at internalising its own disasterous outcomes).

  40. Matthew Pilott 40

    The run-up to an election is NOT the time for legislation of this significance.

    Inventory2 – so you’re saying that during one third of the time, the government should have a moratorium on getting important things done? Surely not.

    So how do you decide that, say, Cullen can give a budget, but something like the ETS is a no-go. I’m afraid your viewpoint seems to lack a degree of practicality.

  41. T-rex 41

    Matt – High five

  42. alex 42

    Heh, the government should do nothing for one third of the time.

  43. Matthew Pilott 43

    T-rex – I somehow completely missed your comment at 9:58, but seemed to rather strongly echo it!

    Regarding your post at 11:25, I have one distinction. in the end, it is not producers that will pay for pollution – the costs are always passed on to the consumer. But internalising the costs of consumption is really what it is all about, even if the method is to internalise the costs of production.

    edit alex – none of that cynicism thank you very much!

  44. Draco TB 44

    When the time arrives for that technology, it will accessible to the masses and there will be no need for a subsidy.

    Like it or not, you cannot control a capitalist market.

    The time for that technology was thirty years ago.

    Like it or not, the capitalist market doesn’t actually work.

  45. Jamesey 45

    erikter

    Hmm, like the railroad, electricity, atomic, airline, car and computer industries came about without extensive government intervention on their behalf.

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    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    2 days ago
  • Come on Darleen.
    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won
    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16
    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16
    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother
    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?
    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    3 days ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)
    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    3 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.
    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    3 days ago
  • Law & Order: National Party 1, Police 0, Public -1
    What happened?Media is reporting that police have lost in their pay dispute with the Coalition Government.Some of you might remember that the police rejected Labour’s previous offer in September, 2023, possibly looking forward to be taken care of by the self-touted ‘Party of Law and Order’ - National.If you look ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Trump shooting and a potential hike in fees for visiting the doctor
    Having watched Donald Trump systematically exploit social grievances, urge people not to accept his election loss and incite his followers to violent insurrection… it is a bit hard to swallow the media descriptions over the past 24 hours of Trump being a “victim” of violence. More like a case of ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Monday July 15
    The exploitation of workers on the national fibre broadband rollout highlights once again the dark underbelly of our ‘churn and burn’ economy. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:An extraordinary Steve Kilgallon investigation into ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 15
    Photo by Jessica Loaiza on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last three days to 9:00 am on Monday, July 15 are:Investigation: Immigration NZ refused to prosecute an alleged exploiter despite a mountain of evidence - ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • City Centre Rebuild: How Soon Is Now?
    Patrick Reynolds is deputy chair of the City Centre Advisory Panel and a director of Greater Auckland There is ongoing angst about construction disruption in the city centre. And fair enough: it’s very tough, CRL and other construction has been going on for a very long time. Like the pandemic, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    3 days ago
  • Peril, dismay, resolution
    This afternoon we rolled into Budapest to bring to a close our ride across Europe. We did 144 km yesterday, severe heat messages coming in from the weather app as we bounced along unformed Hungarian back roads and a road strip strewn with fallen trees from an overnight tornado. Somewhere ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • Bullet the Blue Sky
    In the locust windComes a rattle and humJacob wrestled the angelAnd the angel was overcomeYou plant a demon seedYou raise a flower of fireWe see them burnin' crossesSee the flames, higher and higherBullet the blue skyBullet the blue skyThe indelible images, the soundtrack of America. Guns, assassinations, where-were-you-when moments attached ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 15
    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the three days to 6:00 am on Monday, July 23 are:University of Auckland researcher Ryan Greenaway-McGrevy published an analysis of the impact of Auckland's 2016 zoning reforms.BNZ's latest Performance ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s diary for the week to July 23 and beyond
    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to July 23 include:PM Christopher Luxon has returned from a trip to the United States and may hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4:00 pm today.The BusinessNZ-BNZ PSI survey results for June will be released this ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Was The Assassination Attempt Fake?
    Hi,It’s in incredible photo, and we’re going to be talking about it for a long time:Trump, triumphantly raising his hand in the air after being shot. Photo credit: Evan VucciYou can watch what happened on YouTube in real time, as a 20-year-old from Pennsylvania lets off a series of gunshots ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    3 days ago
  • 40 years ago, inside the crisis that made modern NZ
    It had rained all day in Auckland, and the Metro Theatre in Mangere was steamed up inside as more and more people arrived to celebrate what had once seemed impossible. Sir Robert Muldoon had lost the 1984 election. “Piggy” Muldoon was no more. Such was the desire to get rid ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #28
    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 7, 2024 thru Sat, July 13, 2024. Story of the week It's still early summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The season comes as our first year of 1.5°C warming ...
    4 days ago
  • Unsurprising, but Trump shooting creates opportunity for a surprising response
    I can’t say I’m shocked. As the US news networks offer rolling coverage dissecting the detail of today’s shooting at a Donald Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, and we hear eye-witnesses trying to make sense of their trauma, the most common word being used is shock. And shocking it is. ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    4 days ago
  • Escalation in the States as Trump is shot and his allies capitalize on the moment
    Snapshot summary of the shooting in the States belowAnd a time to remember what Abraham Lincoln once said of the United States of America:We find ourselves in the peaceful possession of the fairest portion of the earth, as regards extent of territory, fertility of soil, and salubrity of climate. We ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Bernie Sanders: Joe Biden for President
    I will do all that I can to see that President Biden is re-elected. Why? Despite my disagreements with him on particular issues, he has been the most effective president in the modern history of our country and is the strongest candidate to defeat Donald Trump — a demagogue and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Questions from God
    Have you invited God into your online life? Do you have answers for his questions? Did I just assume God’s pronouns?Before this goes any further, or gets too blasphemous, a word of explanation. When I say “God”, I don’t meant your god(s), if you have one/them. The God I speak ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • The politics of money and influence
    Did you know: Four days ago, the CEO of Warner Bros Discovery (WBD), David Zaslav, opined that he didn’t really care who won the US Presidential election, so long as they were M&A and business friendly. Please share my Substack so I can continue my work. Thank you and happy ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Auckland & Transport Minister Simeon Brown's insanity
    Excuse me, but I just don’t feel like being polite today. What is going on with Simeon Brown? I mean, really? After spending valuable Ministerial time, focus, and government resources to overturn tailored speed limits in school and high fatality zones that *checks notes* reduces the risk of deaths and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Were scientists caught falsifying data in the hacked emails incident dubbed 'climategate'?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Were scientists caught falsifying data in the ...
    5 days ago
  • What Happened to David D'Amato's Millions?
    Today’s podcast episode is for paying Webworm members — and is a conversation seven years in the making. Let me explain.Hi,As I hit “send” on this newsletter, I’m about to play my 2016 documentary Tickled to a theatre full of about 400 Webworm readers in Auckland, New Zealand.And with Tickled ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Voting as a multi-order process of choice.
    Recent elections around the world got me to thinking about voting. At a broad level, voting involves processes and choices. Embedded in both are the logics that go into “sincere” versus “tactical” voting. “Sincere” voting is usually a matter of preferred … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Women in Space.
    Count downThree twoI wonderIf I'll ever see you againI'm 'bout to take offI'm leaving youBut maybeI'll see you around somewhere some placeI just need some spaceA brief reminder that if you’re a Gold Card holder you can subscribe to Nick’s Kōrero for 20% off. You’re also welcome to use this ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 13
    Auckland waterfront, July. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 13 are:The National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government watered down vehicle emissions standards this week, compounding the climate emissions damage from an increasingly ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Dems need to ask the right question about Biden as his age now defines the campaign
    Midway through the news conference that many American political commentators had built up as critical to Joe Biden’s re-election chances, the US president said European leaders are not asking him not to run for a second term, “they’re saying you gotta win”.The problem for Biden and his advisors is that ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    5 days ago
  • Govt flounders while ocean temps soar
    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items of climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer, most of which they discussin the video above. According to experts, the rate of ocean surface warming around New Zealand is “outstripping the global ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Learning From Brexit
    Whether Britain leaving the European Union was right or wrong, good or bad is for the Brits to decide. But there are lessons about international trade to be learned from Brexit, especially as it is very unusual for an economy to break so completely from its major training partner.In Econ101 ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Bernard’s Chorus for Friday, July 12
    TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so on the morning of Friday, July 12 are: Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Hot Damn! It's The Soggy Bottom Boys!
    Good morning lovely people, and welcome to another weekly review. One which saw the our Prime Minister in Washington, running around with all the decorum of Augustus Gloop with a golden ticket, seeking photo opportunities with anyone willing to shake his hand.Image: G News.He had his technique down to overcome ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • When an independent expert / advisory group is anything but ..
    OPINION: Yesterday, 1News reported that the Government's "independent" advisory group had recommended Kiwirail offload its ferries to another entity.Except this wasn't entirely new news at all, besides that it came formally from Nicola Willis’s advisory team.TVNZ is under significant cost pressure, and earlier this year, after expressing strong discontent with ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 12
    Photo by Alexander Schimmeck on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 9:00 am on Friday, July 12 are:Scoop: Ministerial group advises KiwiRail no longer run Cook Strait ferries 1News’ Julia RodenNews: ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 12-July-2024
    Kia ora and welcome to another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! The week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Scott delivered a delicious disquisition on donut cities, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 12
    Photo by Dominik Scythe on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the day to 6:00 am on Friday, July 11 are:Climate: Transport Minister Simeon Brown said in a release the Government's plan to reverse New ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 12
    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s climate strategy ‘pamphlet’, its watering down of Clean Car Standards and its general lack of coherence;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Casey Costello strikes again
    Summary: A track record of deception is becoming evident in the Government’s Coalition alliance. Ministers across all parties have been found to either lie without contrite, and/or act unlawfully and unreasonably. The rails are coming off quicker than a marshmallow induced fantasy train ride as the conductors throw caution to ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #28 2024
    Open access notables Antarctic Bottom Water Warming, Freshening, and Contraction in the Eastern Bellingshausen Basin, Johnson et al., Geophysical Research Letters Cold winds blowing over polynyas (areas of ice-free water) on the Antarctic continental shelf create sea ice, forming very cold and somewhat salty, hence very dense, waters. These dense ...
    7 days ago
  • We're back! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashWe’re back after a three-week mid-winter break. I needed a rest, but back into it. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: National’s gas fantasy
    Yesterday the government released the advice on its proposal to repeal the offshore fossil gas exploration ban, including a Climate Implications of Policy Assessment statement, Cabinet paper, and Regulatory Impact Statement. I spent some time looking at these last night, and the short version is that the government's plan is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A criminal minister
    RNZ reports that cancer minister Casey Costello has been reprimanded and forced to apologise by the Ombudsman for acting "contrary to law" in her handling of an OIA request: Associate Health Minister Casey Costello has been severely reprimanded by the Chief Ombudsman and forced to apologise for trying to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Luxon in the NATO pressure cooker
    New Zealand is one of six countries invited as onlookers to this week’s NATO summit in Washington. As such, PM Christopher Luxon will be made aware of the pressure on the 32 NATO member states (a) to increase their Defence spending (b) to become less militarily dependent on the US ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus for Thursday July 11
    TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so on the morning of July 11 are:Climate: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts issued the National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government’s climate strategy yesterday, including a three-page document with five bullet ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • By George! Splendid streets take shape down south
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    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 11
    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:30 am on July 11 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister acted 'contrary to law’. Casey Costello has been severely reprimanded by the Chief Ombudsman and forced ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago

  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan
    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset
    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • School attendance continues to increase
    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights
    The coalition Government is providing migrant school leavers with greater opportunities, by increasing access to part-time work rights for those awaiting the outcome of a family residence application, Immigration Minister Erica Stanford has announced.  “Many young people who are part of a family residence application process are unable to work. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery
    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki
    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access
    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston
    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety
    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship
    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality
    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers
    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy
    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants
    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • District Court judges appointed
    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins
    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended
    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance
    New compliance funding in Budget 2024 will ensure Inland Revenue is better equipped to catch individuals who are evading their tax obligations, Revenue Minister Simon Watts says. “New Zealand’s tax debt had risen to almost $7.4 billion by the end of May, an increase of more than 50 per cent since 2022. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Taking action to reduce road cones
    The Coalition Government is taking action to reduce expenditure on road cones and temporary traffic management (TTM) while maintaining the safety of workers and road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  Rolling out a new risk-based approach to TTM that will reduce the number of road cones on our roads.  ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Celebrating 100 years of progress
    Te Arawa Lakes Trust centenary celebrations mark a significant milestone for all the important work done for the lakes, the iwi and for the Bay of Plenty region, says Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka. The minister spoke at a commemorative event acknowledging 100 years ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week.    “New Zealand enjoys warm and enduring relationships with both Korea and Japan. Our relationships with these crucial partners is important for New Zealand’s ongoing prosperity and security,” says Mr Peters.    While in the ...
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    7 days ago
  • Government creates MAG for retail crime victims
    The coalition Government is establishing a Ministerial Advisory Group for the victims of retail crime, as part of its plan to restore law and order, Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee says.  “New Zealand has seen an exponential growth in retail crime over the past five ...
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    1 week ago
  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open
    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says today is another important step towards establishing charter schools, with the application process officially opening.  “There has already been significant interest from groups and individuals interested in opening new charter schools or converting existing state schools to charter schools,” says Mr Seymour. “There is ...
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