Guest post – Marja Lubeck – Labour list candidate

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, August 19th, 2017 - 44 comments
Categories: election 2017, labour - Tags:

I arrived in NZ in 1989 emigrating from Holland and quickly fell in love with the NZ way of live and I fell in love with a kiwi. More than 25 years later I’m still married to that same kiwi, and we have a son who is turning 16 on 23 September.

My work story really starts at Air NZ in 1996. I joined the union of Flight Attendants, became an active delegate and was elected as FARSA’s President in 2009.

That same year I started studying law. Not with the intention of becoming a lawyer, but it was the time of the global financial crisis and my members and their working conditions were under attack from the airlines. 100 crew were made redundant that year and as their president I felt responsible witnessing the devastating personal effects on people, of losing their jobs.

I was determined that I would learn and know about the law and use that knowledge in my union role, started studying part time and graduated with a law degree in 2014.

It has been extremely valuable to get an appreciation of law, how laws are made and the impact on for example the work we do in the unions. And it made me realise that you can work very hard at grassroots level to improve people’s working conditions and lives, but if legislation cuts across all that good work, you aren’t really improving much long term. (A current example is the Pay Equity and Equal Pay Bill being debated right now. Kristine Barlett and the unions fought for years to get a settlement, only to now have the government forcing through contentious legislation with a one vote majority. If they’re successful it will result in continuing discriminating against women in low paid wages).

I believe that you keep learning through your entire life and I have always worked hard, so I decided I wanted to use my experience, knowledge, and the skills I developed over the years, to make a real difference. I joined the Labour party, had the honour to be elected as the Rodney candidate, and here I am now finding myself juggling a very busy fulltime job as the Head of Aviation in E tū, with running a campaign.

An important driver for me is a Labour value as well as a union value. I learned about Manaakitanga while having the privilege to serve as a member of the board of E tū, New Zealand’s largest private sector with 54,000 members.
Manaakitanga, taking care of people, supporting each other. Helen Kelly used to say: “if people were just kinder to each other…”. When I repeat her words, and think of her, I reflect on the fact that society has become so much about individuals, how far up the ladder one can go… never mind about anyone else. Inequality just grows and grows, and the gap between those that have, and those that do not, just widens.

Of course there are always people who could have made different decisions, avoided certain situations, tried harder, do something different. But for every one of those, there are many that are in situations that they could not have foreseen, maybe had a bad start to life, or just encountered bumps in the road on the way.

In my union work particularly during my time at E tū, I have seen many people that cannot make ends meet no matter how many hours they put in. I’ve spoken to good people who through no fault of their own end up working all hours, sometimes on three split shifts, husband also on shift work, both on minimum wages and not able to provide for their family of 2 children. That’s not good for these kids and their family. About 65,000 people work multiple jobs, can’t make ends meet and we see the social harm. The stats on child poverty are appalling. And it’s disgraceful that in New Zealand, we have people sleeping rough in garages, in cars and under bridges.

It’s not the kiwi dream and not how we want families to live in New Zealand. It certainly is not the New Zealand I fell in love with 27 years ago.

I feel that it’s time that we as a country get our priorities right and at the moment, that does not include tax cuts.

This election is about priorities. We need to deal with inequality, the housing crisis and the under-funding in crucial areas like health, education, infrastructure. We need policies around fair taxation, regional development, cleaning up the waterways. And policies that invest in the next generation, they should have opportunities to be the best they can be. I get very passionate about Labour’s Working Futures and Ready for Work policies, three years fees free education, providing opportunities to unemployed young people doing work of public value, subsidising employers to take on young people for on the job training.

So there is a clear choice for voters. A choice between fairness and inclusion or increasing inequality and division.
I am proud to stand with Labour, the party that will look out for those in need and with the aspiration to give the next generation a fair go. I am proud to stand with Labour as the party committed to creating a fairer society.

Marja is number 32 on Labour’s list and if the party polls at about 32% she should be a list MP in the next Parliament.

44 comments on “Guest post – Marja Lubeck – Labour list candidate ”

  1. Xanthe 1

    Thank you Maria great to have a personal statement of intent to think on. I can support your platform and i really hope you are influential in our next government

  2. Heather Grimwood 2

    You are obviously a woman of integrity Marja, and not an easy seat. Every good wish.

    • mickysavage 2.1

      On current polling Marja will be a list MP.

    • Marja Lubeck 2.2

      Thanks Heather. I’ve lived in the area since we found this great country school in Tomarata in 2006 and decided Rodney would be a great place for our son Max to grow up. However, Rodney is a big electorate and I’m learning more and more every day about the local issues. I am looking forward to being out campaigning in this safe National seat, to shake the complacency of the National Party candidate over issues that matter to Rodney residents. Some of these have been lingering for years, so you have to ask what if anything has been done to get their concerns heard…

      • Heather Grimwood 2.2.1

        to Marja@ 2.2: I knew the electorate well as worked the Whangaparaoa /Orewa end for Chris Carter long ago, with contact phone in my house. That’s why I said “not an easy seat”.
        And to MS: yes I realise that things are looking good for Marja, and for my good southern friend Liz Craig, one of those I have worked for in recent years. “Go well”

  3. Dot 3

    I agree with you Marja ,
    we certainly do not have the Kiwi dream,
    as the child poverty number is a disgrace.
    If not addressed soon, consequences will be magnified and problems made more difficult and more expensive to deal with .
    I hope that people will vote for our children, especially
    poor children, in the coming election as they deserve much better.

  4. Marja Lubeck 4

    Thank you all for the nice comments and the support. An aspect I forgot to mention is that I could never do this alone and it’s about team work. I am grateful for all the backing and encouragement from the people around me. And my husband and son who make it possible for me to work all hours and who have put up with often having to take a backseat to others’ needs. So I never have to settle for ‘good enough’. Because I believe ‘good enough’ is never good enough. Let’s do this 🙂
    https://www.facebook.com/MarjaLubeck/
    https://twitter.com/MarjaLubeck

  5. Peroxide Blonde 5

    Excellent! My type of girl!
    I saw her in action at the Willie Jackson gig she organised : the Orewa Speech. She was in COMMAND in a most charming way.
    What a contrast with the para military greaser Mark Mitchell who is the incumbent MP in Rodney.

  6. Marja is a fantastic Labour candidate ; it’s really great to have a union organiser from E Tu there. Im looking forward to her being in Parliament.

  7. Her reputation with senior management in Air NZ is telling.
    The Airline has developed a mature and trusting relationship with Etu (and Marja).
    She knows how to play the long game by confidently and respectfully engaging on values and issues.
    Marja will be an excellent minister for Labour.

  8. Armada 8

    Rodney needs a great MP. Marja looks like she could be the business. Mark Mitchell MP is an arms scandle waiting to happen. Rodney is the fastest growing area in NZ and does not need an old fashioned conservative with a shady background.

    Labour needs a Labour Law advocate who cuts through to the wider population. Marja seem to be able to communicate at all levels: human, family, workplace, economic and legal.

    Marja seems to be able to bring Labour’s key messages together into a cohesive listenable narrative. She does this better than many of our front bench.

    Keep it up and we look forward to seeing you at the Cabint table.

  9. Red Blooded 9

    Wishing you all the best Marja, thanks for posting on here. Watching from the Far North so proudly voting for Willow-Jean Prime. Had 35 years with FARSA until 3 years ago so proudly offer a “Legacy” discount for guests. ;-). I hope you are part of the winning team in September.x

  10. eco Maori/kiwi 10

    Marja will a great MP inequality is every were in our country.
    The workers in the dairy industry need some one like her to help them.
    The people work long hours 430 am to 600 pm or longer 3 weeks on 3 days off .
    They work so long and hard on there first day off they just sleep all day and the workers have minimal time for there family’s or a life outside of work

    I no this because I was a farm worker and a manager. The dairy farm bosses like to employ submissive workers which is why they like Filipinos and not kiwis .
    One farm I was working on the hours were 20 hours a day this is true.

    He had 80% Filipinos when I got the shed running efficiently the dick of a farm owner sent another herd so I was still working 20 hours a day.
    You see he had 2 80 bail rotary sheds and 38000 cows to milk and no work roster.
    So if he got up set with you he would change things to make your job harder.

    You can not run a large team of workers and large herds when the boss is running
    the operation around his ego and no rosters for workers and no roster for cows.

    Its very un efficient hence the 20 hour days I stayed one month my wife made me leave..
    I was not arguing about that . I heard this farm went under because he was banded from hiring Filipinos by the labour department.

    This is one opperation that needed the kicks system Keep it simple but Its hard to talk to A ego that has the sun revolving around it lol
    This will still be happening some were in the country I like the Filipinos .

    I rebuilt the gear box in my truck with a Filipino 4 years ago they have rights to.
    It is unfair on the local workers if the Filipino are earning 10x what they make at home.
    And will put up with these conditions of work

    • millsy 10.1

      People who support immigration need to remember this.

      A farmer has 2 job applicants:

      Bob live close by and will work for $20 per hour
      Jose lives in Manila and will work for $15 per hour.

      The farmer hires Jose. Farming wages in the area drop from $20 per hour to $15 per hour. New Zealanders dont want to work for $15 per hour because they have high living costs to deal with. Farmers them import Filipinos by the dozen to work for $15 per hour, forcing down wages in farming.

  11. Incognito 11

    Good post and I wish you well with the campaign and don’t be afraid to talk to fellow lefty campaigners in neighbouring electorates such as Helensville – there has to be a much more concerted effort in West-Auckland on a number of big issues such as (public) transport and major infrastructure.

    BTW, I assume you’re now a NZ citizen – you know what recently happened in Oz and in the past Harry Duynhoven had some troubles with his Dutch citizenship here too. I’d hate to see this happen to a good person who stands up for (the rights of) others!

  12. TheBlackKitten 12

    Its interesting that you speak of low wages that do not meet the basic costs of living but don’t address the issues that have created this situation.
    A. Contracts act introduced by the National Party in 1991 that was left almost untouched by a labour government during their 9 years of power. Is there any indication that a new labour government may actually address this issue?
    B. False economy propped up by welfare that subsidises landlords and employers such as WFF and rental subsidies. Why are employers not paying wages that meet the basic cost of living? Why are landlords not charging rent that is affordable for wage earners?
    C. Migration that has allowed thousands of migrants to flood into NZ that are willing to work for low wages and poor conditions because these conditions are far superior to their home countries. NZ kiwis have no choice but to work for the same low appalling wage.
    E. Cost of living – why are kiwis paying such high costs of the basics – food, housing (we kind of know the answer to this one).
    F. Minimum wage – so if jobs are scarce then employers can pay the minimum wage to a highly skilled worker who is desperate for a job. What is being done to ensure kiwis are paid fairly for theskills they bring to an employer?
    G. Slave labour countries and trade agreements that have seen jobs flood out the door by thousands.
    The best cure for low wages is plenty of jobs. The worst situation is an economy with too few jobs, not unions.
    Please don’t get me wrong, I support worker representation but lamenting back to the old days of unions of the 1930s is not going to address any of the issues of today. The Labour Party need to start thinking 21st century style. Here is a hint, How do we get fair pay for Kiwis that meets the cost of living that does not involve welfare prop ups and can survive the threat of jobs being palmed off to low paid overseas countries such as China? Tough I know, but its reality of 21st century living.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 12.1

      Answer: unions: their members get paid more.

      You haven’t got a better alternative. That’s not a question.

    • Marja Lubeck 12.2

      I have copied your questions, and put some answers below them. Happy to provide more clarification/context where needed.

      A. Contracts act introduced by the National Party in 1991 that was left almost untouched by a labour government during their 9 years of power. Is there any indication that a new labour government may actually address this issue?
      Answer: Yes, see Worplace Relations Policy for the 2-tier approach. 1). Labour will in its first 100 days: reverse the undermining changes made to the Employment Relations Act by successive National Governments. To name a few: reinstatement as the primary remedy, restore protection for vulnerable workers, restore the right to rest and meal breaks at work, restore the duty to reach an agreement in bargaining, restore the right for new workers to be covered by an existing collective agreement, restore access for unions to the workplace, restore fairness in the 90 day ‘fire at will’ law, restore the right for film and tv workers to bargain collectively (‘Hobbit legislation’), remove employers ability to deduct pay for low level protest action during an industrial dispute, etc. 2). Labour will within the first 12 months: start consultation on improving protections for minimum redundancy if restructuring, address legal rights for ‘contractors’ who effectively are employees but without the legal protections, double the number of labour inspectors to enforce employment law and prosecute breaches, introduce Fair Pay Agreements setting fair, basic employment conditions across an industry (eg the recent equal pay settlement), address job security for casual/seasonal/labour hire workers, etc.
      Plus: introduce 26 weeks paid parental leave.
      B. False economy propped up by welfare that subsidises landlords and employers such as WFF and rental subsidies. Why are employers not paying wages that meet the basic cost of living? Why are landlords not charging rent that is affordable for wage earners?
      Answer: The same policy outlines that Labour will increase minimum wage to $16.50 and work towards lifting the minimum wage to 2/3 of the average wage. As a good employer, Labour will pay public sector employees at least the Living Wage, extending that further over time.
      With the current employment law, we see bad employers undercutting good employers. Most employers want to provide good jobs, decent terms and conditions and fair pay. But an unfair environment created by 9 years of undermining employment legislation often makes this very difficult if the employer wants to remain competitive.
      C. Migration that has allowed thousands of migrants to flood into NZ that are willing to work for low wages and poor conditions because these conditions are far superior to their home countries. NZ kiwis have no choice but to work for the same low appalling wage.
      Answer: see B. Labour’s immigration policy together with the Workplace Relations Policy will start making positive change. It’s not the immigrants fault, but by giving bad employers opportunity to exploit these workers, terms and conditions across the board are eroded. Within the first 100 days Labour will also ensure that NZ employment law applies to all workers in NZ including foreign workers.
      F. Minimum wage – so if jobs are scarce then employers can pay the minimum wage to a highly skilled worker who is desperate for a job. What is being done to ensure kiwis are paid fairly for theskills they bring to an employer?
      Answer: ties in also with the previous answers. Reversing the changes to employment law will help with restoring the inherent imbalance of power between workers and employers. Labour is about good jobs, decent work conditions, fair wages. A high performing economy will deliver these but in the current situation due to the erosion of protections around collective bargaining (allowing bad employers to walk away from bargaining with their employees and picking off the workforce one by one) and undermining of unions, we have seen the opposite.
      G. Slave labour countries and trade agreements that have seen jobs flood out the door by thousands.
      The best cure for low wages is plenty of jobs. The worst situation is an economy with too few jobs, not unions.
      Please don’t get me wrong, I support worker representation but lamenting back to the old days of unions of the 1930s is not going to address any of the issues of today. The Labour Party need to start thinking 21st century style. Here is a hint, How do we get fair pay for Kiwis that meets the cost of living that does not involve welfare prop ups and can survive the threat of jobs being palmed off to low paid overseas countries such as China? Tough I know, but its reality of 21st century living.
      Answer: There are lot of different strands of thinking in your question but here it goes: Labour has for the past two years done a lot of work and research via the Future of Work Commission (led by Grant Robertson). It’s about new ideas, new thinking and new solutions. The working group has been doing great work to be ready for the ‘rise of the robots’ and the end of work as we know it. With the changing nature of work, we need to ensure that people who find themselves needing a change of career, get the support they need. Labour, unlike the current government, is looking ahead to the future. So hugely important to have the opportunity for training and re-training. Learning for life, 3 years fees free education.
      Within the first 100 days Labour will look at ways of employers and unions working together in collaborative models of workplace democracy to lift productivity. That’s workers, the unions, the bosses around the table solving problems together. It is a model that is successfully being used at Air New Zealand. Lifting productivity through worker participation in decision making. Higher wages are then easily offset by the high performance workplace. Everyone wins.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 12.2.1

        About addressing the fact that people who lose their jobs also lose their human rights?

        Is Labour going to do anything to atone for its behaviour towards Metiria Turei, and by extension, the people to whom she gave a voice?

        • Marja Lubeck 12.2.1.1

          Agreed on the importance of jobs. Decent work provides not only an income, in turn providing people with choices, but it also provides a sense of dignity in work, autonomy, skills gained, relationships. That’s why Labour will address insecure, undervalued and poorly paid work and why Labour believes that support for training and re-training is crucial where people see their work situation change. Three years fees free post-school education, lifelong learning.
          Labour’s Family Package is aimed at low and middle income families; delivers more money to families with children not the wealthier households, and reduces child poverty freeing up money to make the overdue investments into housing, healthcare, education. We need to have laws that incentivise people to stick by them, not break them.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 12.2.1.1.1

            So people who are unemployed/”underemployed” will still lose their human rights. Thanks for clarifying that.

          • Incognito 12.2.1.1.2

            We need to have laws that incentivise people to stick by them, not break them.

            I’m intrigued; can you give any examples and/or elaborate?

        • TheBlackKitten 12.2.1.2

          What people did she give a voice to? People that rip off the welfare system? Tell me, do you also agree that a small business owner who is steuggeling to meet his or her wage costs and decides to fudge their tax returns to pay for it is also in the right? No I didn’t think so. Funny how people seem to only have sympathy for their interests and lack any ability to think on a broader scale. See I don’t see any difference between he two. You ither agree with it or you don’t.

          • One Anonymous Bloke 12.2.1.2.1

            “Sympathy”

            🙄

            You cannot articulate the argument I’m employing to save your life, and you think you know about sympathy.

            No, I’m not going to spell it out for you. Metiria Turei and Marama Davidson already did that, and you’re still utterly clueless.

      • TheBlackKitten 12.2.2

        Thank you for your reply however I still have concerns.
        You list a lot of rights that employees have lost due to not only the contracts act but also to high levels of unemployment that see employers having the upper hand due to the old supply and demand equation. When employees negotiate their contract, they are automatically at the disadvantage when unemployment is high. More jobs is the real answer. Good to see labour are going to address those issues re the contracts act but it will only result in job loss without having plenty of jobs available to support it. Why would employers put up with that when they can get it done in India for half the cost?
        Re the Hobbits situation (which is a good example to use). The issue with that situation was that you had many people that wanted to gain experience and who were prepared to work for crap wages and conditions to get it. The problem with the union approach to getting a fair days pay for a fair days work for those people was that the movie industry had the option to pack up and head to Eastern Europe where people are even more desperate for a job, and will work for even less that what the movie industry was offering people in NZ, hence those wanting the work experience missed out. And that is a classic example of where unions no longer work in today’s workplace. The same issues we faced with the Hobbits situation are the same ones we face with jobs flowing out of this country due to trade agreements and cheap offshore labour. As I said before, you need lots of jobs for wages and working conditions to improve. unions alone will not fix that. Trade agreements also need addressing. Stop trading with countries that have appalling labour conditions.
        We now live in a global economy with high levels of unemployment in developed countries and corporate dominance. These issues will not be cured by the union movement as they were back in the 30s. I think that the left wing movemement better start thinking along these lines if their intent is really to help working people.
        Hiking up the minimum wage will not address the issue of lack of disposal income. So you put the minimum wage up to 16.50 an hour, the person who gets 16.50 an hr now will need to get more too. So you are really increasing the wage costs in the labour market overall. The employer will simply increase the cost of their goods or services to meet the higher wage bill. If they just don’t just shut down and go to China. Do not delusion yourself by thinking they might actually take a cut in their profits to pay for this. Answer is lots of jobs and addressing the issues of the high costs of living in NZ. Why do we pay high food costs? What are the costs for putting a bottle of milk in the supermarket fridge compared to what the consumer pays for it? I bet the percentage markup is astronomical. Perhaps if we could get these basic costs to be more realistic we would not such high wages to live. Disposal income is what needs to be looked at rather than just higher wages. WFF and rental subsidies only make this situation worse as they prop up low wages and high rents, yet the Labour Party introduced and support these.

        I

        • One Anonymous Bloke 12.2.2.1

          head to Eastern Europe

          So all the businesses will move overseas, no-one will ever make a movie here again (is this before or after the sky falls on your head?), and no-one in New Zealand will do anything to fill the gap in the market?

          Reality isn’t your strong point, eh.

          • TheBlackKitten 12.2.2.1.1

            It’s not yours ither. Are you telling me that was not an option for the Hobbits situation? Are you telling me that if the movie people had done that that those workers would not have missed out on work experience (that they wanted and were desperate for) and a job?
            Tell me, anonymous bloke, what is your answer to this situation? If you were the PM, how would you saved these peoples jobs and got them good working conditions and at the same time stopped the movie people from heading offshore to cheaper labour pastures?

            • One Anonymous Bloke 12.2.2.1.1.1

              I note that the internal emails on the subject released under the OIA make a mockery of “your” narrative. I suggest you read them so as to avoid further displays of ignorance and credulity.

              If cheap labour is all NZ can offer film-makers, then the solution is to smash the National Party into the ground and restore some dignity to the community.

              • TheBlackKitten

                Yet you still fail to answer my question. What would you do if you were the PM? Try not to get so nasty about this as it only shows your frustration when dealing with reality.
                Eastern Europe was a viable option for the movie set and no I don’t know anything about any emails released under the OIA act. Perhaps you may want to actually provide some proof on that one.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  What would I do about industry lobbyists looking for ways to change employment laws in their favour?

                  Are you for real? How about “nothing”? Question their access to Parliament, maybe…

                  As for proof of the OIA release, the word “mockery” in my comment is a link. Try following it.

            • Stuart Munro 12.2.2.1.1.2

              Making new businesses in Eastern Europe is not always as straightforward as it might appear. There are reasons Hollywood doesn’t go there.

              • TheBlackKitten

                I have also been told that doing business in China is also difficult, but it still does not stop the many thousands of corporates from sending their business over there due to the low labour costs. If the cost of labour is less then trust me, corporates will be prepared to jump through all sorts of hoops to do business there. More money for the old boys club bonuses will take pirioity over anything.

                • Stuart Munro

                  I’ve worked for a business in China and for a Primoryan industrialist – in China you need your own people – in former soviet territory you need security and a friendly local FSB chief – who must be paid for. If you don’t have them your business will be stolen out from under you. NZ businesses contemplating China should read the story of Golden Cat Cement – $200 million disappears into thin air.

                  Movies are somewhat vulnerable because they probably aren’t prepared to establish a long term presence.

                  • millsy

                    I remember at work it was announced that the company I worked for had hired a Russian migrant as in-house company lawyer. My first thought was “they had lawyers and courts in Russia”?

            • millsy 12.2.2.1.1.3

              That is the thing about the creative and entertainment industry. If you dont like the pay and conditions, there are literally thousands of people lined outside the door to take your place, seeking the glitz and glamour of working on a movie set (or in a studio).

              • TheBlackKitten

                True. And there you have your demand and. supply equation. More people wanting the job than jobs for the people so pay and conditions will be crap and there is nothing a union can do to change that. Add the threat of moving the business to Eastern Europe and people desperate for a job will openly despise any unions that want to get them better pay and conditions.

                • millsy

                  The Hobbit was never going to be filmed in Easten Europe. The scenery is what drives Jackson’s middle earth movies. A Hobbit series with a Eastern Europe backdrop would have tanked at the box office and everyone knew that.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  Obviously no country with strong actors unions could ever have a successful movie industry. It stands to reason. Your logic is superb and very very convincing.

                  What’s that you say?

    • eco Maori/kiwi 12.3

      9 Years ago When labour were in power the employers could not use the 90 day clause to sack workers. At that time the employers would have there backsides kicked in the employment courts and have to pay out at least $5000 to the employee so the employers treated workers with more respect . The disputes were mostly sorted out
      by labour department neutral reps.

      It was National that made the 90 day clause law and O 90 days is as long as calving lasts on a diary farm some people are sacked on day 89 with no written notice needed
      try and fight that in the employment court with just verbal evidence the employer
      will lie his ass off so the employee is stuffed

      As for the Filipino workers yes we have to stop the flow of these 3 world workers.
      But we should not kick the workers that are here out they should be payed fair and treated with respect

      Yes there needs to be a dairy union that will keep the dairy employer honest
      I thought about trying to set one up but we are just keeping a float our selves
      may be one day

      • TheBlackKitten 12.3.1

        Are you also referring to the days when a small business owner could also be penalised for firing someone who stole from the company for failing to meet the many complex and long winded rules that employment law has become today. Yet a big corporate who could afford fancy employment lawyers could treat their staff like rubbish and get away with it.
        The Philippino workers are only there because they accept the crap wages and conditions because they are, believe or not, more superior to what they get in their homeland. The issue is, when they do that, we all have to do that. Answer, don’t let cheap labour into the country.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 12.3.1.1

          a small business owner could also be penalised for firing someone who stole from the company for failing to meet the many complex and long winded rules that employment law has become today

          1. Small business owners have no authority to determine guilt in cases of theft. Suspicion is not proof.
          2. If the law is too complex for you to obey, perhaps you should just get some personal responsibility.
          3. And stop whinging.

          I note that you have no problem with the unemployed being subjected to “complex and long-winded rules”. Raise the double standard.

          • TheBlackKitten 12.3.1.1.1

            I was right. You lack any ability to think of situations that don’t apply to you personally.
            Just as a last thought. No 2 could also apply to welfare fraud but I guess you willl only understand that if you have the ability to think outside of what suits you personally.
            Oh and no 3 definitely applies to all welfare fraudsters.

            • One Anonymous Bloke 12.3.1.1.1.1

              You were wrong. You have no idea what situations apply to me personally. I’m just telling you how I feel about your scenario.

              I’ve seen far too many in-house accusations proved wrong to have any time for it.

              I see that you are attempting to show moral equivalence between actions motivated by greed and those motivated by need. Good luck with that.

  13. Ad 13

    Pretty impressive seeing a candidate take the time to engage in long form on this site.
    Thankyou Marja for fronting and engaging.

    If a Labour-led government does get in and there really is a strengthened hand to worker organization, tat will be a massive signal to everyone on a wage that the government really backs them.

    I think the effect of that would be pretty astounding.

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  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    2 days ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    2 days ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    3 days ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    3 days ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how moderates empower the political right
    Struth, what a week. Having made sure the rural sector won’t have to pay any time soon for its pollution, PM Christopher Luxon yesterday chose Fieldays 2024 to launch a parliamentary inquiry into rural banking services, to see how the banks have been treating farmers faced with high interest rates. ...
    3 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Thursday, June 13
    In April, 17,656 people left Aotearoa-NZ to live overseas, averaging 588 a day, with just over half of those likely to have gone to Australia. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Thursday, June 13 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Our guide to having your say on the draft RLTP 2024
    Auckland’s draft Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) 2024 is open for feedback – and you only have until Monday 17 June to submit. Do it! Join the thousands of Aucklanders who are speaking up for wise strategic investment that will dig us out of traffic and give us easy and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    3 days ago
  • The China puzzle
    Chinese Premier Li Qiang arrives in Wellington today for a three-day visit to the country. The visit will take place amid uncertainty about the future of the New Zealand-China relationship. Li hosted a formal welcome and then lunch for then-Prime Minister Chris Hipkins in Beijing a year ago. The pair ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • Fossil fuels are shredding our democracy
    This is a re-post of an article from the Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler published on June 3, 2024. I have an oped in the New York Times (gift link) about this. For a long time, a common refrain about the energy transition was that renewable energy needed to become ...
    3 days ago
  • Life at 20 kilometres an hour
    We are still in France, getting from A to B.Possibly for only another week, though; Switzerland and Germany are looming now. On we pedal, towards Budapest, at about 20 km per hour.What are are mostly doing is inhaling a country, loving its ways and its food. Rolling, talking, quietly thinking. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • Hipkins is still useless
    The big problem with the last Labour government was that they were chickenshits who did nothing with the absolute majority we had given them. They governed as if they were scared of their own shadows, afraid of making decisions lest it upset someone - usually someone who would never have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Exercising with the IDF.
    This morning I did something I seldom do, I looked at the Twitter newsfeed. Normally I take the approach of something that I’m not sure is an American urban legend, or genuinely something kids do over there. The infamous bag of dog poo on the front porch, set it on ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Helm Hammerhand Anime: First Pictures and an Old English ‘Hera’
    We have some news on the upcoming War of the Rohirrim anime. It will apparently be two and a half hours in length, with Peter Jackson as Executive Producer, and Helm’s daughter Hera will be the main character. Also, pictures: The bloke in the middle picture is Freca’s ...
    4 days ago
  • Farmers get free pass on climate AND get subsidies
    The cows will keep burping and farting and climate change will keep accelerating - but farmers can stop worrying about being included in the ETS. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Wednesday, June 12 were:The ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Six ideas to secure Te Huia’s Future
    This is a guest post by our friend Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which features “musings about public transport and other cool stuff in Aotearoa/ New Zealand and around the globe.” With Te Huia now having funding secure through to 2026, now is ...
    Greater AucklandBy Darren Davis
    4 days ago
  • The methane waka sinks
    In some ways, there may be less than meets the eye to the Government announcement yesterday that the He Waka Eke Noa proposal for farmers to pay for greenhouse gas emissions has been scrapped. The spectre of farmers still having to pay at some point in the future remains. That, ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • At a glance – Does positive feedback necessarily mean runaway warming?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Farmers get what they wanted – for now
    Since entering office, National has unravelled practically every climate policy, leaving us with no effective way of reducing emissions or meeting our emissions budgets beyond magical thinking around the ETS. And today they've announced another step: removing agriculture entirely. At present, following the complete failure of he waka eka noa, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Presumed Innocent?
    The blue billionaireDistraction no interactionOr movement outside these glazed over eyesThe new great divideFew fight the tide to be glorifiedBut will he be satisfied?Can we accept this without zoom?The elephant in the roomNot much happens in politics on a Monday. Bugger all in fact. Although yesterday Christopher Luxon found he ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on our doomed love affair with oil and gas
    What if New Zealand threw a fossil fuel party, and nobody came? On the weekend, Resources Minister Shane Jones sent out the invitations and strung up the balloons, but will anyone really want to invest big time in resuming oil and gas exploration in our corner of the planet? Yes, ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    5 days ago
  • Building better housing insights
    This is a guest post by Meredith Dale, senior urban designer and strategist at The Urban Advisory. There’s a saying that goes something like: ‘what you measure is what you value’. An RNZ article last week claimed that Auckland was ‘hurting’ because of a more affordable supply of homes, particularly townhouses ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • Putin would be proud of them
    A Prime Minister directs his public service to inquire into the actions of the opposition political party which is his harshest critic. Something from Orban's Hungary, or Putin's Russia? No, its happening right here in Aotearoa: Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced the Public Service Commission will launch an ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths
    This is a repost from a Yale Climate Connections article by SueEllen Campbell published on June 3, 2024. The articles listed can help you tell fact from fiction when it comes to solar and wind energy. Some statements you hear about solar and wind energy are just plain false. ...
    6 days ago
  • Juggernaut
    Politics were going on all around us yesterday, and we barely noticed, rolling along canal paths, eating baguettes. It wasn’t until my mate got to the headlines last night that we learned there had been a dismayingly strong far right result in the EU elections and Macron had called a ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Numbers Game.
    Respect Existence, Or Expect Resistance? There may well have been 50,000 pairs of feet “Marching For Nature” down Auckland’s Queen Street on Saturday afternoon, but the figure that impresses the Coalition Government is the 1,450,000 pairs of Auckland feet that were somewhere else.IN THE ERA OF DRONES and Artificial Intelligence, ...
    6 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on post-colonial blowback.
    Selwyn Manning and I discuss varieties of post colonial blowback and the implications its has for the rise of the Global South. Counties discussed include Palestine/Israel, France/New Caledonia, England/India, apartheid/post-apartheid South Africa and post-colonial New Zealand. It is a bit … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Policy by panic
    Back in March, Ombudsman Peter Boshier resigned when he hit the statutory retirement age of 72, leaving the country in the awkward (and legally questionable) position of having him continue as a temporay appointee. It apparently took the entire political system by surprise - as evinced by Labour's dick move ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • PSA: NZ's Richest Company, Zuru, Sucks
    Hi,Today the New Zealand press is breathlessly reporting that the owners of toy company Zuru are officially New Zealand’s wealthiest people: Mat and Nick Mowbray worth an estimated $20 billion between them.While the New Zealand press loses its shit celebrating this Kiwi success story, this is a Webworm reminder that ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 10
    TL;DR: The six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty in the past day to 8:36 pm on Monday, June 10 were:20,000 protested against the Fast-track approval bill on Saturday in Auckland, but PM Christopher Luxon says ‘sorry, but not sorry’ about the need for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • In Defence of Kāinga Ora
    Given the headlines around the recent findings of the ‘independent’ review of Kāinga Ora by Bill English, you might assume this post will be about social housing, Kāinga Ora’s most prominent role. While that is indeed something that requires defending, I want to talk about the other core purpose of ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    6 days ago
  • Baby You're A Rich Man
    “How does it feel to beOne of the beautiful peopleNow that you know who you areWhat do you want to beAnd have you traveled very far?Far as the eye can see”Yesterday the ACT party faithful were regaled with craven boasts, sneers, and demands for even more at their annual rally.That ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Stopping a future Labour government from shutting down gas exploration
    A defiant Resources Minister Shane Jones has responded to Saturday’s environmental protests by ending Labour’s offshore oil exploration ban and calling for long-term contracts with any successful explorers. The purpose would be to prevent a future Labour Government from reversing any licence the explorers might hold. Jones sees a precedent ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #23
    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 2, 2024 thru Sat, June 8, 2024. Story of the week Our Story of the Week is Yale Climate Connection's Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths, by ...
    7 days ago
  • Fission by the river
    This is where we ate our lunch last Wednesday. Never mind your châteaux and castles and whatnot, we like to enjoy a baguette in the shadow of a nuclear power plant; a station that puts out more than twice as much as Manapouri using nothing more than tiny atoms to bring ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is the ocean acidifying?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is the ocean acidifying? Acidification of oceans ...
    1 week ago
  • 20,000+ on Queen St.
    The largest protest I ever went on was in the mid 90s. There were 10,000 people there that day, and I’ve never forgotten it. An enormous mass of people, chanting together. Stretching block after block, bringing traffic to a halt.But I can’t say that’s the biggest protest I’ve ever been ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Josh Drummond's Columns
    Hi there,I wanted to put all of Josh Drummond’s Webworm pieces all in one place. I love that he writes for Webworm — and all of these are a good read!David.Why Are So Many “Christians” Hellbent on Being Horrible?Why do so many objectively hideous people declare themselves “Christian”?Meeting the Master ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday soliloquy and weekend Pick ‘n’ Mix for June 8/9
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: On reflection, the six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty this week were:The Government-driven freeze in building new classrooms, local roads and water networks in order to save cash for tax cuts is frustrating communities facing massive population ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The no-vision thing
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • When Journalists are Disingenuous
    Hi,One of the things I like the most about Webworm is to be able to break down the media and journalism a little, and go behind the scenes.This is one of those times.Yesterday an email arrived in my inbox from journalist Jonathan Milne, who is managing editor at Newsroom.I don’t ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Me, elsewhere: Just say you’ll do the thing
    Wrote something over at 1/200 on a familiar theme of mine: The way we frame the economy as a separate, sacred force which must be sacrificed to, the way we talk about criminals as invaders who must be repelled, the constant othering of people on the benefit, people not in ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted
    A nice bit of news today: my 4600-word historical fantasy-horror piece, A Voyage Among the Vandals, has been accepted by Phobica Books (https://www.phobicabooks.co.uk/books) for their upcoming Pirate Horror anthology, Shivering Timbers. This one is set in the Mediterranean, during the mid-fifth century AD. Notable for having one of history’s designated ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministerial conflicts of interest
    Since the National government came to power, it has been surrounded by allegations of conflicts of interest. Firstly, there's the fast-track law, which concentrates power in the hands of three Ministers, some of whom have received donations from companies whose projects they will be deciding on. Secondly, there's the close ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The 2024 Budget Forecasts Are Gloomy Prognosis About The Next Three Years.
    There was no less razzamatazz about the 2024 Budget than about earlier ones. Once again the underlying economic analysis got lost. It deserves more attention.Just to remind you, the Budget Economic and Fiscal Update (BEFU), is the Treasury’s independent assessment and so can be analysed by other competent economists (although ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • A government that can't see twenty feet ahead
    There are two failings that consistently characterise a National government. One is a lack of imagination, the other is their willingness to look after their mates, no matter what harm it might do to everyone else.This is how we come to have thousands of enormous trucks carving up our roads. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • A post I hope is incorrect
    In May, we learned that National MP David MacLeod had "forgotten" to declare $178,000 in electoral donations. Filing a donation return which is false in any material particular is a crime, and the Electoral Commission has now referred MacLeod to police, since they're the only people who are allowed to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Māori Cannot Re-Write New Zealand’s Constitution By Stealth.
    The Kotahitanga Parliament 1897: A Māori Parliament – at least in the guise of a large and representative body dedicated to describing the shape of New Zealand’s future from a Māori perspective – would be a very good idea.THE DEMAND for a “Māori Parliament” needs to be carefully unpicked. Some Pakeha, ...
    1 week ago
  • Cowpats and Colonials.
    Dumbtown, is how my friend Gerard refers to people like ZB listeners - he’s not wrong.Normally on a Friday I start by looking at Mike Hosking’s moronic reckons of the week which he vomits down the throats of his audience like helpless baby birds in a nest, grateful for the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on cutting the sick leave of vulnerable workers
    Should sick leave be part and parcel of the working conditions from Day One on the job, just like every other health and safety provision? Or should access to sick leave be something that only gradually accumulates, depending on how long a worker has been on the payroll? If enacted ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Move: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    So long as we live in a democracy, economic policy can never be anything other than social-democratic.“HEH!”, snorted Laurie, as he waved his debit card over the EFTPOS machine. “Same price as last week. I guess budgets aren’t what they used to be.”“I wouldn’t know,” replied the young barman, wearily, ...
    1 week ago
  • In Search Of Unity.
    Kotahitanga: New Zealand’s future belongs to those who do not fear a nation carved out of unity and solidarity, and are willing to trust the carvers. Some New Zealanders will be required to step up, and others, perhaps for the first time in their lives, will be expected to step ...
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 7-June-2024
    Welcome to another Friday roundup! Here are some recent links and stories that caught our eye, perfectly timed for your watercooler discussions and weekend reading. As always feel free to share more in the comments. Our header image this week is by Patrick Reynolds, and shows Te Komititanga from above. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 7
    As Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, ACT’s Brooke van Velden is fronting proposed changes to sick pay regulations and The Holiday Act. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Did we boil the oceans by cutting pollution?
    Lowering aerosol emissions from shipping has altered clouds, with potentially drastic effects. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: Here’s the top six news items of note in climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, and a discussion above between Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer:New evidence is increasingly pointing at efforts ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #23 2024
    Open access notables Abrupt reduction in shipping emission as an inadvertent geoengineering termination shock produces substantial radiative warming, Yuan et al., Communications Earth & Environment: Human activities affect the Earth’s climate through modifying the composition of the atmosphere, which then creates radiative forcing that drives climate change. The warming effect ...
    1 week ago
  • Fragments
    The best observation I’ve read this week about the deep, profound harm Trump is doingTrump has hurled threats and smears at witnesses, jurors and the judge (including his family)... [he] has tried to intimidate witnesses and delegitimize the New York courts as corrupt. In continuing to incite his mob (that ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • March for Nature
    Do do do do do do do doDo do do do do doDi di di di di di di di di di diNature enter me…In 2018 the Labour lead government banned new oil and gas exploration in Aotearoa. A change welcomed by those who care deeply for our environment and ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus and pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 6
    The Transport Minister is trying to push through urgent legislation that would allow him to change emissions standards for car imports without approval from Parliament, after only consulting car importers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Just as two major reports showed fossil fuel burning was warming the planet to dangerous levels and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • A Better Broadway: Act 2
    This is a guest post by reader Grant A, the second of a pair about how to fix Broadway. If you missed the beginning of the show, here’s the link to Act 1 from yesterday. Yesterday, I discussed changing traffic circulation around Broadway in Newmarket. This included implementing a car-free ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • National breaks another health promise
    National has broken another manifesto health promise, apparently to save only $550,000. It will now train an additional 25 med students next year rather than the 50 it promised. This comes on top of the delays caused by National’s coalition partners in pushing ahead with the Waikato Medical School and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago

  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at Government House in Wellington today.  “I was pleased to welcome Premier Li to Wellington for his first official visit, which marks 10 years since New Zealand and China established a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Mr Luxon says. “The Premier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
    The coalition Government is taking action to reduce the gender pay gap in New Zealand through the development of a voluntary calculation tool. “Gender pay gaps have impacted women for decades, which is why we need to continue to drive change in New Zealand,” Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston ...
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    3 days ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
    The coalition Government is boosting funding for Rural Support Trusts to provide more help to farmers and growers under pressure, Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson announced today. “A strong and thriving agricultural sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy and one of the ways to support it is to ...
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    3 days ago
  • Latest data shows size of public service decreasing
    Spending on contractors and consultants continues to fall and the size of the Public Service workforce has started to decrease after years of growth, according to the latest data released today by the Public Service Commission. Workforce data for the quarter from 31 December 23 to 31 March 24 shows ...
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    3 days ago
  • Speech to the Law Association
    Thank you to the Law Association for inviting me to speak this morning. As a former president under its previous name — the Auckland District Law Society — I take particular satisfaction in seeing this organisation, and its members, in such good heart. As Attorney-General, I am grateful for these ...
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    3 days ago
  • 25 years on, NZ reaffirms enduring friendship with Timor Leste
    New Zealand is committed to working closely with Timor-Leste to support its prosperity and resilience, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “This year is the 25th anniversary of New Zealand sending peacekeepers to Timor-Leste, who contributed to the country’s stabilisation and ultimately its independence,” Mr Peters says.    “A quarter ...
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    3 days ago
  • Inquiry requested into rural banking
    Promoting robust competition in the banking sector is vital to rebuilding the economy, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “New Zealanders deserve a banking sector that is as competitive as possible. Banking services play an important role in our communities and in the economy. Kiwis rely on access to lending when ...
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    3 days ago
  • Ministry for Regulation targets red tape to keep farmers and growers competitive
    Regulation Minister David Seymour, Environment Minister Penny Simmonds, and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard have today announced a regulatory sector review on the approval process for new agricultural and horticultural products.    “Red tape stops farmers and growers from getting access to products that have been approved by other OECD countries. ...
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    3 days ago
  • Government to reverse blanket speed limit reductions
    The Coalition Government will reverse Labour’s blanket speed limit reductions by 1 July 2025 through a new Land Transport Rule released for public consultation today, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  The draft speed limit rule will deliver on the National-ACT coalition commitment to reverse the previous government’s blanket speed limit ...
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    3 days ago
  • Chair appointments for NZSO, CNZ and NZ On Air
    Minister Paul Goldsmith is making major leadership changes within both his Arts and Media portfolios. “I am delighted to announce Carmel Walsh will be officially stepping into the role of Chair of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, having been acting Chair since April,” Arts Minister Paul Goldsmith says.  “Carmel is ...
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    3 days ago
  • Government focus on long-term food, fibre growth
    Food and fibre export revenue is tipped to reach $54.6 billion this year and hit a record $66.6b in 2028 as the Government focuses on getting better access to markets and cutting red tape, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones say. “This achievement is testament ...
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    3 days ago
  • Govt consulting on cutting red tape for exporters
    A new export exemption proposal for food businesses demonstrates the coalition Government’s commitment to reducing regulatory barriers for industry and increasing the value of New Zealand exports, which gets safe New Zealand food to more markets, says Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The coalition Government has listened to the concerns ...
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    4 days ago
  • New Zealand and Philippines elevating relationship
    New Zealand and Philippines are continuing to elevate our relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “The leaders of New Zealand and Philippines agreed in April 2024 to lift our relationship to a Comprehensive Partnership by 2026,” Mr Peters says. “Our visit to Manila this week has been an excellent ...
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    5 days ago
  • Paid Parental Leave increase to help families
    Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, Brooke van Velden says paid parental leave increase from 1 July will put more money in the pockets of Kiwi parents and give them extra support as they take precious time off to bond with their newborns. The increase takes effect from 1 July 2024 ...
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    5 days ago
  • Defence increases UN Command commitment
    The number of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel deployed to the Republic of Korea is increasing, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today.  NZDF will deploy up to 41 additional personnel to the Republic of Korea, increasing the size of its contribution to the United ...
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    5 days ago
  • New Zealand to attend 'Summit on Peace in Ukraine' in Switzerland
    New Zealand will be represented at the Summit on Peace in Ukraine by Minister Mark Mitchell in Switzerland later this week.    “New Zealand strongly supports Ukraine’s efforts to build a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace,” Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Minister Mitchell is a senior Cabinet Minister and ...
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    5 days ago
  • Big step forward for M.bovis programme
    Farmers’ hard work is paying off in the fight against Mycoplasma bovis (M. bovis) with the move to a national pest management plan marking strong progress in the eradication effort, says Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard.  “The plan, approved by the Coalition Government, was proposed by the programme partners DairyNZ, Beef ...
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    5 days ago
  • Build To Rent opening welcomed by Housing Minister
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and Housing Minister Chris Bishop formally opened a new Build to Rent development in Mt Wellington this morning. “The Prime Minister and I were honoured to cut the ribbon of Resido, New Zealand’s largest Build to Rent development to date.  “Build to Rent housing, like the ...
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    5 days ago
  • Agriculture to come out of the ETS
    The Government will deliver on its election commitment to take agriculture out of the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS) and will establish a new Pastoral Sector Group to constructively tackle biogenic methane, Coalition Government Agriculture and Climate Change Ministers say. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand farmers ...
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    5 days ago
  • Luxon Tokyo-bound for political and business visit
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon will travel to Japan from 16-20 June, his first visit as Prime Minister.   “Japan is incredibly important to New Zealand's prosperity. It is the world’s fourth largest economy, and our fourth largest export destination.  “As you know, growing the economy is my number one priority. A strong economy means ...
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    6 days ago
  • Bayly travels to Singapore for scam prevention meetings
    Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Andrew Bayly, travels to Singapore today to attend scam and fraud prevention meetings. “Scams are a growing international problem, and we are not immune in New Zealand. Organised criminal networks operate across borders, and we need to work with our Asia-Pacific partners to tackle ...
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    6 days ago
  • More help for homeowners impacted by severe weather
    People who were displaced by severe weather events in 2022 and 2023 will be supported by the extension of Temporary Accommodation Assistance through to 30 June 2025. Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says the coalition Government is continuing to help to those who were forced out of their ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government to reverse oil and gas exploration ban
    Removing the ban on petroleum exploration beyond onshore Taranaki is part of a suite of proposed amendments to the Crown Minerals Act to deal with the energy security challenges posed by rapidly declining natural gas reserves, Resources Minister Shane Jones says. “Natural gas is critical to keeping our lights on ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand and Malaysia to intensify connections
    New Zealand and Malaysia intend to intensify their long-standing, deep connections, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “Malaysia is one of New Zealand’s oldest friends in South-East Asia – and both countries intend to get more out of the relationship," Mr Peters says.   "Our connections already run deep and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Ending contracted emergency housing motels in Rotorua
    The end of Contracted Emergency Housing (CEH) motels in Rotorua is nearing another milestone as the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announces it will not renew consents for six of the original 13 motels, Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka says. The government is committed to stop using CEH ...
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    1 week ago
  • First Home Grant closure exemptions
    The Government is providing a narrow exemption from the discontinuation of the First Home Grant for first home buyers who may face unfair situations as a result, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says. “The First Home Grant scheme was closed with immediate effect on 22 May 2024, with savings being reprioritised ...
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    1 week ago
  • Faster consenting for flood protection projects in Hawke's Bay
    Work to increase flood resilience in Hawke’s Bay can start sooner, thanks to a new fast consenting process, Minister for Emergency Management and Recovery Mark Mitchell and Environment Minister Penny Simmonds say.  “Faster consenting means work to build stop banks, spillways and other infrastructure can get underway sooner, increasing flood ...
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    1 week ago
  • Judge Craig Coxhead and Nathan Milner newest Māori Land Court appointments
    Tangata tū tangata ora, tangata noho tangata mate. Minister for Māori Development Tama Potaka today announced acting Deputy Chief Judge Craig Coxhead as the new Deputy Chief Judge, and Nathan Milner as Judge of the Māori Land Court. "I want to congratulate Judge Coxhead and Mr Milner on their appointments ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government signs Indo-Pacific Economic agreements to boost trade
    Trade Minister Todd McClay and Climate Change Minister Simon Watts, today signed three Indo Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) agreements that will boost investment, grow New Zealand’s digital and green economies and increase trade between New Zealand and the 14 IPEF partners. IPEF’s partners represent 40 per cent of global GDP ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government signs Indo-Pacific Economic agreements to boost trade and cooperation
    Trade Minister Todd McClay and Climate Change Minister Simon Watts, today signed three Indo Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) agreements that will boost investment, grow New Zealand’s digital and green economies and increase trade between New Zealand and the 14 IPEF partners. IPEF’s partners represent 40 per cent of global GDP ...
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    1 week ago

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