Herald tells Kiwis to bend over

Written By: - Date published: 10:36 am, April 12th, 2009 - 32 comments
Categories: Media, workers' rights - Tags:

The Herald’s article this morning on how to ‘Future-proof your job in the recession’ tells Kiwi workers to bend over for your boss and take it; cause that’s the only way you’re gonna keep your job.

No.

Workers are in danger of losing their jobs because of fat greedy corporates in the first place. We owe them nothing. All Kiwis deserve fair pay, fair working conditions, and deserve to enjoy time with their families and friends. If there’s anyone who should be bending over, it’s those corporate pricks who created this recession in the first place.

32 comments on “Herald tells Kiwis to bend over”

  1. Jerry 1

    Can you name one corporate prick in NZ that created this recession ………. just one ?

    • r0b 1.1

      Well one glib answer would be John Key, Merrill Lynch banker. The dodgy practices of Merrill Lynch resulted in it being among the first of the big institutions to go under in 2008…

  2. Berry 2

    What’s that got to do with anything? capitalism is international. so is it’s conflict with the working class.

  3. Jerry 3

    In between your abuse of apostrophes you might like to remember that it’s 2009 not 1909.

  4. Pat 4

    “…it’s those corporate pricks who created this recession in the first place.”

    In NZ, the Reserve Bank spent several years trying to engineer a recession, by maintaining strict adherence to the inflation-based target of the Reserve Bank Act. Interest rates were finally raised to a level where the recession became a reality, just in time for the double-whammy of the Credit Crisis to ceate a global recession.

    So, because NZ successfully created it’s own recession, I presume the corporate prick you are referring to is Dr Michael Cullen, since he had the ability to make a change to the Reserve Bank Act away from an inflation-based target to a growth-based target.

    • r0b 4.1

      Full marks for creativity Pat. No marks for credibility though.

    • Pascal's bookie 4.2

      Are you saying the government should use monetary and fiscal policy during the upswing of the business cycle to inflate the balloon harder?

      That’s pretty much what the Fed’ did in the States, both under Greenspan and ‘helicopter’ Ben. It doesn’t prevent any recession, just as the RB here didn’t ’cause’ it.

  5. jcuknz 5

    >>..Workers are in danger of losing their jobs because of fat greedy corporates in the first place. We owe them nothing.<<

    How stupid can you get …. the worker needs the boiss just as the boss needs the worker and only by working together will either survive the present crisis. If the trade unionists and employers were not so millitant we would get somewhere … as it is it is just stupid folk on both sides getting nowhere fast.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      If they were all working together then none would be the boss as all critical decisions would be discussed and mutually agreed upon by the workers. We also don’t need the capitalists – any society is capable of supplying the needed resources to get a business going. Once the business is productive it can either sink or swim in the free-market taking no more of the communities resources.

      Bosses and capitalists are what destroy the economy as they only look out for themselves.

  6. gingercrush 6

    In fairness to Labour they actually did make a small but subtle change. Previously, the reserve bank was expected to be far more stringent with inflation. Labour’s changes allowed a relaxation on inflation and more allowance on growth. It use to be that inflation was to curbed under all costs Had that policy still been in place under Labour I daresay the interest rate would have been a lot higher than it ever actually got during Labour’s time in government.

    Of course one can argue whether Labour made big enough changes. But inflation is actually very dangerous to any economy. And while a strategy around growth would be preferable. We’d still need something that deals with inflation. Labour’s small changes allowed for inflation to be still a concern but allowed the economy to grow without necessarily having to hike rates.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.1

      The only way to slow inflation over the last few years would have been to stop overseas investment. I actually think this is a good idea anyway as foreign ownership takes away that which we need to progress the economy.

  7. BR 7

    “Workers are in danger of losing their jobs because of fat greedy corporates in the first place. We owe them nothing.”

    That’s right. The workers (one would assume that it is them you are speaking for) owe the “fat greedy corporates” nothing, and after the workers have been paid at the price they agreed to work for, they are owed nothing either.

    Was there a point to this statement?

    Bill.

  8. Greg 8

    Pat

    “n NZ, the Reserve Bank spent several years trying to engineer a recession, by maintaining strict adherence to the inflation-based target of the Reserve Bank Act. Interest rates were finally raised to a level where the recession became a reality, just in time for the double-whammy of the Credit Crisis to ceate a global recession.”

    When did you decide to throw economic theory out the window? Your assuming that there is a trade off between economic growth and inflation – and indeed your right – in the short term. The problem in the long term is that you keep the inflation, but lose the growth. Higher inflation, for no long term gain.

    Are you a Winston supporter? Go on………. be honest…….

    Jerry

    “In between your abuse of apostrophes you might like to remember that it’s 2009 not 1909.”

    Firstly – it’s a brave man that refuses to learn the lessons of history. Secondly – and this is a wee bit of a gripe. What’s with all the anal-ness about grammar on this site? It sounds like your getting up on your academic high horse and turning your noses up at those who get the occassional semi colon in the wrong place. It’s a forum man, surely you can tolerate the ocassional typo? This ain’t a thesis. Also this grammar thing tends to be used as a deflection to ignore the point of the post, it annoys me. And it ain’t just you Jerry.

    “How stupid can you get . the worker needs the boiss just as the boss needs the worker and only by working together will either survive the present crisis. If the trade unionists and employers were not so millitant we would get somewhere as it is it is just stupid folk on both sides getting nowhere fast.”

    Seriously – can anyone poke a hole in that argument? Because its about the smartest thing I’ve heard all day.

  9. infused 9

    Weak. What a shit argument. Employers owe you nothing. If you have to reduce pay or working hours of your staff to make the business survive, what’s the problem? At the end of the day, business owners are humans as well. Not that The Standard views it this way.

    I’d be firing a staff member before I let my business go under, that’s for sure.

    BR is right.

    • Ab 9.1

      Damn right. And, apropos of the linked article, if I had to make someone redundant in order to stay afloat and my choice was between an average employee I didn’t like and a great employee I did like, you know which one would get notice.

      PS Hi Draco, NZG represent

  10. Bender 11

    If you righties can’t see the disproportiate power structures inherent in capitalist society then there’s no point commenting.

    From what I see Eddie wasn’t making an argument, he was stating a fact. Of course you rich Tory boys would be too busy sipping your lattes and drinking your chardonay to notice working people suffering.

    • Chris G 11.1

      No they dont Bender, infact you can rarely get them to even address the problem.

    • latte 11.2

      I thought it was the socialists that sip latte and drink the chardonnay as per Jafapete…. example as below…….

      “jafapete Says:
      December 31, 2008 at 12:06 pm
      Adam, Thanks. Came up to Napa Valley and had Xmas at one of California?s top wineries (friends of the wife?s). Will post on SF and the class struggle soon. Promise!

      Happy New Year to you and to all the readers of this blog, regardless of politics. Peter”

    • BR 11.3

      The fundamental position of the socialist is based on the idea that if commerce and trade were permitted to function without restraint and without government restrictions, (illegal activity such as drug trafficking and fraud excepted) successful business owners would get progressively richer, while everyone else would get progressively poorer, until eventually there will be only a handful of extremely rich moguls, with the vast majority of the population poor, destitute, and near starvation.

      Am I correct in this assumption?

      Bill.

      • RedLogix 11.3.1

        until eventually there will be only a handful of extremely rich moguls, with the vast majority of the population poor, destitute, and near starvation.

        Interesting question. The last two centuries has seen a massive changes in human life. It can be seen from two perspectives:

        1. An explosion of knowledge, science and technology, creating an entirely new world unimaginable to our ancestors. Near universal education, communication, travel and globalisation has multiplied human productvity by many orders of magnitude, unleashing potential for near universal prosperity if we wished. But 90% or more of the human race remains impoverished; 45% of all humans have zero access to any form of health care; and fewer than 100 people control almost 50% of the worlds wealth.

        2. A total transformation of all social institutions, the end of absolute monarchy, the abolition of chattel slavery, the diminishing role of religion, the gradual erosion of rigid patriarchy, the advent of the welfare state, the sexual revolution and equal rights regardless of race, gender, orientation and belief.

        Despite all this our political beliefs remain rooted in notions of conflict; that prosperity is a zero-sum game; that bigger always equals better.

        You ask if socialists believe in the regulation of markets to serve wider long-term social purposes. The answer is yes. Moreover we have solid empirical evidence that the reduction in extremes of wealth and poverty is inherently a good thing, for everybody. Prosperity is NOT a zero-sum game; wealth is only a net benefit if everyone is able to participate. But even the most cursory glance at human affairs shows how short of this ideal that we fall. In my view, there is more than adequate evidence to suggest that unrestrained capitalism would inevitably result in the kind of hyper-wealthy oligarchry oblivious to widespread impoverishment, that you describe.

        In general there are two types of regulation that society imposes. The more common is the kind that prohibits or discourages a certain action or behavior; eg the criminal laws against unlawful killing, assault, rape and so on. This kind of law we generally accept and understand.

        The other more contentious kind of regulation arises from notion of universal human rights, and the positive implementation of them. This kind of change is always contentious, whether it was the abolition of slavery, universal suffrage, universal pensions, homosexual rights reform, or the rights of children regarding assault.

        Eliminating the extremes of wealth and poverty is the next great moral frontier. Exactly what form it will take I cannot predict, but undoubtedly if the current crisis is severe enough (and this is not an unreasonable thing to suggest) that it will become a great catalysing moment of human history in this regard.

        • ak 11.3.1.1

          Nicely put as always Red. The final frontier… I like it

          Beam us up Mr Obama, klingons all around. 🙂

          • BR 11.3.1.1.1

            “You ask if socialists believe in the regulation of markets to serve wider long-term social purposes.”

            I asked nothing of the sort. Read the question again.

            “there is more than adequate evidence to suggest that unrestrained capitalism would inevitably result in the kind of hyper-wealthy oligarchry oblivious to widespread impoverishment, that you describe.”

            What evidence? A broke and destitute population is bad for business. How can any business sell high priced goods to a starving population? Prices would come down until a sustainable equilibrium is reached. You will note that I didn’t describe an “oligarchy oblivious to a widespread impoverishment”; those are your words. Widespread impoverishment would certainly not go unnoticed by businesses, be they large or small.

            Socialists conveniently forget that every luxury they have ever enjoyed was provided to them by businesses. Governments on the other hand not only provide nothing, but with their ever expanding bureaucracy and increasing numbers of restrictive laws, get in the way of those who do, all in the name of “reducing poverty” or “closing the gaps” or some other such idiocy. Governments are the problem, not the solution.

            It seems obvious that it is desirable to eliminate extremes of poverty, but why the need to eliminate extremes of wealth? That would serve no useful purpose. When wealth is created efficiently and abundantly the rich get richer, but the poor are also better off. If a poor person’s circumstances improve, why would it bother him if a rich person’s fortune increases in roughly the same proportions? Such things are of concern only to the envy-driven socialist who believes in a grey, and at best, mediocre world where everyone is burdened equally under the inefficiencies of state control.

            You can’t make poor people rich by making rich people poor, any more than you can spend your way out of a recession or borrow your way out of debt.

            Bill.

          • Draco T Bastard 11.3.1.1.2

            Socialists conveniently forget that every luxury they have ever enjoyed was provided to them by businesses.

            Businesses that were under government contract and/or massive government subsidies. Without that social support the businesses wouldn’t have been successful.

  11. Stephen 12

    If there’s anyone who should be bending over, it’s those corporate pricks who created this recession in the first place.

    What the hell does that even MEAN?

    The advice in that column actually sounds damned good, doesn’t matter if it’s a recession or not.

  12. Gustavo Trellis 13

    I respectfully disagree with the notion that corporate NZ is responsible for the recession – there was a lot of very dated legislation that allowed several billion dollars of New Zealander’s money to disappear. Were they foolish for investing in these companies? Probably? Were they corrupt? Some of them, sure. But could we have done more to reign them in? Absolutely. Take a look at the liquidity requirements Australia has for their finance companies – then check out ours. They are practically non-existant by comparison.

    To continue the line of question talking, would things have been any different under National? No, not at all. In fact, the way it was ignored is probably what would have happened. But I expected better from Labour. This was unregulated greed posing as stimulating capitalism. There were a lot of laws that could have been tightened up, and have not been even now. It will happen again. The difference is that with things the way they are, the next revival of finance companies could damage the country irreperably. Bring us in line with Australia. National, Labour, I don’t care who.

    Sure, corporates have a less than stellar track record. But the government could have done a lot to fix them. The fact of the matter is we should (with a fair degree of cautiousness) expect corporates to eye up the easy way out. So our best choice is to pre-empt them, lay down the law, and prosecute those who choose to go around it. We didn’t do it last time, let’s make sure there isn’t another.

    • Pascal's bookie 13.1

      There is much to agree with here. But the fact that the government didn’t do enough to ‘rein them in’ as it were does not absolve anyone.

      If the problem is that the private sector in a free-ish market will always go as hard as it can, act irrationally and inevitably blow up the joint, then it is fair to point the finger at them.

      They are agents in their own right, have volition and make choices. If we decide that those choices need to be restricted for the long term good of us all, then that is an indictment on the corporates firstly, and the derugulation lobby and it’s mantras secondly.

      This blaming the government for not stopping them, as if that somehow forced their hand, is a cop out in my view.

      Especially given the fact that the political ‘wisdom’ since the eighties has been that the market can and will police itself to a greater rather than a lesser degree. That idea has obviously come under some pressure recently, with Greenspan’s comments about the ‘flaw’ he discovered most notable. But pretending that that idea was not mainstream, or indeed the dominant view, does not help in getting rid of it. It’s wrongness must be faced explicitly and rejected as a sensible view for any party that seeks the centre. If in fact that is the idea that is being rejected.

      Blaming the government for not regulating, given the western political consensus over the last decades, is hitting the wrong target. As the neo liberals have been telling us for all these years, ideas have consequences.

      • Gustavo Trellis 13.1.1

        Of course, the blame must be apportioned to those who are ultimately responsible. But I believe my attitude towards blaming solely the dipshits running finance companies is akin to your views on people blaming the government; it’s only one side of the coin. The problem is that you need a holistic approach to tighten the loopholes so that these things are effectively legislated against.

  13. RedLogix 14

    BR,

    What evidence? A broke and destitute population is bad for business.

    Look around you. Of the 6-7 billion odd human on the face of the earth, the huge majority IS broke and destitute. Even in the context of the developed world, you overlook the fact that a properous middle class is historically speaking, a very recent thing; most of recorded human history provides ample evidence of extremely polarised societies. All of which is, and was, presumably quite ‘bad for business’.

    Socialists conveniently forget that every luxury they have ever enjoyed was provided to them by businesses. Governments on the other hand not only provide nothing, , except for the complex system of legal, property and contractual, the commercial, technical and physical infrastructure without which no business could function. And of course educated, healthy and capable employees who are vital to any business. Capitalists really do seem to forget that almost all the time.

    It seems obvious that it is desirable to eliminate extremes of poverty, but why the need to eliminate extremes of wealth?

    A simple and seductive argument that turns out to be quite wrong. Start here .

    Such things are of concern only to the envy-driven socialist who believes in a grey, and at best, mediocre world where everyone is burdened equally under the inefficiencies of state control.

    Nothing to do with envy. Socialists have no moral problem with recognising merit and achievement, but we do challenge the kind of generational, ossified social privilege that so many conservative people seem to mistake for the same thing.

    You can’t make poor people rich by making rich people poor..

    You make poor people better off by increasing total prosperity and giving everyone equitable opportunity to access it. What usually prevents this from happening is a powerful class of oligarchs who strive at every point to extend their control, power and privilege…. whose thinking is based on the primitive, pre-industrial idea, of conflict over fixed resources… the zero-sum fallacy.

  14. ak 15

    Socialists conveniently forget that every luxury they have ever enjoyed was provided to them by businesses.

    Just love it how this obscene and insulting distortion is still trotted out…..the generous, beneficent captains of industry toiling single-handedly to provide us lucky, bludging lesser mortals with “luxuries”. Despite the fact that in most outfits, the owners are never seen, no one notices if upper management disappears for days or weeks at a time – while in many cases the lowliest (and lowest paid) worker can bring the operation to a standstill by their absence.

    “I provide luxuries” “I make widgets” “I’m milking 700 cows” “I’m shearing tomorrow”. Uh, no you’re not. Not in that suit with that gut and hands. Some other poor bastard earning a fraction of your income is. You’re just another cog in the machine who happens to be enjoying the lion’s share of this pie we all make.
    For the present.

  15. Bevanj 16

    RedLogix April 13, 2009 at 9:20 am “You make poor people better off by increasing total prosperity and giving everyone equitable opportunity to access it.”

    I don’t think either the blue or red sides have even looked at this in recent times. There’s little equity in the way services are dished out.

    Income testing is making sure there’s a perceived taking from the rich look after the poor. Negative from both sides.

  16. BR 17

    “Look around you.’

    When I look around me, what I see are large numbers of people being paid public money to do nothing, and large numbers of people being paid out of public money to be unproductive AND obstructive. I refer of course to able-bodied people being paid the dole, and the council and government bureaucrats that are paid to administer and enforce all the unnecessary and pointless legislation that has been enacted in recent times.

    “Of the 6-7 billion odd human on the face of the earth, the huge majority IS broke and destitute.”

    That is because the majority of people in the world are ruled by tyrants. Businesses fare poorly under tyranny where the only avenue for advancement is to kiss the backside of the tyrant and his associates.

    “…..except for the complex system of legal, property and contractual, the commercial, technical and physical infrastructure without which no business could function. And of course educated, healthy and capable employees who are vital to any business. Capitalists really do seem to forget that almost all the time.”

    The legal system is far too complex, and self-serving politicians have made it that way. Government has a function, and I would never promote the view that there should not be a government, or no taxes either for that matter. However, the functions of government should be clearly defined and LIMITED by a constitution. The function of limited government should be simply to protect freedom of expression, freedom of association, freedom of exchange, and to apply and enforce the law equally with respect to all citizens regardless of their circumstances. I certainly don’t need any government to keep me educated, healthy or capable.

    ‘It seems obvious that it is desirable to eliminate extremes of poverty, but why the need to eliminate extremes of wealth?’

    “A simple and seductive argument that turns out to be quite wrong. Start here”

    Instead of pointing at links, why not make your own argument? Idiot Savant is making the preposterous claim that knighthoods kill people. Whilst I would concede that knighthoods are these days handed out to people who do not necessarily deserve them (they were traditionally given to those who performed extraordinary acts of self-sacrifice or bravery. “Sir’ Mick Jagger has done nothing of note other than to promote himself). Nevertheless, the idea that knighthoods kill people is a ridiculously long bow to draw. It is also absurd to suggest that it is detrimental to one person’s health for someone else to increase their wealth or status without incurring any cost on the first person. The statistics quoted in the Whitehall II study could be better interpreted by regarding poverty as a symptom rather than a cause. For example, smoking is bad for one’s health, but it is not caused by poverty. Smoking is expensive. Most people who live in poverty do so as the result of their own stupidity and laziness, and this has it’s roots in an education system that no longer promotes the advantages of hard work and enterprise. As for things like obesity and reduced physical activity, these are things that each individual has control of, and it is up to each individual to make their own decisions about their own health. Of course one could also use the Whitehall II study to support the view that there are too many public servants.

    “Nothing to do with envy. Socialists have no moral problem with recognising merit and achievement, but we do challenge the kind of generational, ossified social privilege that so many conservative people seem to mistake for the same thing.’

    Socialists believe that they have a guaranteed right to the fruits of another man’s labour. They see someone who has more wealth than them and they want that same amount of wealth, but they don’t want to do the things that the other person had to do, or make the sacrifices or take the risks that the other person had to take in order to get them. If you are referring to people who inherit a lot of money from a wealthy benefactor, the obvious question is: What business is it of anyone else’s whom a benefactor decides to leave his money to? It is his money after all, and what he decides to do with it is up to him.

    “You make poor people better off by increasing total prosperity’

    And to increase total prosperity, you need to increase total PRODUCTIVITY, and you can’t do that by increasing the size, the power and the influence of the central government.

    “and giving everyone equitable opportunity to access it.’

    When you say “give’, who’s doing the giving? What do you mean by “equitable’, and who gets to decide what is “equitable’?

    “What usually prevents this from happening is a powerful class of oligarchs who strive at every point to extend their control, power and privilege .’

    Oligarchy is government by the few. It is the stuff of dictators. The Likes of Kim Jong Il, Castro and Mugabe come to mind. Communists.

    ” whose thinking is based on the primitive, pre-industrial idea, of conflict over fixed resources the zero-sum fallacy.’

    That sounds to me more like a border dispute between countries ruled by dictators.

    Bill.

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    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    5 days ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    5 days ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    6 days ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    6 days ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    6 days ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    6 days ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Step Too Far.
    A Crown Asset? For reasons relating to its own political convenience, the Crown pretends to believe that “No one owns the water.” To say otherwise would re-vivify the promises contained in the Treaty of Waitangi – most particularly those pertaining to the power of the chiefs and their proprietary rights ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Where Money Comes From
    Most people would say, no doubt, that they have a pretty good idea of what money is. They live with the reality of money every day. It is what is needed to buy the necessities of life and to maintain a decent standard of living. You get money, they would ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Banned by the Green Party leadership: Jill Abigail on women’s rights and trans rights
    The article below was an opinion piece that appeared in the Spring 2019 issue of Te Awa (the NZ Green Party’s newsletter) and on the Greens website.  In keeping with their policy of hostility to women defending women’s right to female-only spaces, Green bureaucrats have since removed the opinion piece.  ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The fallacy of the proximity argument.
    Longer term readers may remember my complaining that, as a political scientist, it is burdensome to have non-political scientists wanting to engage me about politics. No layperson would think to approach an astrophysicist and lecture him/her on the finer details of quarks and black holes, but everybody with an opinion ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Where We Stood: Chris Trotter Replies To Stevan Eldred-Grigg.
    Joining The Fight: Stevan Eldred-Grigg's argument for New Zealand staying out of the Second World War fails not only on the hard-headed grounds of preserving the country’s strategic and economic interests; and not just on the soft-hearted grounds of duty and loyalty to the nation that had given New Zealand ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Universities back the climate strike
    On September 27, School Strike 4 Climate will be striking for a future to pressure the government for meaningful climate action. This time, they've asked adults to join them. And now, Lincoln University and Victoria University of Wellington have signed on:Victoria University of Wellington has joined Lincoln University in endorsing ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Another constitutional outrage
    Another day, another constitutional outrage in the UK. This time, the government is saying that if parliament passes a law to stop Brexit before being prorogued, they may just ignore it:A senior cabinet minister has suggested Boris Johnson could defy legislation to prevent a no-deal Brexit if it is forced ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ending dairy in Canterbury
    Environment Canterbury has finally proposed nitrogen limits to stop dairy farmers from poisoning Christchurch's water supply. And naturally, farmers are whining about it:A proposed move by Environment Canterbury (ECan) to protect Christchurch's drinking water by setting tough – some would say, draconian – nitrate reductions in the decades ahead and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is National the party of climate arson?
    The Zero Carbon Bill is currently before select committee. While its targets are weak, its a generally sensible bill that promises to establish a long-term framework to guide emissions reductions. But National hasn't made up its mind on whether it will support it - and according to Andrea Vance in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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