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How does ACT fit in?

Written By: - Date published: 10:54 am, November 3rd, 2008 - 10 comments
Categories: act - Tags:

I have my doubts about the veracity of Meurant’s statements as he is well known for bigging himself up as a hard man and all of this “politicians in our pockets” stuff certainly fits that description.

But the media is treating them as potentially damning and so are many rightwing commentators so I guess there may be some truth to this story. And if so, what a story it is. Usually when something like this is about to hit there are rumours of it ahead of time but I’ve heard nothing and nobody seems to know what the next twist or turn of the story will be.

What we do know is that today’s Dom Post story hints at the possibility of ACT’s involvement, with Meurant stating to the Velas:

“If ACT don’t get in, access to the finance [select] committee through Dunne will be critical,” the September report said.

Now I read this to mean they already had access to the finance select committee through ACT. That would imply that there was some backroom deal done between the Velas and ACT during the last term of the last National government.

I thought ACT and National were strangely quiet on Friday’s revelations about Winston Peters. Perhaps this week we will find out why.

10 comments on “How does ACT fit in? ”

  1. randal 1

    I am not an expert but it appears that parties like act can represent a more extreme view and more importantly secure larger advertising

  2. There’s certainly something dodgy with ACT’s donations. Their declared donations amounted for only a couple of percent of their declared spending, for other parites the ratio was more like 50%, except for New Zealand First.

    Considering ACT is the party of the ultra-rich free-marketers, it seems unlikely they’ve been getting all their money in small donations.

  3. Felix 3

    Bye Bryan.

  4. Bill D 4

    A little off-topic but I have become aware of the scare campaign ACT are running on the ETS. It is thoroughly cynical and involves outright lying. Here is a letter to the editor that is fairly concise:

    Like many voters, I read with some alarm the letter from ACT Agriculture spokesman John Ormond when it appeared in my mailbox this week. Ormond quotes freely from a NZIER report that predicts dire consequences for the New Zealand economy should the Emissions Trading Scheme enacted by the Government (and supported in whole or in part by National) not be stopped.

    Unlike many voters, I took the trouble to read the report. The part that Mr Ormond neglected to mention is on page 7:

    ” unless producers in other countries also pay for their emissions

    The main reason is our assumption that New Zealand producers exposed to import

    competition or New Zealand exporters are unable to increase their prices to reflect

    the cost of climate change mitigation policies. If climate change measures are

    adopted elsewhere in the world such that that assumption no longer holds true,

    then we would need to revise our analysis.”

    In other words, the alarming figures Mr Ormond quotes are not valid if our competitors adopt similar measures.

    Given that, with the exception of the U.S.* and a handful of countries you’ve never heard of, the rest of the World has signed up and ratified Kyoto, the scenario predicted by ACT is quite frankly nonsense.

    A report released by the Australian Government on 30 October confirmed that the impact of their ETS (similar to NZ’s) will inhibit growth by one tenth of one percent.

    *Despite the Bush regime’s recalcitrance, many States have already adopted measures in line with Kyoto.

    Refs:

    http://www.treasury.gov.au/lowpollutionfuture/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Kyoto_Protocol_signatories

  5. Bill D on 3rd November wrote a letter (I assume it was him) that starts off like this
    and I quote “I have become aware of the scare campaign ACT are running on the ETS. It is thoroughly cynical and involves outright lying”.

    Strong words from someone who thinks they know the answers. The letter continues on to say that the NZIER (77 page) report has been somehow misquoted.

    So I again quote below using the headings from the NZIER report (page 7) which I note is only a model but the best we have so far for New Zealand. I have left out the detail text that outlines the enormous likely cost to all New Zealanders – they are nothing short of frightening: –

    Long term, living standards will be lower than they would have been
    yet emission reductions are not as large

    As proposed, the ETS is not a least cost climate change solution
    unless producers in other countries also pay for their emissions

    Agriculture will be hit hardest through reduced competitiveness
    and rural regions will shoulder a larger burden than urban centres

    The critical writer is clearly unaware that New Zealand is the only country planning to include livestock emissions in an Emissions Trading Scheme.

    If he or she would like to contact me I am happy to help them in finding out more.

    I would add this comment: –
    Chancellor Merkel is caving into German industry that says it will not “pay” for Kyoto. Wade Armstrong our Dep Secretary of Foreign Affairs and in charge of Trade Negotiations says Kyoto and ETS have not been raised as issues in any of our trade talks. We have already won the “food miles” debate. Our trade competitors Chile, South Africa, China, have developing nation status under Kyoto, which means no restrictions on carbon. US is out. Canada is in but says it will do nothing. Australia is only thinking about things and already there is big opposition.

    At this stage we do not know what will happen world wide either to the Global Economy or Country by Country plans for ETS, one suspects that the former is impacting on the situation.

    But we do know one thing – NZ remains alone on livestock emissions.

    The second thing we are fairly sure on, that was not known in 1998, is that the world has very likely entered a cooling phase – making the New Zealand ETS nothing more than a complete and very costly mistake.

    Kind wish

    John Ormond

  6. Pascal's bookie 6

    “… was not known in 1998, is that the world has very likely entered a cooling phase”

    Graphs always have smooth lines. Those ones you see heading up in a zigzag fashion are all just lies of the devil. Pay no attention to the acidity levels in the ocean, that’s just flashbacks from the sixties man.

    http://www.cbc.ca/technology/story/2008/11/12/ocean-acid.html

  7. Savage 7

    Business is more likely to reform the reforms before it changes it’s behaviour.

    The world has entered a cooling phase? Evidence please.

    There are so many variables for our planet’s weather system(sun spots, solar winds, moon, human activity, seismic activity etc etc etc.) that proving anything is near on impossible.

  8. lprent 8

    Savage: I’d agree there are lots of effects. However where you have a well-proven factor (human created greenhouse gases) happening that has a well proven effect (greenhouse effect), and that effect is sustained for a reasonable period (unlike say volcanoes), it gets a bit different. It becomes a theory with reasonably specific predictive properties.

    At that point scientists will be looking to disprove the theory – which to date they haven’t managed to do (at least to other scientists in the relevant areas). They have found far more buffering effects than were expected in the original blackbody style theories (PB pointed one out). They got incorporated into new theories and the models get more sophisticated. You generally find that the buffering effects start getting very dangerous decades out.

    Since the theories (and their models) started getting well rounded in the early 80’s, the trend has been that the level of the effects and the timing of events are large and earlier than previously thought. They also last longer.

    It is hard to be a skeptic when you look at the science, unless of course you have a great deal of faith in divine intervention.

    BTW: The other things you mention all have effects, but with the exception of volcanic (ie plate tectonics) which is pretty unpredictable, they tend to the cyclic. Cyclic is relatively easy to look at and predict and they don’t map to the effects well. However increased entropy for light radiation due to increased scattering does.

  9. Savage 9

    They have only been recording weather accurately for the last hundred or so years. When this is put in perspective with ice ages and weather changes throughout Earth’s history then it is a minute sampling. If mankind had of recorded weather accurately through it’s entire time on the planet then this sample would still be too small to be relied upon as a model for further prediction.

    I think that it’s best to er on the side of caution and suppose that the 150 tonnes* of CO2 that is produced every second or so by man’s actions is having some sort of warming effect and could jeopardise man himself as well as all other living things on this planet.

    *= 1997 Statistic, may have changed by now.

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