web analytics

In other news

Written By: - Date published: 8:59 am, June 25th, 2011 - 14 comments
Categories: bill english, david cunliffe, john key, leadership - Tags: ,

The spotlight was on Christchurch last week, and will be on Te Tai Tokerau over the weekend. Lots of stories are slipping by under the radar. But both of these pieces deserve further comment. Tim Watkin at Pundit takes John Key to task:

The PM’s Pike River problems – time to stop digging

John Key’s brought some messy baggage back from Australia, and finds himself in a hole of his own making at a very sensitive time politically. Yet every new word just seems to make it worse

When it comes to talking about mining, the Prime Minister should realise he’s in a hole and stop digging. But from his interview with The Australian to his unconvincing performance during today’s Question Time, he just can’t seem to step away from the pit opening in front of him.

Yesterday, The Australian ran a news story that quoted John Key acknowledging that questions needed to be asked about mine safety standards in this country. He went on to say that a single-entry uphill mine, as Pike River was, would not have been legal in Australia. He stressed that he couldn’t give a complete answer because of the royal commission that’s under way, but added that no dount changes would be recommended.

Key’s statements weren’t in error, nor were they out of kilter with public opinion. The problem is that they were hypocritical – the great political crime – and that they muddied the waters around the commission and looked too political. …

The Prime Minister tried to get his feet back on solid ground, but instantly slipped. He told the Herald that he wasn’t saying that New Zealand had lower safety standards, merely that the countries standards were “different”. He stood by his statements last year that to his knowledge New Zealand standards are on a par with Australia.

But that’s nonsense. It’s clear that New Zealand mining safety standards are a) lower than Australia’s and b) not world’s best practice. …

And John Armstrong at The Herald lampoons Kate Wilkinson and Bill English:

English bounces back faster than economy

The Labour Party might claim National does not have a plan for growing the economy. But National does have a plan. What’s more it is a “cogent” plan. Not only that. It is a plan which plans to increase the number of jobs. For these mind-blowing revelations, we can thank Labour Minister Kate Wilkinson and her replies to questions in Parliament yesterday. …

Almost as excruciating to watch was Labour finance spokesman David Cunliffe’s well-executed evisceration of Bill English … he was brave (or foolhardy) enough to set up a patsy question for himself to which he answered that there was “emerging evidence”that despite the February earthquake in Christchurch, the economy had been on track “and perhaps a little stronger than expected” in the first part of 2011.

The cue for this relative outpouring of optimism was the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research’s consensus forecasts which, in showing economic growth rising to about 2 per cent over the next year followed by 4 per cent in the following year, were “fairly similar” to discredited Treasury forecasts in last month’s Budget.

But Cunliffe had done some homework. He asked whether English recalled his reply to a similar question in September 2009, when he had received reports indicating the economy was showing “some early signs of recovery”.

Or the one in October 2009 to which English had replied: “In recent weeks a number of reports have confirmed an early sign of pick-up in business confidence.”.

Or the one in March 2010, when English replied: “It is important we convert the early start to recovery into a permanent lift.”

Or the one in July 2010 when English had said the economy was “making very significant progress”. …

Cunliffe then cut to the chase, asking if English’s habit of counting his chickens before they had hatched was one reason Standard & Poor’s had kept NZ’s credit rating on negative outlook. English took it on the chin. “I do recall those answers,” he laughed.

There’s no denying that Key’s government remains popular. But that popularity is a house of cards, there’s no foundation of competence to hold it up. I still reckon that the election is all on, if Labour can offer a plausible, forward looking, and well costed alternative.

14 comments on “In other news”

  1. higherstandard 1

    “I still reckon that the election is all on, if Labour can offer a plausible, forward looking, and well costed alternative.”

    Seeing as they’ve come out with nothing but similar drivel to National over the last several years one can only surmise that it’s more of the same dross for the next few years at least.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      Similar drivel to National? Is National is going to

      – Stop asset sales?
      – Raise the minimum wage to $15/hr?
      – Repeal the 90 day right to fire law?
      – Remove GST 15% from fruits and vegetables?
      – Change the RBA to take into account non-inflation targets?
      – Create an R&D tax credit?
      – Restart a major programme of apprentice and trades training?
      – Order govt. organisations to Buy New Zealand made where possible?

      If they are, I’d like to know!

  2. “if Labour can offer a plausible, forward looking, and well costed alternative.”
    Yeah like Kiwi Saver
    The big problem all parties have is that word plausible, even the dumb ass masses are starting to see through the bullshit of endless growth on a ravaged planet – as imposable
    But the spirit of entitlement is strong, so maybe there is still enough time left to squeeze one more round of bullshit before it hits the fan

    • Colonial Viper 2.1

      At least KiwiSaver takes money out of immediate consumer spending and consumption.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.2

      But the spirit of entitlement is strong, so maybe there is still enough time left to squeeze one more round of bullshit before it hits the fan

      Probably more than one round. I reckon ~2020 before it really becomes indisputable that the socio-economic system that we’ve been slaving away under for the last few hundred years has destroyed any real hope of prosperity for the many. Times are going to get hard unless we (NZ) pull back into the environments limits but, yeah, no party I can find seems to be able to admit that.

      • Robert Atack 2.2.1

        Yeah Bastard, …………….. it is one )
        It would be like the Easter Island high priest saying they should stop their multi generational ‘economy’ of carving statues, as the amount of trees was approaching halfway gone?? but no they had faith in their gods (Kiwi Saver etc) that when all the trees were gone they would sprout legs walk to their place of guardianship and provide the masses with all their needs … which must seem as convincing as what politicians tell us today – the ‘market’ will provide.
        Nothing good is going to come from ‘project human’
        Homo Colossus has had one of the shortest times on this planet, but will leave one of the longest legacies, what with 440 nuke power plants, and the oceans covered in plastic.

  3. Afewknowthetruth 3

    How odd (not) that the big news of the week doesn’t get a mention.

    The IEA has organised depletion of the western world’s strategic oil reserves (oil in tanks) as well as depletion of oil in actual wells. By doing so it has managed to manipulate oil prices down a tad, so we can expect petrol prices to fall slightly. That should provide enough impetus to keep the merry-go-round that constitutes the NZ economy turning for a few more months.

    Just why the IEA would want to stimulate oil consumption after it has already acknowledged we are past peak oil remains something of a mystery. However, we do know that ‘lunatics are running the asylum’, so anything is possible.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      Yeah, saw that. The reserves have a couple of months supply in them and so releasing them will pull fuel prices down a bit and then the reserves will be gone and prices will go back up.

      As to why? Summertime in the Northern Hemisphere and a lot of people wouldn’t have gone on holiday (read tourism) if fuel prices had remained high. In other words, it’s an attempt to boost the economy and make people feel better for a short while.

      • Colonial Viper 3.1.1

        It’s an attempt to head off further social unrest in several key countries. Its desperation measures.

  4. Ian 4

    How about this gem – profiteering off the NZ public
     
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10734386 – but it’s OK it’s big business ‘helping’ rugby!

    Meanwhile over at ACT HQ Smile and wave is hanging out with Cactus Kate!

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/politics/news/article.cfm?c_id=280&objectid=10734367

  5. seeker 5

    Noticing more antics from Nick Smith who really went to the dark side about four years ago….. how is it over there Nick ?? Don’t bother to knock on my door this year in your ‘ol’ friendly meet the locals jacket’ that you’ve probably worn since you became MP for Nelson in 1996 in your effort to show how sincere and ‘user friendly’ you are for the electorate. Your true merciless, ruthless, monetary, manipulating, nature has been revealed in the last couple of years via ACC stripping and prepping for privatisation. This ‘good news ‘is happily just in time for this year’s election door knocking. How cynical.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/5186206/ACC-levies-to-be-reduced
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/514300/ACC-may-be-boon-for-Aussie-insurers

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Wetlands and waterways gain from 1BT funding
    The Government will invest $10 million from the One Billion Trees Fund for large-scale planting to provide jobs in communities and improve the environment, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor and Forestry Minister Shane Jones have announced. New, more flexible funding criteria for applications will help up to 10 catchment groups plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 hours ago
  • New fund for women now open
    Organisations that support women are invited to apply to a new $1,000,000 fund as part of the Government’s COVID-19 response. “We know women, and organisations that support women, have been affected by COVID-19. This new money will ensure funding for groups that support women and women’s rights,” said Minister for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 hours ago
  • Govt supports King Country farmers to lift freshwater quality
    Healthier waterways are front and centre in a new project involving more than 300 King Country sheep, beef and dairy farmers. The Government is investing $844,000 in King Country River Care, a group that helps farmers to lift freshwater quality and farming practice, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “Yesterday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Support for arts and music sector recovery
    A jobseekers programme for the creative sector and four new funds have been set up by the Government to help our arts and music industry recover from the blow of COVID-19. Thousands of jobs will be supported through today’s $175 million package in a crucial economic boost to support the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Legislative changes to support the wellbeing of veterans and their families
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has welcomed the First Reading of a Bill that will make legislative changes to further improve the veterans’ support system.  The Veterans’ Support Amendment Bill No 2, which will amend the Veterans’ Support Act 2014, passed First Reading today. The bill addresses a number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Christ Church Cathedral – Order in Council
    Views sought on Order in Council to help fast track the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Hon Poto Williams, will be seeking public written comment, following Cabinet approving the drafting of an Order in Council aimed at fast-tracking the reinstatement of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealanders’ human rights better protected in new Bill
    The law setting out New Zealanders’ basic civil and human rights is today one step towards being strengthened following the first reading of a Bill that requires Parliament to take action if a court says a statute undermines those rights. At present, a senior court can issue a ‘declaration of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Deep concern at Hong Kong national security legislation
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today reiterated the deep concern of the New Zealand Government following confirmation by China’s National People’s Congress of national security legislation relating to Hong Kong. “New Zealand shares the international community’s significant and long-standing stake in Hong Kong’s prosperity and stability,” Mr Peters said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government invests in New Zealand’s cultural recovery
    Thousands of artists and creatives at hundreds of cultural and heritage organisations have been given much-needed support to recover from the impact of COVID-19, Prime Minister and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Jacinda Ardern announced today. “The cultural sector was amongst the worst hit by the global pandemic,” Jacinda ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Better protection for New Zealand assets during COVID-19 crisis
    Key New Zealand assets will be better protected from being sold to overseas owners in a way contrary to the national interest, with the passage of the Overseas Investment (Urgent Measures) Bill. The Bill, which passed its third reading in Parliament today, also cuts unnecessary red tape to help attract ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Cleaning up our rivers and lakes
    Setting higher health standards at swimming spots Requiring urban waterways to be cleaned up and new protections for urban streams Putting controls on higher-risk farm practices such as winter grazing and feed lots Setting stricter controls on nitrogen pollution and new bottom lines on other measures of waterway health Ensuring ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Record year for diversity on Govt boards
    The Government is on the verge of reaching its target of state sector boards and committees made up of at least 50 percent women, says Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter and Minister for Ethnic Communities Jenny Salesa. For the first time, the Government stocktake measures the number of Māori, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New appointments to the Commerce Commission
    The Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister and Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media Minister, Kris Faafoi, has today announced the appointment of Tristan Gilbertson as the new Telecommunications Commissioner and member of the Commerce Commission. “Mr Gilbertson has considerable experience in the telecommunications industry and a strong reputation amongst his peers,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Historic pay equity settlement imminent for teacher aides
    The Ministry of Education and NZEI Te Riu Roa have agreed to settle the pay equity claim for teacher aides, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This will see more than 22,000 teacher aides, mostly women, being valued and paid fairly for the work they do. “Teacher aides are frontline ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt delivers security for construction subcontractors
    Subcontractors will have greater certainty, more cashflow support and job security with new changes to retention payments under the Construction Contracts Act says Minister for Building and Construction, Jenny Salesa. A recent review of the retentions money regime showed that most of the building and construction sector is complying with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand and Singapore reaffirm ties
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have marked the first anniversary of the New Zealand-Singapore Enhanced Partnership with a virtual Leaders’ Meeting today. The Enhanced Partnership, signed on 17 May 2019, provides the framework for cooperation across the four main areas of trade, defence and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • JOINT STATEMENT BY THE PRIME MINISTERS OF NEW ZEALAND AND THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE ON THE FIRST AN...
    On 17 May 2019, New Zealand and Singapore established an Enhanced Partnership to elevate our relations. The Enhanced Partnership – based on the four pillars of trade and economics, security and defence, science, technology and innovation, and people-to-people links – has seen the long-standing relationship between our countries strengthen over the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government investment supports the acquisition of new Interislander ferries
    State-Owned Enterprises Minister Winston Peters has welcomed KiwiRail’s announcement that it is seeking a preferred shipyard to build two new rail-enabled ferries for the Cook Strait crossing. “This Government is committed to restoring rail to its rightful place in New Zealand. Bigger, better ships, with new technology are yet another ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Better protection for seabirds
    Better protection for seabirds is being put in place with a new National Plan of Action to reduce fishing-related captures, Fisheries Minister Stuart Nash and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage announced today.   The National Plan of Action for Seabirds 2020 outlines our commitment to reduce fishing-related captures and associated seabird ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Milestone in cash flow support to SMEs
    Almost $1 billion in interest-free loans for small businesses More than 55,000 businesses have applied; 95% approved Average loan approx. $17,300 90% of applications from firms with ten or fewer staff A wide cross-section of businesses have applied, the most common are the construction industry, accommodation providers, professional firms, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government protects kids as smoking in cars ban becomes law
    Thousands of children will have healthier lungs after the Government’s ban on smoking in cars with kids becomes law, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. This comes after the third reading of Smoke-free Environments (Prohibiting Smoking in Motor Vehicles Carrying Children) Amendment Bill earlier today. “This law makes it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Parliament returns to a safe normal
    The special Epidemic Response Committee (ERC) has successfully concluded its role, Leader of the House Chris Hipkins said today. The committee was set up on 25 March by the agreement of Parliament to scrutinise the Government and its actions while keeping people safe during levels 4 and 3 of lockdown. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Foreign Minister makes four diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today announced four diplomatic appointments: New Zealand’s Ambassador to Belgium, High Commissioners to Nauru and Niue, and Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism. “As the world seeks to manage and then recover from COVID-19, our diplomatic and trade networks are more important than ever,” Mr Peters said. “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New Bill to counter violent extremism online
    New Zealanders will be better protected from online harm through a Bill introduced to Parliament today, says Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin. “The internet brings many benefits to society but can also be used as a weapon to spread harmful and illegal content and that is what this legislation targets,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Mycoplasma bovis eradication reaches two year milestone in good shape
    New Zealand’s world-first plan to eradicate the cattle disease Mycoplasma bovis is on track the latest technical data shows, says Agriculture and Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two years ago the Government, DairyNZ and Beef + Lamb New Zealand and industry partners made a bold decision to go hard and commit ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New payment to support Kiwis through COVID
    Further support for New Zealanders affected by 1-in-100 year global economic shock 12-week payment will support people searching for new work or retraining Work programme on employment insurance to support workers and businesses The Government today announced a new temporary payment to support New Zealanders who lose their jobs due ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • PGF reset helps regional economies
    The Provincial Growth Fund will play a vital role in New Zealand’s post-COVID-19 recovery by creating jobs in shorter timeframes through at least $600 million being refocused on projects with more immediate economic benefits, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The funding is comprised of repurposed Provincial Growth ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents
    Government exempts some home improvements from costly consents Homeowners, builders and DIYers will soon have an easier time making basic home improvements as the Government scraps the need for consents for low-risk building work such as sleep-outs, sheds and carports – allowing the construction sector to fire back up quicker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Concern at introduction of national security legislation for Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says the New Zealand Government has reacted with concern at the introduction of legislation in China’s National People’s Congress relating to national security in Hong Kong.  “We have a strong interest in seeing confidence maintained in the ‘one country, two systems’ principle under which Hong ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Samoa Language Week theme is perfect for the post-COVID-19 journey
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, says the theme for the 2020 Samoa Language Week is a perfect fit for helping our Pacific communities cope with the unfolding COVID-19 crisis, and to prepare now for the journey ahead as New Zealand focuses on recovery plans and rebuilding New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Adult kakī/black stilt numbers soar
    A nearly 40-year programme to protect one of New Zealand’s most critically endangered birds is paying off, with a record number of adult kakī/black stilt recently recorded living in the wild, the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage announced today. “Thanks to the team effort involved in the Department of Conservation’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Waikato-Tainui settlement story launched on 25th anniversary of Treaty signing
    The story of the Waikato-Tainui Treaty process and its enduring impact on the community is being told with a five-part web story launched today on the 25th anniversary of settlement, announced Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “I am grateful to Waikato-Tainui for allowing us to help capture ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Taita College to benefit from $32 million school redevelopment
    Taita College in the Hutt Valley will be redeveloped to upgrade its ageing classrooms and leaky roofs, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. “The work is long overdue and will make a lasting difference to the school for generations to come,” Chris Hipkins said. “Too many of our schools are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Redeployment for workers in hard-hit regions
    The Government is allocating $36.72 million to projects in regions hard hit economically by COVID-19 to keep people working, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Projects in Hawke’s Bay, Northland, Rotorua and Queenstown will be funded from the Government’s $100 million worker ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $35m to build financial resilience for New Zealanders
    A $35m boost to financial capability service providers funded by MSD will help New Zealanders manage their money better both day to day and through periods of financial difficulty, announced Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni. “It’s always been our position to increase support to key groups experiencing or at risk ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New District Court Judge appointed
    Dunedin barrister Melinda Broek has been appointed as a District Court Judge with Family Court jurisdiction to be based in Rotorua, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Broek has iwi affiliations to Ngai Tai. She commenced her employment in 1996 with Scholefield Cockroft Lloyd in Invercargill specialising in family and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • $206 million investment in upgrades at Ohakea Air Force Base
    The Coalition Government has approved a business case for $206 million in upgrades to critical infrastructure at Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Ohakea, with the first phase starting later this year, Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. The investment will be made in three phases over five years, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Review of CAA organisational culture released
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today released the Ministry of Transport’s review of the organisational culture at the Civil Aviation Authority. Phil Twyford says all employees are entitled to a safe work environment. “I commissioned this independent review due to the concerns I had about the culture within the CAA, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Board appointed at Stats NZ
    Ensuring that Stats NZ’s direction and strategy best supports government policy decisions will be a key focus for a new Governance Advisory Board announced today by the Minister for Statistics, James Shaw. The new Governance Advisory Board will provide strategic advice to Stats NZ to ensure it is meeting New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Principal Environment Judge
    Environment Judge David Kirkpatrick of Auckland has been appointed as the Principal Environment Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  Judge Kirkpatrick was appointed an Environment Judge in February 2014. From December 2013 to July 2016 he was Chair of the Auckland Unitary Plan Independent Hearings Panel. Prior to appointment he ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago