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Inequalities of the 10 percenters

Written By: - Date published: 9:29 am, April 12th, 2014 - 28 comments
Categories: assets, bill english, class war, cost of living, david cunliffe, david parker, election 2014, john key, labour, national, poverty, spin - Tags:

All inequality measures are not equal.  The GINI Coefficient is widely used to measure inequality, enabling the production of some clear graphs and comparisons between countries, as well as comparisons over time within countries.  However, it has its limitations, and doesn’t necessarily show the impact of vast increases in inequality between the most and least well off sections of the population.  Focusing solely on one way of measuring income inequality, can divert from the fact that too many Kiwis are experiencing hardship: and focusing solely on income inequality can mask the vast inequalities in wealth and asset ownership.

These are some of the things I learned this yesterday following Pete George’s comment on open mike yesterday.  Pete’s post was about the latest article on the new Politicheck website looking at differences between the way Labour and National MPs talk about inequality, especially as represented in a recent exchange in the House. As political fact checking goes, this is a pretty mediocre effort, looking at limited and selective evidence and providing some shallow analysis.   Furthermore, the Politicheck article focuses too much on David Parker’s reference to a NZ Herald Digipoll in which the majority of those polled stated they thought that income inequality in NZ is rising.  Clearly, when looking at statements by the Davids Cunliffe and Parker over the last year, they are using other statistics as evidence for their conclusions.

Some of the most recent press releases from David Parker refer to a significant mix of income inequality and asset inequality.  On 30 January 2014, in the House David Parker asked Bill English points to the way income inequality (even if not rising in itself, can result in rising asset inequalities.

This NZ Herald article of 28 January 2014, the author Adam Bennett concludes that both Cunliffe and Key’s claims on inequality in their state of the Nation speeches, are not supported by the evidence.  Then there is this statement about the kinds of evidence Cunliffe and Parker draw on:

With no clear trend, the ministry analysis doesn’t support Labour’s view that inequality is increasing but Labour argues that work doesn’t tell the full story. It argues the data it is based on doesn’t include much of the income more well-off New Zealanders get from realising assets.

There have been other previous analysis and reports of NZ’s income inequalities: ones that used statistics such as those provided by the GINI and that provided a more in depth and more reliable an analysis than that on the Politicheck site.  For instance, there was this post and discussion on the NZ StatsChat website, last December.  And the CTU did a fairly in depth analysis in August 2012, drawing on a range of statistical measures, including the NZ Household Economic Survey and the GINI index.  Among other things, it showed greater inequalities in market income, before redistrubitive measures are accounted for; such measures as occurring via taxation and Working For Families which go a long way to reduce inequalities.

One of the main conclusions of the CTU report includes consideration of changing levels of hardship experienced. Hardship covers things like access to essentials like having enough food to eat. The report also makes comparisons between those on the top and bottom levels of income.

The changes in income were not evenly spread: the top third of households by income saw increasing incomes. The bottom two-thirds had falling incomes –some falling steeply.

The most significant, and clearest indication from NZ’s results on the GINI, is that income inequality rose markedly in the late 1980s and the 1900s, and that it has remained high ever since.  This strongly indicates that the “neoliberal” consensus in play since the late 1980s, has been a significant driver in the heightened level of inequality.  Labour and National can debate whether it was more or less high under each of their watches.  But the clear indication is a need to move away from the neoliberal consensus.  Measures are needed to counter the high levels of hardship and inequalities in income, wealth and asset distribution amongst the most and least well off.

Too much reliance on the GINI measure of income inequality can mask increases in the severity of hardship people experience and/or the numbers of people experiencing such hardship.  This is included in the Wikipedia outline of the limitations of the GINI.  It’s also included in the World Bank overview of different ways of measuring inequality and poverty.

Share of income/consumption of the poorest x%: A disadvantage of both the Gini coefficients and the Theil indices is that they vary when the distribution varies, no matter if the change occurs at the top or at the bottom or in the middle (any transfer of income between two individuals has an impact on the indices, irrespective of whether it takes place among the rich, among the poor or between the rich and the poor).

They state that measuring the top and bottom 10% or 20% would be more reliable. Today’s NZ Herald provides further evidence of the increase in inequalities between the top and bottom 10 % in NZ.

The pay gap between the highest and lowest earners is getting wider. It’s a trend that, says one researcher, can be traced back to the 1980s.

The OECD report, Society at a Glance 2014, says the highest-paid 10 per cent of workers in New Zealand earn 32 times more than the poorest 10 per cent – a 32-to-one pay ratio.

There’s figures point to real impacts on real people’s lives – where too many people in NZ are experiencing hardship. This is an extremely important election issue.

28 comments on “Inequalities of the 10 percenters ”

  1. Colonial Viper 1

    Good points karol.

    As for the concrete, raise all main line benefits by $30 p.w., widen eligibility to them, slash benefit abatement rates, (or perhaps dump all that complexity and just go to a UBI), increase the minimum working wage to $16/hr, and have a full employment scheme for 25s and under. Get state housing and utility pricing sorted.

    NZ poverty = virtually gone in 18 months.

    I notice no NZ political party has anything remotely similar proposed, preferring instead to dance around the issue of poverty like its some intractable monstrosity.

    • greywarbler 1.1

      Yeah pollies like a core of welfare problems festering away in a pile throwing out heat that they can warm their hands on and then to keep it going, actively create more welfare problems to toss on the fire.
      Its sustainable, renewal energy to feed their political rhetoric and get the voters ablaze with horror and disgust.

      Makes sense, from their point of view. And they can paint themselves as poor blighted blighters who have such a hard job ahead of them coping with all these intractable layabouts, miscreants, fecund fools, fertile flirts, uneducated morons, testorone-driven dickheads, violent vexatious vermin – what can we do, they say quizzically?

      But leave it to us we have broad shoulders and can act on your behalf, doing the hard yards to get things better and stop them spreading the plague and their head lice, and hepatitis and mad dogs that bite children.

      Set out like this and seeing how the scenario fits with the political rhetoric and activity with living and working conditions, lack of jobs, and lack of respect and fair resources for those outside ‘the system’, it is obvious that poor quality welfare delivery is a rich vein that pollies can inject into for good personal highs.

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      I notice no NZ political party has anything remotely similar proposed, preferring instead to dance around the issue of poverty like its some intractable monstrosity.

      They don’t want to address the fact that the reason why we have poverty is because we have rich people.

  2. Bill 2

    How can the gap between the wealthiest and the poorest not increase when a whole heap of people spend all of their money getting from one week through to the next while others are able to invest surplus money in assets? Seems logical that the gap can only increase at an accelerating rate under those circumstances.

    Even if a much higher tax rate on higher earnings was put in place, the gap would continue to increase at an accelerating rate, simply because there would still be people in a position to use their money to make money while others used all of their money to buy necessities.

    Or am I missing something?

    • geoff 2.1

      nailed it, bill.

    • Colonial Viper 2.2

      Ahhh, the wonders of unbridled capitalism and unfettered free markets – where every man, woman and child is a tradeable commodity to be monetized for the benefit of large shareholders.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.3

      Nope, that’s it. As I’ve said time and time again – the problem is the rich.

  3. greywarbler 3

    A discussion with Kim this morning and a USA wise-doctor and experienced medical observer and executive resulted at one stage in a comment about how the USA has very little rheumatic fever, and they have closed down much of the resource involved in dealing with it.

    Unlike here.

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/national/programmes/saturday
    10:05 Catherine DeAngelis
    Dr. Catherine DeAngelis is University Distinguished Service Professor, Emerita, and Professor of Pediatrics, Emerita, at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and was the first woman editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Medical Association, from 2000 to 2011. Dr DeAngelis is visiting Seelye Fellow at the University of Auckland, and delivered the public lecture, Patient Care and Professionalism, and university talk, So You Want to be an Author?

    This is audio note: Catherine DeAngelis ( 50′ 2″ )
    10:07 Catherine DeAngelis: policing pharma Emeritus professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, the first woman editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Medical Association, and visiting Seelye Fellow at the University of Auckland.

    • Colonial Viper 3.1

      a USA wise-doctor and experienced medical observer and executive resulted at one stage in a comment about how the USA has very little rheumatic fever, and they have closed down much of the resource involved in dealing with it.

      Now, I didn’t hear this piece, but the comment strikes me as a load of fetid dingo’s kidneys.

      With 48M Americans surviving on food stamps, 2M-3M people experiencing homelessness at some time during a year, and over 50,000 homes foreclosed on per month, I’d simply say that they aren’t looking in the right places.

      Of course, if the doctor was talking about nice places like Fairfax, Arlington or Nassau counties (all with median household incomes of over US$90K), then yeah, not much acute rheumatic fever there.

      If you are talking about places like the Ohio Valley – well there, even adults come down with acute rheumatic fever and it is frequently left untreated. But in the “richest country” in the world, who wants to talk about detail like that.

      • greywarbler 3.1.1

        CV
        Your surprise at the ‘data’ I put up sounds justified when you consider the amount of poverty in the USA. I thought I heard this comment about the drop in Rh fever. Perhaps she was talking about just one state. That could be it. Anyway the link is there to get you near to the audio.

      • BEATINGTHEBOKS 3.1.2

        Rheumatic fever is an immune mediated disease that would be more common in Europeans if they were as genetically susceptible to it as Polynesians. Basically it is a result of Polynesians genetic susceptibility to it, not the proportion of individuals colonized with the bug which is found in about 20% of most adults. These scientific facts make comparisons between the rates of RF in various ethnic groups like comparing apples and oranges. Although housing overcrowding and fewer Dr visits increase the risks of the disease in Polynesians, once seen Drs are well aware of these increased risks , and the disease and will be treated according to this increased risk which is documented and reflected in current ministry of health guidelines, ( go to MOH sore throat guide lines). That’s in NZ though, each state in the US probably has their own guidelines. Rheumatic fever in Europeans is rare and this is in fact due to their immunological susceptibility to it and is a confounding variable when comparing rates between ethnic groups.

  4. JanM 4

    I got sent this link today from the Guardian which speaks grimly of the situation in Britain: http://www.theguardian.com/society/patrick-butler-cuts-blog/2014/apr/10/wonga-or-worse-debt-millions-close-to-the-edge
    It’s not just us

    • greywarbler 4.1

      I wonder if Britons would like to introduce MMP if they knew about it. It doesn’t save you from having avoidable economic pressures or avaricious and inept politicians, but does give another view of what politicos should be thinking about.

      Over in Brit they would probably have a hard right anti immigration group, and an environment party, and a People’s Future party as well as the alternative centre one is it Liberal, who would be able to present some alternatives to the present smug TINA s.its who are so downy they don’t need cushions.

      • karol 4.1.1

        My Brit friends are against alliances between parties – they have been put off MMP type approaches by Nick Clegg’s sell out of the Liberal Party.

        They have little understanding of how proportional representation works.

        • greywarbler 4.1.1.1

          Some proportional representation seems to have more possibility of moral hazard., ie prioritising through all the parties. It is hard for those used to FPP to get their heads around and then fans of one or the other type cause extra confusion. Also some people think it will solve everything and hearing that it won’t, vote for apathetic clinging to the present failed system.

      • Bill 4.1.2

        There are already various proportional voting scenarios used in the UK. (eg, Welsh Assembly, Scottish Parliament and the Northern Ireland Assembly) FPP seems to only be used for the UK general election.

  5. Tracey 5

    country to country comparrisons are not helpful amongst those nations deemed least poor because politicians and shallow thinkers like slylans say

    nz is number one in oecd so no poverty here…

    which is not what being number one means

    • greywarbler 5.1

      Not as stinky as number twos. Which is more useful for growing useful things than getting accolades for having the best non-violent revolution in the world.

      Our revolution was virtually bloodless. We stood with our mouths open and let the little red white and blue men land and squeak ‘One small step for man but one giant step for global capitalism’. Now there is a whole large building in the land of our master race, devoted to space for trainee economists working out charts, questionnaires, and measuring tools also computer games that show our progress in heroic, exciting ways with upbeat voiceover to go with positive press releases.

  6. Raa 6

    Why Labour is the underdog in this election.

    National has selected a field of young candidates for the 2014 election, allowing them to paint Labour as being wedded to outdated concepts such as social justice, common good, and environmentalism in contrast to pursuit of self-interest.

    De-funding the Problem Gambling Foundation might have been influenced by the organised gambling industry. Independent Commissions of Inquiry into Election Funding and the Gambling Industry are long overdue.

    Low turnout, due to lack of compulsory voting as in other jurisdictions favours incumbent governments. National won’t rock this boat.

    Failure of NZ Labour to connect with grassroot voters. When did you last see Cunliffe, Richardson, or Jones with their sleeves rolled up at the local market, pub, installfest, garden show, or street fair .. ?

    Failure to capitalise on National weaknesses, inability to provide a viable constructive alternative, inability to counter Keysian pandering to the lowest common denominator.

    • karol 6.1

      Labour MPs are out there connecting with people on the ground.

      Scroll down through Cunliffe’s twitter feed to see who and where he’s been visiting.

      Of course most others don’t know this unless it gets widespread media attention.

      • Populuxe1 6.1.1

        “Of course most others don’t know this unless it gets widespread media attention.”

        Actually I expect more people follow Cunliffe and other politicians on twitter and facebook than get their political news from newspapers, television or radio.

    • Tracey 6.2

      can you list the names and ages of the national mps

  7. papa tuanuku 7

    This article is too long. It needs to be longer than a teeet, but personally I found it difficult to see what point it’s trying to make

  8. My podcasts #11 and #12 at http://www.stevehart.co may be of interest re pay disparity in NZ and the UK.

  9. tricledrown 9

    Thomas Picketty economist
    Has looked at economic data going back 200 years.
    He has arrived at the conclusions that free market capitalism is failing most of us exvept the 0.1% who are gutting the worlds economies for their greedy selfindugent power.
    The rise of communism caused western capitalism to be more compationate but now since communism decline neoliberal capitalism has gone back to the days of the robber barrons beggers and debtors jaols.

  10. tricledrown 10

    NZ’s worst bene bludgers
    John Key bailed out by US taxpayer by millions$
    SCF investors all National voters Bill English widened the Labour govts bank guarantee scheme to cover dodgy finance companies total cost $2 billion plus.So National could keep its majority in cantabury electorates.
    Rio Tinto $500 million of taxpayers money foregone so national can keep its majorities in clutha southland electorates.

    • Melb 10.1

      And if the Govt left SCF and Tiwai point to their own devices then your comment instead would be ranting about National not caring about families with savings in SCF, not caring about hardworking Kiwis in Southland, leaving the provinces to wither away etc etc.

  11. Fip 11

    The Gini co-effiecient typically used only measures income differences based on data collected about individual incomes because that is all that is available. You could improve it by collecting better data.

    Benefits are largely distributed based on families. Note a discrepancy. One among many in the system. You are taxed on individual incomes, but paid (benefits) on collective responsibilities (working for families). A bit of consistency would be good start. Either grant benefits on individual income levels (like a UBI) or tax on family commitments/dependencies.(like income splitting).

    Just like improving the Gini coefficient would be a start. It’s a step in the right direction not the whole answer. An asset tax to help fund a UBI is another step in that direction. Assets make a huge difference to a person’s disposable income by either increasing their income (income earning assets) or saving expenses (owning a home means you do not have to pay rent and end up with a valuable asset when the mortgage is paid).

    There is no perfect solution. Only steps towards better. We are able to measure and use inflation and interest rates, GDP, unemployment rates and any other of numerous flawed measures for economic management. Well a Gini coefficient is another flawed measure that can be used which would change direction of economic management if it was to be reduced. In doing so it would indicate a greater equality of income distribution which is better for all.

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    New Zealand is the second least corrupt country on earth according to the latest Corruption Perception Index published yesterday by Transparency International. But how much does this reflect reality? The problem with being continually feted for world-leading political integrity – which the Beehive and government departments love to boast about ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Pick o’ the links: Brown vs Fish; Brown vs everyone
    TLDR: Including my pick of the news and other links in my checks around the news sites since 4am. Paying subscribers can see them all below the fold.In Aotearoa’s political economyBrown vs Fish Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Pick o’ the links: Brown vs Fish; Brown vs everyone
    TLDR: Including my pick of the news and other links in my checks around the news sites since 4am. Paying subscribers can see them all below the fold.In Aotearoa’s political economyBrown vs Fish Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Dawn Chorus: Classic middle class welfare to win 'Ford Ranger Man'
    In other countries, the target-rich cohorts of swinging voters are given labels such as Mondeo Man’, ‘White Van Man,’ ‘Soccer Moms’ and ‘Little Aussie Battlers.’ Here, the easiest shorthand is ‘Ford Ranger Man’as seen here parked outside a Herne Bay restaurant, inbetween two SUVs. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Dawn Chorus: Classic middle class welfare to win 'Ford Ranger Man'
    In other countries, the target-rich cohorts of swinging voters are given labels such as Mondeo Man’, ‘White Van Man,’ ‘Soccer Moms’ and ‘Little Aussie Battlers.’ Here, the easiest shorthand is ‘Ford Ranger Man’as seen here parked outside a Herne Bay restaurant, inbetween two SUVs. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Government confirms a light rail rethink possible
    Transport Minister and now also Minister for Auckland, Michael Wood has confirmed that the light rail project is part of the government’s policy refocus. Wood said the light rail project was under review as part of a ministerial refocus on key Government projects. “We are undertaking a stocktake about how ...
    5 days ago
  • Why Nicola Willis is door-knocking in Johnsonville
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    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • “With great power comes great responsibility”: we’ve all heard that, but stepping up to it is ...
    They say a week is a long time in politics. For Mayor Wayne Brown, turns out 24 hours was long enough for many of us to see, quite obviously, “something isn’t right here…”. That in fact, a lot was going wrong. Very wrong indeed. Mainly because it turns ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    5 days ago
  • The escalator rises again
    One of the most effective, and successful, graphics developed by Skeptical Science is the escalator.  The escalator shows how global surface temperature anomalies vary with time, and illustrates how "contrarians" tend to cherry-pick short time intervals so as to argue that there has been no recent warming, while "realists" recognise ...
    5 days ago
  • Dusk Chorus: ‘Bread and butter’ chosen over cutting emissions
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTLDR: Here’s a quick roundup of the news today for paying subscribers on a slightly frantic, very wet, and then very warm day. In Aotearoa’s political economy today Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Dusk Chorus: ‘Bread and butter’ chosen over cutting emissions
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTLDR: Here’s a quick roundup of the news today for paying subscribers on a slightly frantic, very wet, and then very warm day. In Aotearoa’s political economy today Read more ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • We never get to feel one thing at a time, us grownups
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    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Garrick Tremain’s view…
    ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Isn't this the rainy day we're supposed to be saving up for?
    Lynn and I have just returned from a news conference where Hipkins, fresh from visiting a relief centre in Mangere, was repeatedly challenged to justify the extension of subsidies to create more climate emissions when the effects of climate change had just proved so disastrous. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Isn't this the rainy day we're supposed to be saving up for?
    Lynn and I have just returned from a news conference where Hipkins, fresh from visiting a relief centre in Mangere, was repeatedly challenged to justify the extension of subsidies to create more climate emissions when the effects of climate change had just proved so disastrous. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Much excitement as Hipkins gets down to business – but can he defeat inflation with his devotion t...
    A  new Prime Minister, a revitalised Cabinet, and possibly  revised priorities – but is the political and, importantly, economic landscape  much different? Certainly  some within the news  media  were excited by the changes which Chris Hipkins announced yesterday or – before the announcement – by the prospect of changes in ...
    Point of OrderBy tutere44
    6 days ago
  • E-bike incentives work
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Hipkins’ need to strengthen focus on “bread and butter” issues suggests the Ardern team was lo...
    Buzz from the Beehive Before he announced his Cabinet yesterday, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins announced he would be flying to Australia next week to meet that country’s Prime Minister. And before Kieran McAnulty had time to say “Three Waters” after his promotion to the Local Government portfolio, he was dishing ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    6 days ago
  • 24,000 employed under Labour
    The quarterly labour market statistics were released this morning, showing that unemployment has risen slightly to 3.4%. There are now 99,000 people unemployed - 24,000 fewer than when Labour took office. So, I guess the Reserve Bank's plan to throw people out of work to stop wage rises "inflation", and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • February Stars.
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    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards’ Political Roundup:  Hipkins’ bread and butter reshuffle
    * Dr Bryce Edwards writes – Prime Minister Chris Hipkins continues to be the new broom in Government, re-setting his Government away from its problem areas in his Cabinet reshuffle yesterday, and trying to convince voters that Labour is focused on “bread and butter” issues. The ministers responsible for unpopular ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    6 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Hipkins’ bread and butter reshuffle
    Prime Minister Chris Hipkins continues to be the new broom in Government, re-setting his Government away from its problem areas in his Cabinet reshuffle yesterday, and trying to convince voters that Labour is focused on “bread and butter” issues. The ministers responsible for unpopular reforms in water and DHB centralisation ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • The Neverending Curse of MLMs
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    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Dusk Chorus: Mahuta and Little demoted
    Nanaia Mahuta fell the furthest in the Cabinet reshuffle. Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTLDR: PM Chris Hipkins unveiled a Cabinet this afternoon he hopes will show wavering voters that a refreshed Labour Government is focused on ‘bread and butter cost of living’ issues, rather than the unpopular, unwieldy and massively centralising ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Dusk Chorus: Mahuta and Little demoted
    Nanaia Mahuta fell the furthest in the Cabinet reshuffle. Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTLDR: PM Chris Hipkins unveiled a Cabinet this afternoon he hopes will show wavering voters that a refreshed Labour Government is focused on ‘bread and butter cost of living’ issues, rather than the unpopular, unwieldy and massively centralising ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • We just need the Wayne to stop
    Shortly, the absolute state of Wayne Brown. But before that, something I wrote four years ago for the council’s own media machine. It was a day-in-the-life profile of their many and varied and quite possibly unnoticed vital services. We went all over Auckland in 48 hours for the story, the ...
    More than a fieldingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • 2023 More Reading: January (+ Old Phuul Update)
    Completed reads for January Lilith, by George MacDonald The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (poem), by Samuel Taylor Coleridge Christabel (poem), by Samuel Taylor Coleridge The Saga of Ragnar Lodbrok, by Anonymous The Lay of Kraka (poem), by Anonymous 1066 and All That, by W.C. Sellar and R.J. ...
    7 days ago
  • Is Britain doomed (again)?
    Pity the poor Brits.  They just can’t catch a break. After years of reporting of lying Boris Johnson, a change to a less colourful PM in Rishi Sunak has resulted in a smooth media pivot to an end-of-empire narrative.  The New York Times, no less, amplifies suggestions that Blighty ...
    Point of OrderBy xtrdnry
    7 days ago
  • After The Deluge.
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    7 days ago
  • Minister of Education (who might be replaced later today) left it to his ministry to apologise for i...
    Buzz from the Beehive There has been plenty to keep the relevant Ministers busy in flood-stricken Auckland over the past day or two. But New Zealand, last time we looked, extends north of Auckland into Northland and south of the Bombay Hills all the way to the bottom of the ...
    Point of OrderBy Bob Edlin
    7 days ago
  • The other ‘big one’: How a megaflood could swamp California’s Central Valley
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters When early settlers came to the confluence of the Sacramento and American Rivers before the California Gold Rush, Indigenous people warned them that the Sacramento Valley could become an inland sea when great winter rains came. The storytellers described water filling the ...
    7 days ago
  • Tuesday's pick o' the links: Wayne Brown's WTF moment
    Wayne Brown managed a smile when meeting with Remuera residents, but he was grumpy about having to deal with “media drongos”. Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTLDR: In my pick of the news links found in my rounds since 4am for paying subscribers below the paywall:Wayne Brown moans about the media and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Tuesday's pick o' the links: Wayne Brown's WTF moment
    Wayne Brown managed a smile when meeting with Remuera residents, but he was grumpy about having to deal with “media drongos”. Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTLDR: In my pick of the news links found in my rounds since 4am for paying subscribers below the paywall:Wayne Brown moans about the media and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards’ Political Roundup: The gamechanger PM and polls
    Dr Bryce Edwards writes –  Last night’s opinion polls answered the big question of whether a switch of prime minister would really be a gamechanger for election year. The 1News and Newshub polls released at 6pm gave the same response: the shift from Jacinda Ardern to Chris Hipkins ...
    Point of OrderBy poonzteam5443
    7 days ago
  • Dawn Chorus: Why 2023 will be a year of indecision & delay
    Hipkins’ aim this year will be to present a ‘low target’ for those seeking to attack Labour’s policies and spending. Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTLDR: Anyone dealing with Government departments and councils who wants some sort of big or long-term decision out of officials or politicians this year should brace for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Dawn Chorus: Why 2023 will be a year of indecision & delay
    Hipkins’ aim this year will be to present a ‘low target’ for those seeking to attack Labour’s policies and spending. Photo: Lynn Grieveson/Getty ImagesTLDR: Anyone dealing with Government departments and councils who wants some sort of big or long-term decision out of officials or politicians this year should brace for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: The Gamechanger PM and polls
    Last night’s opinion polls answered the big question of whether a switch of prime minister would really be a gamechanger for election year. The 1News and Newshub polls released at 6pm gave the same response: the shift from Jacinda Ardern to Chris Hipkins has changed everything, and Labour is back ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    7 days ago
  • After the deluge – initial thoughts on the Auckland floods
    Over the last few years, it’s seemed like city after city around the world has become subject to extreme flooding events that have been made worse by impacts from climate change. We’ve highlighted many of them in our Weekly Roundup series. Sadly, over the last few days it’s been Auckland’s ...
    7 days ago

  • Advancing our relationship in India
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta departs for India tomorrow as she continues to reconnect Aotearoa New Zealand to the world.  The visit will begin in New Delhi where the Foreign Minister will meet with the Vice President Hon Jagdeep Dhankar and her Indian Government counterparts, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government Northland housing investment to spark transformational change
    Over $10 million infrastructure funding to unlock housing in Whangārei The purchase of a 3.279 hectare site in Kerikeri to enable 56 new homes Northland becomes eligible for $100 million scheme for affordable rentals Multiple Northland communities will benefit from multiple Government housing investments, delivering thousands of new homes for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Battle of Ohaeawai remembered
    A memorial event at a key battle site in the New Zealand land wars is an important event to mark the progress in relations between Māori and the Crown as we head towards Waitangi Day, Minister for Te Arawhiti Kelvin Davis said. The Battle of Ohaeawai in June 1845 saw ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • More Police deployed to the frontline
    More Police officers are being deployed to the frontline with the graduation of 54 new constables from the Royal New Zealand Police College today. The graduation ceremony for Recruit Wing 362 at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua was the first official event for Stuart Nash since his reappointment as Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further support for upper North Island regions hit by significant weather
    The Government is unlocking an additional $700,000 in support for regions that have been badly hit by the recent flooding and storm damage in the upper North Island. “We’re supporting the response and recovery of Auckland, Waikato, Coromandel, Northland, and Bay of Plenty regions, through activating Enhanced Taskforce Green to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • The Princess Royal to visit New Zealand
    Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has welcomed the announcement that Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, Princess Anne, will visit New Zealand this month. “Princess Anne is travelling to Aotearoa at the request of the NZ Army’s Royal New Zealand Corps of Signals, of which she is Colonel in Chief, to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government and horticulture sector target $12b in exports by 2035
    A new Government and industry strategy launched today has its sights on growing the value of New Zealand’s horticultural production to $12 billion by 2035, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor said. “Our food and fibre exports are vital to New Zealand’s economic security. We’re focussed on long-term strategies that build on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Cost of living support extended for families and businesses
    25 cents per litre petrol excise duty cut extended to 30 June 2023 – reducing an average 60 litre tank of petrol by $17.25 Road User Charge discount will be re-introduced and continue through until 30 June Half price public transport fares extended to the end of June 2023 saving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • More Kiwis in work as rising wages match inflation
    The strong economy has attracted more people into the workforce, with a record number of New Zealanders in paid work and wages rising to help with cost of living pressures. “The Government’s economic plan is delivering on more better-paid jobs, growing wages and creating more opportunities for more New Zealanders,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government boosts fund for Auckland flooding
    The Government is providing a further $1 million to the Mayoral Relief Fund to help communities in Auckland following flooding, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced today. “Cabinet today agreed that, given the severity of the event, a further $1 million contribution be made. Cabinet wishes to be proactive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • New Cabinet focused on bread and butter issues
    The new Cabinet will be focused on core bread and butter issues like the cost of living, education, health, housing and keeping communities and businesses safe, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins has announced. “We need a greater focus on what’s in front of New Zealanders right now. The new Cabinet line ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Prime Minister to meet with PM Albanese
    Prime Minister Chris Hipkins will travel to Canberra next week for an in person meeting with Australian Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese. “The trans-Tasman relationship is New Zealand’s closest and most important, and it was crucial to me that my first overseas trip as Prime Minister was to Australia,” Chris Hipkins ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Government makes first payment to Auckland Flooding fund
    The Government is providing establishment funding of $100,000 to the Mayoral Relief Fund to help communities in Auckland following flooding, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced. “We moved quickly to make available this funding to support Aucklanders while the full extent of the damage is being assessed,” Kieran McAnulty ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government steps up to assist Auckland during flooding
    As the Mayor of Auckland has announced a state of emergency, the Government, through NEMA, is able to step up support for those affected by flooding in Auckland. “I’d urge people to follow the advice of authorities and check Auckland Emergency Management for the latest information. As always, the Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Poroporoaki: Titewhai Te Huia Hinewhare Harawira
    Ka papā te whatitiri, Hikohiko ana te uira, wāhi rua mai ana rā runga mai o Huruiki maunga Kua hinga te māreikura o te Nota, a Titewhai Harawira Nā reira, e te kahurangi, takoto, e moe Ka mōwai koa a Whakapara, kua uhia te Tai Tokerau e te kapua pōuri ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Enhanced Task Force Green Approved following Cyclone Hale
    Carmel Sepuloni, Minister for Social Development and Employment, has activated Enhanced Taskforce Green (ETFG) in response to flooding and damaged caused by Cyclone Hale in the Tairāwhiti region. Up to $500,000 will be made available to employ job seekers to support the clean-up. We are still investigating whether other parts ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • General Election to be held on 14 October 2023
    The 2023 General Election will be held on Saturday 14 October 2023, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced today. “Announcing the election date early in the year provides New Zealanders with certainty and has become the practice of this Government and the previous one, and I believe is best practice,” Jacinda ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announces resignation
    Jacinda Ardern has announced she will step down as Prime Minister and Leader of the Labour Party. Her resignation will take effect on the appointment of a new Prime Minister. A caucus vote to elect a new Party Leader will occur in 3 days’ time on Sunday the 22nd of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago