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Key’s snub to unions and workers

Written By: - Date published: 6:37 am, October 9th, 2012 - 97 comments
Categories: economy, jobs, john key, making shit up, national, Unions - Tags: , , ,

National promised us an “unrelenting focus on jobs and work”. Instead workers get the finger:

Key not interested in union’s summit

The Government isn’t interested in a union-organised summit to discuss what can be done to help the manufacturing sector save jobs.

The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union (EPMU) blames the Government’s hands-off approach to the economy for a string of redundancies. Business representatives, unionists, economists and political parties will gather in Auckland on Friday. Prime Minister John Key says he hasn’t been invited and wouldn’t go anyway.

Unbelievable. I cannot find the words to express my contempt for John Key and his arrogance. National’s “unrelenting focus on jobs and work” has brought us to an 18 year high in unemployment levels. It would be worse if it wasn’t for the record exodus to Australia (they’re leaving because the pay here is too low and there are no jobs). And Key doesn’t want to talk about jobs with one of the sectors that is most affected?! What a fool.

No, it’s more than foolish. It’s blind arrogance. The unwillingness to admit that anything is wrong. On Planet Key:

“There’s no crisis in manufacturing,” Mr Key told reporters today. “Over the last four years exports have been consistent and the number of jobs has been up a touch from 245,000 to 255,000 – in the last 12 months alone GDP growth in the manufacturing sector was 2.5 percent.”

Compare and contrast with The Greens’ summary on Planet Earth:

“In the four years to June 2012, exports from manufacturing have fallen by 12.4%, or $1.7 billion. Output from manufacturing in GDP terms has reduced by 9.1%, or $2.8 billion.

“In the past four years to June, nearly 40,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost, a 16.7% reduction in the manufacturing workforce. Hundreds more manufacturing job losses have been announced since the end of June, the latest date for which statistics are available.

(1) Who is right on manufacturing exports?
“Over the last four years exports have been consistent”, vs.
“In the four years to June 2012, exports from manufacturing have fallen by 12.4%, or $1.7 billion”?

Here’s the actual data on manufactured exports:

The fall was biggest during the recession, but it is still continuing.

(2) Who is right on manufacturing output?
Exports in the manufacturing sector were 11.7-11.9 per cent of gross domestic product vs.
Output from manufacturing in GDP terms has reduced by 9.1%, or $2.8 billion

Here’s the actual data on manufacturing output:

It is now holding more or less even (in constant dollar terms) at a level that is well down on 4 years ago. Using this damaged status quo as an excuse to ignore a jobs summit is worse than pathetic. Where is the “ambition” for New Zealand now?

(3) Who is right on manufacturing jobs?
“Over the last four years … the number of jobs has been up a touch from 245,000 to 255,000”
, vs.
“In the past four years to June, nearly 40,000 manufacturing jobs have been lost, a 16.7% reduction in the manufacturing workforce”.

Here’s the actual data on manufacturing jobs.The Greens have already done me the graph for this one!

Again, the fall was largest during the recession, but it is still continuing.

So where are the Nats are pulling their numbers from on this? I really have no idea, looks like more made up stats to me.

Summing up. The Nats have comprehensively failed on the economy, failed to create jobs, failed to stem the exodus to Australia. They’re now giving the finger to a jobs summit, and therefore to Kiwi workers. And they’re “justifying” their inaction with dodgy numbers and the acceptance that some kind of damaged status quo is good enough. They are refusing to acknowledge the problems, because to do so would be an admission of their failure. Shame on John Key, and shame on the lot of them.


97 comments on “Key’s snub to unions and workers”

  1. Tracey 1

    C’mon they did a job fest once… isn’t that enough for NZers??? Ungrateful swine.

  2. tinfoilhat 2

    John Key is a disgrace and his criminal government are a bunch of crooks

  3. odysseus 3

    Your stats don’t include the cycleway 🙂

  4. It is good to see the “planet Key” meme catching on. Radio NZ just said it twice!

  5. marsman 5

    The only thing consistent is John Key’s lies….and Bill English’s lies… and Steven Joyce’s lies.. and Paula Bennett’s lies…. and Hekia Parata’s lies…etc. etc…..

  6. marsman 6

    Slave wages for young people so they can get non-existent jobs.

    ‘Starting out’ youth wage to be unveiled | Stuff.co.nz


  7. DropDead 7

    I guess its all about choice of measure re point 3. The Household Labour Force Survey (June Years) suggests the manufacturing sector employment outlook is (slowly) improving.

    Person’s employed by industry (manufacturing) (000s)
    2008 270.9
    2009 263.3
    2010 243.0
    2011 249.6
    2012 251.2

    • TightyRighty 7.1

      Where is that drop of 40000?

      Edit: Sorry a claimed drop of nearly 40,000. I see that. hardly surprising given the drop in world wide demand over two years ago. Stupid to claim a drop that has started to disappear

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.1

        Usual right wing meme: we’re at the mercy of the markets, there’s nothing we can do.

        You know except
        – Lower the exchange rate
        – Spend more on NZ industries instead of on foreign sourced goods
        – Increase subsidies for training, upskilling and R&D
        – Prevent big corporates (banks, telcos etc) ticket clipping money off SMEs
        – etc

        Stupid to claim a drop that has started to disappear

        A drop in manufacturing employment which has started to disappear? Love to know where these new manufacturing jobs are.

      • McFlock 7.1.2

        yep, polish that turd, tr…

        • bbfloyd

          HE can’t polish that without getting it all over his hands…. He can only do a “key” and roll it in glitter…. Even then , all he’s gonna get is a “johnny sparkle’ doll.

  8. PlanetOrphan 8

    The Gnats are obviously delusional, they want to be successful so much they just dream it all these days.

    • Dr Terry 8.1

      They dream, we have the nightmares! Good for the Greens (as usual). Why are not more people getting behind them?

      I adore dolphins and mean no criticism of them. But I am told they can swim around with half their brain turned off. This immediately reminded me of the National gang, wandering the world with a half dormant brain (assuming, of course, that there is any brain!)

      Nevertheless, we may take comfort from Michel de Montaigne who shows that “rational arguments (in general), are fallible because human reason itself cannot be relied on; “how useless human reason is , how feeble human powers are, and how silly and deluded almost everyone is.”,

      Such is the world we have to live in! Such is human nature!

  9. deuto 9

    Not trying to divert from the main themes of this post, but yesterday the Herald’s Opinion section ran an article by Geoff Bascand, Government Statistician (Making Sense of job Statistics).

    This helped me understand a little better the different methods of measuring employment, number of jobs etc through the Household Labour Force Survey (HLFS) and the Linked Employer-Employee Data (LEED) and the Quarterly Employment Survey (QES).


    It is worth reading the whole article but here is an excerpt.

    There’s been heated debate over the number of new jobs in the economy. According to our Linked Employer-Employee Data (LEED), there were 13,050 fewer jobs at June 2011 than there were in March 2008. But there’s also been a figure quoted that according to the HLFS, there were around 57,000 more people employed in June 2012 than there were in June 2010. Which one of these is right? Are there more or fewer jobs?

    The first thing I’d note is that these figures cover different time periods and one is measuring people employed (the number of people who have jobs) while the other is measuring the number of jobs. They’re both right in that they both help to analyse what’s happening. We have multiple labour market measures because they tell us different things. This can appear confusing, but when used together, they provide a strong evidence-based picture of the inner workings of the country’s labour market.

    If the question is “how many people are employed or unemployed”, then the HLFS provides the answer. If information about the number of jobs people have (they might have one, two, three or more) or the churn of people starting and finishing jobs is required, then LEED will provide that. HLFS provides the helicopter view of the labour market, whereas LEED puts the information under the microscope.

  10. Enough is Enough 10

    It should be the duty of the Prime Minister to attend an annual unemployment summit. John Key should have to stand before the unemployed and explain himself and why he is exporting their jobs and hopes for the future.

    Never have we seen a Prime Minister care less about his country or his people. Never.

    Why is it that New Zealand is stuck in this never ending recession. Everywhere you look people are miserable. Yet the rest of the world charges on. Look at the optimism of those attending the rallies in the States. Look at the optimism shown in London during their golden summer.

    Here in New Zealand there is none of that optimism. It is a frightening place to be right now.

    • marsman 10.1

      NZ was also a depressing place to be when Jenny Shipley was doing her best to screw the country. Same story, same people, different time.

      • Enough is Enough 10.1.1

        I think this will be the last time.

        New Zealander will never forget the Great Recession of 2008-2014. They will never forget the party that ruled during this period.

        They will never forget the manufacturing jobs that were exported by John Key to China.

        This corrupt mob will be gone forever. But it will take a generation or more to rebuild the manufacturing jobs they have willingly destroyed.

        • Lanthanide

          “But it will take a generation or more to rebuild the manufacturing jobs they have willingly destroyed.”

          There’s only so much a government can do to stop the loss of jobs (or foster the creation of jobs).

          It is likely that a lot of these jobs would have gone even if Labour were in power.

          • insider

            Many of them did go when Labour was in power if you look at the graphs. According to Stats NZ in March 2008 there were 240k manufacturing jobs and that dropped to 210-12k by the election. That’s around 30k jobs lost in one year under Labour.

          • Dr Terry

            So that makes it OK, Lanthanide. How helpful you are!

    • Lanthanide 10.2

      “Why is it that New Zealand is stuck in this never ending recession. Everywhere you look people are miserable. Yet the rest of the world charges on. ”

      I think you’re being far too pessimistic. As various government ministers pointed out, NZ is one of the stronger western economies in the world right now.

      • aerobubble 10.2.1

        The employment market is failing, skilled workers are flocking overseas while
        local companies that want them can’t pay them enough.

        The housing market is chronically under invested in despite housing prices
        being heavily over priced.

        Households, and now under Key, government are heavily in debt and will
        remain since the same incentives remain, short term capital gain farming.

        Our economy is up with Greece, Ireland and Spain for GDP debt.

        But worse still, our current administration is cheeky, indifferent and
        condescending when challenged.

        Let’s break society down, there are the bottom rung who don’t have enough
        opportunity to take risks (that don’t mean a jail sentence) who are implored
        and legislated by National to the hilt to seize onto profits. Then there is
        the middle NZ, who have been led by the banks, media and politicians
        to take on mortgage risks and are now over their head in debt, or
        worse left high and dry for years while insurance payouts are left hanging.
        Middle NZ takes on incremental risks and they now are finding themselves
        force into the bottom rung because of this ‘strongest’ economy in the world.
        Then we have the top rung, who believe they should not pay more taxes,
        they should not pay even as much tax as most people, because somehow they
        are the invincible few we need to keep the economy buzzing along. Sorry
        but its call progressive taxation because the more you make the more you
        should contribute back to the pot as you have been greatly benefited from
        the civility, the enterprise, the whole nation. The richest have risk opportunities
        in abundance and this requires a higher burden of tax, because not only is
        it fair, but also if we don’t contain their avarice for greed they will convince
        us all to load up on debt, they will castrate parliament to stop it acting
        against them, and then you’ll find you national debt as a part of GDP up
        there with Greece, Ireland and Spain.

        i.e. you complete moron please shut up already.

      • Enough is Enough 10.2.2

        I disagree. The US unemplyment rate has dropped from double digits to 7.8%. The Australian rate has never got close to ours. Europe has its own problems but the unemplyment rate has flat lined.

        We are running against these trend because we have the worst performing economic managers in the world.

        The international community is slowly sorting itself out. We are making things worse here.

        Key is responsible

        • Lanthanide

          NZ unemployment rate looks pretty flat to me: http://www.tradingeconomics.com/new-zealand/unemployment-rate

          • ianmac

            The unemployment stats would be much higher if the exodus to Australia hadn’t happened, as would housing woes.

        • BM

          I think you’re being far too pessimistic. As various government ministers pointed out, NZ is one of the stronger western economies in the world right now.

          Did you not read this above?

        • freedom

          you really believe that ?
          “What few people realize is that the headline unemployment rate is calculated each month using a unique set of seasonal adjustments. The August unemployment rate, which was 8.1%, was calculated using what BLS calls a “concurrent seasonal factor adjustment.” Each month the agency recalculates the series to adjust for regular seasonal patterns tied to the school year or holiday shopping season or whatever is considered relevant. The next month, it does the same thing using another set of seasonal factors. Rather than publish a number that’s consistent with the prior month’s estimate, it recalculates everything, including the previous month, but it doesn’t publish the revised number from the previous month.’
          source http://news.goldseek.com/GoldSeek/1349726400.php

          according to various groups the real current unemployment rate in the US is reportedly closer to 18% than 8% but who do we believe anymore, the bankers at the junkett or the volunteers on the breadline?

          • Colonial Viper

            Exactly. The BLS numbers are being massaged ahead of the Presidential elections.

            If you want a far closer estimate of US unemployment (that is, before they started fucking around with the statistics to make it look better eg simply not counting the long term unemployed) go to shadowstats.

            Oh look the broadest measure of unemployment as per old counting methodologies is up over 20%.


            • Enough is Enough

              So do you think the rest of the world (or US specifically) is performing worse than New Zealand?

              • Lanthanide

                Evidence suggests that it is, yes.

                • Colonial Viper

                  I agree with you Lanth, NZ has got it pretty easy at the moment. But we need to build up our capital (financial, societal and human) against what I reckon is going to be a very long and protracted downturn.

                  • Lanthanide

                    Yes, definitely.

                    Which is what pisses me off that we’ve had another 3 years of no real progress towards this. Although having said that, Labour’s 2011 election platform was quite compromised and had some really stupid policies in it (like borrowing to contribute to the cullen fund).

                • Enough is Enough

                  So does that mean the National Government, compared to every other government governing during this era, is doing a realtivley good job?

                  • Lanthanide

                    I was specifically replying to your point here:
                    “Why is it that New Zealand is stuck in this never ending recession. Everywhere you look people are miserable. Yet the rest of the world charges on.”

                    You made no mention of the National government. You say that NZ is somehow worse-off than other western countries. The evidence doesn’t support your contention.

            • Poission

              There is a deep underlying structural change that seems to be emerging,the change in consumer behaviour,as evident in paying down debt,and saving more.

              The lack of both trust and confidence in the financial market,and corporates ( with over paid executives and benefits such as share issues etc) has decreased the option of risk.


              • aerobubble

                There two ways to get exec salaries down, force them to take a pay cut, or print lots of money and inflate them to nothing.

        • Fortran

          E is E

          the figure of 7.8% is only the registered unemployed. Many others have not bothered to register.

          • aerobubble

            Given the amount of calls on value disconnected from the real economy is it any surprise that many can sit out the employment market, I mean simple put the great three decade run is over, many are not eligible for unemployment benefit. Romney said with some relish that unemployment is much higher than the nominal figures because they weren’t in the official figures. Some how that is ‘good’, that the western world economy is so disconnected (and growing), when even the wannabee President has no idea of the real crisis at the heart of the his economy? That the end of cheap oil makes the value assessments, that saw many accrue much wealth (not just the top 1%), being shredded in value as they speak. What is printing money!

      • David H 10.2.3

        New Zealand is stuck in this recession because the National government is sitting on it’s hands, twiddling it’s thumbs, staring at it’s navel, Letting the market forces do it and has been for quite a while. And its NOT working.

        • TightyRighty

          Yes it is, manufacturing jobs are on the rise again. The Household saving rates are increasing which means the capital is there to fund future growth without having to borrow it from offshore. I would say the National government is doing an amazing job given the difficult worldwide conditions. Every nation that is “doing something” as i’m sure you want the nats to is rolling backwards. Aussie included.

          • insider

            If you can afford it it’s a great time to invest in plant to boost productivity, because it will only get more expensive if Labour and the Greens are put in charge of the Xerox machine.

          • mike e

            Household savings is bullshit just like the rest of your argument the banks aren’t lending or giving repayment holidays !
            So you make it into a little lie just like blinglish!
            Not even original!

        • Draco T Bastard

          This National government is not sitting on its hands doing nothing. It’s quite actively undermining our economy so that it’s cheaper to sell.

          • David H

            Sorry. Yes you are right there. But they are still picking lint out of their navels.

      • Dr Terry 10.2.4

        As Montaigne explains, there are “a multitude of perspectives”. Sadly, as history will show Lanth, yours is one.

  11. captain hook 11

    these tories seem to think that workers are like specimens to be experimented on to see how much punishment they can take before they expire.
    and then get a new lot.

  12. Coolas 12

    “There’s no crisis in manufacturing”

    Sits in nicely with the motto of Planet Key: ‘War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.”

  13. red blooded 13

    These people are manipulative and disconnected from people who struggle with the outcomes of their decisions. Many of them are quite simply incompetent. We can’t kid ourselves and say that they won’t ever be back, though; history tells us that they will. Bolger was a bullshitter, Shipley et al were disasters; Muldoon (shudder) was a power-crazed bully… Guess what? The National Party didn’t implode; the general public swayed back towards them after a while, just as they are swaying back towards the left now (even though we have to be honest and admit that Labour is not exactly impressing with its prowess at present).

    Is Shearer going to the union-organised summit? If so, what actual policies will he be offering that are targeted at creating jobs? If he has some up his sleeve, he hasn’t been doing much of a job explaining them to the public.

    Plus, don’t let’s kid ourselves that people in the US and UK are feeling optimistic and empowered. They are being ground down and feeling pretty resentful and powerless right now. think about the student protests in England about the huge cuts to tertiary education funding. Those folk weren’t celebrating people-power, they were registering their despair and anger at policies they knew they weren’t able to change. And the Liberal Democrats are not exactly happy with the direction of the government that they are propping up. Will it go full term?

    I guess what I’m saying is that we have to keep it real. The Nats and their policies deserve criticism (and even contempt) but unrealistic predictions and unbacked assertions don’t do anyone any good. After all, that’s what we are criticising Key for! (See the discussion re Key’s erroneous claims and predictions.)

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      Is Shearer going to the union-organised summit?

      Can someone please give us a confirmation on this?

      • Enough is Enough 13.1.1

        If he doesn’t, he should be replaced on Friday night

      • Te Reo Putake 13.1.2

        Shearer hasn’t been specifically invited and the summit is not intended to be a political talk fest. It is a meeting of union and industry leaders who recognise that there is a problem to be fixed.
        However, there are going to be some politicians on one of the panels:

        The political panel will feature Green Party co-leader Russel Norman, Labour’s finance spokesperson David Parker and New Zealand First leader Winston Peters.
        And some industry heavyweights on another:
        The business panel will feature Peter Conway from the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions, Nick Inskip from the Heavy Engineering Research Association, technology entrepreneur Selwyn Pellett, John Walley from the New Zealand Manufacturers & Exporters Association, and Hugh Whitaker of the University of Auckland.
        I’m told that other MP’s will be attending, as any member of the public can. I hear that one would be politician that will be attending is Colin Craig. That certainly lifts him in my estimation and might be an indicator that he intends to take an independent line from National on economic matters.

        • Colonial Viper

          Shearer hasn’t been specifically invited

          NB that’s exactly the same reason John Key used. Key also said he wouldn’t go even if he were invited. Would Shearer go if he were invited?

          I’m told that other MP’s will be attending, as any member of the public can.

          So Shearer can go to? Which would be better instead of (in addition to) Labour sending its no 3 man along.

          Shearer isn’t shy to be identified as being tight with a union initiative is he?

          • Te Reo Putake

            You’ve missed the point, CV. The organisers invited the economic spokespeople for the political parties who recognised that there is a crisis in manufacturing. NZF, Labour and the Greens fit that category, National and Act don’t. Norman and Peters are attending as part of their economic portfolio duties, not because they are party leader.

            • insider

              Really good way to get concensus when you only invite people who agree with you.

              • Te Reo Putake

                Yep, consensus is good. But would you invite a witchdoctor to attend your heart op, insider? Would you act on his advice, just to get consensus?
                Tell you what, Insider, why don’t you attend? There will be seats available and you can chat with the businessmen and economists attending who do recognise that we have to do something and want to offer leadership. Honestly, they’re your kind of people, and they’re willing to make an effort. Why don’t you, as well?

                • insider

                  You already have a witchdoctor there – two in fact – peters and Norman. But they are your spiritual advisers so that’s ok then

    • r0b 13.2

      David Parker is representing Labour, I haven’t seen any report that Shearer is going.

      • insider 13.2.1

        So Shearer is snubbing unions and workers then

        • r0b

          If he said “he hasn’t been invited and wouldn’t go anyway” then he would, yes.

        • Te Reo Putake

          Hard to snub a meeting you haven’t been invited to, Insider, though Key managed to from his position of willful ignorance and thoughtless arrogance. Shearer would be welcomed, just like any other intelligent, caring MP who made the effort. But this is not a political meeting, its an industry do first and foremost.

          • insider

            This is not a political meeting except for Parker, Peters and Norman…who have been invited.

            • Te Reo Putake

              That’s right, Insider, it’s not a political meeting. But it has a political aspect, of course, which is why one of the panels was set up for politicians who recognise that there is a problem. National weren’t invited because they claim there is no problem*, so there would be no point having their economic spokesperson there.
              *Actually, National know there is a problem, but as they are active in making the problem worse, they have to lie about it.

              • insider

                The fact dissenting views are not welcome tells me this is just a political stunt aimed at headlines not understanding.

                • Lanthanide

                  “The fact dissenting views are not welcome tells me this is just a political stunt aimed at headlines not understanding.”

                  Dissenting views are already in the media. What difference does it make if they turn up to this meeting and say exactly the same things? How does that achieve anything, other than some bizarre semblance of ‘balance’ (like the teevee networks strive for).

                  • insider

                    Then stanadardistas can’t get on their high horse claim to have been snubbed. I don’t care who goes or the balance, but people here pretending to be angry at the PM non attendance is just more grandstanding. Which is ironic given the summit apparantly is not a political meeting.

                    Note that if the standard for an invite is not saying exactly the same as what has appeared in the media, why are Norman, Peters and Parker there?

                  • tsmithfield

                    Lanth, if this group is truly interested in change, don’t you think they would have invited the PM in order to at least attempt to influence his perspective on things, even if his view is contrary at them moment?

                  • felix

                    tsmithfield, with most PMs I would absolutely agree with you.

                    The current child in office, however, has already shown us that he doesn’t read reports, doesn’t take note of briefings, can’t concentrate on powerpoint presentations, and any info that miraculously gets through his soft little skull is immediately forgotten on leaving the room anyway.

                    So seriously, what would be the point?

                    (Actually for purely political reasons they probably should have invited him just so he could say ‘no’, so there’s that. But as it turned out he went one further all by his little self with his ‘didn’t want to play with you anyway’ sneer so there’s that too.)

                • Te Reo Putake

                  Check the invite list and re-read my comments above. A wide range of views will be represented, including ones close to your own.

                  • insider

                    But there has been a deliberate (and political IMO) decision to not invite a significant part of the political debate to take part. How can you claim a wilful snub when you went out of your way not to invite that segment?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      It’s an easy claim to substantiate when the PM says he wouldn’t go anyway. That’s a snub. National had already made clear that they didn’t think there was a problem, so there is no point having them there at all, so the organisers asked the people from industry and politics who do give a flying one about NZ instead.
                      And, just to remind you, it wasn’t party leaders who were invited, it was economic spokespeople. So it wasn’t Key that didn’t get an invite, it was Joyce.

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Nope. National have said that there is nothing to debate. They have nothing to contribute, so they have been sensibly left off the invite list.

                    • insider

                      Hang on, National deliberately weren’t invited. that is a snub. And it came first in the sequence. So while the PM may have been petulent, he hardly snubbed you.

                      Note Parker is not ‘economic’ speaker for Labour Cunliffe is. Why is Cunliffe not there? He’s not been snubbed has he?

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Parker is the finance spokesperson. Cunliffe is the associate finance spokesperson. Parker is the senior, so he got the invite. Cunliffe may well be there in the audience anyway as he is spokesperson for the related economic development portfolio.

                    • insider

                      Cunliffe is Economic Development as is joyce, so it should have been English you snubbed. Norman is not finance either he’s Economy. Peters is anything and everything so not a hard choice 🙂 .

                      A rumour monger might think you don’t want Cunliffe at the top table….

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      And a fish monger might think you smell funny, Insider. Who’s ‘you’, by the way? I’m not organising the meeting, I’m going off the press release. You’re just going off.
                      No National Minister has been snubbed. They are of the opinion that there is no crisis, so they had nothing to contribute to a summit about protecting and creating jobs. The PM is welcome to attend, as are you and any other interested kiwi, but his response was to stick two fingers up at those who do care about NZ’s future.
                      John Key: Relentless Focus on Jobs (at Warner Bros).

                    • insider

                      Sorry TRP, but you seemed to be speaking with great authority as to who had been invited and why, who might be in the audience, availabilty of seats etc. I never saw any reference to a non invite to Joyce you referred to in any of the material.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Apart from all the clever side stepping bullshit excuses of “Shearer wasn’t invited” and “it’s not Shearer’s portfolio anyway it’s Parker’s” Labour better wake the fuck up.

                      Sending your Leader along to an event like this sends a strong message to the manufacturing sector and to the unions organising the event.

                      NOT sending your Leader along to an event likewise sends a strong message to the manufacturing sector and to the unions organising the event.

                      WAKE UP

                    • Te Reo Putake

                      Oh, bullshit, CV. Nobody is ‘sending’ or ‘not sending’ anyone. The organisers sent invites to appropriate people to sit on the panels, mainly industry leaders, not politicians. Anyone can go and take a seat in the audience. I take it you’ll be going yourself? Y’know, coz you’re not a hypocritical poseur, posting from your wife’s parents mansion about matters that don’t affect you in the least, because you can afford to not get a job. Sheeesh, man! Has it not occurred to you that joining in with the righties bagging the meeting makes you look a bourgeois tool?

                    • insider

                      Did you not hear cv? It’s not a political event 😉

                      One of the rare times I agree with you though. Kumbayah anyone?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey TRP ignore the optics then, I don’t give a shit.

                      And yes, when I’m Great Leader, I’ll make sure to turn up to this kind of important shit, and doubly so if I’m getting $210K pa to do so.

      • David H 13.2.2

        Oh Joy whats wrong this time? Is he thinking up another ‘roof painting beneficiary’ story for his fans?

  14. JK wants rid of unions, not to indulge them.
    JK is a Planet Hollywood© asset.
    Just watch the film and wake up.

  15. Stan 15

    To refuse to go you first have to be invited

  16. Draco T Bastard 16

    Where is the “ambition” for New Zealand now?

    Key never had any ambition for NZ. His only ambition, as far as I can see, is to sell NZ out to the highest bidder and then retire to Hawaii.

    • marsman 16.1

      And Mr Potato Head Steven Joyce’s mantra is that the ‘economy needs to be more competitive.’ and I presume that’s voodoo-speak for lower wages and smashed Trade Unions or it’s just the ol’ neolib gibberish.

  17. red blooded 17

    So, getting back to the starting point; I think we can agree that the Nats’ employment policies are misguided and harmful (the latest, re-intruducing Youth Rates seems to me to even be unconstitutional, discriminating against a group of people based solely on their age), but I think it’s pushing it to say that JK’s non-attandance at an event he wasn’t invited to is an insult to unions and workers. Sure, he was petulant and disrespectful in his comments, but frankly it would have looked better all around if reps from ALL parties had been invited. It’s likely that some would have waived the opportunity to attend (and THAT might have shown disrespect), but it’s hard to have dialogue with power-holders if you exclude them from the conversation. What possible influence to the organisers expect to have when all the government needs to say is that they had a predetermined outcome in mind when they put together the invitation list?

    • Gosman 17.1

      It could be argued, (and indeed has), that abolishing the youth minimum wage caused increased levels of unemployment amongst youth and therefore was more detrimental to that group than having a temporary lower income.

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