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Labour’s housing policy a winner

Written By: - Date published: 10:20 pm, December 1st, 2012 - 113 comments
Categories: david shearer, housing - Tags:

John Armstrong’s take on Labour’s housing policy, announced by David Shearer at the Labour Party conference, is as follows:

For the first time in a very long time, Labour has come up with something radical on the policy front which may grab the public’s attention, if not imagination – and which National cannot really get away with copying.

Armstrong makes a  number of interesting comments:

Labour easily trumped National’s limp response to the Productivity Commission’s report on the provision of affordable housing….

National’s response to the affordability crisis was to be seen to be wringing its hands. In contrast, Labour is rolling up its sleeves…..

Labour is being bold. Like the push for a capital gains tax, the housing promise is a break from Labour’s immediate past of playing safe and finding excuses for not doing things….

It is what the housing policy says about Labour’s direction which is possibly as important as the policy itself. It shows Labour regaining its soul….

He notes the political advantages for Labour;

It also pushes many political buttons to Labour’s advantage.

It will appeal to middle-income voters congregated in the political centre, especially those worried that they or younger relatives will never get on the home-ownership ladder. Those voters worried about Labour being profligate with taxpayers dollars will be comforted by knowing the $1.5 billion will be designated as capital and thus will not slow the country’s return to budget surplus.

What the capital injection will provide is stimulus to a sluggish economy. The 10-year programme will provide some certainty to an industry which has notoriously been victim to boom-bust cycles. The increase of building activity dovetails with Labour’s long-held preference for an effective apprenticeship system while at the same time cutting back youth unemployment.

The policy is also an answer to the anti-poverty lobby which argues not enough is being done to lift the quality of the housing stock.

Armstrong comments that  “in terms of ideological renewal and momentum, Labour is starting to get it right.”

I agree; I’m already getting good feedback about it on the golf course – and I think it might well be a topic for the Christmas barbecues.

Watch this space.

113 comments on “Labour’s housing policy a winner”

  1. Bright Red 1

    What about the fact that the economics don’t work?

    I’m not talking about the houses – $300K is feasible. I’m talking the economics

    • Fortran 1.1

      Bright Red

      Could be a great idea – look forward to seeing 196 houses a week completed.
      But how does it affect the poor amongst us ?
      $300,000 minimum is more than most can dream of –

  2. xtasy 2

    Mike:
    Where are the sections affordable to make this plan work?

    I hear talk about “government” land, where is it apart from parks and reserves, then?

    You are a Labour demagogue, I am sorry, I do NOT get what you are on about, please specify, and do not take us for a ride, thanks!

  3. Lightly 3

    The day that John Armstrong’s seal of approval is regarded as a good thing by the Left is a bad day.

  4. McFlock 4

    3 comments so far.

    nice. One says the economics might work but the sections don’t exist, another says the sections exist but the economics won’t work, but the third decently enough points out that an endorsement from the MSM is not something to be proud of.

    • kiwi_prometheus 4.1

      I suggest the nay sayers pay attention to Ms King:

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10851136

      “But Labour’s policy is being written by no less than the formidable Annette King, who holds the shadow housing portfolio.

      [ King ] says the high section prices in Auckland could result in Labour promoting mixed housing developments in which the more expensive homes would cross-subsidise the ones meeting the affordability criteria.

      King is still very much fleshing out the detail of the policy framework unveiled by David Shearer at Labour’s annual conference two weekends ago.

      There have been rumours this may be King’s last term in Parliament. But she says she is not going anywhere. That is bad news for National. She has out-foxed National generally and Housing Minister Phil Heatley in particular.”

      • McFlock 4.1.1

        I suggest that if you genuinely support the policy KP, and that you want people here to support the policy, then you STFU. Or even argue against it. Because the great way to nuke this policy is for lefties to see you AND John Armstrong support it.

        • kiwi_prometheus 4.1.1.1

          “lefties”

          Only the Academic Left aka Felix, QofT, Karol et al

          I don’t think they even count as “lefties”, they are too radical. Except maybe Karol, at least she has a sense of history.

          Shows how lost the Left is, when these days you get a necklacing for not kowtowing to gender feminist.

          But like I said this housing policy might mean there is hope yet.

          • QoT 4.1.1.1.1

            Academic Left aka Felix, QofT, Karol et al

            [citation needed]

            • Colonial Viper 4.1.1.1.1.1

              Hmmm I think you might have fallen for a trap there, QoT.

              • QoT

                Bah, no real time/emotion is invested in telling k_p he needs to back his shit up.

                • kiwi_prometheus

                  So you deny being part of the Academic Left, QoT?

                  That’s odd, you spit out the usual Marxist / Deconstructionist nonsense.

                  Citations? Take a look at QoTs site. If you don’t think that is evidence QoT, please explain what you think your philosophical foundation actually is.

                  IrishBill: Speculating on the identities of authors is a no-no here wee fella. Take a week off.

                  • QoT

                    Oh, poor little man, doesn’t even realise how citations work.

                    Protip: “looking at a site” =/= “academic left”.

                    Sadly for you, actual proof of your blatherings is still needed and your sad little “look! a deconstructionist!” jabs mean fuck all.

          • karol 4.1.1.1.2

            For someone who supports scientific rationality, you really are a hoot, K_P.

            You idea of a true leftie includes:

            * not being “too radical”

            * having the support of John Armstrong

            * supporting a housing policy that largely targets the middle-classes (one that ignores the low paid and renters)
             

            • David H 4.1.1.1.2.1

              Well then I’d hate to think what that makes me. A Kiwi version of Victor Meldrew?? No I am not so frustrated with the whole world yet.
              I don’t really know. Well more to the Left than the Right. I believe in the many shades of Grey, rather than Just Black and White.
              It makes me angry that people in a country such as NZ, just want to ‘dig it up’ or Mine it. Joyce’s dreams must be of a Texas skyline circa 1920’s.
              I don’t suffer fools gladly (explains my anger at Shearer being elected over Cunliffe) They put a ‘fool’ (for fool read inexperienced, babe in arms) in over the Intelligent, and better qualified person. For that, they lose my vote, until that has been corrected. And the other fools, Mallard, Jones, and Hipkins have been dealt with by way of a comfy cushion on the Back bench! It also explains my Anger at what the Nats are doing to our country and the grief that some of it will be irrepairable.
              It makes me angry that Labour still haven’t learned from the mistakes of the past, (Tamahere comes to mind) and it seems they are doomed to just (like the Nats) to the same ol’ same ol’ every day. Groundhog Day anyone?

              Maybe I’ll just start my own Gang. Roadrunners Nudie’s.
              http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/8021908/Nude-jogging-same-as-a-gang-patch-judge
              Gotta love NZ in the end

              I believe in giving a fair break to anyone, until they spit in your eye. And I also believe in helping others, but in this day and age it doesn’t seem to happen as much as it should.

  5. kiwi_prometheus 5

    I thought it was an interesting opinion piece by Armstrong.

    Maybe there is hope for Labour after all. Affordable housing is probably THE issue for NZers – forget the “Gay Gandolf wants to get married in ‘Middle Earth'” circus the Academic Left has delivered.

  6. Blue 6

    The policy is great in theory. But the devil is in the details, and Labour haven’t given us enough yet to know if it’s going to fly.

    This seems to be because they don’t know the details and are making shit up as they go along. Which gives John ‘Show Me The Money’ Key a stick with which to beat them.

    Ideally, a policy of this magnitude should be bombproof before being announced and the details should fill more than one page on a press handout.

    Good idea, sloppy execution. It is an important turning point for Labour in terms of ideology, but someone still needs to do the heavy lifting to prove that it’s viable and that it won’t just be an early Christmas present for property investors.

    • kiwi_prometheus 6.1

      “early Christmas present for property investors.”

      1 Tax reform – capital gains tax.

      2 Reserve bank policy shift – stop favouring house mortgages.

      3 Get rid of construction red tape costs.

      4 Release more land for development.

    • BM 6.2

      This.
      A major party say they’re going to spend 2 BILLION dollars on a housing scheme yet provide no details on how it’s going to work or if it’s even feasible.
      Can you imagine going to a bank to ask for a 2 billion dollar loan with this “Business plan”, you’d be laughed out of there in less than 5 minutes.

      It’s the total disregard of tax payer money that fucks me off. Labour can go shove it’s half baked housing scheme up it’s arse.

      • Colonial Viper 6.2.1

        Can you imagine going to a bank to ask for a 2 billion dollar loan with this “Business plan”, you’d be laughed out of there in less than 5 minutes.

        Sovereigns should not and must not be beholden to private banks. The Government can and must accomplish the things that the private sector is incapable of considering.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.2.1.1

          +1

          No government should be taking out loans or selling bonds at all as they just don’t need due to having the entire resources of the country to command.

      • David H 6.2.2

        Well the NATS are borrowing a shitload more than that. On Nothing. But Tax Cuts.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.2.3

        A major party say they’re going to spend 2 BILLION dollars on a housing scheme yet provide no details on how it’s going to work or if it’s even feasible.

        That’s got to be the biggest lie yet from the RWNJs.

        1.) It’s $1.5b not $2b
        2.) The $1.5b is used as seed capital to build the first units which are then sold at slightly more than cost
        3.) The income from the sales goes back into the capital fund to build more houses

        The original $1.5b loan will have to be paid for out of taxes.

        • prism 6.2.3.1

          It would be good if these houses were administered by a housing association/trust which would buy them back at a rate that incorporated annual revaluations on term deposit basis, then onsell them at a slightly higher percentage. This pool of houses would diminish the number of renters and depress house prices a little for other low to medium price housing buyers, because demand would drop somewhat. It would be a great opportunity but might be too imaginative and far seeing for today’s Labour.

        • DJ 6.2.3.2

          “The original $1.5b loan will have to be paid for out of taxes.”

          No it won’t, coz they ain’t gonna win.

          This policy is just a pipe dream. Something for you nutters to hold onto and debate instead of ripping your own party to shreds with differences between your in house ideologies.

          • Draco T Bastard 6.2.3.2.1

            No it won’t, coz they ain’t gonna win.

            All indications are that there will be a Labour led coalition after the next general election so chances are that some form of this policy will go through.

            Something for you nutters to hold onto and debate instead of ripping your own party to shreds with differences between your in house ideologies.

            Firstly, Labour isn’t my party. Secondly, your authoritarian attitudes are showing. It’s really not up to the parliamentary caucus to tell the members what to do.

      • bad12 6.2.4

        BM, the present Slippery National Government have been borrowing 300 million dollars a week since elected in 2008,

        We await with bated breath a full breakdown of where that 300 million bucks a week has been spent,

        Only a fiscal dunce would borrow such monies at the same time as taxes were cut…

        • Jackal 6.2.4.1

          Good point bad12. I also await with some anticipation the opening up of the books when John Keys corrupt bunch of miscreants gets ousted… Because as far as I can tell there’s been no amount of spending on infrastructure and tax cuts for the rich that can account for such a huge amount of government borrowing. Where the hell has all the money gone John?

  7. Huginn 7

    It’s a great scheme. I’m particularly excited about the expected provision for vocational training.

    Its an opportunity to entrench better building standards and thereby draw a line under the years of disastrous, light-handed regulation of the construction industry which has destroyed so much value and blighted so many lives.

    • kiwi_prometheus 7.1

      The Herald has done a good series on trades and apprenticeships and where it all went wrong during the 90s.

      Over a thousand guys on a waiting list for building apprenticeships while businesses wail about the lack of skills – especially those with 5 to 10 years experience under their belt ready to shift into project management positions.

      How fucked up is that?

      • Descendant Of Smith 7.1.1

        The private sector has never ever done sufficient apprenticeships.

        What’s disappeared over the years is the public sector ones – even hospitals employed their own carpenters and electricians and had apprentices. Add in bigger public sector employers such as NZR with the railway workshops in Wanganui or the loco repairing in Taumarunui or Ministry Of Works or with the council owned power companies and so on are where the shortage of apprentices has come from.

        If you ask any group of tradesman over 50 where they did their apprenticeship about 40% or more will tell you that did their apprenticeship in the public service.

        The public service always had commitments to taking on youth and training them for the good of the country.

        That’s been replaced with shitty wages, high unemployment, low benefit rates, poor employment contracts, young people emigrating and the private sector bleating.

    • BM 7.2

      You won’t have apprentices with this scheme, it’s factory work.

  8. National’s response to the affordability crisis was to be seen to be wringing its hands. In contrast, Labour is rolling up its sleeves…..

    Given the kind of things this govt gets up to when it is rolling its sleeves up and getting things done (eg ECAN, King Gerry 1 of Christchurch, pretty much everything they’ve done in education), I’d rather it did just wring its hands and not do stuff.

    This is a great policy from Labour, even if it isn’t a new one. And from a schadenfreude perspective, the best thing about it is that National’s attempts to claim that it’s just impossible for an NZ govt to run a major house building programme are comedy gold.

  9. JazzaBelle 9

    A good policy, Mike, and achievable with a bit of work.

    And we need to be in Government to implement it.
    The decisions on Cunliffe and Tamahere tells me that Shearer is useless as a leader.
    We will loose in 2014 if we do not get rid of Shearer and promote Cunliffe.
    This party will split if the members do not get a say in the leadership early next year.

    Mike, your time would be better spent now on working to replace Shearer.
    That is the only way that critical policies like this will ever be implemented.

  10. Olwyn 10

    The only thing I have seen these people do with commitment and conviction is to hastily try to head off the threat to their leadership by fabricating a reason to demote Cunliffe. Everything else is an “appeal” to the mythological middle class vote while attempting to “suggest” to the members that they “have not lost touch” with Labour’s roots. This housing policy, at the press release stage, is no different. There is not enough detail to know whether it is a genuine, practical response to the housing problem or a gift to property developers. But going by their record so far, I cannot see them putting up a fight to ensure that it is the former.

  11. just saying 11

    I wasn’t going to comment on your post Mike.

    However, this morning a picture has appeared next to it of what appears to be, the unveiling of Labour’s state housing programme. Frankly I find it offensive to put such a picture next to Labour’s latest bribe to comfy the middle classes (whatever secondary virtues it might possess), which offers absolutley zip to the large numbers of poor that Labour continues to pointedly ignore. The people who are doing it really bloody hard.

    I’m reminded of Goff’s offensive (to me) line about representing the “many not the few” when it was as clear as dog’s balls that the “few” that Labour had repudiated were the poorest 25 percent of citizens.

    If the Paganiists in Labour imagine that this policy in any way resembles Labour’s revolutionary state housing programme, it’s time for the membership to remind them of the world that exists outside of their cosy, “aspirational” -middle-class bubble.

    • Te Reo Putake 11.1

      “I wasn’t going to comment on your post Mike”
       
      If you’d just stopped there, you would have been fine, js. Your fantasy that ‘the few’ referred to the poor does you no credit, nor does your inability to do the basic financial math around this proposal add to your credibility. This excellent housing program will put thousands of lower paid families into their first home. That’s a similar outcome to the program in the thirties, hence the appropriate photo.

      • just saying 11.1.1

        …will put thousands of lower paid families into their first home. That’s a similar outcome to the program in the thirties, hence the appropriate photo….

        I disagree and we may have the opportunity to see who is right on this.

        I see some potential merit in the programme, for some at the upper-end of the poorest to benefit. However, as the guts of Labour’s housing policy, in and of itself, for the beginning of the second global depression, it is as inadequte as the same policy would have been during the first depression.

        And Goff’s metaphor clearly didn’t literally mean “few” however you interpret it. Otherwise could have been more specific …”for the many, but not those three”..

        • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.1

          However, as the guts of Labour’s housing policy, in and of itself, for the beginning of the second global depression

          THIS

          Labour’s housing programme is a good bucket and useful for bailing water out of a dinghy.

          Problem is, I think that the next 5 years is going to put a gaping hole in the side of the NZ economy below the waterline, and virtually every compartment is going to start flooding. A bucket is not going to be enough.

          This is an awful time for Labour to start listing rightwards.

    • karol 11.2

      Actually, js, that 1930s photo does represent the backward-looking policies & image that Team Shearer are currently following.  The Savage-led government was pretty radical for its time.  But it was also a time when Labour was a very male-dominated party, and when a woman’s place was mainly considered to be in the home, and as largely second class citizens.

      It was a time when a working man had the achievable hope of earning a wage for affordable housing.  But, of course, there was a much stronger vision of state housing than Team Shearer is aiming for with this policy.

      Team Shearer does seem to be trying to lead a Men’s Party, with most women (with one or two exceptions) relegated to the margins. 

      • Draco T Bastard 11.2.1

        Actually, js, that 1930s photo does represent the backward-looking policies & image that Team Shearer are currently following.

        Nope. That seems to be the illusion that Shearer want to produce but the actual policy is pure neo-liberal banksterism. It really will only benefit the banks as another 100,000 mortgages worth of money is created ex nihilo with them then getting to charge interest on it.

  12. Ad 12

    what I would look forward to is a government who works to build intelligent, innovate, safe and sustainable cities.

    It’s about time central government recognised the social and economic and cultural dominance of cities in New Zealand.

    Dusting off the Public Works Act and acting to Give Effect To the Auckland Plan and the Christchurch plan (the real one) would be a start.

    Housing should be an important part of using road and public transport and motorway investment, and schools, and prisons, and Defence land, and all the rest, to really engage with Mayors.

    Home ownership is really important, but only as part of a bolder and coherent approach.

    Bring back 1946-type urban planning I say.

  13. Matthew Hooton 13

    John’s column is similar to the points I made on RNZ on Monday. David Shearer is onto a winner with this, because it sounds big and bold and National can’t copy it. And Shearer has had another win this weekend with the Tamihere decision – see http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/bold-gamble-labour-allows-tamihere-back-ck-133327

    • Te Reo Putake 13.1

      “Mr Hooton wrote earlier that the “rainbow” faction on Labour’s council remained suspicious of Mr Tamihere. But to shun him would have risked his defection to NZ First.
      “That would undoubtedly transfer 5% of the vote from Labour to NZ First, putting the former down to 25% and the latter well above 10%,” Mr Hooton said.”
       
      🙄

      • Ad 13.1.1

        Nice catch there TRP.

        • Te Reo Putake 13.1.1.1

          Like fish in a barrel, Ad!

          • Jim Nald - Once Was National 13.1.1.1.1

            Ahm ….. “And Shearer has had another win FOR NATIONAL this weekend with the Tamihere decision”

            Shearer is National’s best friend and most valuable Christmas present – the gift that keeps giving Labour (headaches, distractions, alienations, ….)

            • Saarbo 13.1.1.1.1.1

              I have a different view Jim. Labour is broad church and Tamihere represents an important part of our constituency. It would be nice if he could do that without shooting his big mouth off completely detached from his brain but in the end of the day he can also be a real asset. 

              Tamihere will on balance enhance Labour’s image, he has a big public profile. He just needs to learn to engage his brain before he speaks. 

              We just need to get Cunliffe back and Labour will start looking like a winning party again.

              What happened at the Labour Council Meeting re New Lynn complaint? 

              • Colonial Viper

                Labour is broad church and Tamihere represents an important part of our constituency.

                Yes, misogynists and gay-bashers are part of the Labour community too, and they need increased representation inside the ‘broad church’ of caucus.

                After all, how can one be democratic and inclusive if you exclude ashholes and bigotted haters.

                Tamihere YES Cunliffe NO, makes sense to me.

                • Saarbo

                  Tamihere represents urban maori, a group who have traditionally been Labour, but have been lost. In the end of the day Labour need to do some serious work around getting some voters/support back.  

                  For all of his weaknesses, Tamihere has done good mahi for urban moari…he has my support for this. I agree however also with you CV, he is an arsehole for his comments about Gays and Women…he is a weird and unpredictable bugger but on balance will be good for Labour.

                  • cardassian

                    I’m urban Maori, my votes been lost to Labour and Tamihere certainly won’t get that vote back. He’ll push it further away.

                  • Jackal

                    I really think you’re a bit deluded there if you think John Tamihere represents urban Maori Saarbo. You are right though that he has a profile and that will translate as support. The problem here is that Tamihere is sometimes highly outspoken against Labour, and often echoes the attack lines of National. Labour have effectively invited another potential leaker into their midst at a time they should be working to close such damaging dynamics down.

                    Now if you were to say that a person like Joanna Paul represents urban and rural Maori and their interests then I would have to agree wholeheartedly. She was interviewed on Marae Investigates recently and argued passionately about the failures inherent in the treaty settlement process. Of course Joanna is probably too radical for Labour who seems to prefer Maori like John Tamihere and Shane Jones, both of which in my opinion are right wing elitists.

                    I don’t want to foment any division on the left, and think that Robert Winters’ article today about Russel Norman’s NZ Herald article is spot on. It could be the case that David Shearer has found time to reason with Jones especially and persuaded him to not undermine any potential coalition with the Greens. I hope this is the case, because a more unified and cohesive left wing is what is required to not only win the next election, but to repair the damage National has caused New Zealand.

                    The other problem here is that Maori are being played off against each other by the crown that’s using favoritism based on historic allegiances and a drawn out treaty settlement process to ensure it’s tribe against tribe competing for a very small pot of gold. Jones and Tamihere are happy to play along with that corruption of the process because they know it’s the only way of ensuring their people get a slice of the pie. This leaves many Maori living in abject poverty while a few are living it up. The vast majority of Maori have seen little or no benefit from treaty settlements so far and I don’t presently see how re-appointing Tamihere is going to make any difference to that unfortunate reality at all, although I do hope that he proves me wrong.

                • Like it or not, many of the people who do the actual work about the place are blokey proletarians, and they sound a lot like Tamihere. The last thing a party named “Labour” should do is start considering the labouring proletariat beneath its dignity. Hooton’s right for once, this is a success for Labour.

                  • dancerwaitakere

                    “many of the people who do the actual work about the place are blokey proletarians” 

                    Oh really? Blokey Proletarianas…. BLOKEY…. do the ‘actual’ work. As opposed to women. Women who just sit home making tea and having babies.

                    FFS.  

                    • Yes, really. Unless you believe the fact that a lot of men work for a living excludes the possibility that a lot of women work for a living. Hint: it doesn’t.

                    • McFlock

                      So why would Labour even consider alienating a lot of female or gay male workers by pandering to small-minded bigots? Like it or not, it’s as stupid as it is unethical.

                  • IrishBill

                     blokey proletarians, and they sound a lot like Tamihere

                     Tamihere is an aging overweight well to do man with a chip on his shoulder. I remember him when he was young and could get away with his bigoted shit because of his “boyish charm”. Now he’s just another has-been bore who believed his own publicity, didn’t live up to his potential, and blames it on teh gayz and the unions.

                    There’s a group in Labour (and the wider urban elite) that think that provincial and/or working class are synonyms for “bigot”. I can tell you from long experience that’s not the case. Getting Tamihere on board is like getting Goff talking about Maori privilege or Shearer trying some bene-bashing – all it will do is piss off the liberals in the party and make working class and provincial people feel even more patronised. It also confirms their suspicion that Labour doesn’t even know who they.

                    • just saying

                      Well said.

                      It is clear that the Labour power clique think that in lieu of actual policies that benefit the working class, it will be good enough to give us some soft targets to get the boot into, and our own bully-boy to direct a diversionary hatefest.

                      It’s clear any and all actual resources will be directed higher up the socioeconomic ladder to “worthy” people like them, their friends, and families.

                      How fucking insulting.

                      It hasn’t worked to date, it won’t work now.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      There’s a group in Labour (and the wider urban elite) that think that provincial and/or working class are synonyms for “bigot”.

                      Exactly. I’d prefer to hang out with a beer with the good natured provincial working class types rather than the snobby Wellington beltway bubble elite types any day.

                    • karol

                      Exactly, IrishBill.  Tamihere is an attempt to dress up Team Shearer as being for those on low incomes. 

                      But this article about JT being back, really shows up what he is these days. Sure the interview and pic for that article were done yesterday in West Auckland, but hardly at a hang-out for your average Outrageous Fortune westie, or even working class Maori.  It was all done here.  And the times I’ve been there, the people I was with would not be impressed by JT’s tired old bigotry.

                      BTW: proletariat, before adopted by Marx as meaning wage-slaves, originally meant Romans on the lowest income, who had nothing but their children to contribute to the state. And, owning no or little property, couldn’t vote.  It certainly didn’t mean the property-owning classes, whether middle or upper working (skilled tradesmen) class.

                • Populuxe1

                  Well if you actually want Labour to get enough votes to regain power, you might just have to suck it. You can’t just wish all the old school bigots into sensitive new age types by clicking your heels together three times, so deal with it.

                  • just saying

                    You’re talking out of your arse here imo PM.

                    Even those working class men who are bigoted in some areas, aren’t seeking confimatory bigotry from politicians, they are looking for a better lives for themselves and their whanau.

                    Would the opportunity to join a hatefest be enough to get you into a polling booth to support a party who don’t give a shit about you and your’s Psycho Milt? If not why do you think it would be good enough for anyone else?

                    Patronising tosh.

                    • Populuxe1

                      Oh for FFS,
                      even Helen Clarke recognised the fact. I think you need to get out the provinces a bit more. 

                  • Pascal's bookie

                    Well if you actually want Labour to get enough votes to regain power, you might just have to suck it. You can’t just wish all the old school bigots into sensitive new age types by clicking your heels together three times, so deal with it.

                    Well no one has to ‘suck it’ actually. they have plenty of options. Easiest being to tell the LP to go fuck itself in a sack.

                    It’s swings and roundabouts Pop. You pick up the votes of bigots at the expense of the votes of liberals and the people the bigots are bigoted against.

                    Tamihere thinks he can get, in your words, bigots voting for the party. how is he going to that and keep the votes of the people that don;t fucking like bigots?

                    Riddle me that one while you explain what meant about Clark.

                    Liberals are pretty much who the party has got left on its books.

                    Throw them under the bus! Good fucking plan. Maybe the LP can pull off what the GOP couldn’t, and win based on appealing exclusively to the shrinking demographic.

                    • Populuxe1

                      What a short memory you have. 

                      “I find your society genuinely admirable in many ways. For example, I met Helen Clark while I was in Wellington. I was invited to her official residence, and waved in by a lone policeman who didn’t even check who I was, then I had a barbecue with her. I congratulated her on the public’s enlightened attitudes towards racial issues, but she disagreed. She said to me that New Zealand was really a very racist country, and she was determined to do everything she could as prime minister to change that. I thought that was a very bold, honest statement to make to a foreigner, and I really respected her for that.” – Ian Mckellen

                      The same is also true of casual sexism and homophobia
                       

                    • Pascal's bookie

                      Pop, just to refresh your memory, you were supposed to be finding an example of Clark saying that we just have to accept the bigotry. I’m sure they exist, but that quote is the opposite of it, she says there they we have to recognise it exists, but that it’s important to fight it, not pander to it.

    • Skinny 13.2

      Hootan politics followers just don’t take you seriously with most of what you have to say! It’s usually running a spoilers line & you often stoop to dog whistling like your under tones of Grant Robertson being gay. You know damn right Shearer is on borrowed time, the vote change is designed to roll Shearer in February if he continues to flounder as he has done. If you don’t know David Parker is being lined up as the next Labour Leader your a bigger right wing mug than I already thought. Yes under the new rules the likes of me get a vote & it’s for Parker that a done deal.

  14. Skinny 14

    A while ago we visited a cafe in old Frankton, Hamilton, my colleague pointed to nearby buildings & mentioned that’s where most state/ railway house were build years ago, which started me thinking.        
    I can see a great opportunity for Tainui in playing a part in building affordable homes. Their new industrial park in Ruakura, Hamilton would be a great site to facilitate a purpose built kit set home manufacturing hub. Imagine what can be achieved; architecturally stylish New Zealand timber homes, utilising technological (smart) advancements in solar powering & gadgetry. Manufacturing on a large scale brings your cost down by purchasing in  volume of materials. Hamilton has the training institutes to support such a venture. They also have plans for a near by residential subdivision to test & fine tune before rolling out nationwide. 
    I am going to look into this and see what interest can be harnessed? A bit of support from Labour’s  NH would be appreciated. 
    I might head to Town as we often see her on Sundays at Master House chowing down on yum lol cha 🙂 

    • RJLC 14.1

      Their new industrial park in Ruakura, Hamilton would be a great site to facilitate a purpose built kit set home manufacturing hub.

      Hmmm, if I recall correctly the one of the first casualties of the restructuring of Ruakura Research post Treaty settlement was the demolition of a whole picturesque row of houses in a tree lined lane that were built decades ago to accomodate research staff. I guess if was an oversight.

      • Skinny 14.1.1

        Not sure where your going with that? Action is needed i.e. talk & do! It’s no good running around like chicken little. Our future generations need action now don’t you agree? 

  15. Saarbo 15

    This is a good policy.

    If we win in 2014 we will inherit a $70 billion govt debt. This policy is affordable given how it will be funded, it will stimulate the economy (as do many Labour policies) and it solves a major problem.

    But I worry like many on this site whether Labour have done enough of the hard costings and calculations to refute the opposition/media when they try to discredit it (its kind of already happened). At a high level this policy makes good sense but Labour/Shearer’s challenge will be whether they can successfully sell it to the public to make it the important vote winner it should be.

     

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      This policy is affordable given how it will be funded, it will stimulate the economy (as do many Labour policies) and it solves a major problem.

      Labour will have to massively increase either borrowing or taxes in order for the economic ‘stimulation’ to have any real effect.

      The country has a $200B economy. A minor 1% boost requires an extra $2B a year to be injected. That $2B has to come from taxes or from borrowing. (And some from printing, if the Govt is sufficiently progressive).

      That’s MORE than the entire programme has been costed out at over 10 years.

      • Saarbo 15.1.1

        I may have to do a bit more reading CV, I thought initially Labour were to issue bonds for $1.5b (therefore borrow), so initially there would be a $1.5b stimulus. This will be a good start to get things going. Remember that $1.5b times the multiplier affect will equate to a bigger number from a GDP point of view (sorry, its been a few years (28, shit where did those years go) since I did micro/macro economics at Uni). 

        • Draco T Bastard 15.1.1.1

          They’d get more stimulatory effect if they just printed the money than they will borrowing it at interest. In fact, the interest will eventually negate the stimulatory effect especially considering the vast amounts of interest that will be added by the people borrowing from the banks to buy the hoses.

    • KJT 15.2

      Funny how everyone expects hard costings from Labour, The Greens and Mana.

      Who do not even have access to the accounts.

      And how few asked for them from National when they claimed they would cut the Government deficit by 2014 by using tax cuts, austerity and the confidence fairy, none of which have worked anywhere. Not to mention how we would catch up to Australia by doing the opposite of everything they have done.

      Show me the money, John, Indeed!

  16. MrSmith 16

    I’m sorry but isn’t it a governments job to regulate, legislate and facilitate, not fuck around with one of the few industries that hasn’t been monopolized by some corporate yet.

    The building industry is made up of thousands of small businesses, and can be and has been the starting point for many families to break free and work for themselves. Labour will fuck this up if it ever come to fusion that’s my bet, why do they want to flounder around on the building site? when instead they could be getting to the root of the problems.

    If Labour want cheap housing maybe they could start talking about breaking up the monopolies and cartels that control building materials in NZ and while your at it how about helping out the low income workers by raising minimum wage rates and leaning on the banks, the very same banks that were recently groveling at our feet for a guarantee, but Oh no instead they will start pissing around with one of the most resilient industries in NZ, an industry that is crying out for good strong oversight and guidance.

    But that said this policy is Labour doing what John Key is famous for pulling numbers out of it’s ass then seeing which way the wind blows, so it might just be a winner for them.

    • RJLC 16.1

      The building industry is made up of thousands of small businesses, and can be and has been the starting point for many families to break free and work for themselves.

      yeah, Fletchers and James Hardie compete hard in a shark infested sea of competition.

      • kiwicommie 16.1.1

        Don’t forget the buildings that collapsed in the Christchurch Earthquake, they were meant to be able to survive a basic 6 Earthquake. They cut corners, just like with leaky houses. 😉

    • KJT 16.2

      Like National gave Fletchers the Christchurch contract. Who then cut builders rates so much all the good ones went to OZ ,or became loss adjusters.

  17. Populuxe1 17

    I think there are several aspects of the housing policy that are fucking stupid. Where is the land coming from? Don’t we have a builder shortage? Why encourage Auckland to become even more top heavy? What is to stop this triggering a property bubble a la the Clinton presidency? Aren’t the houses are still well out of the price range of the people most in need? Can we have some reassurance this isn’t a step toward projects or housing estates a la the US and the UK? The proposed time scale strikes me as unrealistic, smacking a little of the seven year plan and Potemkin villages – are we just going to see one or two show homes and the rest being cheap shit with cut corners if they get built at all?

    • kiwicommie 17.1

      The NZ property bubble will collapse eventually (within this decade) and 95%+ mortgages,etc are dangerous indicators of poor regulation.

    • KJT 17.2

      I have been in the building industry. The time scale and costs are entirely realistic.

      I hope this is not the only policy though. Housing needs to become more affordable by rises in wages and welfare in addition to breaking the monopolies on building supplies.

      And any borrowing should be from ourselves, called “printing money” by economic ignoramuses. Including the finance to buy the houses. Why should offshore banks make a killing from our housing.

      However any party who tries to lower the costs of houses will commit electoral suicide if they drop too fast. For most of us it is our biggest single asset and the perception, not reality as the price of the next house will also drop, of losing wealth will drop consumer confidence.

      • Jackal 17.2.1

        I don’t think Labours housing policy will necessarily make house prices fall… They will likely just level off and hopefully allow people’s incomes to catch up a bit. I think that once the initial bunch of houses are a proven success, the scheme will expand beyond 100,000 homes, for which there’s ample land area to build them on.

        The crown owns around 61% of the area north of the Bombay hills, which equates to 21,985 properties or 265,001 hectares in crown ownership. Some of these properties are registered as vacant residential, meaning they’re freely available to the crown to build houses on. That means the crown can build houses cheaper than any private company, and why there’s relatively low costs outlined in Labours policy.

        Populuxe1 and others bleating about “where is the land coming from” are really just showing their ignorance.

        • Adele 17.2.1.1

          Kiaora Jackal,

          I would think that Tainui, Ngāti Whatua and Ngāpuhi, would have a thing to say if there was 265,000ha of Government land currently lying dormant and invisible to the Treaty settlement process.

          As Māori feature significantly as the poorly housed and deprived perhaps Labour could negotiate and partner with those Iwi towards a scheme that fulfills a number of social and economic imperatives.

          • Colonial Viper 17.2.1.1.1

            The entire Auckland supercity area is roughly 60,000 ha. I have no idea where the hell Jackal is getting an area 4 times bigger than that as Crown Land.

            Populuxe1 and others bleating about “where is the land coming from” are really just showing their ignorance.

            Please enlighten me – where is the land for building houses coming from? And why are you adding a shit load of conservation land in to the mix for building on?

            • Jackal 17.2.1.1.1.1

              I have no idea where the hell Jackal is getting an area 4 times bigger than that as Crown Land.

              It’s north of the Bombay hills meaning it’s not just Auckland. Please read my comment properly before going off all half cocked.

              And why are you adding a shit load of conservation land in to the mix for building on?

              Because I haven’t worked out the exact amount of land that’s available ie unused and zoned appropriately yet Colonial Viper.

              The question was where is the land coming from… It’s likely that some of the land for Labours housing projects will be land they already own.

              That 265,001 hectares doesn’t include District or Regional Council owned land either.

          • Jackal 17.2.1.1.2

            Not all that land is unused and I doubt it’s invisible to the Treaty settlement process. In comparison to Maori owned land of around 131,487 hectares north of the Bombay hills it is far more productive and profitable though… Basically because settlers took the best land for themselves. So more Maori owned land will be unused and therefore potentially available for a targeted housing policy.

        • MrSmith 17.2.1.2

          Kiaora Jackal

          Labours housing policy won’t see house prices fall unless they subsidize the fall, by not selling the houses for their true value.

          All this nonsense about the crown freeing up land to build on is laughable, crown land has a value and if you propose to take that land and then revalue it at a lower value you are technically stealing from the crown or every Kiwi.

          I have no problem with helping out those that can’t afford a home, but would prefer the government made the banks provide for this and yes you could argue we will still have to pay for that, but it’s far better than setting up a government bureaucracy when they could easily sit back and let the private sector do that, with oversight from the government .

          I have know idea where people got the idea that government land should be suddenly given away, but shit most of it was stolen to begin with so why not.

          People seem to have this illusion that houses are over valued, and yes some are, but only because of their location the rest are a combination of the value to rebuild/build the house, and the land value, and if that land has things likes roads, sewer, phone, storm-water, water, power supply, etc then it is more valuable.

          This is why a section of land cost so much more than a paddock of grass, but it never ceases to amaze me how people get from paddock to a section with all the services on it for next to nothing.

          • Jackal 17.2.1.2.1

            The crown freeing up land to build on is not laughable at all. There’s around 763 acres that are zoned Vacant Residential property north of the Bombay hills that the government already owns and can build on right now if it wanted to. It has a capital value of approximately $55 million at 2001 prices. There’s also Defence owned land of 1,146.431 ha, Rail 1,366.372 ha and other 384.501 ha etc etc, some of which could possibly be appropriated. The crown using something it already owns to provide a service to the public is not stealing MrSmith.

            • Colonial Viper 17.2.1.2.1.1

              The crown using something it already owns to provide a service to the public is not stealing MrSmith.

              FFS. These houses are designed to be bought up into PRIVATE OWNERSHIP. Using GOVERNMENT LAND for this purpose and then PRIVATISING it is THEFT from the COMMONS.

              Get a grip.

              • McFlock

                Get a grip 
                   
                You’re the one doing the YELLING 🙂  

              • Jackal

                Get a grip yourself CV. You’re going off half cocked once again because you obviously don’t understand how government accounting works…

                The initial land that the government already owns will be paid for by the government to itself. It will effectively pay itself for something it already owns. Some of the profit that comes from the people who purchase a government house on land the government already owned will then be used to purchase other land that the government doesn’t own.

                When there are enough houses the government will have the initial startup capital plus some from selling land that was not previously being utilized. It can then pay off debt, reduce taxes or whatever.

                They could even buy some more land to keep vacant just to try and appease people like yourself Colonial Viper, but I doubt they will.

                Besides, Vacant residential property is often expensive to maintain and a drain on resources.

                It might be a different story if Labour was proposing to implement such a policy on the back of kicking hundreds if not thousands of HNZ residents out of their homes, but these properties are currently being unused Colonial Viper, therefore there is no benefit to the commons in keeping them vacant and there is no loss from helping families that would normally not be able to purchase a house into them. In fact there are only social benefits and therefore an increase in common wealth.

                • Colonial Viper

                  The initial land that the government already owns will be paid for by the government to itself. It will effectively pay itself for something it already owns. Some of the profit that comes from the people who purchase a government house on land the government already owned will then be used to purchase other land that the government doesn’t own.

                  OK so you admit that there will be at least one round of privatising public land.

                  will then be used to purchase other land that the government doesn’t own.

                  So the land in the second round is going to be much more expensive than that in the first round. How are second round houses going to stay in the $300K price cap if they rely on private sections?

                  You’re going off half cocked once again because you obviously don’t understand how government accounting works…

                  Sure, but somehow I still manage to point out the points you conveniently glossed over.

                  • Jackal

                    How are second round houses going to stay in the $300K price cap if they rely on private sections?

                    It would seem pretty obvious to me that the $300 K price is an averaged one across the country. Some houses will be cheaper to build while some will be more expensive because of where they are located.

                    Savings are likely to be made by building to a set house design with the main financial variable in land prices, just like the previous state housing that Labour undertook.

                    You know Colonial Viper, I can’t be all that specific as I’ve not yet seen the final policy, which probably won’t be released until closer to the 2014 election. I don’t even know if Labour is planning to use all the vacant residential sections the crown already owns in the first round of building, and have only really provided figures of crown owned land as an argument to show that there’s a lot of land in New Zealand that’s available and appropriate for houses to be built on.

                    But somehow I still manage to point out the points you conveniently glossed over.

                    Your point that using unproductive sections the crown already owns for state housing projects is theft from the commons is entirely false… That’s why I “glossed over” it Colonial Viper. Would you prefer that the state just rented these houses perpetually until a National government came along and once again sold them all off to their rich developer mates for nix? Now that’s what I would call stealing from the commons.

                    • lprent

                      What is it? Something like 65% of the population is in the greater Auckland area and Christchurch combined and something like 90% of the housing problem.

                      Unless there is a great policy to move jobs into the regions that I have not seen, then the effect country wide will be limited.

                    • Jackal

                      Have to agree with you there 1prent… Focussing mainly on Auckland isn’t the best solution.

          • Draco T Bastard 17.2.1.2.2

            I have no problem with helping out those that can’t afford a home, but would prefer the government made the banks provide for this and yes you could argue we will still have to pay for that, but it’s far better than setting up a government bureaucracy when they could easily sit back and let the private sector do that, with oversight from the government .

            No, really it’s not. What you’re in fact suggesting is that two bureaucracies be set up – a private one for making a profit and a government one to watch over the private one. It really shouldn’t take a genius to figure out that doing something that way will be far more expensive (both in money and outcomes) than just having the government set up the necessary bureaucracy in the first place.

            • MrSmith 17.2.1.2.2.1

              What I was trying to say Draco is leave the building industry alone when I said “let the private sector do that”.

              I would rather see the government step back and take control with good strong regulations and over-site, yes a bureaucracy, but one that already exists.

              Then instead of going into the property development and building bussiness set up some sort of interest free deposit scheme for people on low incomes, plus maybe an income guarantee scheme.

              The government doesn’t need to go into business when it ultimately controls things in the first place.

          • Adele 17.2.1.2.3

            Kiaora Mr Smith

            I have know idea where people got the idea that government land should be suddenly given away, but shit most of it was stolen to begin with so why not.

            My point entirely. As Crown land is essentially mis-appropriated lands, there is no way Māori interests would overlook, undervalue, or relent on making a claim to land that rightfully belongs to them. In Northland and Auckland, Iwi were left virtually landless. 250,000ha would go some way towards redressing their historical wrongs.

            It is highly unlikely that Māori would knowingly accept the alienation of Crown land from the Treaty settlement process.

  18. Draco T Bastard 18

    Anyway, I only came into this thread to post this. It’s the sort of housing we should be looking at building for this plan. It’s seven units – four singles and three family size.

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    Another day, another piece of legislation with a secrecy clause. This time its the innocuous-seeming Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill, which (after establishing a new body and making it subject to the OIA in three different ways) includes the rapidly-becoming-standard clauses enabling it to request information from other public ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • “This is England, this knife of Sheffield steel…”
    The state of the United Kingdom is fractured, torn up, shredded. The Empire is gone, it died a long time ago. And yet, the country is still tracking with a lead in favour of the ones who play to the ingrained, class-bound division for political gain. It is a disgrace ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    6 days ago
  • CORSIA, coming soon to an airport near you
    On 27 September, Greta Thunberg addressed a crowd of 500,000 at the School Strike for Climate in Montreal, saying: “You are a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And Sweden is also a nation that is allegedly a climate leader. And in both cases, it means absolutely nothing. Because ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    6 days ago
  • Cloaking hate speech and fake news in the right to free expression.
    It should be obvious by now but let’s be clear: The same folk who regularly traffic in disinformation, misinformation and “fake news” are also those who most strongly claim that their freedom of expression rights are being violated when moves are made to curb hate speech (as opposed to protected ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    7 days ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
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    1 week ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    1 week ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • How plant-based meat is stretching New Zealand’s cultural and legal boundaries
    Samuel Becher, Victoria University of Wellington and Jessica C Lai, Victoria University of Wellington Earlier this year, the New Zealand-based pizza chain Hell Pizza offered a limited-edition “Burger Pizza”. Its customers weren’t told that the “meat” was plant-based. Some customers complained to the Commerce Commission, which enforces consumer law in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    1 week ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    1 week ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New Zealand medical specialists to provide further support to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters today announced further support for Samoa’s longer term needs as it continues to respond to a devastating measles epidemic. “Samoa’s health system has experienced massive strain in the wake of the measles epidemic. The volume of patients needing care during this outbreak, and the number of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    37 mins ago
  • Discounted electric-bikes offered to public sector workers
    Discounted electric bikes will be offered up to public sector staff across the country as part of the Government’s work to reduce transport emissions and support healthier transport options.  Associate Minister of Transport Julie Anne Genter officially launched the new initiative at Wellington Hospital today.  “The Government has negotiated bulk-purchase ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Australia and New Zealand confirm joint bid for FIFA Women’s World Cup
    The Australian and New Zealand Governments today launch an historic joint bid to bring the FIFA Women’s World Cup to the Southern Hemisphere for the first time. Australian Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck and New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson will announce the bold campaign, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Blackwater gold mine gets PGF boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) has approved a $15 million loan to help re-establish a gold mining operation at Blackwater Gold Mine, near Reefton, Rural Communities Minister and local MP Damien O’Connor announced at an event on the West Coast today. “This is great news for the Coast that could ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 hours ago
  • Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being
    Papakāinga model inspires whānau well-being A housing project by Kohupātiki whānau in Hastings is an outstanding example of a Māori-led housing initiative that can reduce financial pressure and reconnect whānau to their whakapapa says the Minister for Māori Development Hon Nanaia Mahuta.  Minister Mahuta officially opened the Aroha Te Rangi ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 hours ago
  • Housing First to help Nelson Tasman homeless
    Nelson has today seen the launch of Housing First Nelson Tasman. Today’s launch marks the expansion of the Government’s homelessness programme, Housing First, to the top of the South Island. “Housing First is a proven programme that puts people who are experiencing homelessness and multiple, high and complex needs into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • Government takes bite out of loan sharks
    The days of vulnerable consumers falling victim to loan sharks, truck shops and other predatory lenders are numbered, following the Credit Contracts Legislation Amendment Bill passing its third reading tonight. “Too many Kiwis are being given loans that are unaffordable and unsuitable, trapping them in debt and leaving their families ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • New Zealand safer as Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders Bill) becomes law
    A Bill that prevents terrorism and supports the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas has passed its third reading, Justice Minister Andrew Little says. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill is a carefully targeted response to manage the risk posed by a small number of New Zealanders who have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Foreign Minister and Pacific Peoples Minister to visit Samoa
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Samoa on Friday, where New Zealand medical teams are helping Samoa respond to an outbreak of measles. “New Zealand has been working closely with the Government of Samoa and offering our assistance from the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • New Pastoral Care Code will support tertiary students in 2020
    The Government has changed the law to improve student safety and welfare in university halls of residence and other student accommodation. The Education (Pastoral Care) Amendment Bill passed its third reading this afternoon and details of an interim Code of Practice setting out the Government’s expectations of tertiary providers have also been released. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    24 hours ago
  • New infrastructure funding tool to build housing developments faster
    A new tool to help councils fund and finance infrastructure could mean some housing developments happen a decade earlier than currently planned, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. “This new tool, developed by the Government in partnership with industry and high-growth councils, will allow councils to access private debt ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Vision to unite the primary sector launched today
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the release of a bold new vision for the country’s vital food and fibre sector. “I’m delighted that New Zealand’s major farmer and grower organisations are today supporting the Primary Sector Council’s vision – Fit for a Better World,” he said. “The international consumers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ congratulates PNG and Autonomous Bougainville Government on referendum
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has congratulated the Government of Papua New Guinea and the Autonomous Bougainville Government for completing a well-conducted referendum on the future political status of Bougainville. “New Zealand supported the referendum process by providing technical advice through the New Zealand Electoral Commission and leading a Regional Police ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Next steps for Upper North Island logistics
    In light of Cabinet’s position that freight operations on prime land in downtown Auckland are no longer viable, the Government will now embark on a short work programme to enable decision-making in the first half of next year, Associate Transport Minister Shane Jones says. Minister Jones is today releasing the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago