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Luxon has been Susied on National Radio

Written By: - Date published: 11:04 am, June 22nd, 2022 - 68 comments
Categories: Christopher Luxon, health, Media, national, same old national, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, uncategorized - Tags:

The country is in the middle of a wave of influenza that is putting significant strain on the health system.  And Covid has not gone away.  Numbers continue to be stubbornly high.

National are focussing their attacks on this.  Chris Luxon was interviewed this morning on Radio New Zealand by Susie Ferguson.  His solutions were neatly wrapped up in three bullet points, fast track nurses into residency, stop wasting money on the new Health bureaucracy,  and bring back health targets.

Susie Ferguson delved deeper into these bullet points.  How for instance can we attract more nurses to New Zealand when Australia offers significantly higher wages.  Shouldn’t we also increase nurse wages?

It is here that Luxon started to get unstuck.  He is very good at sounding all managerial on it but get him off his talking points and he flounders.

He claimed that a fast track to residency for nurses was more important than offering them good wages.  They will somehow bypass superior wage offers in Australia and Canada as long as they have certainty about their immigration status.  They are on the work to residency pathway which allows them to enter the country and after spending some time to then apply for residency.  But Luxon thinks it should be straight to residency.

It is here that the interview became interesting. Because Susie Ferguson started to ask him some very pointed questions.

SF – But also they [Australia and Canada] do pay them more, bottom line.  So are you saying that you wouldn’t be pay them anything more?

CL – What we wouldn’t be doing is spending billions of dollars on a health structure that is going to need …

SF – Can we focus on the nurses please.  Would you pay them more money or would you not?  Simple question.

CL – We would stop spending the money building bureaucracy and management in Wellington.  We would put that money into the front line to make sure we improve services, hospitals, Doctors, Nurses, and we get them here.  But we are 4,000 nurses short right now and we could solve this by opening up our immigration settings, making New Zealand attractive to Australia, Canada and other places.

SF – … are you undertaking that if you become leader of the Government next year you will pay Nurses more?

Luxon continued to talk about anything but wage increases for nurses.  The collective sign you heard at this time was the whole country losing the will to live as they waited for Luxon to simply say “yes” or “no”.

He was then asked about tax cuts.

SF – But the thing about this here is that under your proposal thousands of top earners like yourself will get thousands and thousands of dollars as a tax cut so wouldn’t that then pay essentially a chunk of  nurses wages or to put a chunk more money into the health system.

CL – Susie what we are saying is that at the moment we have a Government that is making it up on the fly.  A week out from the budget they put a cost of living package together …

Then about health:

SF – Would you Mr Luxon want to commit to inflationary spending increases for the health system?

CL – Well what we are saying is we would be increasing health spend and education spend each year that I am in Government.

SF – To an inflationary level?  You would match that?

CL – We have been very clear we would increase the budget each and every year in health and education.

SF – Ah but that is not the same thing. Would you match inflation?

CL – What I said to you Susie is we would increase budgets each and every year and what we would be doing …

SF – But if it is not an inflationary level adjustment Mr Luxon then it does mean that it’s going backwards.  So would you fund it to an inflationary level?  Or Not?

SF – We would make sure we have got what we need to deliver the outcomes we want to see …

Luxon then talked about delivery implementation and execution.  He really loves his management buzz words.

The take away is clear.  In power National will allow health funding to dip below the rate of inflation just as it did last time it was in power.

This is why we had sewerage running down the wall in Middlemore Hospital.  It is why the health system needed dramatic and prolonged budget increases to get it functioning more efficiently.

As for the criticism of the new bureaucracy well it will be replacing 21 individual health boards.  I thought that National would approve of this.

It irritates me every time National attacks on health.  The system is large and complex.  To achieve meaningful change requires the application of extra resources over a long period of time.  It takes years to construct buildings and train staff.  Nothing happens over night.

And National’s proposal, to seek out “efficiencies” will only mean price cutting and further undermining of a system that is struggling but still works remarkably well.

Hats off to Susie Ferguson for actually asking the hard questions.  How can tax cuts be implemented but the quality of Government services not be affected.  To the rest of the media please take note.  The country deserves to hear from the major parties what they are proposing and not allow the reality of what they are suggesting to be smothered by corporate speak.

68 comments on “Luxon has been Susied on National Radio ”

  1. Matiri 1

    I heard him too this morning, shame more people don’t listen to Morning Report!

    NB Sewage running down the walls, sewerage is the infrastructure.

  2. Leighton 2

    Has Luxon yet done an interview in which he has successfully held his own when asked to go beyond his bog standard talking points about how hopeless/wasteful/"woke" the current government is? It seems that every time he is pushed by an interviewer he ends up taking a position that the vast majority of the electorate disapprove of.

    The difference in aptitude between him and Ardern (who has to answer tough questions much more often) is so profound that it is hard to understand how the polls can be where they currently are.

    • Grafton Gully 2.1

      Sure but people confused and disheartened by Ardern's cleverness and grip on the data will, like me find comfort in a seemingly well meaning guy getting interviewed and trying to do his best against point scoring smartypants interviewers. Simple to understand and leaves me feeling cheered up that's what I want, like the "less educated people" in the Reuter's Institute Report 2022.

      "Meanwhile, the proportion of news consumers who say they avoid news, often or sometimes, has increased sharply across countries. This type of selective avoidance has doubled in both Brazil (54%) and the UK (46%) over the last five years, with many respondents saying news has a negative effect on their mood. A significant proportion of younger and less educated people say they avoid news because it can be hard to follow or understand – suggesting that the news media could do much more to simplify language and better explain or contextualise complex stories."


      • Joe90 2.1.1

        Luxon gets >$300k pa. For that money, doing his best just isn't enough.

        For that money he should at the very least be well meaning, well prepared, and have a grip on the data.

        Instead, we get an ill prepared, jargon spouting nitwit easily bested by someone well below his pay grade.

        • Grafton Gully

          Agree with para 3, but these qualities might be appealing if you went through school unprepared in the same class as the prepared and felt shit because of it, clung to easily memorised lines to numb the confusion and learned that charm and cunning can determine pay grade.

  3. pat 3

    You know you're in it up to your neck when the likes of Luxon is polling as the next PM….the future is bleak.

    • tc 3.1

      Totally expected with the media not asking luxon the obvious questions like Susie just did.

      Unlike key luxon can’t boycott RNZ at this point so the owned media compensates with no hard questions and fluff.

      • pat 3.1.1

        It appears it matters not whether 'the hard questions' are asked or not…if there is dissatisfaction with how things are under the incumbent (and without doubt , there is) then the (obvious) alternative will benefit, irrespective of their competency.

        A sad state of affairs.

  4. Muttonbird 4

    When one nurse has residency fast tracked, how many family members come along with that nurse, or is the nurse to be separated from family, indefinitely?

    We simply do not have the infrastructure for another imported wave of cheap labour, plus extended families.

    • Populuxe1 4.1

      We do if they're distributed properly. Everyone can't live in Auckland and Wellington. If anything now is a good time with house prices dropping.

      • mpledger 4.1.1

        The thing is affordability isn't dropping because of interest rates. It's a lose-lose situation. Sellers don't win, buyer don't win (unless the buyers didn’t sell in the same market). And there is a 3 year stand-down for new migrants IIRC.

    • Margaret Costello 4.2

      With the present two years work in NZ as a nurse, then apply for residency. The nurse will have the immediate family arrive, sometimes a nurse also. Then marriage, then baby with NZ birth certificate, NZ passport, then Grandparents to mind baby, then with the residency, and experience in NZ in NZ hospitals, often initially Aged care, then Public Hospital experience and study days attended, /CV endorsements are sent to Australia, and the whole family move to Australia via their NZ residency. That was always their endgame. The weather weather and the tropical fruit and vegetable and a large community that their own South Kerulla, India, is one example of the journey, as observed many times by NZ Public hospitals. National/Luxons call to immediate residency, with mean the time until they leave for Australia will be much sooner. Hence very little help with NZ recruitment and retention That is why the immigration of nurses should remain at 2 years, not direct residency IMO

  5. Ad 5

    +100 Mickey neither Ardern, Hipkins nor Little would turn up to a health debate unprepared with strong brief.

  6. "The collective sign you heard at this time was the whole country losing the will to live as they waited for Luxon to simply say “yes” or “no”.:

    A helluva thing to wake up to this morning… Despite her best abilities, Luxon ducked, dived weaved,spun,pirouetted, and dodged her bullet-questions like some super-powered meta-human gifted with super speed…

    Some takeaways from his behaviour;

    1. He's no longer Some rank amateur. He's a fully fledged,well oiled politician.

    2. I doubt his deflecting will work well against PM Ardern next year in the Leaders debates. This kind of equivocation will not go well for him.

    3. Will Nats polling remain at their current level when the public see he can't deliver a straight answer? Will swing voters put up with it?

    If Luxon's party strategists think this is a workable strategem,they are playing a game of roulette. And the House usually wins…

    • Sacha 6.1

      I doubt his deflecting will work well against PM Ardern next year in the Leaders debates.

      Why not? He only has to keep it up for 30-60 seconds at most before the format moves on. Just like regular 'news' clips. Voters will focus on his demeanour, not what he says.

      • Hanswurst 6.1.1

        Maybe. On the other hand, nobody ever gave Key the sort of treatment that Jack Tame and Susie Ferguson have, so Luxon might find that the manner in which leaders' debates are moderated has also moved on. A style once successful won't necessarily be so forever. Luxon is no better or worse than Key was at the same stage, but it may be a case where the man hath come (again), but the hour is long gone by.

        Then again, he may also win.

    • Patricia Bremner 6.2

      Yes he is oily Frank. Slippery and says what he thinks is going to be acceptable. Very shallow coat of paint on any ideas.

      Someone we know is right wing was shocked by his arrogant "It will be great when we win Government and can please ourselves. People are tired of this Government"

      Where is the "Do what the Electorate wants??" Oh that's right, they want the vote only…… after that… we are on our own.smiley

    • Peter 6.3

      It'll take more than collective sighs. Go to the local bowling club, say "Three Waters" and listen to what easily outdoes collective sighs.

  7. Ross 7

    How can tax cuts be implemented but the quality of Government services not be affected.

    Quite easily I imagine. But don’t worry, National will undoubtedly provide a comprehensive and fully costed economic policy prior to the next election. Just as they did prior to the 2020 general election. That policy was reviewed by independent economists.

    I would’ve thought that those on the Left would be delighted that everyone earning over $14,000 will receive a tax cut under National.The implication that we cannot afford to give the low paid a tax cut is rather sad.

    • Leighton 7.1

      Yep, tax cuts for the poor is what this is all about. I'm sure the extra $105 a year that our full time minimum wage earners can expect under National's tax plan will more than make up for the inevitable reduction in public services.

      • Leighton 7.1.1

        Interestingly on this point, National is actively trying to deliberately obscure the extent to which their tax plan favors the ultra rich. Their online tax savings calculator does not factor in the effect of abolishing the 39% top bracket, which is part of National's policy. This makes it look like Luxon and his mates will only benefit by the same amount as a "working man" on $78k per year, which is of course complete bullshit.

    • Craig H 7.2

      Having spent many hours tinkering with the Treasury tax tool, the lowest bracket is the biggest one in terms of revenue, so it's not surprising nobody wants to touch it.

  8. Sanctuary 8

    Interesting meta about Luxon's technique is he uses a debating style very common amongst Evangelicals/creationists – the Gish gallop. Basically, you send out a constant stream of talking points that half and no truths.

    • Robert Guyton 8.1

      Gish gallop – much favoured by Fonterra and Dairy NZ fronts-people as well. You "win" the debates, from the crowd's point of view, wherever the crowd is unaware of how Gish gallop works. That is, most crowds.

      • JO 8.1.1

        Also much favoured by certain radio 'hosts' who seem to believe that the faster they speak and the more ground they cover, the more people will give up and agree – the Gish Gallop could go with the Goebbels Gavotte – say an awful lot often and fast on as few breaths as possible to minimise pauses for listeners to think, and you'll convince many distracted people to believe you might be telling the truth. Heck, you don't even need to believe it all yourself, just wave your personalised pretension pennant and go for it.

        Sanctuary's great link explains far more than a strong aversion to Luxonspeak:

        A Gish Gallop tries to create the illusion of authority and an incredible weight of evidence by sheer quantity alone, without any quality to back it up. To supporters, the illusion works, but those who disagree with the Galloper’s points often find the amount of repetitive assertions and non-explanations offered tedious to deal with.

    • tc 8.2

      Mostly that works as the current crop lack the motivation and skills to de-frock nationals latest emporer.

      Saw Beatson do this to English years ago requiring a yes/no…eventually double dipton caved and told a truth that very few people saw on the old freeview public tv channel.

  9. Bruce Ellis 9

    Good post and it was a painful interview to hear. Well done Suzie.

    We also need to remember that keeping Health expenditure up with inflation is not enough as it doesn't allow for rising needs from an aging population and from high levels of immigration. I haven't heard anyone put this point to him.

    • Barfly 9.1

      Yeah and no one has noted that medical inflation runs at a much higher % than general inflation.

      • Patricia Bremner 9.1.1

        True Barfly.

      • Poission 9.1.2

        Medical inflation is a symptom of Baumols cost disease.Wage costs meeting a Pareto curve of 80% of costs.


        A good test is the increase of costs for vehicle accidents when,accidents and subsequent claims decreased.


        • Nic the NZer

          This theory is saying despite significant advances in medical outcomes, health care has not experienced labour productivity gains?

          • pat

            How or why would you expect productivity improvement in 'caring' labour….it is a time intensive activity where the outcomes are improved by greater engagement…not conducive to improved productivity.

            • Nic the NZer

              If productivity improvement in healthcare means anything it must be related to improving health outcomes. Contrary to the conception your putting across of health care this has been achieved (the improved outcomes over more recent decades) by improvements in health science, not by medical practitioners introducing more time intensive practices. If anything, the privatization of health policies have attempted to reduce the amount of engagement involved in medical practice.

              • pat

                Those improved outcomes have come with increased expectation/demand that impact productivity negatively….we can so we must, irrespective of productivity and the private sector is no paragon, indeed the most privatised healthcare system in the world is also the most expensive in terms of cost to GDP.

                • Poission

                  The US also has some of the least outcomes in terms of life expectancy etc.see links and data models at world in data below.

                  Very hard to do comparative analysis though.

                • Nic the NZer

                  I'm unconvinced productivity has any useful meaning regarding health care. I claim this thought experiment demonstrates its not productivity being measured at all.

                  Take NZ and its health care system and measure its level of productivity by some measure (like cost of health care provision per capita). Now imagine we swap NZs population with a much younger population but make no changes to the health care sector. We can even keep the same staff as necessary. What happens to NZs cost of health care provision per capita? Obviously it goes down, maybe by quite a lot.

                  Note this is basically the setup used in Poission's links for some measures which also demonstrates an older population is more expensive to treat.


                  In this thought experiment we didn't change the productivity of the health care sector at all. They remained exactly as productive with both populations. So all that was measured was the age of the population by proxy with their health care costs.

                  • pat

                    Yes , a change in demographics would impact demand upon health care however I would argue that does not equate to a change in productivity , but on reflection there are elements of health care where productivity may be increased…e.g currently the home care service provides in home care for many elderly/disabled but it is administered from Auckland and the carers spend unnecessary travel time between clients due to poor logistics planning, accentuated by inadequate staffing levels…the replacement of local health care with helicopter and ambulance transfer to metro hubs is another example…it seems to me that productivity has been sacrificed to reduce investment.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      "Yes , a change in demographics would impact demand upon health care however I would argue that does not equate to a change in productivity"

                      This is the point of the thought experiment. If this is true then we can't measure healthcare productivity via cost of health care provision per capita, or measures which look like it. The analysis in that link talks about productivity (marginal productivity) but what is being measured may be just increased costs with population aging, and that extending life spans at birth leads to an older population.

                    • Sacha

                      transfer to metro hubs is another example…it seems to me that productivity has been sacrificed to reduce investment.

                      Not about 'productivity'. Clinical safety demands that practitioners undertake the same procedure a certain number of times in a year. Small population centres cannot offer that for rarer ones.

                      Delivering harm or death more efficiently counts for nothing.

          • Poission

            Its labour intensive and increased health spending moves to a limit (where the laws of diminishing returns occur) such as old age.

            In most countries with market economies, the market for healthcare is only one of many markets competing for the same resources; because of this the prices for healthcare services are affected by productivity changes in other markets. Economic theory suggests that, if the productivity of the healthcare industry increases slower than that of other industries (a probable scenario given that healthcare provision is particularly labour-intensive), then prices in the healthcare sector are likely to grow faster than inflation, and expenditure as a share of income is thus likely to grow (this argument is known as Baumol’s ‘cost disease’). The graph from Culyer and Newhouse (2000) shows that in the U.S., over the course of the 20th century the growth in the consumer price index for all goods and services (CPI) was lower than the growth in the medical consumer price index (MCPI).


            • Nic the NZer

              This Baumol concept has some pretty fundamental issues being applied herein. For a start we need to find an independent variable relating productivity which measures volume of output and if your comparing across industries then that measure needs to be compatible between those industries. On the other hand with no independent variable for productivity you could just be measuring wages in two industries and then applying a somewhat arbitrary preference for which industry you assess has become more productive.

              As Piero Sraffa investigated a similar concept in his work on 'Production of Commodities by Means of Commodities'. Ultimately he concluded that the value of capital could not be determined independent to the profit level. I'm going to suggest similar issues exist comparing productivity across industries. Productivity becomes particularly difficult to interpret where your not counting numbers of standard widgets or where quality is a factor. The usual fallback is to a price measure but now why should this be independent from labour cost?



              If we assume a relatively fixed return on capital inside an industry then the price level of an industry isn't exactly independent to the wage rate in that industry basically because all income eventually gets paid as a wage/(or as profits). This is a bit of a problem if your trying to look at how wages compare to productivity, you may simply be measuring the price setting power of the good produced. In terms of the research your referencing this considers only the US CPI vs the US MCPI. Maybe the medical insurance industry in the US has more price setting power than other important goods and as a result medical professionals get paid more.

              The other issue here is the assumption that the medical industry is constrained in its output by some productivity limit. To me this appears to simply be incorrect. If the health budget was enlarged it would provide more health services at least in some areas, this is just a basic fact of health services being rationed. This doesn't imply that health services are performing close to a productivity limit but a somewhat lower budget limit.

              • Poission

                For a start we need to find an independent variable relating productivity which measures volume of output and if your comparing across industries then that measure needs to be compatible between those industries.

                That is the difficult argument as the health sectors argue for wage parity and equity from sectors that do have large productivity gains.If they are arguing for parity with similar sectors in say Queensland,where there is to be a large health spend (funded by coal royalties) then they should also look at the problems in that jurisdiction such as large power hikes (caused by increased coal royalties and increased prices) 20% rent hikes in the last 12 months due to internal migration,cold mouldy uninsulated homes due to cold wet weather.Higher food costs etc.

                Arguing that we need increased funding to retain staff from immigration is weak,as are difficulties at hospitals in winter,with delays to elective surgery,as this would be expected following a pandemic and with a naive population at risk from influenza.

                There may be efficiencies unmasked from a centralized organization,mostly in debt management and administration,then again looking at RCA etc it usually comes at cost plus.

  10. mary_a 10

    I listened to Susie Ferguson interview Chris Luxon this morningindecision Wasn't sure if I was supposed to laugh at Luxon's comic value, or cry at the tragedy of his inability to correctly respond to basic questioningcoolfrown

    Will Susie be at work tomorrow I wonder, after beating her head so hard after Luxon's "visit"? Her frustration at his pointless answers was clearly audible to me.

    At this rate, next year's election debates should be entertaining as well as interesting. Ardern v Luxon … the PM will own National's leader. Then there will be Robertson v Willis, same outcome there as well I'd say. Bring it on with the popcorn.

    • Patricia Bremner 10.1

      laugh We have a stock of lollies Yep. Bring it on.

    • Yes, the election 'contest' will be no contest if judged solely on the head to head debates.

      Jacinda owned Chrissie in the House today, as did Hipkins with Mercenary Mitch and Grant with Nicola. There’s not a lot of depth in the opposition.

      Unfortunately, I can't see the international economic situation getting any better in the next 12 – 18 months, and the government will inevitably get blamed for the stress this country will be under.

      So it'll be relatively easy for a coat of paint like Luxon to grab headlines, with the aid of a compliant MSM.

      The election debates will be one-sided and entertaining, but are unlikely to determine the outcome of the election. More's the pity.

      • satty 10.2.1

        Agreed. Especially, food prices and – for all those petrol-dependent / addicted car drivers – petrol prices will have a bigger impact on the election than some election debates.

      • peter sim 10.2.2

        Well put and apposite.

  11. georgecom 11

    moving nurses to the same status as doctors will HELP the nursing crisis to some extent. So will paying nurses more. So will training more nurses in NZ. What Luxon says won't solve things in itself.

    As for Health NZ, Luxon is saying its a waste of money. A big part of the budget allocation was wiping DHB debt, that debt accumulated during the last National Government. So his solution is scrapping HNZ and keeping DHB's in debt? Perpetuate the same ongoing problems. Continue with DHB's in debt and never clearing that debt.

    As for waiting time targets, how will that solve things. If there are 10 people in the door at an ED probably easy to meet a target. If 510 people then it gets a whole lot harder. Achieving targets requires funding and resources to meet targets.

    9 years of a previous National Government saw DHBs significantly under funded and under staffed. No commitment from Luxon to provide that funding and staffing, not even a commitment to finding increases meeting inflation. Essentially sounds like a rehash of the Key years.

    • It is a 'rehash' of the Key years. There's no original thinking in the entire Natz party.

      As if a number (target) on a piece of paper will somehow solve wait times! The more so when Chrissie failed to give a commitment to funding keeping up with inflation.

      Under a Chrissie Luxy government we'd be right back in the Colman (sp?) era of millions needing to be cut from DHB budgets.

      Oh happy times ahead.

  12. cut the flim flam. the health department is in need of repair because the nationals party broke it into twenty parts so they could say it wasn't working and then sell the parts off to someone who could ostensively fix it.

  13. The problem that Luxative brings is that a lot of people will support him because he is not that nasty Labour lot or too cringe worthy like Collins or whoever. He can be as dimwitted and contradictory as he likes and will still get a lot of sheep following.

    A friend of mine went to a rally of his here in Nelson a couple of months ago. A guy in the audience got up and ranted about all this treaty and Maori stuff. The crowd went rah rah and cheered. Luxative said this is right though he was learning Te Reo himself. And the crowd went rah rah and cheered. A very similar thing happened with environmental issues. All I can say is God save us.

  14. Bryan 14

    And why is there this pressing need to pay nurses in DHB's/Health NZ even more.

    When the dispute over backpay of the historic pay equity deal is resolved then from March 2022 a RN with a three year degree will start on $66.5K and be on $90K base salary after completing four years service topping out at $95K base salary after 6 years service [60% + of RNs employed by DHB's are now at the top of automatic scale] with another bargaining starting I believe in October 2022.


    • pat 14.1

      Apparently the pay in Australia is around 30% higher…and we are effectively the same market….whether that makes any difference I'll leave to you to decide.

      • Bryan 14.1.1

        A true genius, however I will decide when you produce more than a hearsay figure.

        • Bryan


          oh dear, apparently, my math for the NSW RN pay step after 6 years service translated into $NZ puts it 2% ahead on base salary or with the extra step at year 8 in NSW 12% ahead on base salary.

          • pat

            Apparently your math is lacking

            NZ award reg nurse 6 years experience DHB NZD 75,132
            NSW reg nurse 6 years experience AUD83928 (or 92000NZD) …your link.

            • Bryan

              Apparently you do choose to ignore the rates that have been negotiated and agreed by the parties [provided in the link] as part of the historic pay equity settlement which will be effective from March 2022.
              NZNO and PSA are not disputing these rates but will not ratify at this point in time because of a dispute over prior undertakings that were given over backpay of the pay equity settlement to late 2019. In the journey to resolving this disputed issue on 13/06/2022 all parties were in mediation in the Employment Relations Authority.
              Feel free to remain oblivious to real world events.

              • pat

                Speaking of oblivion to real world events….if you think that NZ nurses are not and will not continue to move to Australia for greater pay and better conditions I would suggest it is not me with the delusion….however in thye grand scheme of things it matters not what you or I think but what the nurses themselves think…and clearly that is pay and conditions in Australia are better, and they would know.

                “An advertisement by a recruitment company in Australia calling urgently for experienced emergency nurses in regional New South Wales offers new recruits a A$7500 ($8280) “sign-on bonus”.

                “[That’s] just to sign on the bottom line. Add to that free accommodation, free flights, support to get education and increase your skill and knowledge and experience. New Zealand at the moment cannot compete with that.”

                A doctor who has worked in the sector for more than 10 years said he knew of around 10 nurses – a mix of colleagues and friends – who had left New Zealand for jobs in Australia over the past three months.

                One nurse, who the Herald agreed not to name, said his pay increased 30 per cent when he moved to Australia earlier in the year. Better pay was one of several reasons why he moved.

                Pay slips seen by the Herald showed the nurse was paid $39.80 per hour in New Zealand per hour and A$47.37 in Australia. He said another bonus was that a small part of his salary was exempt from tax.”


  15. Bryan 15


    oh dear, apparently, my math for the NSW RN pay step after 6 years service translated into $NZ puts it 2% ahead on base salary or with the extra step at year 8 in NSW 12% ahead on base salary.

  16. JustMe 16

    For almost 40 plus years the NZ National Party has beaten the same Blame Game Mantra Drum to the point of nausea

    That is they will never stop beating a repetitive mantra that truly needs to be consigned to the past but National just DON"T GET IT i.e figure out how to move with the times and reality.

    Their best approach to matters is to blame everyone else but the faces staring back at them in the mirror of their feeble lives.

    They now have a leader that has resulted in them scraping the bottom of the barrel when it comes to leaders. Their current leader is one John Key put forward and he(Luxon)has the foul stench of Key even when it comes to his appearances in the media and his 'beating of an outdated National Party Mantra Drum'.

    More than 20 years ago I worked with Jim Bolger's cousin who was a 'true blue' National Party supporter. He kept up the beating of the National Party Blame Game Drum to the point that I asked him if there was ever a policy in a National government that he didn't agree with. He would give reason for the policies of a National government by blaming a previous Labour government for all the woes in the world.

    It made me think that whilst this and previous Labour governments were not perfect and is the human frailty of life make mistakes that National and their supporters deem themselves as being incapable of making mistakes and therefore taking responsibility and accountability for whatever mistakes they have made whilst in government.

    This inability by National to take responsibility and accountability is what renders them, in my opinion, as un-electable at say the next election.

    • Drowsy M. Kram 16.1

      This inability by National to take responsibility and accountability is what renders them, in my opinion, as un-electable at say the next election.

      Yep, no acknowledgement or repudiation of past mistakes. Imho politicians are not inherently untrustworthy, but some are (considerably) less trustworthy than others.

      Revealed: Trust in politicians at lowest level on record
      When IPPR asked the question in May this year [2021], just after the Greensill scandal, a clear majority (57 per cent) said they thought politicians were ‘out for themselves’, suggesting that distrust in politics had already become the norm.

      This new norm – voters' low expectations of (self-serving) pollies – will suit some more than others.

      Trust is political [9 February 2022]
      Altogether, in principle, trust is political and, in practice, trusting is a political experience.

      Trust as a political game of allegiance and alliances is perhaps most evident when we look at the so-called dark sides of trust and its, at times, foul relationship with power (Möllering, 2019) in organisations (Skinner et al., 2014) and across multiple levels.

      In general, in as much as trust is an attitude with behavioural consequences that actors can actively promote or prevent, in themselves and others, trusting is a manifestation of power and ultimately a political choice – a vote.

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  • Waikato Expressway speed limit to change to 110km/h
    Transport Minister Michael Wood has welcomed the announcement that a 110km/hr speed limit has been set for the SH1 Waikato Expressway, between Hampton Downs and Tamahere. “The Waikato Expressway is a key transport route for the Waikato region, connecting Auckland to the agricultural and business centres of the central North ...
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    4 hours ago
  • Government listening to sector on NCEA
    Following feedback from the sector, Associate Minister of Education Jan Tinetti, today confirmed that new literacy and numeracy | te reo matatini me te pāngarau standards will be aligned with wider NCEA changes. “The education sector has asked for more time to put the literacy and numeracy | te reo ...
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    5 hours ago
  • Further Aotearoa New Zealand support for Ukraine
    $4.5 million to provide Ukraine with additional non-lethal equipment and supplies such as medical kit for the Ukrainian Army Deployments extended for New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) intelligence, logistics and liaison officers in the UK, Germany, and Belgium Secondment of a senior New Zealand military officer to support International ...
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    23 hours ago
  • Electoral changes will bring greater transparency for voters
    Changes to electoral law announced by Justice Minister Kiri Allan today aim to support participation in parliamentary elections, and improve public trust and confidence in New Zealand’s electoral system. The changes are targeted at increasing transparency around political donations and loans and include requiring the disclosure of: donor identities for ...
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    1 day ago
  • Government invests to minimise gambling harm
    The Labour government has announced a significant investment to prevent and minimise harm caused by gambling. “Gambling harm is a serious public health issue and can have a devastating effect on the wellbeing of individuals, whānau and communities. One in five New Zealanders will experience gambling harm in their lives, ...
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    1 day ago
  • More free flu vaccines and a second COVID-19 booster to groups at risk of hospitalisation
    The Government has widened access to free flu vaccines with an extra 800,000 New Zealanders eligible from this Friday, July 1  Children aged 3-12 years and people with serious mental health or addiction needs now eligible for free flu dose. From tomorrow (Tuesday), second COVID-19 booster available six months ...
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    1 day ago
  • Government backs action to drive strong wool growth
    The Government is investing to create new product categories and new international markets for our strong wool and is calling on Kiwi businesses and consumers to get behind the environmentally friendly fibre, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor said today. Wool Impact is a collaboration between the Government and sheep sector partners ...
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    2 days ago
  • Veterans Minister pays tribute to service and sacrifice at Korean War commemoration
    At today’s commemoration of the start of the Korean War, Veterans Minister Meka Whaitiri has paid tribute to the service and sacrifice of our New Zealand veterans, their families and both nations. “It’s an honour to be with our Korean War veterans at Pukeahu National War Memorial Park to commemorate ...
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    3 days ago
  • Matariki projects star in latest round of Tourism Infrastructure Fund
    Minister of Tourism Stuart Nash and Associate Minister of Tourism Peeni Henare announced the sixth round of recipients of the Government’s Tourism Infrastructure Fund (TIF), which supports local government to address tourism infrastructure needs. This TIF round will invest $15 million into projects around the country. For the first time, ...
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    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s Matariki speech 2022
    Matariki tohu mate, rātou ki a rātou Matariki tohu ora, tātou ki a tātou Tīhei Matariki Matariki – remembering those who have passed Matariki – celebrating the present and future Salutations to Matariki   I want to begin by thanking everyone who is here today, and in particular the Matariki ...
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    4 days ago
  • First Matariki holiday marked across New Zealand and the world
    Oho mai ana te motu i te rangi nei ki te hararei tūmatanui motuhake tuatahi o Aotearoa, Te Rā Aro ki a Matariki, me te hono atu a te Pirīmia a Jacinda Ardern ki ngā mahi whakanui a te motu i tētahi huihuinga mō te Hautapu i te ata nei.    ...
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    4 days ago
  • Minister to attend second United Nations Ocean Conference in Portugal
    Oceans and Fisheries Minister David Parker will represent Aotearoa New Zealand at the second United Nations (UN) Ocean Conference in Lisbon, Portugal, which runs from 27 June to 1 July. The Conference will take stock of progress and aims to galvanise further action towards Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14, to "conserve and sustainably use ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government supports innovative dairy sheep sector to scale up
    The Government is boosting its partnership with New Zealand’s dairy sheep sector to help it lift its value and volume, and become an established primary industry, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “Globally, the premium alternative dairy category is growing by about 20 percent a year. With New Zealand food ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government supports Buller flood recovery and longer term resilience
    The Government is continuing to support the Buller district to recover from severe flooding over the past year, Minister for Emergency Management Kieran McAnulty announced today during a visit with the local leadership. An extra $10 million has been announced to fund an infrastructure recovery programme, bringing the total ...
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    5 days ago
  • Government outlines plans for future COVID-19 variants
    “The Government has undertaken preparatory work to combat new and more dangerous variants of COVID-19,” COVID-19 Response Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall set out today. “This is about being ready to adapt our response, especially knowing that new variants will likely continue to appear. “We have undertaken a piece of work ...
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    6 days ago
  • Next steps for NZ UK free trade agreement
    The Government’s strong trade agenda is underscored today with the introduction of the United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill to the House, Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor announced today. “I’m very pleased with the quick progress of the United Kingdom Free Trade Agreement Legislation Bill being introduced ...
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    6 days ago
  • Five new members join education Youth Advisory Group
    A ministerial advisory group that provides young people with an opportunity to help shape the education system has five new members, Minister of Education Chris Hipkins said today. “I am delighted to announce that Harshinni Nayyar, Te Atamihi Papa, Humaira Khan, Eniselini Ali and Malakai Tahaafe will join the seven ...
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    6 days ago
  • Address to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons First Meeting of States Party
    Austria Centre, Vienna   [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] E ngā mana, e ngā reo Tēnā koutou katoa Thank you, Mr President. I extend my warm congratulations to you on the assumption of the Presidency of this inaugural meeting of States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. You ...
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    7 days ago
  • Govt makes sure support workers have right to take pay-equity claim
    The Government is taking action to make sure homecare and support workers have the right to take a pay-equity claim, while at the same time protecting their current working conditions and delivering a pay rise. “In 2016, homecare and support workers – who look after people in their own homes ...
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    7 days ago
  • Targeted second COVID-19 booster a step closer
    A law change passed today streamlines the process for allowing COVID-19 boosters to be given without requiring a prescription. Health Minister Andrew Little said the changes made to the Medicines Act were a more enduring way to manage the administration of vaccine boosters from now on. “The Ministry of Health’s ...
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    7 days ago
  • Commerce Commission empowered to crackdown on covenants
    New powers will be given to the Commerce Commission allowing it to require supermarkets to hand over information regarding contracts, arrangements and land covenants which make it difficult for competing retailers to set up shop. “The Government and New Zealanders have been very clear that the grocery sector is not ...
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    7 days ago
  • Plasterboard taskforce set up to ease shortages
    Ministerial taskforce of industry experts will give advice and troubleshoot plasterboard shortages Letter of expectation sent to Fletcher Building on trademark protections A renewed focus on competition in the construction sector The Minister for Building and Construction Megan Woods has set up a Ministerial taskforce with key construction, building ...
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    1 week ago
  • First Matariki public holiday celebrated with a unique broadcasting collaboration
    Minister for Māori Development Willie Jackson and Minister for Māori Crown Relations Te Arawhiti Kelvin Davis announced today the inaugural Matariki public holiday will be marked by a pre-dawn hautapu ceremony at Te Papa Tongarewa, and will be a part of a five-hour broadcast carried by all major broadcasters in ...
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    1 week ago
  • Health volunteers recognised at Parliament
    Volunteers from all over the country are being recognised in this year’s Minister of Health Volunteer Awards, just announced at an event in Parliament’s Grand Hall. “These awards celebrate and recognise the thousands of dedicated health and disability sector volunteers who give many hours of their time to help other ...
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    1 week ago
  • Trade Minister to travel to Europe, Canada and Australia to advance economic recovery
    New Zealand’s trade agenda continues to build positive momentum as Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor travels to Europe, Canada and Australia to advance New Zealand’s economic interests. “Our trade agenda has excellent momentum, and is a key part of the Government’s wider plan to help provide economic security for ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister to travel to Europe and Australia
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will leave this weekend to travel to Europe and Australia for a range of trade, tourism and foreign policy events. “This is the third leg of our reconnecting plan as we continue to promote Aotearoa New Zealand’s trade and tourism interests. We’re letting the world know ...
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    1 week ago
  • Remarks to ICAN Nuclear Ban Forum session “The Ban is the Plan and this is Why”
    [CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY] Nga mihi ki a koutou. Let me start by acknowledging the nuclear survivors, the people who lost their lives to nuclear war or testing, and all the peoples driven off their lands by nuclear testing, whose lands and waters were poisoned, and who suffer the inter-generational health ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand leadership contributes to significant progress at the WTO
    New Zealand’s leadership has contributed to a number of significant outcomes and progress at the Twelfth Ministerial Conference (MC12) of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which concluded in the early hours of Friday morning after a week of intense negotiations between its 164 members. A major outcome is a new ...
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    1 week ago
  • Meth addiction service launched in Eastern Bay of Plenty
    The Government has delivered on its commitment to roll out the free methamphetamine harm reduction programme Te Ara Oranga to the eastern Bay of Plenty, with services now available in Murupara. “We’re building a whole new mental health system, and that includes expanding successful programmes like Te Ara Oranga,” Health ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Creatives in Schools Round 4 open for applications
    Kura and schools around New Zealand can start applying for Round 4 of the Creatives in Schools programme, Minister for Education Chris Hipkins and Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Carmel Sepuloni said today. Both ministers were at Auckland’s Rosehill Intermediate to meet with the ākonga, teachers and the professional ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Opening speech for MEETINGS 2022
    It is my pleasure to be here at MEETINGS 2022. I want to start by thanking Lisa and Steve from Business Events Industry Aotearoa and everyone that has been involved in organising and hosting this event. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to welcome you all here. It is ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Reconnecting across the Tasman: Australia – Aotearoa New Zealand Foreign Minister Consultations
    Aotearoa New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon Nanaia Mahuta and Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong, met in Wellington today for the biannual Australia - Aotearoa New Zealand Foreign Minister Consultations. Minister Mahuta welcomed Minister Wong for her first official visit to Aotearoa New Zealand ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Global challenges reflected in March quarter GDP
    The volatile global situation has been reflected in today’s quarterly GDP figures, although strong annual growth shows New Zealand is still well positioned to deal with the challenging global environment, Grant Robertson said. GDP fell 0.2 percent in the March quarter, as the global economic trends caused exports to fall ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • One million New Zealanders vaccinated against flu
    More than a million New Zealanders have already received their flu vaccine in time for  winter, but we need lots more to get vaccinated to help relieve pressure on the health system, Health Minister Andrew Little says. “Getting to one million doses by June is a significant milestone and sits ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • NZ Principals Federation MOOT SPEECH -Friday 10 June 2022 
    It’s a pleasure to be here today in person “ka nohi ke te ka nohi, face to face as we look back on a very challenging two years when you as Principals, as leaders in education, have pivoted, and done what you needed to do, under challenging circumstances for your ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund already delivering jobs and economic boost to the regions
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is successfully creating jobs and boosting regional economic growth, an independent evaluation report confirms. Economic and Regional Development Minister Stuart Nash announced the results of the report during a visit to the Mihiroa Marae in Hastings, which recently completed renovation work funded through the PGF. ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Pre-departure tests removed from June 20
    Travellers to New Zealand will no longer need a COVID-19 pre-departure test from 11.59pm Monday 20 June, COVID-19 Response Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall announced today. “We’ve taken a careful and staged approach to reopening our borders to ensure we aren’t overwhelmed with an influx of COVID-19 cases. Our strategy has ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Foreign Minister to attend CHOGM
    Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta will travel to Rwanda this week to represent New Zealand at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Kigali. “This is the first CHOGM meeting since 2018 and I am delighted to be representing Aotearoa New Zealand,” Nanaia Mahuta said.  “Reconnecting New Zealand with the ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Joint Statement: Agreement on Climate Change, Trade and Sustainability (ACCTS) at MC12
    We, the Ministers for trade from Costa Rica, Fiji, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland, welcome the meeting of Agreement on Climate Change, Trade and Sustainability (ACCTS) partners on 15 June 2022, in Geneva to discuss progress on negotiations for the ACCTS. Our meeting was chaired by Hon Damien O’Connor, New Zealand’s Minister for ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • New Chief Censor appointed
    Internal Affairs Minister Jan Tinetti has today announced Caroline Flora as the new Chief Censor of Film and Literature, for a three-year term from 20 July. Ms Flora is a senior public servant who has recently held the role of Associate Deputy‑Director General System Strategy and Performance at the Ministry ...
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    2 weeks ago