Luxon’s triple backward summersault on Labour Day

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, April 21st, 2022 - 72 comments
Categories: Christopher Luxon, labour, making shit up, Media, national, same old national, spin, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags:

There is this media beatup occurring currently which suggests that National is now viable and a government in waiting.

If you want proof then Radio New Zealand’s weird attack on the Government yesterday for delaying the reduction of MIQ requirements while Omicron threatened.

And Luxon is getting away with saying some pretty strange stuff.  Like yesterday when he initially said that Labour Day should be abolished but then backtracked on it.

This is not a new proposal from National.  During the debate on the Te Kāhui o Matariki Public Holiday Bill last month Paul Goldsmith said this:

Now, of course, everybody wants more holidays. I can understand that, and I can understand why all the submitters think it’s a good idea. And, like I say, the principle of having a Matariki holiday we agree with, and we’re very happy about that, but what we would have liked to have seen is just some recognition—just a moment’s recognition from this Government—of the difficulties of staying in business and staying afloat, and recognising that now maybe—maybe—this is just not the time for yet more entitlements in this country.

And maybe they could have considered Labour Weekend as a good alternative to remove. I don’t know why we don’t have a “National Weekend” that I’m aware of. We don’t have an “ACT Weekend”, but we have a Labour Weekend, and maybe it’s time in history that it’s moved on, and we replace Labour Weekend with Matariki, and that would be fine. Then we would have been able to support this piece of legislation.

And fellow conservative Scott Simpson said this at the third reading stage of the bill:

My good friend and colleague Paul Goldsmith suggested in an earlier debate that maybe we consider looking at removing Labour Day. That’s probably something that should at least be considered. I don’t think this Government even considered it. In fact, what we know from the impact statement and speeches and contributions made at earlier stages of this legislation passing through the Parliament—we know that actually no consideration has been given by this Government to even thinking about rationalising the range of statutory public holidays in New Zealand. I think that’s an opportunity lost and an opportunity missed.

During the passage of the Bill they even proposed an amendment that would remove Labour Day from the list of public holidays.

Support at the time for National’s proposal was muted at best.  I can confidently say that the proposal was opposed by the vast majority of ordinary kiwis.

So what does Luxon do yesterday?  He floats the idea again.

From Glenn McConnell at Stuff:

Now that Matariki is recognised with an official public holiday, Christopher Luxon has continued to call for another public holiday to be scrapped.

The National Party leader says he loves Labour Day, but he and his MPs want it to be axed.

During a visit to Whāngarei, Luxon was asked if he stood by the idea to get rid of Labour Day. He said doing so would add hundreds of millions of dollars to businesses, at a time when costs were increasing.

“Love Matariki, love Labour Day, love every other public holiday we’ve got in New Zealand, but we’re choosing to make a decision to add $450 million of costs to small businesses that have to pass through to customers,” he said.

Te Rā o Matariki would be New Zealand’s 12th public holiday – including regional anniversary days.

The Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment estimated adding a public holiday would cost up to $448 million. But official advice also said the public holiday could have a positive economic impact – with benefits estimated to be between $310.4m to $496.1m.

Note the dodgy use of statistics.  Luxon’s claim the holiday costs $450 million is based on a very narrow view of the data and ignores the societal benefits giving workers a day off has.

But later in the day Luxon did a triple backward summersault with a degree of difficulty of 9.0 and completely changed his position, claiming that earlier in the day he was being facetious.

From Thomas Coughlan at the Herald:

National leader Christopher Luxon said he would not get rid of any public holidays if he won the 2023 election, saying he could not “follow through on the commitment” of removing holidays.

Luxon has repeatedly said the Government should consider axing a public holiday to pay for the cost of Matariki, which National supports.

When questioned whether he would cancel another holiday if he came into Government in 2023, Luxon said “that’s what we’ve been saying since this bill’s come to Parliament”.

Luxon later suggested Labour Day would be axed to pay for Matariki, a joke National MPs have made before, given Labour Day’s significance to the Labour movement and by extension, the Labour Party.

However, on Newstalk ZB, Luxon clarified that if he won the 2023 election he would not axe holidays, saying the Matariki change was “irreversible”.

So in the space of a few hours Luxon shows his anti worker world view by proposing to get rid of Labour Day essentially because it has the word “Labour” in it, then he backtracks completely on his stated position.

Gordon Campbell’s earlier comment on Luxon’s recent public transport utterance is just as relevant here.  He said:

If a female politician said something as laughable as Luxon’s proposal on transport subsidies and defended it on the basis that she hadn’t thought about it too deeply, she would never survive the fallout. She would be roundly damned as a scatterbrain and a show pony, and deemed plainly unfit for higher office.

This is becoming a pattern.  And I have said this before but it is becoming increasingly clear that Chris Luxon is no John Key.

72 comments on “Luxon’s triple backward summersault on Labour Day ”

  1. Ghostwhowalksnz 1

    So Luxon has reneged on a promise even before getting to election time

    Same with the ending of public transport subsidies, it was unpromised later the same day. And included weird comments about the called' $100 mill yearly subsidy' for the Te Huia Auckland Hamilton passenger train.[ yes He did say yearly in the reports]

    Thats included the roughly $50 mill capital and setup costs which all up with subsidy came to $80 mill not $100 mill. Yet Luxon was happy about covering capital costs for public transport.

    he must have been a similar disaster at Air NZ when he arrived as a captains pick CEO in waiting after spending 25 years in the soaps, shampoos and deodorants business at Reckitt and Colman

    • Blazer 1.1

      I believe Luxon worked for Unilever….and his father for Johnson&Johnson…same products .

  2. Nic the NZer 2

    I support Paul Goldsmiths proposal for new National, Labour (added because Labour day is actually dedicated to the struggle for an 8 hour working day), Green, NZ First, ACT, Māori Party, Opportunities, Advance NZ, Legalise Cannabis, New Conservative, ONE, Outdoors, Social Credit, Sustainable NZ and Vision NZ public holiday days.

    Lets do this!

    • roy cartland 2.1

      And everything with 'National' in it can have those other parties represented (RNZ National, National Identity, National Parks, International whatever…)

      • Nic the NZer 2.1.1

        I thought the new holidays should be expressly dedicated to members of the public auditing the political party named by the holiday. I don't think that leaves any time to enjoy National Parks on National day given the state of Nationals public finances, is all.

      • Descendant Of Smith 2.1.2

        The party that inflicted Building Blue on the public service a second time.

        Don't you wish you had a job at Human Synergistics, a consulting firm paid hundreds of thousands of dollars by the Ministry of Social Development to colour-code its workers changing them from red to blue..

        "David Lange’s reluctance to promulgate any more products derived from Douglas’ neo-liberal disconnection from reality eventually resulted in Douglas stepping down. A year later and it was game-over for David Lange. Its almost as if Human Synergistics had done its work. David Lange was pigeon-holed into its fabricated Circumplex Red Zone while the members of Labour’s Caucus had affiliated their self-actualisation into the equally fabricated Blue Zone. The “Caucus Team” was operating at the “higher-order satisfaction needs level” where its “Humanistic-Encouraging” behaviour was “sensitive and supportive of it own members.” Accordingly, by voting their fellow Blue Zoner, Roger Douglas, back into Cabinet, Caucus told Red Zoner David Lange to fuck off . So he did, weeping for his fellow New Zealanders and what lay ahead."

        From memory Lange got someone else to fill out his forms.

      • Peter 2.1.3

        Don't forget 'National Standards' in schools.

        They high jacked 'standards' so that anyone arguing against the programme could be accused of being against standards

        Reality hit when the last PISA test results came out and our kid's results were down. The cohort that went through with God's gift, National Standards, had results that were down the tubes.

    • Patricia Bremner 2.2

      National "The Party of cuts"

      • Tony Veitch (not etc.) 2.2.1

        Or, as an Honest Government ad puts it, the Party that puts the 'n' into 'The Party of Cuts.'

        Though they’re talking about Scottie from Marketing. Still, birds of a feather, and all that!

    • Christopher Randal 2.3

      You forgot my favourite – Magillicuddy Serious Party day!

  3. roy cartland 3

    The man's a f*ckwit. Without being facetious, I say it's time for the unproductive rich to give up something. More than a few somethings.

    • Patricia Bremner 3.1

      Entitlements are for special people? More like him?

      He has talked of a "business perspective" the window he is looking through with a narrow view.

      "Governing for all" is a concept beyond the man. imo

      • Incognito 3.1.1

        Framing it as “entitlement” is clever because it plants a seed of doubt about whether it is truly deserved (as in: earned). Entitlement, in this context, is in the head of the entitled one only, at the expense of others. This kind of framing is, of course, polarising and potentially divisive, but that’s exactly the game Luxon and National are playing, in my opinion. Don’t underestimate the ‘egg-head’.

  4. Reality 4

    Luxon seems to open his mouth and say anything to keep "business" happy and then belatedly no doubt be told by his advisers that he has said something stupid. He seems to need daily coaching on what is or is not stupid.

    As for no subsidies for public transport operators, I well remember when the railways were sold. The private owners never spent any money on upgrades or maintenance. Consequently the Labour government had to spend millions and millions of taxpayers money to keep the railways functioning. Luxon's business mates do not always make good decisions.

  5. tsmithfield 5

    Whatever you think of him, Luxon isn't stupid. And National have their own group of public relations people helping shape the National message.

    Discussing the rationale of an additional public holiday with the prospect of dropping one is definitely controversial, and probably not popular amongst most, taken on its own without context. But it is a relatively minor issue that will be forgotten about soon enough.

    But the effect is that it gets lots of media attention, and the chance for interviews.

    Which, as per his interview last night on ZB, gives him the chance to push back with his messaging focused around a government he is framing as irresponsible and needlessly increasing costs for businesses a time of high inflation, and the cumulative effect of government decisions on the cost of living.

    • Nic the NZer 5.1

      Your saying Luxon at first put the latest public relations message across, but then realized he isn't stupid and walked it back across several appearances?

      • tsmithfield 5.1.1

        No. Walking the comment back would make perfect sense if the strategy I outlined is being applied.

        Get the conversation going, but remove the political fallout of actually carrying such an idea through.

        • Nic the NZer

          Got it. So it's don't blame Chris for his jarring media personality and opinions, he's only doing what National party marketing arm tell him to do.

        • Incognito

          Exactly! He’s trying to come across as a reasonable man with common sense who appears to listen & explain.

    • Patricia Bremner 5.2

      But the effect is that gets lots of media attention, and the chance for interviews. Yes TSmithfield.

      I agree that is the framing, but he is not adept and forgets to be "charming" when discussing ideas.

      He is a "one man band" and is used to having his way, he finds democracy difficult and a block to the business agenda he is promoting, so in these interviews we see a man full of hubris and dogma. His body language is that of challenge not accommodation.

      Politics is the art of compromise. That is extremely difficult for him and may be his undoing.

    • McFlock 5.3

      The curious thing is trying to suck up to business. They're not exactly known to be floating voters, so I guess he's hoping to claw some back off ACT.

      The incessant cost of living problems will hurt the government, but those are the times we live in. Even without the rest of the world in the economic shit, if the govt had let hundreds of thousands of people get thrown on the job heap with almost zero notice because of covid things would be much worse for govt popularity.

      edit: the other thing is that if he steps on the wrong issue, he becomes the party leader who “couldn’t even sort himself out over Labour Day, and he wants to run the country?”

  6. Bearded Git 6

    Luxon: "but we’re choosing to make a decision to add $450 million of costs to small businesses"

    This is a weird statement. Apart from the obvious catastrophic errors in calculating the cost (and MBIE says "up to $448m") while ignoring the benefits, pointed out by Micky in the post, he says the costs will only fall on small businesses, which is inaccurate.

    If Luxon really believes this rubbish he may one day support a policy to cancel 4 public holidays. After all he would argue that this would add $1.8 billion to the economy, remembering he sees no benefit in the holidays.

    • Brigitte 6.1

      Thinking about it, much of the cost will fall on larger organisations. Many small businesses (those in hospitality) may see additional money coming in on the holiday although that will be offset by the fact they need to give those workers a day off in lieu as well as paying them extra on the actual holiday.

      And just to note a typo in the heading: it's somersault.

      [Bugger will fix – MS]

  7. Incognito 7

    Let me act as the Devil’s advocate here (or as some would see it, a Luxon & National apologist). Their messaging is like a dog whistle and depending on what kind of dog you are you’ll hear a different message.

    Businesses, especially small businesses, will hear a consistent message of acknowledgement and support. Reduced income because of reduced consumer spending and increased costs due to higher pay rate of employees for a Public Holiday, for example, are much more tangible (as in: in hurting in the pocket) than increased productivity and improved service because of better-rested and more relaxed staff let alone “the societal benefits” at large. The latter will sound more like a conclusion from an academic study done elsewhere.

    I also reckon that each Labour Day or Matariki SME owners are more likely to be reminded of which Government they hold responsible than the people enjoying a day off and when they switch off their brains.

    • tsmithfield 7.1

      Yes. Consistent with what I was saying also.

      The statement by Luxon may seem counter-intuitive if taken in isolation. But if seen as part of a broader strategy, it makes more sense.

      Who knows. I guess only Luxon could answer that.

      • Ghostwhowalksnz 7.1.1

        You seem to think he knows what he is doing.

        The evidence is that he is all mixed up and clueless.

        Authenticity and integrity is the precious gold politicians aspire to find and cover themselves in it. Flip flops arent the aim at all.

        Just having an occasion to repeat talking points is exacatly what voters turn against.

        • tsmithfield

          It may not matter what the original intent was. Probably the effect is more important.

          It might be that the result is a combination of what Incognito and I have suggested. Whether it was intended that way in the first place is probably a moot point.

          • Ghostwhowalksnz

            The effect wasnt good, other wise he wouldnt have back pedalled so quickly and risk his 'integrity'

            The media commentators are staring to notice the 'gaffes ' and dont seem to think its a good outcome or master plan

            'Fran O'Sullivan: Gaffes won't help Christopher Luxon defeat Jacinda Ardern'

            The upshot is that he was later forced to dance on the proverbial pinhead and clarify just what he meant: "People that are in state houses that actually aren't paying the rents, that are trashing the houses, abusing the neighbours," he told other media.

            This was somewhat risible, as explanations go.

            So even the National friendly media dont see the upside that you claim ….hmm

            I suggest you and incognito are too one eyed see the wood for the trees

            • Incognito

              I suggest you and incognito are too one eyed see the wood for the trees

              Your irony is hilarious, as I was trying to see if from the other side of the fence. You should try it once, if you can find your way to the fence that is, but don’t get too close or it might zap you. You sound like a partisan hick.

              • Ghostwhowalksnz

                So good if you to be fair and balanced in a Fox news way over this .

                maybe send off your resume to NZ Herald ?

                Who really gives a flying F over what their respin will be, they really dont need your help to do this.

                • Incognito

                  It wasn’t news reporting, it was my PoV from a different angle; I was playing the Devil’s advocate, as I said at the beginning of this thread. To an uncritical lazy partisan hick such as you this may come across as taking a side, i.e. taking the wrong side. Your biased intolerance prevents you from considering any merit in any opinion that may not 100% agree with yours in your binary reality of Left vs. Right, right vs. wrong, or good vs. bad. In fact, you’re so scared that it (i.e. my alternative angle) might “help” the other side that you resort to pathetic ad homs and attacking the messenger. You have again proven my point that you’re a partisan hick with whom debating is futile because a mutually agreeable conclusion is ruled a priori because of your rigid convictions right at the start. No wonder debate is dying.

                  • Ghostwhowalksnz

                    Debate ? This is gibberish. if I want debate I would read the NY review of Books. Its a blog for goodness sake.

                    • Incognito

                      TS is a blog!? No shit, Sherlock. You come over here to bore us with your biased BS? Have you read and Because this ain’t the cartoon section of your favourite partisan propaganda paper. When you grow up and can handle an alternative viewpoint without attacking the messenger you may want to comment here on TS starting with simple emojis and then work your way up to words of more than one syllable surprise

    • Kat 7.2

      That is exactly what National/Luxon are up to. They want to shore up the SME support. There are business that I have spoken with who traditionally vote National/Act that are wanting a change in govt, never mind being bailed out during the last two years with the present govts financial pandemic assistance. They can be easily swayed to become totally anti Labour, anti Ardern with the promise of palms being crossed with silver and more employer-centric policies.

      National/Act regard these SME's as lawful prey.

  8. Tiger Mountain 8

    “Luxury Luxon” actually deserves a media pile on from all channels…but he seems to be getting rose water and hot towels just like sirkey.

    • tc 8.1

      Nationals media delivering for the backers as usual.

      Rimmer gets a free ride being part of that club.

    • AB 8.2

      Yep – this is the point. He knows that he can stuff up almost with impunity. Best hope is that he is so emboldened by it all, that he crosses the line that defines "almost".

      My theory is that Ardern annoyed the media as a whole in 2020 by having so much support for her decisions and actions. And because of that, we (the public) hammered the media when they acted like silly, nit-picking arses with an overinflated sense of their own ability and relevance. Now it's payback time.

  9. mac1 9

    I Googled National holidays. This is what I got! Eleven of them! They even claim Labour Day as a National public holiday!

    National public holidays 2022

    • New Year’s Day: Saturday 1 January or Monday 3 January
    • Day after New Year’s Day: Sunday 2 January or Tuesday 4 January
    • Waitangi Day: Sunday 6 February or Monday 7 February
    • Good Friday: Friday 15 April
    • Easter Monday: Monday 18 April
    • Anzac Day: Monday 25 April
    • Queen’s Birthday: Monday 6 June
    • Matariki Day: Friday 24 June
    • Labour Day: Monday 24 October
    • Christmas Day: Sunday 25 December or Tuesday 27 December
    • Boxing Day: Monday 26 December
  10. mac1 10

    "claiming that earlier in the day he was being facetious."

    Luxon is not a funny man. Nor is he a thinker.

    This "but I was only joking", is a short step away from the standard bigot's response to being called out on some misogyist, racist, homophobic statement- "Can't you take a joke, gedda sensa humour".

    A person who is being facetious needs to be funny, so that the hearer can tell it's facetious. Re-telling a political attack line from a fellow National MP does not make that benchmark.

    Perhaps he needs to study his predecessor, Judith Collins, who used her eyebrows to show her facetiousness.

    • Incognito 10.1

      I have no trouble at all believing that Nats would and indeed do joke about axing Labour Day, just like a misogynist might ‘joke’ about axing Mother’s Day or Woman’s Day even though they’re not Public Holidays. JC’s eyebrow was always in need of a stretch.

    • Charlie 10.2

      Luxon could raise his shirt over his head like a foreskin, that would send the best facetious messaging.

      • mac1 10.2.1

        I believe that's what soccer players do at the corner post, but not when scoring an own goal… Luxon.

        • Charlie

          Luxon would probaly put his soccer shirt up for auction saying his own goal was the hand of God.

    • Patricia Bremner 10.3

      mac1 more like fatuous.devil However he is really sending messages to the “Top Feeders".

      We should keep a list of his gaffes/displays of attitude.

      Bottom Feeders…"Who are they exactly Christopher?"

      • Blazer 10.3.1

        'We should keep a list of his gaffes/displays of attitude.'

        Where's 'Blip' when you …need him!

  11. Barfly 11

    IMO he wasn't being facetious he was being the entitled ring wing 'stuff the people' arsehole that he is.

    • tc 11.1

      Gotta retrieve those ACT voters back to the hive with some clear messaging.

      He's doing a job presenting supplied material knowing he will not be called on it.

      Nice work if you can get it, morally challenging but none the less easy money.

    • Ghostwhowalksnz 11.2

      Yes. I can see the fellow travellors are trying to turn it into 'a joke' I thought this would happen.

      The scenario is more likely this is the sort froth he says when talking to donors and the private meetings with party faithfull. They lap it up.

      But the public comments are supposed to be more circumspect and hes been reminded of that by the real power behind the throne. Willis, Bishop, Goldsmith

    • Patricia Bremner 11.3

      yes Yep.

  12. Mike the Lefty 12

    National and ACT have always regarded Labour Day, and its associated public holiday, with barely concealed loathing. It is a reminder to them of how NZ workers won the right to have a balanced work/sleep/recreational lifestyle and how this (to them) signifies the end of the good old days when the employer said "jump" and the employee asked "how high".

    National should be reminded that Don Brash's pledge to take back one week from the minimum four weeks' annual leave in the 2005 election campaign may well have cost them winning what was a very close election.

    It could be argued, of course, that the 8-hour working day is now just history. How many people work 8-hour 40 hour weeks, with weekends off, anymore? Not many I would think. Employment now is described as casual, part-time, permanent part-time, on-call, contracted out, zero hours, weekends and more.

    But that doesn't excuse Luxon and National from their clumsy attack on NZ workers. It seem that National regards public holidays as a business expense rather than a reward for the "hard working New Zealanders" that they always claim to represent.

    As the CTU pointed out, if it was just a matter of cost, then why didn't National go after Queens Birthday holiday, which arguably means less to New Zealanders than Matariki and is near the same time. Then Luxon claims the Matariki public holiday will cost New Zealand businesses $450 million but gives no evidence for this. The hospitality and accommodation industries will tell you that public holidays are usually a boom time for them.

    Will National go after regional anniversary holidays too?

  13. Brendan Waugh 13

    Nat voter here.

    Own goal.

    Either make a small bit of noise to keep the base happy, or at least keep to message.

    In the big scheme of things an extra public holiday is not going to break the bank.

  14. Craig H 14

    If National were serious about it, the obvious holiday to suggest for replacement would have been Queen's Birthday, both practically as the nearest public holiday by date, and symbolically by suggesting we replace a colonial fossil of a holiday with an indigenous holiday.

    However, they weren't serious about it, they were grandstanding, and now they've been called out for it.

    Also, Labour Day predates the Labour Party, so if anything, the party is named after the holiday, not the other way around.

    • Ghostwhowalksnz 14.1

      I didnt know that but its correct

      'What the Liberals did do was make Labour Day a holiday. The Labour Day Act of 1899 created a statutory public holiday on the second Wednesday in October, first celebrated in 1900. The holiday was 'Mondayised' in 1910, and since then it has been held on the fourth Monday in October.'

      the party had a number of founding dates after that the earliest but short lived was 1910

  15. SPC 15

    A fly on the wall at the National Party Intelligence Unit meeting.

    1. I've got a new word association idea – Labour Day as a cost. Labour government spending as inflationary. Word associate Labour with higher cost.
    2. Brilliant, best idea since dancing cossacks, Kiwi not iwi and John Key's claim we were of an ambition to increase wage levels to that of Australia.
    3. Even Luxon could not stuff up something that simple.
    4. So its agreed.
    5. It's a majority but I suspect Luxon will just reveal why he was never a candidate for Finance.
  16. Dean Reynolds 16

    Luxon is a penis in a suit

  17. newsense 17

    Seems like some clever advice from someone. ‘Clever’?
    Continually get yourself in the news, stake out a series of clear messages hitting traditional conservative crap- race baiting, union baiting, public transport or f- the poor, lazy workers, government spending outa control.

    It might not be much of a manifesto, but let’s be honest it doesn’t seem to be one.

    On the other hand we could have seen the media smacking him down for having poor control of the details, for flip flopping, for playing politics with the violent occupation of the parliament precinct, for weak leadership, for being a dick, but they haven’t.

    More to see here I guess…

  18. Peter 18

    That man of principle, David Seymour, will be into it after the election. He has told us previously of the massive cost of a holiday for Matariki.

    He'll no doubt push from his position in Government, for getting rid of holidays on the day after New Year, Easter Monday and Labour Day at a minimum.

    If he is really true to his practical view, Good Friday will be gone, and Queen's Birthday. There you go David, by your previous reckoning of $400 mill or so for Matariki you can save businesses well over a billion.

    • Dean Reynolds 18.1

      Seymour won't be part of government after the 2023 election.

    • Mike the Lefty 18.2

      ACT in the past have made noises about reducing the number of public holidays. I remember Richard Prebble saying something like the only public holiday needed aside from Christmas and Easter was ANZAC day, although I am working with a memory from over 30 years ago and might not be spot on.

      ACT would also like to freeze the minimum wage (although this is a small climbdown on their earlier pledges to REDUCE it); reduce the minimum annual leave from four to three weeks and abolish the time and a half wage plus a day in lieu for working a public holiday.

      Wage workers who have any illusions that ACT actually give a monkeys about their welfare should remember this the next time they approach a ballot box.

  19. observer 19

    This is a familiar debate on political tactics, as discussed by several already in this thread. "Getting people talking", making headlines, all publicity is good publicity, etc.

    The problem with that analysis is that in the end, there has to be a party policy. Only one. The waffly word salad won't do.

    The 2023 election campaign will probably happen around Oct/Nov, including Labour weekend. Luxon will be asked: "Scrap Labour Day, yes or no?".

    And before that, in the pre-campaign period, he will be asked "Scrap Matariki, yes or no?".

    Luxon's answer will have to be "No", in both cases. First, because you don't promise to remove people's holidays, but more importantly because it's not the issue he wants the election to be about.

    Right now the confusion and contradiction doesn't matter much. But in a campaign it would only be a ridiculous distraction. A self-inflicted wound for the Nats.

    So I'd say this one is filed under cock-up, not conspiracy. And there's a limit to how many times Luxon can keep saying "I didn't mean it, I didn't express myself clearly". That's simply not an option for a PM – and on issues much bigger than the dates of public holidays.

    • Blazer 19.1

      Luxon is so under whelming.

      God,how easy it must be to …run an airline!

      Christofaux (pas )=hopeless,marginally better than that other management titan=Muller.

    • Ghostwhowalksnz 19.2

      he cant say he 'didnt mean it' as the scrapping Labour day for Matariki was already being promoted and aired by National.

      It wasnt a true gaffe in that he meant to say something different. he really wanted to do this.

      This just shows Luxon isnt a conviction politician at all, but like Key a 'process politician' and it can be now said that he 'got into politics to take away peoples holidays' and other tricks learnt from a long management career

  20. Peter 20

    "Waffly word salads" will certainly do for many. The clarity offered from the start of coronavirus on is stark. There are many many dumb people.

    Anything will do. One word, one notion out of a word salad can be like the Sky tower piercing out of a fog. It will stab and stay, the overruling image and driver, erasing all existing reality.

  21. The question that needs to be asked of Luxon while rabbiting on that workers are worse off today with inflation, if he becomes PM and rolls back all wage rises given workers under Labour will they be worse off than they are now?

    • Ghostwhowalksnz 21.1

      Wages are an inflation follower anyway, as workers dont have a crystal ball. Although over a longer period they do rise more than inflation

      The minimum wage increase was example , following the inflation rate of the previous year.

      Guess who was avoiding answering the question when asked if supported or opposed the minimum wage increase ( according to Stuffs Henry Cooke)

      By playing games like that he will find himself in a doom spiral of being asked ' Do you oppose or support ……'

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    You're broken down and tiredOf living life on a merry go roundAnd you can't find the fighterBut I see it in you so we gonna walk it outAnd move mountainsWe gonna walk it outAnd move mountainsAnd I'll rise upI'll rise like the dayI'll rise upI'll rise unafraidI'll rise upAnd I'll ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 hours ago
  • Waimahara: The Singing Spirit of Water

    There’s been a change in Myers Park. Down the steps from St. Kevin’s Arcade, past the grassy slopes, the children’s playground, the benches and that goat statue, there has been a transformation. The underpass for Mayoral Drive has gone from a barren, grey, concrete tunnel, to a place that thrums ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    6 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 23

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am on Tuesday, July 23 are:Deep Dive: Penlink: where tolling rhetoric meets reality BusinessDesk-$$$’s Oliver LewisScoop: Te Pūkenga plans for regional polytechs leak out ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 hours ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 23

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 23, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Health: Shane Reti announced the Board of Te Whatu Ora- Health New Zealand was being replaced with Commissioner Lester Levy ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    8 hours ago
  • HealthNZ and Luxon at cross purposes over budget blowout

    Health NZ warned the Government at the end of March that it was running over Budget. But the reasons it gave were very different to those offered by the Prime Minister yesterday. Prime Minister Christopher Luxon blamed the “botched merger” of the 20 District Health Boards (DHBs) to create Health ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    9 hours ago
  • 2500-3000 more healthcare staff expected to be fired, as Shane Reti blames Labour for a budget defic...

    Long ReadKey Summary: Although National increased the health budget by $1.4 billion in May, they used an old funding model to project health system costs, and never bothered to update their pre-election numbers. They were told during the Health Select Committees earlier in the year their budget amount was deficient, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    11 hours ago
  • Might Kamala Harris be about to get a 'stardust' moment like Jacinda Ardern?

    As a momentous, historic weekend in US politics unfolded, analysts and commentators grasped for precedents and comparisons to help explain the significance and power of the choice Joe Biden had made. The 46th president had swept the Democratic party’s primaries but just over 100 days from the election had chosen ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    16 hours ago
  • Solutions Interview: Steven Hail on MMT & ecological economics

    TL;DR: I’m casting around for new ideas and ways of thinking about Aotearoa’s political economy to find a few solutions to our cascading and self-reinforcing housing, poverty and climate crises.Associate Professor runs an online masters degree in the economics of sustainability at Torrens University in Australia and is organising ...
    The KakaBy Steven Hail
    21 hours ago
  • Reported back

    The Finance and Expenditure Committee has reported back on National's Local Government (Water Services Preliminary Arrangements) Bill. The bill sets up water for privatisation, and was introduced under urgency, then rammed through select committee with no time even for local councils to make a proper submission. Naturally, national's select committee ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    23 hours ago
  • Vandrad the Viking, Christopher Coombes, and Literary Archaeology

    Some years ago, I bought a book at Dunedin’s Regent Booksale for $1.50. As one does. Vandrad the Viking (1898), by J. Storer Clouston, is an obscure book these days – I cannot find a proper online review – but soon it was sitting on my shelf, gathering dust alongside ...
    23 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell On The Biden Withdrawal

    History is not on the side of the centre-left, when Democratic presidents fall behind in the polls and choose not to run for re-election. On both previous occasions in the past 75 years (Harry Truman in 1952, Lyndon Johnson in 1968) the Democrats proceeded to then lose the White House ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 day ago
  • Joe Biden's withdrawal puts the spotlight back on Kamala and the USA's complicated relatio...

    This is a free articleCoverageThis morning, US President Joe Biden announced his withdrawal from the Presidential race. And that is genuinely newsworthy. Thanks for your service, President Biden, and all the best to you and yours.However, the media in New Zealand, particularly the 1News nightly bulletin, has been breathlessly covering ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 day ago
  • Why we have to challenge our national fiscal assumptions

    A homeless person’s camp beside a blocked-off slipped damage walkway in Freeman’s Bay: we are chasing our tail on our worsening and inter-related housing, poverty and climate crises. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • Existential Crisis and Damaged Brains

    What has happened to it all?Crazy, some'd sayWhere is the life that I recognise?(Gone away)But I won't cry for yesterdayThere's an ordinary worldSomehow I have to findAnd as I try to make my wayTo the ordinary worldYesterday morning began as many others - what to write about today? I began ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • A speed limit is not a target, and yet…

    This is a guest post from longtime supporter Mr Plod, whose previous contributions include a proposal that Hamilton become New Zealand’s capital city, and that we should switch which side of the road we drive on. A recent Newsroom article, “Back to school for the Govt’s new speed limit policy“, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 22

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 7:00 am on Monday, July 22 are:Today’s Must Read: Father and son live in a tent, and have done for four years, in a million ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 22

    TL;DR: As of 7:00 am on Monday, July 22, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:US President Joe Biden announced via X this morning he would not stand for a second term.Multinational professional services firm ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #29

    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 14, 2024 thru Sat, July 20, 2024. Story of the week As reflected by preponderance of coverage, our Story of the Week is Project 2025. Until now traveling ...
    2 days ago
  • I'd like to share what I did this weekend

    This weekend, a friend pointed out someone who said they’d like to read my posts, but didn’t want to pay. And my first reaction was sympathy.I’ve already told folks that if they can’t comfortably subscribe, and would like to read, I’d be happy to offer free subscriptions. I don’t want ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • For the children – Why mere sentiment can be a misleading force in our lives, and lead to unex...

    National: The Party of ‘Law and Order’ IntroductionThis weekend, the Government formally kicked off one of their flagship policy programs: a military style boot camp that New Zealand has experimented with over the past 50 years. Cartoon credit: Guy BodyIt’s very popular with the National Party’s Law and Order image, ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • A friend in uncertain times

    Day one of the solo leg of my long journey home begins with my favourite sound: footfalls in an empty street. 5.00 am and it’s already light and already too warm, almost.If I can make the train that leaves Budapest later this hour I could be in Belgrade by nightfall; ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • The Chaotic World of Male Diet Influencers

    Hi,We’ll get to the horrific world of male diet influencers (AKA Beefy Boys) shortly, but first you will be glad to know that since I sent out the Webworm explaining why the assassination attempt on Donald Trump was not a false flag operation, I’ve heard from a load of people ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 days ago
  • It's Starting To Look A Lot Like… Y2K

    Do you remember Y2K, the threat that hung over humanity in the closing days of the twentieth century? Horror scenarios of planes falling from the sky, electronic payments failing and ATMs refusing to dispense cash. As for your VCR following instructions and recording your favourite show - forget about it.All ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 20

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts being questioned by The Kākā’s Bernard Hickey.TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 20 were:1. A strategy that fails Zero Carbon Act & Paris targetsThe National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government finally unveiled ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Pharmac Director, Climate Change Commissioner, Health NZ Directors – The latest to quit this m...

    Summary:As New Zealand loses at least 12 leaders in the public service space of health, climate, and pharmaceuticals, this month alone, directly in response to the Government’s policies and budget choices, what lies ahead may be darker than it appears. Tui examines some of those departures and draws a long ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Flooding Housing Policy

    The Minister of Housing’s ambition is to reduce markedly the ratio of house prices to household incomes. If his strategy works it would transform the housing market, dramatically changing the prospects of housing as an investment.Leaving aside the Minister’s metaphor of ‘flooding the market’ I do not see how the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted (Again!)

    As previously noted, my historical fantasy piece, set in the fifth-century Mediterranean, was accepted for a Pirate Horror anthology, only for the anthology to later fall through. But in a good bit of news, it turned out that the story could indeed be re-marketed as sword and sorcery. As of ...
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Friday, July 19

    An employee of tobacco company Philip Morris International demonstrates a heated tobacco device. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Friday, July 19 are:At a time when the Coalition Government is cutting spending on health, infrastructure, education, housing ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 8:30 am on Friday, July 19 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister Casey Costello orders 50% cut to excise tax on heated tobacco products. The minister has ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 19-July-2024

    Kia ora, it’s time for another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! Our header image this week shows a foggy day in Auckland town, captured by Patrick Reynolds. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Climate Wrap: A market-led plan for failure

    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items climate news for Aotearoa this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer. A discussion recorded yesterday is in the video above and the audio of that sent onto the podcast feed.The Government released its draft Emissions Reduction ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Tobacco First

    Save some money, get rich and old, bring it back to Tobacco Road.Bring that dynamite and a crane, blow it up, start all over again.Roll up. Roll up. Or tailor made, if you prefer...Whether you’re selling ciggies, digging for gold, catching dolphins in your nets, or encouraging folks to flutter ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Trump’s Adopted Son.

    Waiting In The Wings: For truly, if Trump is America’s un-assassinated Caesar, then J.D. Vance is America’s Octavian, the Republic’s youthful undertaker – and its first Emperor.DONALD TRUMP’S SELECTION of James D. Vance as his running-mate bodes ill for the American republic. A fervent supporter of Viktor Orban, the “illiberal” prime ...
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Friday, July 19, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:The PSA announced the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) had ruled in the PSA’s favour in its case against the Ministry ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 19

    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers last night features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s release of its first Emissions Reduction Plan;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor and special guest Dr Karin von ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #29 2024

    Open access notables Improving global temperature datasets to better account for non-uniform warming, Calvert, Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society: To better account for spatial non-uniform trends in warming, a new GITD [global instrumental temperature dataset] was created that used maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) to combine the land surface ...
    5 days ago
  • We're back again! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live

    Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on UnsplashWe’re back again after our mid-winter break. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Gut Reactions.

    Trump Writes His Own Story: Would the “mainstream” media even try to reflect the horrified reaction of the MAGA crowd to the pop-pop-pop of the would-be assassin’s rifle, and Trump going down? Could it even grasp the sheer elation of the rally-goers seeing their champion rise up and punch the air, still alive, ...
    5 days ago
  • Dodging Bullets.

    Fight! Fight! Fight! Had the assassin’s bullet found its mark and killed Donald Trump, America’s descent into widespread and murderous violence – possibly spiralling-down into civil war – would have been immediate and quite possibly irreparable. The American Republic, upon whose survival liberty and democracy continue to depend, is certainly not ...
    5 days ago
  • 'Corruption First' Strikes Again

    There comes a point in all our lives when we must stop to say, “Enough is enough. We know what’s happening. We are not as stupid or as ignorant as you believe us to be. And making policies that kill or harm our people is not acceptable, Ministers.”Plausible deniability has ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:The inside stories of KiwiRail’s iRex debacle, Westport’s perma-delayed flood scheme and Christchurch’s post-quake sewer rebuild, which assumed no population growth, show just how deeply sceptical senior officials in Treasury, the Ministry of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • What's that Jack Black?

    Ah-rah, deeSoo-guh-goo-gee-goo-geeGoo-guh fli-goo gee-gooGuh fli-goo, ga-goo-buh-deeOoh, guh-goo-beeOoh-guh-guh-bee-guh-guh-beeFli-goo gee-gooA-fliguh woo-wa mama Lucifer!I’m about ready to move on, how about you?Not from the shooting, that’s bad and we definitely shouldn’t have that. But the rehabilitation of Donald J Trump? The deification of Saint Donald? As the Great Unifier?Gimme a bucket. to re-iterate, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • June 2024: Earth’s 13th-consecutive warmest month on record

    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters and Bob Henson June 2024 was Earth’s warmest June since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was the planet’s 13th consecutive warmest month on record, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported July 12. As opposed to being focused in ...
    5 days ago
  • Connecting the dots and filling the gaps in our bike network

    This is a guest post by Shaun Baker on the importance of filling the gaps in our cycling networks. It originally appeared on his blog Multimodal Adventures, and is re-posted here with kind permission. In our towns and cities in Aotearoa New Zealand, there are areas in our cycling networks ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • Webworm Down Under Photos!

    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The politics of managed retreat

    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Some changes are coming

    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • About fucking time

    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking

    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.

    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    6 days ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?

    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.

    Slip-Sliding Away: Labour may now enjoy a dominant position in Britain’s political landscape, but only by virtue of not being swallowed by it.THE BRITISH LABOUR PARTY’S “landslide victory” is nothing of the sort. As most people understand the term, a landslide election victory is one in which the incumbent government, or ...
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent

    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac

    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • A blanket of misinformation

    Two old sayings have been on my mind lately. The first is: “The pen is mightier than the sword”, describing the power of language and communication to help or to harm. The other, which captures the speed with which falsehoods can become ingrained and hard to undo, is: “A lie can ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 7:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 are:Scoop: Government considers rolling back home insulation standards RNZ’s Eloise GibsonNews: Government plans tree-planting frenzy as report shows NZ no longer ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 , the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day were:Simon Watts released the Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP), which included proposed changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • “Shhhh” – National's 3 Waters is loaded with higher costs and lays a path to ...

    This is a long, possibly technical, but very, very important read. I encourage you to take the time and spread your awareness.IntroductionIn 2022, then Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Adern expended significant political capital to protect New Zealand’s water assets from privatisation. She lost that battle, and Labour and the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Plugging a video channel: Dr Gilbz

    Dr. Ella Gilbert is a climate scientist and presenter with a PhD in Antarctic climate change, working at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Her background is in atmospheric sciences and she's especially interested in the physical mechanisms of climate change, clouds, and almost anything polar. She is passionate about communicating climate ...
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” again

    Back in 2022, in its Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, the government promised to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation. Since then they've run a secret "consultation" on how to do that, with their preferred outcome being that agencies will consult the Ministry of Justice ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Crashing New Zealand's health system is not the way to prosperity, Prime Minister

    Another day, and yet another piece of bad news for New Zealand’s health system. Reports have come out that General Practitioners (GP) may have to close doors, or increase patient fees to survive. The so-called ‘capitation’ funding review, which supports GP practices to survive, is under way, and primary care ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Closer Than You Think: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.

    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    1 week ago
  • Come on Darleen.

    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won

    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16

    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16

    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother

    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?

    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)

    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    1 week ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.

    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago

  • Sir Don to travel to Viet Nam as special envoy

    Sir Don McKinnon will travel to Viet Nam this week as a Special Envoy of the Government, Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced.    “It is important that the Government give due recognition to the significant contributions that General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong made to New Zealand-Viet Nam relations,” Mr ...
    2 hours ago
  • Grant Illingworth KC appointed as transitional Commissioner to Royal Commission

    Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden says newly appointed Commissioner, Grant Illingworth KC, will help deliver the report for the first phase of the Royal Commission of Inquiry into COVID-19 Lessons, due on 28 November 2024.  “I am pleased to announce that Mr Illingworth will commence his appointment as ...
    2 hours ago
  • NZ to advance relationships with ASEAN partners

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters travels to Laos this week to participate in a series of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)-led Ministerial meetings in Vientiane.    “ASEAN plays an important role in supporting a peaceful, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific,” Mr Peters says.   “This will be our third visit to ...
    3 hours ago
  • Backing mental health services on the West Coast

    Construction of a new mental health facility at Te Nikau Grey Hospital in Greymouth is today one step closer, Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey says. “This $27 million facility shows this Government is delivering on its promise to boost mental health care and improve front line services,” Mr Doocey says. ...
    3 hours ago
  • NZ support for sustainable Pacific fisheries

    New Zealand is committing nearly $50 million to a package supporting sustainable Pacific fisheries development over the next four years, Foreign Minister Winston Peters and Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This support consisting of a range of initiatives demonstrates New Zealand’s commitment to assisting our Pacific partners ...
    3 hours ago
  • Students’ needs at centre of new charter school adjustments

    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says proposed changes to the Education and Training Amendment Bill will ensure charter schools have more flexibility to negotiate employment agreements and are equipped with the right teaching resources. “Cabinet has agreed to progress an amendment which means unions will not be able to initiate ...
    4 hours ago
  • Commissioner replaces Health NZ Board

    In response to serious concerns around oversight, overspend and a significant deterioration in financial outlook, the Board of Health New Zealand will be replaced with a Commissioner, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti announced today.  “The previous government’s botched health reforms have created significant financial challenges at Health NZ that, without ...
    23 hours ago
  • Minister to speak at Australian Space Forum

    Minister for Space and Science, Innovation and Technology Judith Collins will travel to Adelaide tomorrow for space and science engagements, including speaking at the Australian Space Forum.  While there she will also have meetings and visits with a focus on space, biotechnology and innovation.  “New Zealand has a thriving space ...
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change Minister to attend climate action meeting in China

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts will travel to China on Saturday to attend the Ministerial on Climate Action meeting held in Wuhan.  “Attending the Ministerial on Climate Action is an opportunity to advocate for New Zealand climate priorities and engage with our key partners on climate action,” Mr Watts says. ...
    1 day ago
  • Oceans and Fisheries Minister to Solomons

    Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones is travelling to the Solomon Islands tomorrow for meetings with his counterparts from around the Pacific supporting collective management of the region’s fisheries. The 23rd Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Committee and the 5th Regional Fisheries Ministers’ Meeting in Honiara from 23 to 26 July ...
    3 days ago
  • Government launches Military Style Academy Pilot

    The Government today launched the Military Style Academy Pilot at Te Au rere a te Tonga Youth Justice residence in Palmerston North, an important part of the Government’s plan to crackdown on youth crime and getting youth offenders back on track, Minister for Children, Karen Chhour said today. “On the ...
    3 days ago
  • Nine priority bridge replacements to get underway

    The Government has welcomed news the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has begun work to replace nine priority bridges across the country to ensure our state highway network remains resilient, reliable, and efficient for road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“Increasing productivity and economic growth is a key priority for the ...
    3 days ago
  • Update on global IT outage

    Acting Prime Minister David Seymour has been in contact throughout the evening with senior officials who have coordinated a whole of government response to the global IT outage and can provide an update. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has designated the National Emergency Management Agency as the ...
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand, Japan renew Pacific partnership

    New Zealand and Japan will continue to step up their shared engagement with the Pacific, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “New Zealand and Japan have a strong, shared interest in a free, open and stable Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.    “We are pleased to be finding more ways ...
    4 days ago
  • New infrastructure energises BOP forestry towns

    New developments in the heart of North Island forestry country will reinvigorate their communities and boost economic development, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones visited Kaingaroa and Kawerau in Bay of Plenty today to open a landmark community centre in the former and a new connecting road in ...
    4 days ago
  • 'Pacific Futures'

    President Adeang, fellow Ministers, honourable Diet Member Horii, Ambassadors, distinguished guests.    Minasama, konnichiwa, and good afternoon, everyone.    Distinguished guests, it’s a pleasure to be here with you today to talk about New Zealand’s foreign policy reset, the reasons for it, the values that underpin it, and how it ...
    4 days ago
  • Delivering 24 hour pothole repairs

    Kiwis and freight operators will benefit from the Coalition Government delivering on its commitment to introduce targets that will ensure a greater number of potholes on our state highways are identified and fixed within 24 hours, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Increasing productivity to help rebuild our economy is a key ...
    4 days ago
  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals

    Five hospitals have been selected to trial a new mental health and addiction peer support service in their emergency departments as part of the Government’s commitment to increase access to mental health and addiction support for New Zealanders, says Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Peer Support Specialists in EDs will ...
    5 days ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan

    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    5 days ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset

    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    5 days ago
  • School attendance continues to increase

    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    5 days ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway

    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
    5 days ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights

    The coalition Government is providing migrant school leavers with greater opportunities, by increasing access to part-time work rights for those awaiting the outcome of a family residence application, Immigration Minister Erica Stanford has announced.  “Many young people who are part of a family residence application process are unable to work. ...
    6 days ago
  • Funding to support use of NZ Sign Language

    Seven projects have received government funding totalling nearly $250,000 to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). Initiatives that received an NZSL Board Community Grants this year include camps that support the use of NZSL through physical and sensory activities, and clubs where Deaf people and ...
    6 days ago
  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery

    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
    6 days ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki

    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    7 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access

    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    7 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits

    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston

    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    1 week ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety

    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship

    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    1 week ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality

    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    1 week ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers

    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
    1 week ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy

    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants

    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    2 weeks ago
  • District Court judges appointed

    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins

    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
    2 weeks ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended

    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
    2 weeks ago

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