Marching backwards to diesel

Written By: - Date published: 4:38 pm, July 1st, 2015 - 35 comments
Categories: business, climate change, energy, global warming, transport - Tags: , , ,

I’ve been meaning to write on this madness for a long time:

KiwiRail cost-saving plan ‘nuts’

Cash-strapped KiwiRail is proposing to replace electric trains with more diesel-powered engines – a move which will horrify environmentalists and could see the loss of hundreds of jobs. Fairfax Media has learned of cost-saving plans to buy a dozen more diesel locomotives from China, to replace ageing electric trains on the 680km-long Wellington-Auckland railway. Electric trains are expensive, but they are faster and produce far less pollutants.

Move from a cleaner energy source to a dirtier one? Lose jobs? Chinese rail stock again (because the last set worked out so well)? This is unfortunately typical of the way NZ is currently run. Make decisions that are stupid in the long term for the sake of short term cost saving / profit.

We are apparently the only country in the world that is contemplating this backwards step (question time today).

There were protest marches around the country today (if I’d known about them in advance I would have advertised them here). Here’s the Greens on the Wellington protest:

Marching backwards – very appropriate.

35 comments on “Marching backwards to diesel”

  1. JonL 1

    FFS !!!!!!!

    Terminal stupidity all round – – – – !

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    Fossil fuels have had their day. In fact, electric trains have been a better idea since the 19th century. Considering that we must ask why we’re still using fossil fuelled trains at all.

    Cash-strapped KiwiRail is proposing to replace electric trains with more diesel-powered engines – a move which will horrify environmentalists and could see the loss of hundreds of jobs.

    And cost them more because, low and behold, diesel trains cost more to run.

    What seems to be holding us back in NZ is the government unwillingness to pay for the electrification of the entire railway network.

    • Macro 2.1

      I attended the Cabinet Economic Committee meeting at which Electrification of the NI Main Trunk Line was discussed and agreed, and was present when Lance Adams-Schneider announced the decision. I believe that this was the most important decision that the Muldoon government ever did. As Muldoon was want to say when questioned as to how governments made decisions ‘ Oh! Hit and miss! you win some you loose some!” (On whether to raise the price of wheat). Muldoon had a pretty poor batting average, but he did hit this one. The only one fault that has never been rectified is the continuation of the the electrification from Hamilton to Auckland. This is a major fault and embarrassment. Here we are – a country flush with electrical energy – failing to electrify the one rail link between two major cities around 130 km from each other! I mean how stupid is that?
      There should be a fast electric train running every half hour between Auckland and Hamilton, at the very least, ramping up the service as patronage increased. The time for a rapid train from Hamilton to Auckland would be around an hours journey – many commuters in Auckland spend more time in their cars than that!

      Key’s batting average on the other hand is practically non existent because he never makes any decisions – other than to line the pockets of the wealthy. This non-decision is appalling.

      • Sirenia 2.1.1

        I hear government talk of ripping up the electric wires on the main trunk line where they exist – instead of filling in the gaps where they don’t. Even more stupid than getting rid of the trolley buses in Wellington.

        • Macro 2.1.1.1

          This crowd are little more than vandals. I have said as much many times before. How anyone can be inspired to vote for them I have no idea. They have reduced NZ to 3rd world status in many areas – and they will not be content until they have wrecked the whole lot, and lined their pockets in the process.

          • Jones 2.1.1.1.1

            In this case the vandals must also include Fay Richwhite.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.1.1.1.2

            +1

            That’s exactly what National are doing. Destroying NZ and lining their pockets with the proceeds.

    • Jones 2.2

      An effective rail network means less trucks on the road. Less trucks means lighter use of roads (doesn’t help Nats roading policy) and lower petrol tax take.

    • David 2.3

      Trains have had their day.

      • Draco T Bastard 2.3.1

        Nope. Trains have always been and will always be the better option for moving bulk goods across the land.

        • David 2.3.1.1

          Moving iron ore from mine to a port, sure. They are rubbish outside of that niche. NZ, for the most part, simply doesn’t do much bulk movement of goods between two fixed points.

          • Draco T Bastard 2.3.1.1.1

            Wow, you truly are ignorant.

            All those trucks on the road are about moving bulk goods from A to B but the major point is that the transport system is a network. You use a truck to move from farm to train station and then train station to port. The two work together and shouldn’t compete with one another as doing so is uneconomic.

            • David 2.3.1.1.1.1

              Those trucks are moving goods from A to B,C,D,E,F….etc via a network that connects all those things, i.e. roads. Double handling goods onto rail adds significant costs. I received a shipment of around 20 tons of equipment sent from Auckland to Christchurch on Friday, one truck 36hrs between dispatch and delivery. Using rail for that would have taken a week plus and cost double at least, as well as all the risk of missing connections. Why would anyone do this?

              Given distances in NZ are short and very low density, building a rail network that is more than currently exists is nothing short of bonkers. The two compete to discover which is more economic, and for the most part it’s the trucks that win. Rail is simply too expensive.

              • Draco T Bastard

                Double handling goods onto rail adds significant costs.

                Then we need to look at how that’s done and not go for more trucks as that’s outright uneconomic.

                Using rail for that would have taken a week plus and cost double at least, as well as all the risk of missing connections.

                I’m gonna call BS on that.

                The two compete to discover which is more economic, and for the most part it’s the trucks that win.

                And that is actually the biggest lie. Trains are far more economic because they use less resources than trucks to achieve the same result. We know this and thus the only reason why trucks appear to be cheaper is because they’re massively subsidised by the cars on the road.

                • David

                  “Then we need to look at how that’s done and not go for more trucks as that’s outright uneconomic.”

                  If it was uneconomic I wouldn’t have transported that way now would I?

                  “I’m gonna call BS on that.”

                  Well, give me the actual quote for the transport if you want to make a point; 1 x 6 ton load 6mx3mx3m, 2 x 4 ton crates 3mx2mx3m and a number of smaller crates, delivery from warehouse in Auckland to a rural site 30km south of Christchurch. Must be flat deck transport.

                  “And that is actually the biggest lie. Trains are far more economic because they use less resources than trucks to achieve the same result. ”

                  Rubbish. For a start you need two transport systems to use a train, only one by truck.

                  “We know this and thus the only reason why trucks appear to be cheaper is because they’re massively subsidised by the cars on the road.”

                  You do understand that the existence of those roads for both trucks and cars is an efficiency don’t you? Rail needs both a specialized network, and truck and road network. Anyone who thinks that is economic for general goods in NZ is quite simply bonkers.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    If it was uneconomic I wouldn’t have transported that way now would I?

                    Wrong again. As per normal for RWNJs you’re confusing money for economics. The two are not the same. When we measure in actual resources used the train uses less resources which means that the train is cheaper.

                    The fact that you can hire a truck cheaper than a train is because our financial system brings about uneconomic results.

                    Well, give me the actual quote for the transport if you want to make a point;

                    Why? I provided a link to a business that does such a transport every day using road, rail and sea. They obviously have the capability and are successful which means that their prices would be competitive.

                    Rubbish. For a start you need two transport systems to use a train, only one by truck.

                    You show a fundamental misunderstanding of what a transport network is. To put it correctly, if we used trains we wouldn’t have long distance highways.

                    You do understand that the existence of those roads for both trucks and cars is an efficiency don’t you?

                    You do understand that cars are massively inefficient as well don’t you?

                    Rail needs both a specialized network, and truck and road network.

                    Nope, it’d still only be a single network. We just wouldn’t have long distance highways. In fact, at a guess I figure that 90% of the highways in NZ would be gone if we used rail.

                    There is, after all, a very good reason why rail was built before roads. It’s far more economic and efficient.

  3. weka 3

    Next step, SOEs should have an obligation to make decisions in the context of climate change.

  4. ianmac 4

    Maybe the real reason is to give all that unused electricity to the Smelter instead?

    • dukeofurl 4.1

      They ( smelter) are reducing their consumption ( and asking for more subsidies).

      Once they stop running the electric locos fro the goods trains, it will be gone for good, as they wont run the maintenance on the overhead lines either.

  5. G C Cameron 5

    Counter-Intuitive

  6. John Shears 6

    The future of Kiwirail looks bleak as the Car and truck lobbies have the ear of the Nat. Govt. and so most of the transport $$$$ just announced are for roading not rail.
    In a recent article re POA in The Herald , Anne Gibson, the comment made was :- “An additional 3000 heavy vehicles a month could be running for Tauranga or Whangarei to Auckland, transporting imported vehicles.” really?? this was presuming that because the POA expansion was blocked then import vehicles would be unloaded at Tauranga. The 3000 suggested heavy vehicles could easily by replaced by rail transport. Tauranga already uses rail to shift import cargoes to Wiri. and so this drivel goes on. The article is at http://www.nzherald.co.nz/anne-gibson/news/article.cfm?a_id=39&objectid=11471668 and has a lot of other vested interest comments.
    Ports of Auckland should be forced to use rail to transport cars and other freight to their Inland Port rather than expand further, Kiwirail should be assisted to upgrade the permanent way & rolling stock if needed , recall the $30 million that The Bluff smelter got a couple of years ago. ( Oh!! that’s different) , bs.

  7. dukeofurl 7

    Just checking up on the relative costs of diesel and electric locomotives.

    The purchase cost is around 30% higher per unit. The other side is that you would have to buy more diesels as the bigger trains require multiple units while this is not allways the case with electrics.

    Of course diesels have to spend time refueling while an electric can change crew and immediately start another trip. So is more productive depending on trip length.

    For maintenance , you are looking for electrics to be 30% cheaper. There are many similar parts to both types as they both rely on electric motors to drive the wheels, but the engine overhaul costs can be very high.

    Currently diesel prices are lower but cant last, and I would hope Kiwirail is able to use low electricity costs for its overnight services.

  8. Dianne 8

    What about hosting a website from another country, surely information can remain ‘online’ that way?

    Anyone got any idea ‘how’ you can kept information online?

  9. Sable 9

    Luddites….

  10. Steve 10

    This has parallels to the Auckland decision in 2006 where the then Minister of Finance Sir Michael Cullen was finally convinced that the whole of life benefits and lower costs of electric trains more than offset the higher initial purchase price when compared to diesels. The current government though seem far more focussed on the short term and this flows through to Kiwirail who are struggling financially, a short term saving is good, someone else can deal with the long term issues

    Also complicating things here is that diesels have an advantage of being able to run from Auckland to Wellington, whereas electrics on the central section of the line would require two changes, one at Frankton (or is it Te Rapa) and one at Palmerston North. Even if the hundreds of millions of dollars to electrify from Papakura could be found, there are still some differences between Auckland and the central section (though I think it is that Auckland electrics are ok on central but the EF class would blow up in Auckland). Furthermore, there would still be the Palmerston North change and even if the wires were extended to Waikanae, Wellington runs on a different voltage and is likely to do so until the Matangi units need to be replaced.

    It would be short-sighted to get diesels to replace the EF class, but somewhat understandable, it would be absolutely tragic if as part of this the wires came down though as a future government not so wedded to the trucking lobby is likely to do something about the Papakura-Hamilton section at least, if not more.

  11. Iron Sky 11

    One feels like the Nats are feeding us one big BS sand-which

    http://alankandel.scienceblog.com/2013/01/17/cats-diesel-electric-versus-pure-electric-train-operations-pros-and-cons/

    “Looking at railroad operations, outside of intercity (or interurban) and urban passenger rail that by-and-large employ electricity to run trains, the bulk of operations in America is diesel-electric-technology oriented.

    But the decision to go that route I believe had as much to do with the availability of fuel as it did the expense of building expensive electric infrastructure even though over the long haul electric operation is more cost effective, not to mention environmentally friendly as long as that electricity is generated cleanly.”

    So in a nutshell, initially it costs a lot to build electric rail, but once in place it is over the long haul cheaper….

    If that ain’t a backwards backwards step I don’t know what is…

    Oh and this:

    http://www.railway-technology.com/features/feature104304/

    Quieter, cleaner, more reliable
    Wide-scale electrification poses many benefits to UK railways, not least a reduction in costs associated with the overall maintenance of rail lines. Electric trains running along electrified lines do not possess the need to carry heavy diesel engines, nor do they carry their own cargo or fuel. Fuel is supplied to the train through overhead cables as and when it is needed.

    As a result, electric trains are lighter and more efficient than their diesel counterparts.

    WTF NZ, I suppose who care ehhh….. go those Highlanders….

    • Draco T Bastard 11.1

      The final selling point for me on electric rail was that it could use regenerative breaking down hills (which NZ has in abundance) which can be fed back into the grid making them even more efficient than fuel burning trains or trucks.

  12. Skinny 12

    Kiwi Rail are rumoured to be making a ‘major announcement’ this Friday. One would assume the timing is a bad news Friday dump. This could be the official confirmation the main trunk line electric service is being decommissioned in favour of diesel trains, due to being under funded by a road crazy Govt.

    Or a restructuring of track network maintaining ‘outsourcing’. It could also spell the end of the North Auckland Line. Given Nationals has just announced mega billions being spent on Roading, and major Rail investment is not included. Then there is the interislander services that maybe taking a hit with a leased ferry and potential job losses.

    It is very unlikely the much needed Auckland Rail Loop is being moved forward. Lastly it could be an announcement that a joint venture between Kiwi Rail and a private sector group will take over running Auckland passenger trains, ditching the poor performing outfit currently clipping the tickets.

    Basically Kiwi Rail are being set up to fail by National and are getting pressured to make stupid short term choices.

  13. RedLogix 13

    Question.

    Which National Party donor is lined up to get the scrap copper?

  14. millsy 14

    Skinny — doesn’t sound good.

    Unfortunately National has it in for rail. Selling it off in one lot didnt work for them in 1993 so they are going to close it down and sell it off bit by bit for scrap.

    Mind you Labour made it easy for them….Had ONTRACK been kept seperate it may have been more difficult for National to carry out their plan.

  15. Ad 15

    Kiwirail is a bigger suck-hole of my taxes than Solid Energy was. I agree this decision is hopeless, but the so-called “turnaround plan” for Kiwirail is also fully hopeless.

    Who on earth would want the job? They are never going to get enough cash to really “turn around”, and they are never going to get to an efficient track maintenance spend when only the main trunk line up the north island and the spur to Tauranga actually make real money.

    They would have a slightly better chance if they shut down the Northland line + the Kaipara spur, the West Coast line, Napier line, and Nightcaps spur as well.

    And to be really bracing, the Auckland line is about to get fully electrified, but we have terminal loonies wanting to keep the diesel trains and in fact extend them to Kumeu. It has taken over a decade to electrify the Auckland network and buy and operate the electric stock, but the whole system is still a shit service. It will be a massive grind to get it back. Same for Wellington. All too far gone for too many decades.

    • Descendant Of Sssmith 15.1

      Why does it have to make a profit?

      It’s an essential piece of infrastructure that is cheaper to run and maintain than roads which are predominantly funded by the tax payer.

      It has a social, business and societal good that outweighs the need to make a profit.

      Right-wingers only know the price of things and never the value.

      I’m happy to have substantially less trucks (and consequently less deaths) on the roads.

      Of course you wouldn’t see that as a cost of the trucking industry – a cost that is socialised by the way by the very taxes and ACC levies that you no doubt resent paying.

    • Skinny 15.2

      “Who on earth would want the job?”

      Plenty would like to be earning 900 K per annum on a 5 year contract as CEO of the SOE.

      Agreed, the turn around plan was a fail from the get go. Self funding Rail opposed to heavily taxpayer funded Trucking Industry, certainly not a level playing field. As long as the huge donations keep filling the National Party’s coffers nothing will change.

  16. Transport is only a small part of our climate change ‘foot print’
    Meat consumption surpasses this by miles
    All your bitching is nothing if you eat meat
    And if you produce more humans, then you bloody well deserve extinction

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    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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