Nat Minister unhappy, leaks Key email

Written By: - Date published: 9:29 am, February 18th, 2009 - 53 comments
Categories: national/act government - Tags: , , ,

Well, that didn’t take long.

In the first 100 days of the new National government we’ve seen a clamp-down on workers’ rights, tax cuts for the rich, and now tying everything up nicely in a big bow, we have the first leaked National Party email of the term.

Another day, another leak in the National Party. We shouldn’t be surprised. Getting into government was never going to stop the problem. But in this instance we should be even less surprised considering the contents of John Key’s email to his Ministers.

In the leaked email John Key admits to his Ministers straight out there IS NO NEW PLAN, infrastructure or any other spending plan, to deal with the economic downturn and all spending must be funded within existing baselines and that Ministers must simply rather ‘reprioritise’.

“Given the challenging fiscal position that we have inherited and the weakness of the economy, we need to focus and target our efforts to achieve maximum impact.”

“The Minister of Finance has written to you to outline the implications of the fiscal outlook…. It will not come as a surprise to hear that there is little new money, and that we will all need to reprioritise within our baselines.”

Barack Obama and Kevin Rudd may have huge stimulus packages to get their respective economies going, but in New Zealand our former merchant banker Prime Minister knows better: tighten the belt and restrict spending.

Obviously at least one of his Ministers doesn’t agree and is worried the impact Key’s inaction will have on National’s 2011 election hopes. Because if the economy goes under, unemployment hits record highs, and small enterprises start going under, we’ll know whose inaction to blame.

(Read Nicky Hagar’s full account of the latest leak here. It’s worthwhile. You might as well read Steve’s analysis too if you haven’t already.)

53 comments on “Nat Minister unhappy, leaks Key email”

  1. BLiP 1

    Yet more evidence of an indolent MSM in collusion with the big-business captured National Party – surprise surprise

  2. Redbaiter 2

    I dunno what the point of the post is. If it is to allege disloyalty within the National Party then its a pretty thin allegation. If its to say that a “stimulus” package is necessary in NZ then I disagree. Lets get one thing straight here. The word “stimulus” is just a euphemism, as most socialist terms are.

    What Krudd and Zerobama are doing is so bad, its hard for me to find a term that I consider accurate. I don’t know. Banditry? Vandalism? Nope, just completely inadequate.

    The socialist’s “stimulus” is merely a grab bag of politically correct nonsense. Left liberal obsessions brought from dreamworld to some kind of intangible reality by means of money that doesn’t exist.

    The whole thing stinks to high heaven, and even a casual look at where the money is going shows a staggering level of corruption and pork barrel politics.

    $4.2 billion to ACORN for example, the fraudsters who played a big part in the campaign of trickery and deceit and gangsterism that brought Zerobama to the white house. What the damn hell does this stimulate except more fraud.

    Handouts in Australia coincided with massive increases in turnover at gambling outlets.

    I’m surprised that Key and the Nationals appear to understand that to follow in the footsteps of Krudd and Zero would be the wrong path, but hell, if they truly do realise this, maybe there is actually some small degree of hope for them and New Zealand in the long term.

    PS-

    ..and journalists, show some spine you yellow politically partisan scum. You traitors to the concept of democracy.

    The word “stimulus” is propaganda.

    If you had an iota of self respect, you would stop using it.

  3. TomS 3

    Does anyone else just not read anything that starts with “Redbaiter?”

  4. Daveski 4

    Sigh … the Standard is getting very sloppy indeed.

    Spin busting myth # 1 – clamp down on workers rights

    The 90 bill only affects new employees and only those working for companies with 20 employees or less.

    [and those people are workers, eh? SP]

  5. Alex 5

    “Sigh the Standard is getting very sloppy indeed.

    Spin busting myth # 1 – clamp down on workers rights

    The 90 bill only affects new employees and only those working for companies with 20 employees or less.”

    Obviously new workers aren’t workers?

  6. Tane 6

    I’m with TomS.

    Daveski – workers in their first 90 days are still workers. Trying to argue that the removal of the right of workers to appeal against unfair dismissal is not removing workers’ rights is, frankly, absurd.

  7. What is wrong with that email? It seemed truthful of the situation that New Zealand is in?

  8. Tane 8

    Read the linked Hager piece Brett. All is explained.

  9. Worker 9

    Don’t see anything in this that JK hasn’t already been open with to the NZ public. It has probably been leaked on purpose to show that what JK is saying in public is what he is also saying within his party.

  10. Okay, I will have it a read, we all know how fair and balanced Hager is.

  11. Tigger 11

    Is Redbaiter on drugs? Or working in Key’s office?

    National have no plan – the sooner the population sees that the sooner this mess of a government can collapse in upon itself and be shunted on.

  12. Doubt Redbaiter works in Key’s office, he’s unemployable.

  13. Tigger 13

    And can a rightie explain to me why National are cutting jobs at MSD in a time of high unemployment? I mean, yeah it’s the government’s biggest employer but I figure with more people on welfare and out of work their might be MORE work for MSD, not less…

    Not to mention why you would pull much needed money out of the building sector by canning work on various government buildings (including that soft furnishings budget!)….pulling money out of the economy is hardly going to help our bottom line. If the government stops spending then we’re all up the creek… Mr Key, is it that your friends build roads and don’t supply soft furnishings? And I thought you said you had gay friends!

  14. djp 14

    Why is it that you guys advocate almost every fallacy enumerated in the classic “Economics in One Lesson” by Henry Hazlett

    Download it here: http://fee.org/library/books/economics-in-one-lesson/

  15. Daveski 15

    At the risk of getting caught up in a semantic war of attrition, a change that affects a small group of people does not by definition affect all workers. Semantics admittedly but it’s no worse that implying that all workers are now worse off under National which is what is being implied.

    To take your logic further, increases to the top tax bracket affect all workers because all workers potentially can earn $60K +.

    While semantics, it’s simply not try that all workers rights have been slashed by National – that’s simply your spin.

  16. Tane 16

    Daveski, the removal of rights from one sector of the workforce actually does affect other sectors in various ways, but I’m not interested in getting into the semantics of your argument here because I think it’s irrelevant.

    This is all actually very simple. What the post said was: “we’ve seen a clamp-down on workers’ rights”, and we have.

    The removal of rights at work by definition means there’s been a clamp-down on workers’ rights. To argue otherwise is simply absurd.

  17. Matthew Pilott 17

    Daveski, also remember that since you no longer work with one employer for life, the 90-day bill will affect a lot of people. Weren’t the estimates at around 500,000 a year (the number of people who move from one job to another)?

    That’s a bit more directly relevant that your tax example, because these are people actually affected, not hypothetically, if they get a whopping pay rise.

  18. Daveski 18

    MP – the issue only arises if one works for an organisation employing 20 or less staff which is the other point I was making.

    It’s not absurb to argue that it does not or will not affect every worker or indeed every worker who changes job.

    Likewise, one could argue that the impact of the law benefits the unemployed as employers may be more willingly to take risks.

    You simply can’t make blanket statements based on your perspective and try to present it as unarguable fact.

  19. BLiP 19

    Daveski said:

    ” . . . You simply can’t make blanket statements based on your perspective and try to present it as unarguable fact. . . ”

    The National Party removed the rights of workers by deception in a move designed to circumvent democracy. That is fact. Your wriggling around trying to soften the reality of the situation doesn’t make it any less of a fact and nor does it soften the impact of the legislation.

    Why are you defending this?

  20. Billy 20

    The National Party removed the rights of workers by deception in a move designed to circumvent democracy. That is fact.

    If, by deception, you mean they campaigned on it, received a mandate and then enacted it, then I guess, yes, they were highly deceptive.

  21. BLiP 21

    Billy said:

    ” . . . If, by deception, you mean they campaigned on it, received a mandate and then enacted it, then I guess, yes, they were highly deceptive. . . . ”

    Under urgency without warning? Yep – you’re right. It was deceptive. It was also hypocritical given Goober John Key’s statement in relation to National wanting to keep New Zealanders in employment and then the first thing it does is pass fire-at-will legislation.

  22. Daveski 22

    BLIP

    An important point. I’m not defending something on principle eg blindly defending the EFA which is a no-go topic here for obvious reasons.

    I’m simply pointing out to argue that “all workers” have been screwed by the National Government is complete spin which largely goes unchallenged here because of the nature of the govt.

    Myth # 2 was that the Nats will cut your wages. Even when proven to be wrong, the spin continues.

    I respect your right, and that of Tane, MP, and others to view the legislation as potentially negative for some workers. But it is patently not true to state as fact workers rights have been removed without considerable qualification.

  23. Matthew Pilott 23

    Daveski, ‘rights’ have been unequivocally reduced. That is a cold, hard and unarguable fact.

    You had many workplace rights, none of which apply for a period of 90 days in new employment, for all workers, unless they are employed by a large organisation.

    There may be benefits to having these rights removed, but that does not make the statement false; rather, your view of what a ‘right’ is isn’t correct.

  24. mike 24

    You guys make me laugh – the same idiots who were screaming blue murder about the Nats borrowing a few billion more than Labour did are now crying that we aren’t going to be in enough debt.

    Also, please don’t quote Rod Oram as if there is any balance to his articles he’s just as deluded as hager

  25. Tane 25

    Daveski, I’m not wasting any more time on you. You’re free to spend all day constructing semantic arguments about how removing the rights of workers isn’t removing workers’ rights. Frankly I’ve got better things to do.

  26. Daveski 26

    My last sentence in my last post missed the word “all” which leaves the comment looking a little naive to say the least.

    MP The potential impact of the law is limited to new workers for organisations employing less than 20 workers. Happy to agree with you that “rights” for people in these situations may have changed.

    That is not the same as calling it a “clampdown on workers rights”.

    I’ll happily withdraw from this discussion (unless suitably riled :)) – I’m not trying to stir anything up but there is at least IMO an issue with the statement. Accept it will be seen differently by others here. I’ll move on.

  27. Tane 27

    And Mike, stop being stupid. Economic circumstances change, and when that happens your policy responses need to change with them. If you don’t understand this then there’s no helping you.

  28. BLiP 28

    Daveski

    Okay – you were right – it is semantics. There are still 108,000 workers affected by the new law. I would posit that the legislation provides the thin end of the wedge for the removal of other workers rights. But, yes, okay, not ALL workers are affected immiedaitely by this one Act.

    Wages have been reduced, or will be reduced, by the so called tax cuts National is planning – another example of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer

  29. the sprout 29

    Hardly surprising that email was leaked and dissent within National is brewing – I’d be very worried if I were part of that caucus and hoping to get re-elected in 2011.

    It won’t take very long at all for the Key administration to get a reputation as a Do Nothing Government as economic and social woes increase while all they can come up with is symbolic but ineffective gimmicks.

    “…we need to focus and target our efforts to achieve maximum impact”

    Yep that’s the truth John, at this rate you’ll need to sell every little half-arsed imitation of a real plan as hard as you can for anyone to believe anything’s being done at all.

  30. sweeetdisorder 30

    Oh dear, just when labour thought they were on a roll again, along comes tonights tv3 poll. Will Goff last till spring? I think not.

  31. Matthew Pilott 31

    sweeetdisorder – I don’t think Labour ‘thought they were on a roll’ as such and in a position to improve on polls (three years out from the election, I’m sure the panic will set in!) but nice of you to acknowledge they were doing well.

  32. mike 32

    Read em and weep lefties:

    National 60%
    Labour 27%
    Greens 7%

    Preferred PM:

    John Key 52%
    Helen Clark 14%
    Phil Goff 4%

    And isn’t this the poll you guys hang your hat on. Bye bye phil…

  33. sweeetdisorder 33

    Mat

    yes, I thought they were just starting to ask a few telling questions, but then I am a polli geek and most of what I see/hear/read goes unreported/unexamined.

    oh well, too bad, never mind.

  34. monkey boy 34

    Wow – if that is the Nats in trouble, I wonder what they look like when they are on a roll!! No wonder Key wants Helen ‘shipped off’ as soon as possible so he can ‘dismantle her legacy’!!
    Might I suggest that on this recent poll, Phil Goff has much better motives for this than John Key?

    http://monkeyswithtypewriter.blogspot.com/2009/02/labours-love-is-lost.html

  35. jimbo 35

    Tane,

    It seems you believer that the 90 day “fire at will” act (as you keep misrepresenting it) is a case of “removing workers rights” because it impacts on whether or not currently unemployed people will be in employment 6 months from now. Is that right?

    In that case, to be consistent you must also believe that raising the minimum wage is “removing workers’ rights”… Why? Because raising the minimum wage stops people who are currently prepared to work for less from getting a job. The worker has lost his “right” to set the price of his labour at a low enough rate to get back into the workforce.

    The phrase “removing workers’ rights” is rolled out by the Left when it doesn’t want to properly debate the merits of a particular policy. It’s basically a shorthand way of saying “You (the Right) are wrong and do not care about people as much as I do. My motivations are more pure than yours so therefore my policies are the best”.

    You don’t want to debate “semantics” so fair enough. Just thought I’d say the “workers rights” refrain has been abused so much by the Left, and thrown around with such astonishing intellectual laziness, that no-one really gives it any credence.

  36. Felix 36

    jimbo,

    Or maybe it’s because the bill removes a bunch of workplace rights for the first 90 days.

  37. Pascal's bookie 37

    jimbo. so it’s like you lot with “property rights” then?

  38. Oliver 38

    I think that those two paragraphs of email drive home an important point. The govt has sweet fa money floating around to use because Labour managed to screw the govt’s books. Therefore the new national govt has to be careful. Nothing wrong with that. they also want to avoid borrowing so much that we’re forever screwed trying to pay it off. nothing wrong with that either.

  39. r0b 39

    If, by deception, you mean they campaigned on it [abolish worker’s rights bill], received a mandate and then enacted it, then I guess, yes, they were highly deceptive.

    It’s not like you to spout such arrant nonsense Billy. National didn’t “campaign on it” – if you can find any reference to it anywhere in National’s speeches or campaign material I will be very surprised. It was on their web site, and discussed on sites like this one, so it was seen by what – 0.1% of voters? They didn’t campaign on it, they had no mandate for it, they enacted it under urgency in a gross violation of the democratic process.

    Arguably, in fact, National didn’t campaign on anything except not being Labour, and tax cuts. Now that they are government it is abundantly clear that they haven’t a clue. Buckle up NZ, the next 3 years will be bumpy.

  40. jimbo 40

    Felix, anyone who”s been in a job for over 90 days has “lost” absolutely nothing.

    Let’s be absolutely clear who you’re referring to when you refer to “workers’ rights” (i.e. who you’re “fighting for”).

    Your “worker” in this case is someone who (a) didn’t have any job at all until he was (b) taken on board by an employer who wanted to give him a chance, but who (c) didn’t turn out to be what the employer was looking for (or was maliciously fired by the employer despite being fine at their job).

    Amongst (c), there are at least the following categories:
    (1) Despite doing everything right, boss maliciously fired them.
    (2) Despite doing everything right, boss fired them because of economic downturn.
    (3) Unable to do the job – intentionally misrepresented their ability during interview.
    (4) Unable to do the job – job turned out to be “bigger” than they were expecting. Just couldn’t step up despite making best efforts.
    (5) Lazy.
    (6) Criminal.

    Sure, the Act might need extra protections for category (1) and (2) people above, but to broadly state that “workers rights” have been taken away in the case of a previously unemployable, lazy employee who misrepresented his CV in order to get a job is total nonsense. Why do you fight for such a person? Why not help employers deal with them?

    This is not about “Workers’ rights” – it’s about trying to reddress an INFORMATION IMBALANCE. A potential employee might TELL YOU he is hardworking, competent and able to do the job, but in actual fact he could turn out to be wrong on all counts.

    Similarly, an employer could TELL YOU that the job is good hours, has fun co-workers, and is interesting. If you take that job but change your mind within the first 90 days, you can walk away without paying one cent compensation to the employer.

    The 90 day probation period evens up the information disparity that exists when new worker meets new job/employer – workers can leave at any time for any reason at all if they find out their decision to accept the job offer was “wrong”.

    In short, to say 90 days probation is taking away workers rights is, frankly, so intellectually lazy it’s laughable.

    Pascal – don’t understand your property rights comment.

  41. Tane 41

    jimbo. It helps to know the law before making an arse of yourself on the Internet.

    A lazy, criminal or incompetent employee can be sacked now, it just requires natural justice and a fair process. That fair process is the way we find out which ones are the lazy, criminal or incompetent ones, and which ones are just being unfairly treated by their boss.

    No worker wins by losing the right to a fair process, and in fact it’s the good ones who have the most to lose.

    That right-wingers are now absurdly trying to argue the removal of the right to a fair process in employment isn’t a removal of work rights shows just how desperate they are to defend this indefensible law.

  42. jimbo 42

    r0b – the latest polls show that, on balance, National’s voters have absolutely no problem with the law (or the way in which is was passed). It’s therefore a bit of a moot point to argue about how many people know the details of the policy beforehand.

    Like many others who comment here, you provocatively insist on referring to it as “abolishing workers’ rights”, which shows you’re not really equipped to properly assess the pros and cons of the measure.

    For the record, I think passing the law under urgency was a bit stupid politically. It was designed to make the new govt appear to be decisive and delivering on its promises. I think using urgency for political expediency should have been avoided, if nothing else to contract with the actions of the previous govt.

  43. jimbo 43

    Tane –

    You’re making an arse of yourself by casting around the insults – why the need to fall into ad hominem attacks?

    You’ve selectively chosen one tiny piece of my post and avoided responding to any parts of it that cannot be attacked on woolly grounds like “workers’ rights” or “fair process”.

    I understand the law and the reasons for it. Clearly there have been concerns that “fair process” is too complicated in certain circumstances. Employers are losing money and time because of “procedural missteps”. That potential for loss of time and money means employers are less likely to take a chance on a new, unproven employee.

    The new law effectively says – if the SUBSTANCE of the employer’s position is right, but the PROCEDURE that they followed during the first 90 days was wrong, nevertheless the employee has to leave.

    The new law is evening up (during the first 90 days) some of the “unfair” consequences of dogmatically sprouting “DUE PROCESS DUE PROCESS”, without bothering to consider the wider effects of such an approach.

    The law is saying “due process will now be different during the first 90 days”.

    You said “No worker wins by losing the right to a fair process, and in fact it’s the good ones who have the most to lose”. Care to lay a bit more meat on that bone? What do you mean? Why do “good ones” suffer from this law when these good ones are currently unemployed and presumably desperate to be given a chance to prove themselves.

  44. Tane 44

    It’s quite simple. Right now if you’re a competent employee your job is safe except in situations of redundnacy. Once the new law comes into effect your job is not safe – you can be sacked for no reason at all.

    If you’re lazy, incompetent or criminal you can be sacked now anyway for your laziness, incompetence or criminality.

    The reality is this law punishes competent employees the most and leaves all new workers in small businesses in fear that their economic livelihood could be taken out from under them at any time without warning.

    All this “desperate to prove themselves” rhetoric is nonsense. Aside from the slavish master-servant employment relationship you seem to be promoting, there’s no evidence that allowing bosses to sack their workers more easily will create any new jobs. Jobs exist because there is work to be done, not because it’s easier to fire people.

    You complain a lot about how hard it is to manage people. Well I’ve got news for you buddy, according to every international measure we’re one of the easiest places in the world to employ people and to do business. If you can’t even manage the basic task of managing people competently then you shouldn’t be a manager, it’s that simple.

  45. r0b 45

    It’s therefore a bit of a moot point to argue about how many people know the details of the policy beforehand.

    There are moot points (all good fun), and there is re-writing history (which is a form of propaganda). Billy was rewriting history. But I can’t stay to chat alas…

  46. jimbo 46

    Tane,

    Disagree – it’s NOT simple – it’s a careful balancing between the interests of society as a whole and the people who will be affected by the law (i.e. employers, new employees and potential new employees). You guys THINK it’s simple and keep sloganeering – you’d do your cause a lot more favours if you actually engaged on substance.

    For example, your first paragraph is scaremongering and simply not correct. I am a competent employee who has been with my current employer for 2 years – are you saying I can now be fired?

    Right now, if you’re an employee and you’ve been in a job for 90 days or more, nothing has changed at all. This applies whether you’re competent or not. So let’s keep the focus on those first 90 days and on people who previously did not have a job (or who decide to move jobs). It’s not “workers”. At best, it’s a subset of “workers” or it’s a new category called “people who want to become workers” (which they will as soon as they get through the first 90 days).

    Before the Act, if an employer filled a job and it didn’t turn out right (for any reason at all), that employer was faced with the prospect of significant cost and expense to implement “due process”. Employers were saying “this whole process is putting us off taking the risk of employing someone”.

    Society NEEDS economic risk-takers. Without risk-taking, there will be no growth.

    So the Act has responded to a perceived problem with the status quo by saying “lets modify due process during the first 90 days”. The reason the Act does this is because Parliament believes the modification will have positive incentive effects (that outweigh any associated negative incentive effects).

    I can list the positive effects of the law for ages. You can list the negative ones. (Previous threads have canvassed a lot of it.) On balance, Parliament has decided that the positive effects outweigh the negative ones and therefore society is better off if we pass the law.

    Sprouting on about “trampling works rights” or “eliminating due process” doesn’t make your position any better – or morally superior – to mine.

    If your definition of “workers rights” is so broad as to include “a right during the first 90 days of employment to the dismissal process as it existed immediately before
    passage of the law”, then yes, this new law takes away a workers’ right.

  47. jimbo 47

    Tane – I missed the bit in your comment about how I was promoting a “slavish master-servant employment relationship”. Made me laugh.

    God knows how you read that into any of my posts – I can only imagine that you’ve got a sloganeering gremlin in your computer madly adding things into any text on your page!

  48. Matthew Pilott 48

    jimbo, are you living in a 70’s utopia where you get a job and are in it for life, or are you with us in this brave new millenium where people change jobs on average every five years?

    The implication therein that the law will affect more than just those new to the workforce.

    Hence ‘workers’.

    The law does not take away “a workers’ right.” It takes every right of every worker in their first 90 days of employment, with the exception of about 5% of employers due to size.

  49. jimbo 49

    Matthew – are you living in a 1920’s nightmare where all employers are factory-owning, cigar-smoking, fat capitalists who exploit penniless workers under candlelight or have you entered the brave new millenium where (gasp!) society’s growth depends in large part on the efforts of small employers who are (often) no better off than many “workers”?

    You’ve come blazing into the debate, rattled off a pithy little insult to try and imply I’m a head-in-the-sand conservative who’s opinions are arguments are therefore without merit. You’ve made ABSOLUTELY ZERO attempt to address any of the substance in my previous posts.

    Your last paragraph is so bad you’ve decended into self-parody (basically proved my point about the descent into thoughtless sloganeering). I’m assuming you did it on purpose to be ironic.

  50. Matthew Pilott 50

    jimbo, take a breath and read it again.

    You said:

    So let’s keep the focus on those first 90 days and on people who previously did not have a job (or who decide to move jobs). It’s not “workers’. At best, it’s a subset of “workers’ or it’s a new category called “people who want to become workers’ (which they will as soon as they get through the first 90 days).

    To which I made the point that

    … people change jobs on average every five years?

    The implication therein that the law will affect more than just those new to the workforce.

    Hence ‘workers’.

    To analyse, since you insisted on not getting it the first time around, it’s not some special new subset of workers, the law change can affect anyone and everyone. Hence ‘workers’, not your proposed subset, by which you were trying to dismiss the full effect and scope of the law.

    You also posited that:

    If your definition of “workers rights’ is so broad as to include “a right during the first 90 days of employment to the dismissal process as it existed immediately before passage of the law’, then yes, this new law takes away a workers’ right.

    To which I replied:

    The law does not take away “a workers’ right.’ It takes every right of every worker in their first 90 days of employment, with the exception of about 5% of employers due to size.

    which, to the best of my knowledge is true, whether you choose to dismiss it as parody or not.

    To explain further, again because you chose not to understand: currently when newly employed you have the full plethora of Workers Rights. When the law comes into force, you’ll have no workplace rights for those 90 days. Hence taking away every right of every worker (referring to workplace rights, btw, not human rights, in case that needs to be spelled out…). The 5% exception is due to the fact that 95% of empolyees are in companies with fewer than 20 employed, as far as I gather.

    To be honest, I didn’t think it was that bad a comment, and it did address two points you made fairly directly, both of which seemed fairly fundamental to your argument.

  51. Matthew Pilott 51

    First line was a bit unnecessary though, sorry.

  52. jimbo 52

    Matthew,

    The “due process” for the first 90 days of employement has changed. That is unargued.

    The “workers right” you’re arguing for is the *right* for the due process regime for the first 90 days to remain exactly as it was before the law was passed. Do I have that correct? In my view, that’s an incredibly strained view of what a “workers’ right” is.

    No one in society has the “right” for laws to remain static. I don’t have the “right” to drink up to the drink-driving limit as it existed 20 years ago. If that limit changed, it would be ridiculous to say that I’ve lost a “right”.

    To say all workers have had a “right” stripped away from them is, in my view, misleading and inflammatory.

    There is a subset of people currently working who are immediately affected by the law. Whatever % of the workforce are currently less than 90 days into their job with a small employer. ALL people not currently working are also affected in a positive way (they DO NOT have a job right now, the new law makes it more likely they will be offered one).

    Of course “everyone” is affected. That’s what happens when society changes its laws.

    Let’s look at your last paragraph again:

    “It takes every right of every worker in their first 90 days of employment, with the exception of about 5% of employers due to size.’

    You start off with the saying workers lose “every right” during their first 90 days, which is demonstrably wrong. You then switch from employees to employers because the numbers look better for your argument. The 5% of employers due to size end up employing a major chunck of the workforce, do they not? It would have been far more intellectually honest of you to give us the following: “Except for 50% of workers who are employed by companies that won’t be subject to the new law” (FAOD I have no idea whether it is 50%, but I wouldn’t be surprised).

    That’s why the argument never makes progress. It’s clouded by impassioned rhetoric rather than fair and reasoned debate.

    Labour will never repeal this law.

  53. jimbo 53

    Matthew –

    I’ve only just noticed that you genuinely believe ALL workplace rights have been lost for the first 90 days. That is a comical reading of the law and also a total misunderstanding of what is usually regarded as being part of the “plethora of workplace rights”.

    I’m pretty sure (1) health and safety laws, (2) sexual harassment, (3) your legal right to be paid, (4) overtime/hours worked restrictions, (5) right to strike, etc have not been done away with for 90 days…!

    The one “right” that has changed in the dismissal process. Don’t over-egg it.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Simon Bridges: the 15 March Christchurch massacre and winning at any cost
    . . Just when you thought Simon Bridges couldn’t sink any lower – he has. After the March 15th  Christchurch terror attack, the (current) Leader of the National Party issued strong committments to support urgently needed gun law reform; “We will be ready and prepared to be constructive and to ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    13 hours ago
  • Only the least intelligent students, with bad parents, will attend the nonsense climate strike
    We all know that bad parents simply don’t care about their children’s education. Most truants have loser parents, and grow up to be involved with crime, or in low paid employment usually like their parents. The nonsense so-called “climate strike” coming up will be attended mostly by the least intelligent ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    23 hours ago
  • Professional Internet Trolls being used to push manmade climate change lies
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    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    23 hours ago
  • Climate Change: Strike!
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change: Squandering our opportunity?
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Protect The King!
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    1 day ago
  • The rot at the top.
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    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 day ago
  • Challenging the voting age in court
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Israel’s elections herald a long siesta
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 day ago
  • Petrol companies promise prices will come back down once peace is restored to the Middle East
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    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • All Blacks unveil boat for Rugby World Cup 2019
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    The CivilianBy admin
    2 days ago
  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
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    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
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    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
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    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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