National costs you $100,000 from your retirement fund

Written By: - Date published: 9:49 am, July 2nd, 2016 - 66 comments
Categories: accountability, class war, national, superannuation - Tags: , , ,

If you’re an average worker the actions of the National government have reduced the value of your KiwiSaver fund at retirement by about $100K:

National’s cuts shave $100K off KiwiSaver by retirement

Press Release: New Zealand Labour Party

New analysis shows National’s constant cuts to KiwiSaver will reduce the average worker’s retirement savings by $100,000 over their working life, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says.

“The former Labour Government launched KiwiSaver nine years ago today to boost the country’s savings and ensure all New Zealanders have a nest egg in their retirement.

“National has gutted KiwiSaver. Since coming to office it has made five separate cuts to the scheme:

• Taxed employer contributions

• Halved the maximum Member Tax Credit from $1042 to $521

• Halved the Member Tax Credit rate from $1 for every dollar saved to 50c

• Reduced employee/employer contributions from 4 per cent to 3 per cent

• Abolished the kick-start payment

“Analysis by the Parliamentary Library (attached) shows a worker on the average wage joining the scheme today will have total contributions of $3500 after their first year. That would have been $6700 without these cuts.

“After their first year, the average worker misses out on $2,200 a year in contributions. That adds up to $100,000 the average worker will miss out on if they retire after 45 years’ work. That’s a big slice of their nest egg.

“Axing the start-up payment alone resulted in new KiwiSaver sign-ups plummeting.

“Figures released this week show growing inequality under this Government. National’s KiwSaver cuts are making inequality worse by making it harder for middle New Zealand to save.

“For many people, KiwiSaver is their largest financial asset outside their home – if they’re lucky enough to own one. Having less savings in their scheme means people will be forced to work for longer and will have less to retire on,” Andrew Little says.

ENDS

KiwiSaver_Cuts.xlsx

66 comments on “National costs you $100,000 from your retirement fund”

  1. jcuknz 1

    In addition there are holes in the scheme which enable you to use part to fund your home to reduce it further. Quite apart from savings are held in expensive private schemes, with not guarantees, which further reduce matters. Even 4% was ridiculously low and to be meaningful should have been almost twice that as I ended up paying with NatProv.
    I am glad it was not possible for me to dip into my fund. But of course I worked in happier days did I but know it.

  2. dv 2

    And don’t forget the OBR where a collapsing bank can take 10% of you saving to prop them up. (I know not Kiwisaver)

  3. Greg 3


    There is a little-known clause in the Employment Relations Act that allows for an employee’s salary to represent ‘total remuneration’ for the role they perform.

    “Should that employee decide to join KiwiSaver, the cost of the employer’s contribution will come directly from the employee’s pay.

    “If an employer wishes to adopt the ‘total remuneration’ approach, there is still the requirement to negotiate in good faith with the employee.
    =How many employee’s have that option.

    The Individual Employment Agreement must include a clause detailing the ‘total remuneration’ which accounts for the amount of the employer’s contribution (if any)’

    =Who has this in there employment agreement?

    =Still think its a wonderful deal.
    =loss of compounding wage rises, + long term effect?

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/personal-finance/news/article.cfm?c_id=12&objectid=11341802

    http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/how-investments-lose-value-over-time.html

    • Infused 3.1

      Thats hardly little know

    • The New Student 3.2

      Yes, people are more aware of total rem arrangements nowadays but doesn’t hurt to keep making noise about it. I’ve been on total rems before. It’s a bit tough seeing the whole lot come out of your pay! But yeah it does require the employee to be both aware and confident enough to negotiate the contribution component, which many certainly are not. which this government seems to encourage

  4. Draco T Bastard 4

    Kiwisaver is just another capitalist Ponzi scheme. It adds to the inequality and environmental destruction that is inherent in capitalism and, of course, it will eventually collapse the same way that capitalism is presently collapsing.

  5. save nz 5

    Unbelievable!! National are so greedy and sneaky!! Plenty of money for their corporate cronies through I see.

    And that is why I never went into Kiwisaver and why Kiwis don’t save for their retirement.

    What’s the point if in the course of your lifetime some greedy politician comes and steals money you should have received or makes changes every year.

    Who can trust them. Even if you trust one party, the next one comes along to steal it.

    They should have a guarantee on it. No changes.

    Apparently we can lock in TPPA against workers but can’t lock in benefits for workers.

    Disgusting.

    Great work by Labour and Andrew Little to let us know about this dodgy rip off by the National party.

    And people are still waiting for that holiday pay too…

    • mosa 5.1

      I joined kiwisaver just before the National party won in 2008 knowing they would despite John Keys soothing words lay their thieving hands on the scheme and make it as they always do to the disadvantage of the hard working kiwis who had in good faith and enticed by the $1000 kickstart and employer contribution to match their own.
      Before they harmed it and made it unequitable it was a well put together scheme to encourage kiwis who do not save a cent to put aside a supplement to a minimum pension when they finish working.
      If they had the long term of the country as their priority not just 9-12 years and enhanced the scheme incl the emloyer contribution rate , tax credits ,and join up incentive in other words improved it as an investment instead of a cash cow to tinker with it would have demonstrated some commitment to long term savings which we dont have a good track record of and increased confidence that it would remain in its current form and not interfered with and not disadvantage the working kiwis that already get nailed on everything else by being in the fund.
      That would have demonstrated mature leadership but we dont do maturity well in New Zeeluund.
      $100,000 less to live on is deliberate fraud against working kiwis and Little should keep saying it LOUDLY at every given opportunity !

  6. Eralc 6

    So what will Labour do, put it all back to how it was? Semantics, I know, but the second and third bullet points seem to be one in the same – I stand to be corrected if that’s not right.

    • mosa 6.1

      The point is they should NOT have too put it back if as Key promised they would not alter it !!!
      It should not have been taken in the first place !!!
      Why do idiots keep voting for this party knowing its track record when it comes to governing this country its never good for hard working kiwis.
      Compasionate conservatisim _ brighter future my arse !! another John Key Myth

  7. fisiani 7

    Labour just whinge and whinge and complain about National not spending enough. Money does not grow on trees or from a magic hole in the wall machine. Note that Labour are not planning to give you $100,000 just moan about it. How can you lose something that you never had?

    • Stuart Munro 7.1

      Money certainly doesn’t grow on trees when one’s fiscally irresponsible tax cut has endebted the country to the tune of $120 billion, and is headed for $150 billion if no public spirited citizen deposes this utterly useless corrupt government.

      • Dv 7.1.1

        And don’t forget the 1.6 billion bailout to SCF.

      • ropata 7.1.2

        there’s plenty of cash for convention centres, motorways, and tax breaks for corporations. lots of fancy new skyscrapers and sports stadiums are in the works. it’s really sweet that there’s no capital gains tax and house prices are just shooting up forever.

        oh sorry no cash for social housing or hungry school kids.

        • Stuart Munro 7.1.2.1

          You’re right of course – I’m much too generous to these thieving scoundrels.

    • maninthemiddle 7.2

      Exactly! And yet other posters here have accepted lying Little’s so called ‘analysis’ hook line and sinker.

    • Colonial Viper 7.3

      How can you lose something that you never had?

      We did have it. Labour had set up a good deal. Then National pulled out of it.

      • maninthemiddle 7.3.1

        When? In 1975? If so, I never had, so I never lost it. Besides, i’d rather manage my own retirement savings thanks.

    • Colonial Viper 7.4

      Money is created faster than a tree creates leaves. That’s because in the modern day, money is created out of thin air by keyboard strokes.

      In the last thirty years the NZ Government has allowed the new dollars in circulation to quintiple in just the last couple of decades. Over $100B in brand new dollars.

      Materialised out of thin air.

    • Pat 7.5

      there appears to be no lack of money trees for tax cuts however…

    • Sabine 7.6

      26 mil flag debacle

      • gsays 7.6.1

        and petty cash is full with the $ that used to go to lifeline.

      • jcuknz 7.6.2

        Since most of the 26 million went to the Post Office it was a donation to keep the loss of that organisation down … tricky that!

    • ropata 7.7

      And yet the house prices in Auckland have doubled in the last 6 years. Money DOES fucking grow out of thin air. It’s wealth that hasn’t been growing as the top 5% like Key have stolen ever more off the lower IQ morons like you

    • Fisiani, looks like you have lost a brain, or maybe you never had one in the first place,

  8. dave 8

    all i can think about is the half a trillion dollars debt when houseing bubble pops
    the debtors should pay not savers

  9. Incognito 9

    Something badly wrong here? The difference between $6700 and $3500 is $3200 and not $2,200 as stated in this Post and the original Media Statement!?

  10. Wayne 10

    Lets assume the calculations are correct. It is obviously true that if the taxpayer subsidy for each Kiwisaver account is reduced, the final amount saved in each account will be less.

    I recall the reason why the changes were made, which was primarily because the uptake rate was much higher then anticipated by Treasury in part due to the size of the taxpayer subsidy. It also meant the cost to the govt finances was much higher then Treasury estimated, and at a time when we were in the middle of the GFC. This meant money being extracted from the economy and put into long term savings at the very time when current consumption was the need, or in other words the requirement was economic stimulus.

    So Labour has now done the calculations of the impact of the changes for an account that lasts 49 years, fair enough. But it does raise the obvious question, will Labour restore all the subsidies for KiwiSaver, at a cost to govt expenditure of probably around $500 million, maybe more?

    • ropata 10.1

      Is that what you tell yourself when cheering on the theft of billions from hard working kiwis?

      FFS you RWNJs are short sighted idiots and have fucked over NZ time and time again

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10465138

      • Wayne 10.1.1

        Well actually it was not hardworking kiwis money that was taken, it was a reduction of the taxpayer subsidy that the govt (other taxpayers) gave to each KiwiSaver. Obviously people keep what they had already got, it was future taxpayer subsidies that were reduced.
        As I say the real question is whether Labour will reinstate the level of taxpayer subsidy that prevailed in 2008.

        • ropata 10.1.1.1

          1. government finance is not a zero sum game. it is their own policy of tax cuts to the wealthy that have screwed the balance sheet & provided a pathetic excuse for artificial cuts to social spending
          2. the real question is not what you say it is. labour is not in government
          3. national must answer for their regressive policies that have worsened inequality in New Zealand and thrown thousands into poverty. that is the “real question” IM(NS)HO

        • RedBaronCV 10.1.1.2

          Much as us kiwi’s (other taxpayers) decided that the best way to deal with the GFC was to give major tax cuts to high end earners, fund Saudi sheep farms, bail out SC Finance, Tiwai point, flag referendums , build useless roads etc etc. All very low quality government spending compared to Kiwisaver.

          But hey you keep mentioning how well you are doing so you and other wealthy high end earners will be happy to pay a couple of thumping levies to get that external debt under control and pop a lump sum in those kiwisaver accounts!

    • ropata 10.2

      It’s funny how all the Nat Party policies have a short term benefit to the wealthiest 1% and a long term cost to the long suffering NZ taxpayer.

    • save nz 10.3

      What is the cost of Kiwi’s not saving, for treasury?

      Yep, always Labour’s fault, they get more people than expected saving for their retirement, but under National – that’s bad!

      National seem so keen on subsidising businesses in corporate welfare but that’s good!

      Bit of a double standard there.

      Anyway I knew National would get in and F*&k it up, so I never joined.

      BTW our mostly Aussie banks don’t have to guarantee bank deposits like practically every other OECD country… wonder why Kiwis don’t save – look at the reasons!

    • DH 10.4

      “This meant money being extracted from the economy and put into long term savings at the very time when current consumption was the need, or in other words the requirement was economic stimulus.”

      That argument might have some merit if the Govt hadn’t also walloped up ACC levies around the same time Wayne. You’re just making shite up there IMO.

  11. Stuart Munro 11

    So in essence what you’re saying Wayne is that the Gnat’s economic management is so inept they cannot meet their obligations. Rockstars indeed!

  12. b waghorn 12

    They should of kept the kick start , dumped tax credits , and not taxed the earnings , also cracking down on the amount of fees would be good.

  13. slumbergod 13

    hahaha “retirement”??? What’s that? There isn’t going to be any retirement for the people at the bottom of society, just like there isn’t going to be health care, dental care, or welfare.

  14. stunned mullet 14

    Give me some free money !

    • Paul 14.1

      Someone who defends a government that does not house its citizens.
      Shame on you.

      • stunned mullet 14.1.1

        Big ups Paul – I love your morning moan.

        perhaps you could spice it up like this piece I was sent from the UK…

        “…..While we’re on the subject of scum. Blair has once again stuck his head above the parapet. As we know, we need to negotiate our new relationship with the Fourth Reich over in Brussels. As we also know, this will be pretty complex. So, up pops Tony Blair, like the eternal foul stench, once again pretending to be our saviour and offering his services as a negotiator.
        Apart from the fact Blair is a filthy, murdering, money whore, lying, arrogant, ignorant, dishonourable, dishonest, conniving, warmongering, bloodthirsty traitor. He never does ANYTHING unless there is something in it for Tony Blair. His chances of a cushy job in Brussels have been shot to shit, so I can only imagine that Blair considers this an opportunity to once again raise his profile and be seen as some kind of hero. He seems to need the adoration of the public. The big problem he faces, is that everyone on Planet Earth knows that he’s a massive cunt.

        Still, he can’t resist the opportunity of taking part in a high profile negotiation. Whoever turns out to be our next Prime Minister, their first job should be telling Blair to fuck off, and shove a live hand grenade up his arrogant arse. Let’s not forget, it was Blair who gave up part of our rebate on the money that the EU steals from us each year.

        Though not for much longer…”

        • save nz 14.1.1.1

          +1 Stunned Mullet, while I wouldn’t describe Tony Blair in quite the same terms, I think you are totally on the right track about him in general.

          The big joke was when he volunteered to help the Palestine/Israel peace talks after invading Iraq. What a joke, no wonder the peace talks stalled with him on board – political sabotage!

          • stunned mullet 14.1.1.1.1

            Not my work save nz a friend from up north in the UK sent it across.

            He’s also sent see great stuff on Jeremy Corbyn if you want me to post the random thoughts of a yorkshireman.

    • Pat 14.2

      “Give me some free money !”

      Isn’t that what we do for all those negatively geared rentiers (to name just one group)?

    • dv 14.3

      Ha SM is a bank – heard of the OBR?

  15. DH 15

    I’m not sure you want to link to their workings, their error is rather glaring.

    God these Labour people are amateurs, they can’t even get their numbers right on simple stuff like this.

    • Pat 15.1

      what error would that be?

      • DH 15.1.1

        Employees don’t lose their own contribution Pat. Cutting the employers maximum from 4% to 3% doesn’t cut the employees contribution to 3%.

        • Pat 15.1.1.1

          and you suggest the calculation assumes an employee contribution reduction to 3%?

          • DH 15.1.1.1.1

            That it does Pat, you could try looking at it yourself.

            • Pat 15.1.1.1.1.1

              that it does…not doing themselves any favours presenting it thus even though its reasonable to assume a matching of employee contribution to employers contribution for maximum benefit.

              • DH

                Mistakes like that sabotages their own argument. The one lesson they should have learnt by now is to double-check their figures before quoting them.

                The Labour caucus really do appear to have a problem with their maths, they just don’t seem to have (m)any MPs who are good with numbers.

                • Pat

                  suspect it wasn’t a math problem….rather a political nous problem…..they were trying to present the worst possible case, foolish given it was bound to be noted and discredits them, whereas they could have presented a slightly less bad case and added a rider saying”and it could potentially be worse”.

                  As you note…they should have learned by now.

                  • DH

                    I have to admit I have no idea what they were thinking at all. Their argument is dumb, it leaves them wide open to ridicule and rebuttals.

                    They neglected to add in the compounding interest which would genuinely take the losses over $100k.

                    The lost tax credit of $521.43 alone would compound to over $48k at a conservative annual return of 3% (after tax).

                    • The argument and supporting example is overly simplistic and rather unrealistic, but not dumb. It talks about contributions. Not returns. Not account balance. I’d say compounding interest has no bearing on the contributions required by legislation.

                      Thus, the ~$100K difference in contributions (on a constant salary of $57.7K for 45 years straight) when comparing Labour’s scheme with that of National checks out.

                      While I thought it was a bit silly overkill having two points that refer to the exact same thing, one must remember that many members don’t contribute enough to max out the MTC in a year. So now they only get 50c in the dollars they do contribute (up to $521) as opposed to dollar for dollar (up to $1042).

                      The compulsory employer contribution rate (CEC) well I believe Labour planned for a rate of 4% from 2011 onwards. What we got was 2% then upped to 3% from 2013 onwards. http://www.treasury.govt.nz/budget/2007/kiwisaver/pdfs/ks-employer.pdf
                      So I guess saying “Reduced employee/employer contributions from 4 per cent to 3 per cent” has some persuasive merit.

                      Reducing the employee contribution to minimum of 3% well that’s hardly persuasive as one can elect to contribute 4% if they so wish. But again, I think Labour intended the minimum to be 4% from 2011 onwards, so that’s why it was used for calculating the Labour example in the spreadsheet.

                      ESCT erodes the employer contribution, pretty plain as day. It was probably necessary for reasons.

                      I believe National removed the $40 fee subsidy and also removed the $1040 (ish) employer subsidy/tax credit.

                      So contributions-wise, KiwiSavers ARE worse off under the tweaks and changes introduced by National government, as we all know. Mainly due to reduction in MTC, removal of kickstart and application of ESCT. The simple example given is a pretty sound comparison between what is, and what was/might have been. Yes the power of compound interest is the whole point of a long-term investment like KS, but it has little to do with the contributions required by legislation.

                    • DH

                      “Thus, the ~$100K difference in contributions (on a constant salary of $57.7K for 45 years straight) when comparing Labour’s scheme with that of National checks out. ”

                      You’ve lost me there. Are you saying you can’t add & subtract or you haven’t looked at their figures?

    • save nz 15.2

      @DH bit like English not being able to work out the cost of parental leave bill. Never mind, nothing in it for English, why would he bother?

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     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 ...
    5 days 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 ...
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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 ...
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    6 days 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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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
    7 days 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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
    1 week 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 ...
    1 week ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The wrong kind of trees?
    Newsroom today has an excellent, in-depth article on pine trees as carbon sinks. The TL;DR is that pine is really good at soaking up carbon, but people prefer far-less efficient native forests instead. Which is understandable, but there's two problems: firstly, we've pissed about so long on this problem that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • No freedom of speech in Turkey
    Canan Kaftancioglu is a Turkish politician and member of the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP). Like most modern politicians, she tweets, and uses the platform to criticise the Turkish government. She has criticised them over the death of a 14-year-old boy who was hit by a tear gas grenade during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Tadhg Stopford: Why I’m standing for the ADHB
    Hi there, just call me Tim.We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. If I ...
    1 week ago
  • Good little vassals
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has published their report on whether the SIS and GCSB had any complicity in American torture. And its damning. The pull quote is this:The Inquiry found both agencies, but to a much greater degree, the NZSIS, received many intelligence reports obtained from detainees who, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Who Shall We Turn To When God, And Uncle Sam, Cease To Defend New Zealand?
    Bewhiskered Cassandra? Professor Hugh White’s chilling suggestion, advanced to select collections of academic, military and diplomatic Kiwi experts over the course of the past week, is that the assumptions upon which Australia and New Zealand have built their foreign affairs and defence policies for practically their entire histories – are ...
    1 week ago
  • The Politics of Opposition
    For most of the time I was a British MP, my party was out of government – these were the Thatcher years, when it was hard for anyone else to get a look-in. As a front-bencher and shadow minister, I became familiar with the strategies required in a parliamentary democracy ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
    The Green et al (2019) fluoride/IQ is certainly controversial – as would be expected from its subject (see If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help and Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear). Anti-fluoride campaigners have been actively promoting it ...
    1 week ago
  • The return to guerrilla war in Colombia
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On August 29th a video in which veteran FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) commander Iván Márquez announced that they had taken up arms again was released. There was no delay in the reaction to it, from longtime Liberal Party figure and former president Uribe, for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Air New Zealand identifies this enormous plot of unused land as possible second airport site
    Air New Zealand couldn’t believe its luck that this seemingly ideal piece of real estate had so far gone entirely unnoticed. Air New Zealand’s search for a site to build a second Auckland Airport may have made a breakthrough this afternoon, after employees scanning Google satellite imagery spotted a huge, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Redline on the Labour Party
    No-one on the anti-capitalist left in this country today puts forward a case that Labour is on the side of the working class.  There are certainly people who call themselves ‘socialist’ who do, but they are essentially liberals with vested interests in Labourism – often for career reasons. Nevertheless, there ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Labour’s failure
    When National was in government and fucking over the poor for the benefit of the rich, foodbanks were a growth industry. And now Labour is in charge, nothing has changed: A huge demand for emergency food parcels means the Auckland City Mission is struggling to prepare for the impending arrival ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Ardern attempts to vaccinate Clarke Gayford live on television to prove that it’s safe
    Gayford, pictured here on The Project, before things got wildly out of control. A bold public relations move by the Government to encourage parents to vaccinate their children has gone horribly wrong. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern appeared on tonight’s episode of Three’s The Project, where the plan was for her ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Mr. Whippy gone too far by parking on our front lawns?
    Mr. Whippy’s business model has driven it down a dark road of intimidation. Residents in major centres around the country are becoming disgruntled by the increasingly aggressive actions of purported ice cream company Mr. Whippy, who have taken to parking on people’s front lawns and doorsteps in a desperate attempt ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Cleaning up the water
    Today the government released its Action Plan for Healthy Waterways, aimed at cleaning up our lakes and rivers. Its actually quite good. There will be protection for wetlands, better standards for swimming spots, a requirement for continuous improvement, and better standards for wastewater and stormwater. But most importantly, there's a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Fronting up
    Today I appeared before the Environment Committee to give an oral submission on the Zero Carbon Bill. Over 1,500 people have asked to appear in person, so they've divided into subcommittees and are off touring the country, giving people a five minute slot each. The other submitters were a mixed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
    Anti-fluoride activists have some wealthy backers – they are erecting billboards misrepresenting the Canadian study on many New Zealand cities – and local authorities are ordering their removal because of their scaremongering. Many New Zealanders ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Democracy – I Don’t Think So
    So, those who “know best” have again done their worst. While constantly claiming to be the guardians of democracy and the constitution, and respecters of the 2016 referendum result, diehard Remainers (who have never brought themselves to believe that their advice could have been rejected) have striven might and main ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • Government says it will now build just one really nice home
    Following publication of this article, the Ministry has requested it to be noted that this supplied image is not necessarily representative of what the final house will look like, and it “probably won’t be that nice.” As part of today’s long-anticipated reset of the Government’s flagship KiwiBuild policy, Housing Minister ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and your cup of coffee
    Over the next week or two we will be running three synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016).  The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Marx began Capital not with a sweeping historical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Still juking the stats
    The State Services Commission and Ombudsman have released another batch of OIA statistics, covering the last six months. Request volumes are up, and the core public service is generally handling them within the legal timeframe, though this may be because they've learned to extend rather than just ignore things. And ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Hard News: Time for a New Deal: 25 years on
    In 1994, I was editing an ambitious street mag called Planet, from a fabled office at at 309 Karangahape Road. The thirteenth issue of the magazine was published in the winter of that year and its cover embodied a particularly ambitious goal: the end of cannabis prohibition.I wanted to do ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Not impressed
    KiwiBuild was one of the Ardern government's core policies. The government would end the housing crisis and make housing affordable again by building 100,000 new homes. Of course, it didn't work out like that: targets weren't met, the houses they did build were in the wrong place, and the whole ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Solar beats coal
    As the climate crisis escalates, it is now obvious that we need to radically decarbonise our economy. The good news is that its looking easy and profitable for the energy sector. Wind is already cheaper than fossil fuels, and now solar is too:The levellised cost of solar PV has fallen ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

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