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Nats refuse to face their record on youth

Written By: - Date published: 6:46 am, August 17th, 2011 - 45 comments
Categories: education, employment, jobs, john key, minimum wage - Tags: , ,

Having decided to beat up on a few thousand of the most hard done by young people in the country, National is now refusing to acknowledge the problem of disconnected youth that has ballooned under their watch. There are enough young people who aren’t in education, training, or work to fill Eden Park, and Key is literally running from the issue.

In a disgraceful display in Parliament yesterday, John Key refused to answer a question on his own promises regarding youth unemployment from Phil Goff and transferred the question to Paula Bennett. Not to be outfoxed, Goff swapped questions with Annette King, who had a question to Key accepted, also on youth issues. However, when Goff got up to ask King’s question, Key ran from the House like a coward, leaving Bennett to make excuses and try to deflect the issue. [inthehouse doesn’t have video up yet]

We have a serious problem in this country with disconnected youth who are locked out of work and education by the government. Last time this happened, during the neoliberal revolution, we got the 90s crime wave and the world’s highest rate of youth suicide as Roger and Ruth’s children became angry, hopeless young adults.

Right now, there are 58,000 young people aged 15 to 24 not in education, employment, or training (ironically, called ‘NEETs’). Duncan Garner points out that’s enough to fill Eden Park. I’m more worried about what else they will be filling if this is allowed to go on: planes to Australia, prisons, gang houses, dead-end jobs, and holes in the ground as teen suicide begins in rise again.

The first step in solving a serious problem (as we know from climate change and peak oil) is for those with the power to do something about it to acknowledge there is a problem. And National won’t.

Key’s disappearing act is just part of it.

Bennett refuses to talk about the 58,000 ‘NEETs’. When asked about disconnected youths in Parliament, she skited about how there are ‘only’ 16,000 young people on the dole now and that’s down from January last year. Of course, that’s just a seasonal change. In truth, youth dole numbers are nearly as high as total dole numbers 3 years ago. And, anyway, just looking at the dole number ignores all those aren’t on the dole but aren’t in education or training either – another 42,000 on top of the 16,000 Bennett acknowledges exists.

Garner’s
having none of her attempts to use number games to plaster over a serious issue.

Then, Key and Bennett try to pretend that unemployed young people aren’t really unemployed. See, to be part of the ‘official’ unemployed you have to be looking for at least one hour a week of work. And, according to Bennett, a lot of the 65,000 unemployed 15-24 year olds are in school or uni, so they’re not really jobseekers in her opinion.

Key and Bennett want us to believe it’s just 65,000 people wanting paper runs, I guess.

And they have no explanation for why there are suddenly so many more unemployed – data obtained by Labour shows that the number of young people who have been out of work for a year has increase 8-fold since National came to power – let alone why there are 58,000 who are unemployed and not learning.

National’s final play is to try to blame the problem on the abolition of the youth minimum wage. Now, that’s clearly ludicrous because we’re talking about 15-24 year olds and the youth minimum wage only applied to 16 and 17 year olds, most of whom are in school anyway.

It’s funny, in a way, that the Nats are now trying to blame young people getting the same pay for the same work as an adult for more young people being out of work, because when the law came in, as the Herald points out, National was saying equal pay was bad because it would draw more young people out of school into work. David Bennett, for example, told Parliament: “this will be a disincentive for people to go into education, when that is what we should be promoting as a country”. It didn’t happen, btw. The number of young people in the workforce has fallen sharply in recent years because THERE. ARE. NO. JOBS.

And that’s what it all comes down to. There are 58,000 young people out there right now for whom there are no jobs and no appropriate education opportunities (remember those Adult Community Education cuts?). That is a massive waste and a huge problem for us all. But before we can fix it, the government has to have the courage to admit that it exists and has expanded due to its neglect and malicious cuts.

What chance of that, do you think?

[PS. Trevor Mallard was kicked out for calling Key a chicken as he ran from the House. Fair enough, maybe. But there was some strategy in it from Lockwood. Mallard was kicked out for rest of the ‘sitting day’. When the House enters Urgency, the ‘sitting day’ continues for however many actual days it takes to get through all the bills in the Urgency motion. National has engineered it so Labour’s House Leader can’t be in the House while National slams through 11 laws this week]

45 comments on “Nats refuse to face their record on youth”

  1. Typical Tory response. They make a big noise at the margins (independent youth benefit recipients) but refuse to accept there is a youth unemployment problem. The IYB stuff is small change but makes them look like they are doing something, anything.

    Meanwhile they create no jobs. The market told them not to.

  2. tc 2

    Encourage folk to watch question time, Blinglish and sideshow mostly come across as cocky uncaring buffoons who evade just like this time. You never see this in the media as the average kiwi would see how clueless they are.

    • jackal 2.1

      Evasion seems to be the norm for the National party. Kate Wilkinson’s performance a few days ago was a perfect example of using procedure to avoid answering a question about her deporting the abused fishermen. But National do it all the time. It’s because they have no answers, they have no plan.

    • AAMC 2.2

      You will never convince many people to watch question time, but if somebody can get the footage onto youtube, we can all disseminate it as citizen journalists.

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    When a society no longer knows how to or cares about looking after its young, you can expect a lot of things to start going bad. The momentum of all this really picked up in the late 80’s and early 90’s, disconnected atomised families, individuals trying to fend for themselves, a society which turns a blind eye when it knows better.

    Key and English must think they live in a different country to all these young people. A country so well guarded and ordered that societal distress isn’t going to one day end up on their own door step.

    • aerobubble 3.1

      But Key Nationals policy is to play to the grey vote who are now worried about youth criminals
      coming to their place, or their savings disappearing, or any number of stresses.

  4. Peter Martin 4

    “National has engineered it so Labour’s House Leader can’t be in the House while National slams through 11 laws this week”

    That’s simply not true. I heard Smith state very clearly early on in the session that any unruly behaviour could end up with the Member expelled and that could well be for some time as the Govt had indicated urgency was going to be called for.
    If Mallard can’t keep himself from rising to the bait, then more fool him.

  5. Afewknowthetruth 5

    It is just another demonstration that parliament is a disgrace, as has been the case for decades.

    Of course politicians love the way the system works: all power and no accountability. It’s the same at local government level.

    There is no hope for western societies under such a system.

    • Unless people force politicians to change. Election year is the best opportunity for that.

      • KJT 5.1.1

        Yeah right! We get the privilege of changing the Dictators every three years.

        Even the South Americans were able to do that.

        • Reality Bytes 5.1.1.1

          Unfortunately, a few know the truth but their voice is not mainstream enough to influence elections enough to change the system, yet.

  6. The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 6

    I know you guys want the government to buy supermarkets and overstaff them with overpaid shelf stackers but, assuming the electorate has no appetite for the dark days when the government was losing money hand over fist in any hopeless business it happened to find itself in, what is it you think the government can do?

    The jobs during the last government were largely in the private sector and the result of a strong economy.

    None of the make work schemes any government of any stripe has ever tried have ever been good value for money in terms of actually getting people in work.

    • jackal 6.1

      Ensure communities have money to keep the economy working by keeping inflation low for one.

      By the dark old days I presume you mean the last Labour government that managed the deficit properly and gave National a zero net debt.

      I’m not sure about the make work schemes, but training allowances and 31,000 positions help young people get jobs. Did you know National cut those Gormless?

      • rosy 6.1.1

        training allowances and 31,000 positions help young people get jobs.
        A helping hand with a few more apprenticeships wouldn’t go astray either.

        • millsy 6.1.1.1

          I also suggest funding cadetships in the SOE sector as well.

          • aerobubble 6.1.1.1.1

            I think you are missing the point, while the rich don’t want to spend, or could hope to
            spend their wealth (limits on resources), there is little point forcing job creation
            since the invisible hand has been handcuffed. Commodities continue to rise, debt
            woes have not gone away, its not rocket science, oil will cost more decade on
            decade for the foreseeable future. Until we have open debate about why we have
            a economy we’re never get to the point where we know what to train youth in.
            World population is set to level out to 9 billion by 2050, it only is doing that
            because people are have *less* children than it takes to maintain the population
            level. So its pretty simple the market should be desperate to hire and retain
            young people, and corner the future commercial advantages. But no, its not
            happening because we have no direction, we don’t know how much oil
            is left, we don’t know what technology is just enough, wifi? fibre to the door.
            NZ should be well place if it weren’t for the neo-liberal shisters still peddling sh*t.

    • AAMC 6.2

      Stop funneling all of the money into the hands of 1% of the population who stash it all away in bonds and gold and work to rebuild the middle class and small to medium sized business as a priority over offshore multi-nationals for a start.

      • Craig Glen Eden 6.2.1

        Here here!

        • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 6.2.1.1

          Do you mean, “hear, hear” or are you asking that all of the money be funnelled to you?

          AAMC, how is money being funnelled to the top 1%? Is the mere forbearance from taking it away from them “funnelling” by any sensible definition?

          • AAMC 6.2.1.1.1

            The games rigged Gormless; that, I think is plainly obvious. I gather there’s probably not a lot of point in entering into this discussion with you though.

            • freedom 6.2.1.1.1.1

              good call AAMC, save yourself the boredom

              • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell

                Suit yourself. Only engage with people who agree 100% with everything you say. Then you can be re-assured that everything you think is absolutely correct.

                • AAMC

                  No, I’ve just got a lot of work to do, otherwise I’d love to point out the structure of our society, but it’s been done endlessly here already.

                  Anyway, perhaps the onus should be on you to prove that the 151 individuals on the rich list did not in fact increase their wealth by 20% while the rest of the country stagnates at best, starves on the street at worst.

                  The socialization of private losses, that’s a serious trickle up which doesn’t only reside in the American and European financial world (although we’re all part of the same global community aren’t we, so we could legitimately include them in the discussion) but right here in the guise of South Canterbury Finance, Mediaworks and oh.. that really big company Warner Bros, and wait for the free trade deal, that’ll be a nice “funneling” to Phizer and Sony BMG and so on and so forth.

                • freedom

                  oh gormless one that is so not true, so very very not true.

                  If one does not engage with people of differing opinions then it is difficult to learn, consider and when apt, to disregard certain aspects of a dialogue

                  It is simply you repeat ad nauseam the same monotonous dribble over and over, month in month out and never offer constructive realistic alternatives to the problems facing our species or even suggest a slight adjustment in direction. You choose not to see it for whatever reason but be aware that many people out there are growing tired of cyclic pointless dialogue and are pro-actively offering alternatives. I believe my own posts for example, though often acutely direct or in some minds pointless, are usually based in constructive discussion and i regularly offer and listen to, ideas for change.

                  There are alternatives to the broken and despotic attitudes of the rein -holders. Be a flag waving supporter of systems proven to be dangerous and destructive to people or join the millions of human beings who have simply had enough of the lies and are trying to discover just what can, and eventually will, be done about it.

                  This is not an organised card carrying club you can identify and vilify. These are your neighbors and your drivers, and your librarians and hairdressers. These are everyday people who are waking up to just what is going on. The really cool thing is most do not even know they have woken up untill faced with something as innocuous as the next grocery bill,
                  then a light goes on and they think, hang on a minute . . . .

                • AAMC

                  “Suit yourself. Only engage with people who agree 100% with everything you say.”

                  What, you mean like Key in parliament yesterday?

      • aerobubble 6.2.2

        Funny thing is Buffet sees there’s more money to be made if the rich pay more taxes and
        the society didn’t carry so many unproductive rich people who think they are hotstuff
        (but still need a tax cut crutch). Anyone who believe tax cuts are good is not any capitalist
        I want to respect.

    • bbfloyd 6.3

      good fom gormless one… make up half witted crap and then react to it like you have something real to say… i bet your kids thought you were a riot when you acted it out in front of them… unless they were just being polite so that they would get pudding…

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 6.3.1

        You are right of course. I am trying to work up to really big ideas, poignantly expressed. Like yours.

    • KJT 6.4

      I seem to recall apprenticeships, and other training schemes, doing well before 1990.

      By private sector do you mean those who bleat to the immigration department that they cannot get skilled staff.
      After not training anyone for 30 years, and expecting to pay less than they pay for that level of skills in India, Argentina, China and Africa.

      The only reason they get immigrants now, is whats left of the social wage, or they want residency to get into Oz.

  7. randal 7

    what record on youth?
    they haven’t done anything.

  8. Deadly_NZ 8

    It seems that whenever KY makes an ass of himself the footage just disappears.
    And how convenient that the videos of the day are missing due to the snow.

    Tui Ad time again.

  9. Oligarkey 9

    I had a dream last night which gave me a glimpse of National’s up-coming election campaign. National made a gigantic father Christmas out of sugar and bright food colouring, and towed it around on a truck trailer. Blaring from the truck was the tune “jingle bells” with the words replaced by “the rich count and the rest of you don’t, that’s the way the system goes” – or words to that effect. I had Key up about how facile and nasty he is, then he ran off. Funny how the subconscious works.

    Even in my dreams i can’t escape the banking oligarchy. What does one do?

  10. This is a comment I posted late yesterday on the ‘epic fail’ thread. It has links to the trends for IYB from 2004-2007.

    It may not have been seen (being a late comment) so I thought it might be useful on this thread too. 

  11. Do note that the unemployment rate for 15-19 year olds is 27.5%. The 2008 changes hit the 15-17 year old cohort; the recession made the prior elimination of the youth rate for 18-19 year olds binding. At least that’s my bet.

    • Blighty 11.1

      No evidence for that odd theory, though.

      Still, it won’t stop you acting as if it’s true.

      Before it was pointed out to you that the youth minimum wage only applied to a small fraction of youths in the labour-force you were gleefully attributing the entire rise in youth unemployment to the abolition of the youth rate, and I haven’t seen any retraction on that elementary mistake.

      Instead, you’ve invented a complex and unfalsifiable theory to ‘prove’ you’re still right.

      You’re a weird kind of scientist, Crampton.

      Hell, what am I saying, you’re a neoliberal economist – that’s not really science, it’s ideology wrapped in thin veneer of numbers based on simplistic, convenient models, and not reality.

    • Puddleglum 11.2

      Interestingly, the NEET rates are higher for 20 to 24 year olds than for 15-19 year olds. Particularly interesting as it doesn’t seem to be due to women having children, as males have higher rates (in both age groups) than females.

      Also, these rates, overall, have increased during the recession for both groups although they appear to be flattening or even decreasing for some groups over the past year.

      The 2008 changes...” – The election?? 

      Also, why would the recession make “the prior elimination of the youth rate for 18-19 year olds binding“? (Especially given your view that the evidence suggests its reintroduction would help reduce unemployment in that group.)

      Are you trying to excuse the government’s inaction over re-introduction of youth rates? If so, why? 

    • mik e 11.3

      The 40 to 54 year olds had the same increase in unemployment as well EC maybe we should introduce youth rates for them as well!National has a very poor record on employment and wages .Right through the nineties wages dropped and their purchasing power . same again under blinglish and Key!

    • Puddleglum 11.4

      Do note that the unemployment rate for 15-19 year olds is 27.5%.”

      The Prime Minister is disputing that figure – or at least what it means. 

  12. Alice 12

    To be the son of the Moon Queen you have to be extraordinary special, unique and profoundly inspirational, and you have to be someone who can relate to ‘all’ humans. To achieve such accomplishments you have to live in a ‘state of existence’ that is in harmony not only with your own body, mind and heart (aligned) but you have to open up yourself to the universe and become ‘one’ with it. It is difficult to do if you fight it- and awfully uncomfortable – so you have surrender yourself.
    Basically, to become a King you have to have the correct state of mind, otherwise you will fail.
    Now we aren’t talking about kings of countries who have been born in line to a throne, a king who has never done a damn thing to warrant his exalted and honoured position, these ‘kings’ are not true kings. These are little minds playing games with diamonds and jewels, money and murder, so earthy, so materialistic, so cheap and so small and not at all extraordinary, not at all inspirational, and not at all eternal!

    Now the son of the Moon Queen doesn’t work in petty, small-minded, rickety, materialistic and vulgar fashions, as if. The true King has a style, a state of mind like no other, he rules, he owns, he ‘is’ like no other before him.

    Now you have this disjointed, dislocated, fragmented and fractured mind, it is because you are fussing over many things, many small things, irrelevant petty incidences and pissy little vengeances. You hold onto negative energy like a small-minded neurotic man. A ‘man’ acts in this fashion not a King. Now if you want to remain this way – it is your choice but you will never be the son of the Moon Queen.

    You have move beyond this detrimental existence, it is good to be aware of negative energy, to know it, to master it, to overcome it and to slice it down. Negative energy can help if it improves you, but if it makes you worse you have to cut it down, trampled on it and send it to it’s grave, because to rule as a true King you have to have an extraordinary state of mind, a brilliance that is magnificence and that only comes when you master the art of destroying fears, inner demons, and pissy little hang ups.

    You have to lift yourself up. High.

    I will give you an analogy to what your state of mind should be. Have you ever fired up a V8 motor, if you haven’t maybe you should. If there is one motor that deserves to be on our roads it is the ruling master of all motors- the V8!

    When you fire one up, turn on the ignition, a split second rumbling starts and in a flash this baby is rolling, a persistent constant hum starts flowing, no flappy, fractured or spluttering happening with this baby –it is just a smooth roll, a durable humming- everlasting and constant. You can feel it in the sound and in its power; it just rolls over like a machine, a master, a beast- steady, strong and powerful!

    When you hit the open road, it’s just smooth operations all the way; you slice through the air with purpose and direction. This beast just beats to a constant drum, the faster he goes, the faster the beatings of the drum go- but always in time, always in perfect time – there are no wobbles or hesitations- he just hums nice and steady, an even flow, ruling the road with confidence, complete assurance and an sensational ability. (Mama Mia!!)

    Now when you are behind the wheel of a V8 you know your dealing with something extraordinary special. If someone gives you the finger while on the open road or someone gives you a bit of road rage, do you feel like raging back, nah, why? Because your driving the beast, and you know it, you just fly on by, knowing, knowing you rule this fucking road anyway, so you don’t have too!
    Do you give the fingers back, of course not, you smile and wave and cruise on by, why? Because you’re the fucking King baby, the ruler of the road, no time for pettiness in a V8, no time for bickering and spiteful crap in a V8, the V8 means business! He’s hard, constant, everlasting and sturdy. A machine, a beast, this fucker is designed to go from A to B and from A to Z. He ain’t got no time for pissy little shit. He has direction, a destination to get too, he has purpose! And believe me this fucker always gets to his destination, to the sound of his own drum, constant and steady, calm and collected, even at the fastest most furious speeds! He is designed to get to his destination and believe me HE ALWAYS GETS THERE!

    So if you want to be the son of the Moon Queen you have to up your game, move yourself up- no time for pettiness anymore. Get into the right state of mind- take a V8 for a test drive! – and blast the stereo while your doing it!

    You know you have the ability- so do it.
    x

  13. HC 13

    It was a very, very embarassing day for Don Key and Paula Pudding Belly Bennett today in Parliament!

    Have a look at question time on the Parliament website, or on Parliament TV at 10 pm tonight, if you have time and the chance to do so.

    It was quite delightful to see John Key and Phil Goff throw contradicting figures about youth unemployment at each other, and it was a total delight to see fat Bennett get hammered by Annette King later in the question time hour. No wonder it was the first item on TV3 news tonight.

    We need more days like this, and then – who knows, John Key may get his chance to retire at his holday home on Hawaii after 26 November.

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    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    2 days ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    2 days ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    3 days ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    4 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    4 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    4 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    4 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    4 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    5 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    5 days ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    6 days ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    6 days ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    6 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    6 days ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    6 days ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    7 days ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    1 week ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    1 week ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    1 week ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    1 week ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    1 week ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago

  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
    Essential workers who take leave from work to comply with public health guidance are being supported with a leave scheme to ensure they will continue to receive income, say the Minister of Workplace Relations and Safety Iain Lees-Galloway and Minister for Social Development, Carmel Sepuloni. A number of essential businesses ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
    Work is underway looking at measures to speed up consents for development and infrastructure projects during the recovery from COVID 19, to provide jobs and stimulate our economy.  Environment Minister David Parker said the COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis that will have a wide ranging and lasting impact ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
    Work to scale up the health system in preparation for COVID-19 was today outlined by Health Minister David Clark, as he reported back to the new Epidemic Response Committee. “We are well placed to contain the spread of COVID-19. We have taken early and decisive action at our borders, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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