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Neoliberal dominoes

Written By: - Date published: 9:55 am, November 6th, 2010 - 49 comments
Categories: capitalism, greens, labour, leadership, Left, monetary policy - Tags: ,

It’s been interesting watching the dominoes of those who used to support neoliberal economic orthodoxy (here within NZ) falling one by one. I’d argue that one of the first signs of discontent was Bernard Hickey’s extraordinary open letter to Generations X and Y in June last year:

Dear Generations X and Y

Did you realize the baby boomers running the country have just decided to make you poorer for decades to come so they can retire early with all the assets and high incomes?

Did you realise your taxes are going to rise and you won’t be able to afford your own home? Did you know the baby-boomers are refusing to save their own money now for their retirements so they can live off your hard work? Did you know you will be slaving away paying high taxes in your 40s and 50s to pay for their pensions and health care? Did you know you’re wasting your time trying to build a family and life in New Zealand? Did you realise you have huge student loans while they received free tertiary education?

That piece is driven by profound disquiet with fundamental issues, which all came to a head for Hickey a couple of months ago in this extraordinary piece:

Why we must abandon the economic orthodoxy and embrace capital, trade and exchange rate controls

I feel like a priest who has been wrestling with his belief in god and has now decided god does not exist.

It’s time for me to recant and to say what I’ve been thinking for months: the economic god of completely free markets and capital flows is not worth believing in anymore and we must look for other things to believe in and do.

I think New Zealand needs to have a debate about capital controls, about foreign ownership of assets, about measures to control our currency and about being openly nationalistic rather than internationalistic about our economic policy.

I think the Global Financial Crisis and the preceding decade of debt-driven instability in global capital markets and trade flows have demonstrated the failure of the economic model most New Zealand policymakers have adhered to for nearly 3 decades.

Well worth going to read the whole thing. Who’s next? Economics teacher and author Peter Lyons:

Mantra of free market ideology wearing thin

This worldwide recession can be attributed to the actions of the private sector, in particular, the finance industry. … Dodgy lending and the use of financial instruments of mass destruction such as mortgage securities were legalised by governments under the guise that “markets know best”. …

Ideas matter. In the past 25 years New Zealand has embraced the free market ideology of neoclassical economics.

This ideology states free markets, competition and the profit motive ensure a society uses its resources in the most efficient way to maximise the well-being of its citizens. I teach this mantra on a daily basis and have written text books on it. My job sometimes feels uneasily like a form of indoctrination.

From 1984, New Zealand was a laboratory for free market economics. This experiment has been described as a country that prided itself on its pragmatism encountering its first full blown ideology.

A better description would be a mugging. Yet there is still little understanding of this ideology and how it continues to shape our society. Neoclassical economics is an elegant and logically consistent theory. The only problem is it is based on some major assumptions that in the context of a society such as New Zealand simply do not work.

Author Ian Fletcher:

Free trade theories based on dubious assumptions

The price of living in the fantasy world of free-trade economics continues to rise for America. …

Any serious discussion of free trade must confront David Ricardo’s celebrated 1817 theory of comparative advantage, whose tale of English cloth and Portuguese wine is familiar to generations of economics students. According to a myth accepted by both laypeople and far too many professional economists, this theory proves that free trade is best, always and everywhere, regardless of whether a nation’s trading partners reciprocate.

Unfortunately for free traders, it is riddled with holes, some of which even Ricardo acknowledged. If they held true, the hypothesis would hold water. But because they often don’t, it is largely inapplicable in the real world. …

And so on and so on. It’s a good time to be exploring these issues — because at the moment too many people are asking “Are we heading for a second recession?” in NZ. The old ways of thinking got us in to this mess, and they won’t get us out again.

Some people get it. Some people are offering alternatives. The Greens have long had ready a comprehensive alternative — the Green New Deal. The CTU is offering an alternative economic strategy. And at their last conference Labour broke the mould on the old thinking (and there was much rejoicing). Ex UK MP and former vice-chancellor of the University of Waikato Bryan Gould sums up:

Labour reopens economic debate

Something important has happened in New Zealand politics. After two-and-a-half decades in which economic policy has been a no-go area for political discussion, we have at last seen the beginnings of a debate about what is potentially the central issue of our politics. …

The Labour Opposition has been thinking. They seem to have grasped that there is no upside in either electoral or practical terms in simply agreeing with the Government, and that the evidence before our eyes demands that New Zealand should strike out in a new direction.

So, the two-party consensus on economic policy is at an end. It is proposed that the purpose and techniques of government’s involvement in economic policy should change. Macro-economic policy is back. …

The voters may or may not reward Labour for its courage in challenging an orthodoxy that has prevailed for so long. But we all owe Labour a debt of gratitude for starting a debate that is long overdue.

According to some, the very definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. In economic terms the world, and NZ, have been doing the same neoliberal economic agenda over and over for the last 30 years. It hasn’t worked. More of the same will have the same result. So we need to try something new! Labour, the Greens, the CTU, and others, are offering alternatives and new ways of thinking. National is stuck in the failed policies of the past. What do you reckon – time for a change?

49 comments on “Neoliberal dominoes”

  1. Armchair Critic 1

    What do you reckon – time for a change?
    Yes.
    Unfortunately the neoliberal beast will inevitably rear its head again. I’m waiting for the comments along the “it didn’t work because we didn’t get to implement our agenda fully” lines.

  2. ianmac 2

    For those of us who are economically illiterate or should that be Illiterate with Economics, we will have to be nurtured.
    Does this mean that trickle down is dead?
    Does it mean that the market decides is dead?
    Does it mean that economics is paramount in deciding the direction of policy?
    Does it mean that Social Responsibility is born again?

    • r0b 2.1

      Hopefully all of the above. The debate is now on.

      Wouldn’t it be nice to be something more than a “consumer”?

  3. WOOF 3

    We can’t spend the next 30 years chasing our own tails. 🙂

  4. john 4

    US NeoLiberal Paradise has produced disaster for most Americans here’s a clip from one American who has published a book on the US’s dire straits where he says revolution is necessary! Scroll up to access video.

    http://maxkeiser.com/2010/10/29/david-degraw-the-road-to-revolution-99-uprising-unplugged/#comments

    • john 4.1

      Another disaster from NeoLiberal US. Michael Parenti discusses his California supplier of gas and electricity(Pacific Gas and Electric) which severely neglects safety by not replacing ageing pipelines, this has caused a major explosion where people have been killed and homes destroyed. The Company guarantees its shareholders 11.1/2 return yearly!!! an incredible return in a depressed economy such as California’s.The CEO and his associates pay themselves huge salaries. Now they are putting smart meters into people’s homes despite the objection the radio wave communication is bad for health. (My power provider Genesis wanted to put a smart meter in my home, I responded by changing to another supplier which doesn’t use them-there was no consultation like “Would you feel ok about these meters considering the health concerns around them?!”)

      http://www.zcommunications.org/death-and-profits-the-utility-protection-racket-by-michael-parenti

      • john 4.1.1

        Death and Profits: The Utility Protection Racket
        The California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) permits PG&E to charge rates that are 30 percent higher than the national average. PG&E’s shareholders enjoy a guaranteed 11.35 percent yearly return on equity. That’s slightly higher than the 11 percent that swindler Bernard Madoff pretended to offer his investment victims
        PG&E enjoys a captive consumer market of 15 million customers in northern and central California. The utility is a shining monument to state-supported monopoly capitalism. If costs rise, then so do customer rates (in order to guarantee the 11.35 percent return). PG&E carries a $17 million insurance premium and additional millions in insurance deductibles; these expenses, too, are picked up by its ratepayers.
        An Avoidable Catastrophe
        Along with all the other expenses they bear, PG&E’s ratepayers usually pay for the enormous costs of utility accidents. This may still prove to be the case with the disaster recently visited upon San Bruno. On September 9, 2010, a PG&E pipeline blew apart. Gas explosions and flames ripped through the San Bruno community, taking the lives of at least eight people, injuring over 50 others (some very seriously), and completely destroying or damaging upwards of a hundred homes. An official from the National Transportation Safety Board described it: “My immediate assessment was the amazing destruction, the charred trees, the melted and charred cars, the houses disappeared.”
        Critics argue that the smart meters are too smart. They often inflate electric bills. Worse still, they may be harmful to our health. There is evidence that radio-frequency exposure is linked to cancer and other diseases. A number of ratepayers already complain of being sickened by the heavy doses from smart meters. PG&E gives reassurances that the frequencies pose no great danger, but it continues to face community resistance and skeptical questions from independent investigators.

        Smart meters cut labor costs. Lower labor costs do not bring lower rates for ratepayers, but higher profits for managers and stockholders. Never accuse PG&E of neglect or stupidity. The company knows what it is doing. In keeping with the essence of the corporate capitalist system, PG&E exists not to serve the public, but to serve itself.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.1.2

        Now they are putting smart meters into people’s homes despite the objection the radio wave communication is bad for health.

        Another reason why every house/home needs a wired broadband internet connection.

  5. outofbed 5

    I find it difficult to believe that Labour has had a road to Damascus moment. You can’t go the opposite direction to your neo liberal one if you have a Roger Dougas acolyte as your leader.
    that is just not credible. really, they are having a laugh.
    The move to the left by Labour is probably to head off the new leftwing party that is in the advanced stages of being formed. Move to the left squash the upstart and then swing back to centre right again. classic (just what Helen did to the Alliance)
    Anyway it’s going to put the cat amongst the pigeons.particularly as the new party may well have an electorate seat. which of course will free up the labour left to vote for them.
    Remember how the Alliance was once out polling Labour?.
    Interesting times

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      I find it difficult to believe that Labour has had a road to Damascus moment.

      Now not a moment in time, certain people in Labour have realised the fallacy of Chicago school free market economics for many years now.

      And it took a crashing defeat at the polls, but finally the parliamentarians are ready to set a new direction.

      You can’t go the opposite direction to your neo liberal one if you have a Roger Dougas acolyte as your leader.

      Don’t forget that former ‘followers’, once they leave the fold, can become the most ardent critics of their former ideology.

      AND it is up to us as a mass movement to keep Phil’s feet to the fire every hour of every day.

      • outofbed 5.1.1

        Say what one will about National they were very good in opposition they set the agenda Nanny state blah blah
        In comparison Labour seem weak and ineffective just a year out from the election.
        How many people out there actually know about Labours apparent change of heart?
        On a local level with the two Browns things are changing, but Labour nationally. not only needs feet to the fire ,but a rather large kick up the jacksee

        • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1

          Say what one will about National they were very good in opposition they set the agenda Nanny state blah blah

          Setting up a bunch of ‘nanny state’ PR memes is not really much of an Opposition, yeah? I mean, we can see how much thinking NAT have actually done in their 9 years in the wilderness, yeah?

          In comparison Labour seem weak and ineffective just a year out from the election.
          How many people out there actually know about Labours apparent change of heart?

          au contraire Labour is on a roll my man. The activists now see 2011 as highly winnable, and NAT as slowly panicking as the tide starts going back out on them.

          And when commentators like Colin James, Bernard Hickey and Chris Trotter start focussing more and more on Labour’s economic direction as something quite different to the “just left of National” norm of the past you know that something is very different.

          No doubt though there is a lot more to be done and you do raise a good point, Labour has to communicate much more clearly to the electorate.

          • outofbed 5.1.1.1.1

            effective in terms of they now are in control and 50% in the polls. they were like fox terriers on every issue particularly between 05 and 08.
            I don’t think it is winnable unless we are looking at MP GP NZF and Lab
            just making it over, And I don’t think that u can guarantee support from the first three :~]
            and there is the HMS party
            Heaps
            More
            Socialists
            .to come maybe :~]
            anyway too off topic I suppose

            • r0b 5.1.1.1.1.1

              I suppose a lot depends on whether the parties of the left decide to support each other, or undermine each other…

            • M 5.1.1.1.1.2

              O, I share your concern with Labour not getting the message out and wonder if they have really changed.

              I think Matt running in Mana will force Labour, perhaps unwillingly, to modify its policies because he is a very liked and respected figure who through his sheer mana and message of helping working people might embarrass Labour into action.

              Labour needs to start its campaign right now and run an absolutely excoriating one on NACT, never letting up and not letting them get away with the least little thing. It needs to give massive publicity to past infidels who have promoted catastrophic economic policy such as Hickey and publish their words recanting their mistakes. Labour neeeds to get its foot soldiers out there advising voters how to vote if tactical voting will ensure victory. In my electorate I live on a main drag so I’ll have Labour posters along the length of my fence and I will get out and distribute flyers.

              The way things are going I believe we are in the Great Depression 2, we just have fancier toys these days and will need a government like MJS from 1935 that focuses on the really important, nitty gritty stuff like full employment, decent housing, health and education but with a less paternalistic slant. The government is going to have to get honest with the population about peak oil and why the transition to public transport is necessary for most everyone, and to that end will need to massively subsidise it at first so that people will consider themselves nuts to even consider using a vehicle.

              A wartime mentality never to be extinguished will need to become the new norm where conservation is paramount, waste is very much frowned upon and the inculcation of community over the individual is seen as more important. I’m not saying people should become cookie-cutter drones as I like people to be themselves even if they are outre and find them more interesting than people who follow the party line and I don’t mean people who are in gangs or those who indulge in criminal behaviour.

              Will Goff be the leader to take Labour to victory? I don’t know, we haven’t seen or heard enough of him to get the measure of him as a man or the message he should be carrying.

    • lprent 5.2

      Nope it is real. I’m pretty ‘right’ on economic matters, been in business and exporting for decades. , But over the last 10 years it has become evident that the hands off approach to the economy has been failing NZ.

      The most obvious sign of this is the level of unproductive investment going on. Quite simply you cannot get capital to build businesses, but it has been easy to invest in unproductive bubbles like the housing market or unsustainable farming on unsuitable land. Labour did a moderately good start on trying to shift that over the last decade – but it was politically faught because so many people were vested in the bubbles.

      Now the economic climate has changed and so has the political feasibility. The time for a long overdue change has come and with a great deal of relief, people inside and outside Labour are discussing where we go next. It won’t be to a daddy state like Muldoons (or Anne Tolley and her national standards)’ but it will have the state concentrating on what is required for our development decades ahead.

      • gingercrush 5.2.1

        Name one fucking thing Labour did to tip the balance away from so-called unproductive sectors.

        • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1

          They held Labour Conference 2010.

          I sense an undercurrent of panic in the NAT Cabinet as they see the tide slowly seeping back out from under their toes, and that John Key in response is not providing any leadership to them at all.

          • gingercrush 5.2.1.1.1

            2010 and Labour are not in government. And the National government has done more to shift away from unproductive elements of the economy than Labour ever did in the previous 10 years. And National get slammed for it. For instance the removal of depreciation on most assets was a wise move and yet the left labeled it as “pushing rents up” even though most of them want to see a capital gains/land tax that has proved utterly useless in preventing speculation (one only has to see Australia for that instance) and would do considerably more harm for anyone renting than what National has done.

            Not that I believe National has done enough. But I really can’t see much vision in Labour’s ideas either. Do Labour honestly believe that a country the size of New Zealand with much smaller GDP than Singapore can control our capital markets and somehow create an artificial low dollar? It just isn’t feasible or likely and will undoubtedly add complications. And you can’t sell the idea of housing affordability and at the same preach for people to stop investing in land and housing especially when Labour offer no alternative.

            • Colonial Viper 5.2.1.1.1.1

              NATs done frak all. In good times, sure, they would get credit for their mediocre efforts. But their response to the ongoing GFC aftershocks is…totally confused.

              And because of that NAT will continue to get slammed.

              And NAT will continue to be stuck in neutral and will continue to get slammed because what NZ needs today cannot be accomlished between the ideological lines of a hands off, laissez faire free market Chicago-School style economy.

              Do Labour honestly believe that a country the size of New Zealand with much smaller GDP than Singapore can control our capital markets and somehow create an artificial low dollar?

              YES I honestly do. Why? Because Singapore only overtook us in GDP per capita in the 1980’s. Up until that point we had been LEADING Singapore. BTW we are not creating an “artificially low dollar” we are creating a dollar which is not artificially inflated in value due to highly liquid speculative capital inflows.

              And you can’t sell the idea of housing affordability and at the same preach for people to stop investing in land and housing especially when Labour offer no alternative.

              I’ll give you a clue. Affordable housing means that there can be no more financial speculation on houses. It means that developers who put money into creating new housing will have to do so on the basis of generating affordable added value housing instead of waiting for speculative asset bubbles to inflate and trying to overleverage off capital gains.

              And it means turfing the NATs out and looking at seriously rebuilding the Government’s stock of state houses.

        • lprent 5.2.1.2

          Wrong question… Politically you don’t try to break peoples addictions until they’re ready for it to happen. Think about Nordmeyer.

          Right question. What did Labour do to tilt investment towards more productive sectors? That’s easy – just look at the major programs for reasearch and development (including market development) that national cut to pay for tax cuts.

          Every company I have been in in the last decade has used one or more of those to bring in board additional funding. There are virtually none of those programs running under nationals current regime.

          Even you should be able to answer that question…

  6. burt 6

    rOb

    “time for a change?”

    Love it… the same line that was denigrated when National were saying it now pops from the mouths of the Labour supporters. Why oh why are partisans stupid enough to say ‘time for a change’ is hollow when it’s used against them then go use it again themselves when it suits them.

    • lprent 6.1

      Good to see that you’re as farcical and shallow as ever Burt.. If you changed and put some thought into your comments then we’d have to worry that the bone was being shaved from your skull enough to let some new ideas in there….

    • Colonial Viper 6.2

      Its time for a change burt, try it out, you’ll be a happier camper.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      There’s one major difference burt – NACT weren’t really talking about changing anything except to give themselves and their rich mates more of our money whereas the left is actually talking about changing the system to one that actually works.

    • Akldnut 6.4

      Here you go Burt – It’s time the average Kiwi had an alternative to the B/S thats being peddled and pushed by todays Govt .

      Fixed, all better now!

    • burt 6.5

      Well I did talk about partisans but I didn’t ask for a role call…

      • Vicky32 6.5.1

        “role call…”
        As mistakes go, that’s amusing! (Presumably it ought to be “roll call”)

        • felix 6.5.1.1

          I was laughing at that too but I thought I’d best leave it to the teacher to point out 😉

  7. mcflock 7

    It really is gratifying when other parties move towards policies the Alliance has had for years. It indicates that although I might not have been on the winning team all this time, I was on the morally correct team.

    • burt 7.1

      Ummm, I’ll give you fashionably correct from time to time. Morally correct needs to be justified with a lot more evidence than the call of ‘time for a change’.

      • Colonial Viper 7.1.1

        Its time for a change.

        26 years of neoliberal freemarket nonsense has done nothing but disadvantage the NZ economy and ordinary NZ workers, while putting more power and influence in the hands of those with the most financial capital.

      • mcflock 7.1.2

        I said “indicates”, not proof.

        Other indicators include geni, youth suicide, unemployment rates, ambulatory-sensitive hospital admissions, access to education, access to food, access to water, access to clothing, access to shelter, crime rates, imprisonment rates, crime clearances, general morbidity/mortality, etc etc etc.

  8. Herodotus 8

    Lab 99 version distanced themselves from Lab 84 with “we were wrong”, Lab ’10 distanced themselves from Lab 08 with “we were wrong”. With 15 years of experience in govt we get the appologies of being wrong the previous 2 times. So how can those educated under the Neo Lib system (from Phil, Jones, Cunliffe and co, even Peter Conway) now come out and say that we need a new system and we are to have confidence that they can:
    a: educate us in an election of what they propose with detail, that most can understand.
    b: communicate what benefits and initial suffering from the transition.
    c: Manage the change, and react when reality do not follow planning.
    d: Not tell us in 2018 we were wrong … again
    It sounds like Labs version of national standards.

  9. lefty 9

    It is not just a matter of changing a few economic policies. It is also about courage. Labour likes to talk big when it is in opposition but lacks the guts to stand up to capital when it comes to the crunch. We will see the same old pattern of labour pretending to listen and take on board the concerns of the working class until they are elected. The day after they win an election they will start backtracking as fast as they can. Social democrats are feeble buggers who can’t really make up their mind what they stand for and defend their position. Until they are prepared to name their enemy ,show loyalty to their class, and mobilise the people against the ruling class, not just to vote, they are worse than useless.

    • Carol 9.1

      Until they are prepared to name their enemy ,show loyalty to their class, and mobilise the people against the ruling class, not just to vote, they are worse than useless.

      Actually, I think it is more important for the people to collectively mobilise against the ruling class, and not wait for someone else to do it for us. Decisive leadership is very important for a political party, but without the large numbers of progressive and left-leaning people actively pressurising for change, political leadersip is pretty useless.

  10. Carol 10

    On whether Labour/the left generally has “changed its spots”?

    I noticed a major difference in approach, between Brown & Banks in the Auckland mayor candidate debates, and I think this should guide the way forward for the left grass roots. Basically, Bank’s approach was top down, and was characterised with a, “I know what’s best for Auckland” attitude by Banks. He constantly referred to the corporate/business-based finance people having doing the figures, with the result that Banks, & other powers at the top, were presented as knowing what is best for Auckland. Brown’s approach was more of a bottom up, “consult, engage with local wards & communities, consult, and consult again.” And the people responded to that with the votes.

    This indicates to me, that the power of the broad mass of (relatively) disempowered working, unemployed, and/or underclass people is in mobilising the grass-roots, on & offline. The aim should be to put pressure on the left and progressive representatives in local and national governments. …. including Labour & other left party MPs and leaders, as well as relevant people with a public voice.

    The MSM, frontline messages to the masses is part of a corporate, top-down approach. There are more considered views presented in the op ed columns away from the front page headlines. But most of the public don’t read beyond the front pages & headlines on and offline. The top-down approach of the neoliberals also works through the digitial networks of right wing blogs and discussion forums, where the main neolib ideas are first seeded and then virally circulated. The neoliberal champions have the finances to keep working that system.

    But the power of the people, is in the grass roots, collectively-engaged, bottom-up mobilisation. I know it’s not totally clear-cut with digitised social networking, and talk-back media capabilities that engage with (often asymmetric) two-way processes.

    But the main strength of the neoliberal philosophpies, pushed, in contradictory ways, by the corporate powers, is in the top-down pressure, exerted by those with wealth, polical power & financial influence. The main strength of the less powerful, but larger numbers, of working and unemployed people, is in applying pressure from below, through multiple networks, on and offline, as part of a large, collectively-engaged movement.

    Now is the time to work the grass-roots networks of the left, progressive, dissaffected, and disempowered, working and underclass people, through every means of connection possible, on and offline. And it is especially important now that many Labour & other party leaders, as well as diverse progressive thinkers are opening up the lines of communication between them and ordinary people.

  11. Nick C 11

    This is why the arguement against free trade is absurd: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j0pl_FXt0eM

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      Friedman was extremely intelligent, but also really dumb.

      – New exporting jobs weren’t created to replace US steel jobs lost because US corporations offshored every major industry that they could. Steel was only one of many. Only low value service jobs which could not be exported stayed. (And they had a good crack at offshoring those too e.g. contact centres).

      – What exactly is a US steel mill worker going to do when his plant closes down? He can’t suddenly become a computer programmer or accountant even if those professions become more prominent. He is stuck unemployed for a long period of time. How is he going to feed his family in the meantime while he retrains?

      – Giving USD to Japan in the hopes that they would spend it back in the US was a foolish notion. The Japanese are SAVERS not spenders. And in fact what happened was that money fueled a huge unproductive asset bubble in Japan and all that wealth was lost. That money did not make its way back to the US real economy – except through Japan lending the US Govt money, increasing today’s Federal debt burden and because the US had to pay interest on monies the Japanese leant them it cost them even more. Oh yeah, the Japanese also used a bunch of cash to buy up important US businesses.

      – The banana growing example he gives is dumb. South America has a natural climactic advantage in growing bananas. Japan has no natural climactic advantage in milling steel. In fact, Japan has multiple disadvantages e.g. it has to import all the ore required to make the steel it has none of its own.

      – The laughable idea that Japanese Govt subsidies for their steel producers = foreign aid for the US. Did anyone look at the tax loss to the US Govt and in US GDP to not have all those steel workers employed in well paid manufacturing jobs but go to get jobs flipping burgers instead? All the ancillary engineering and technical companies destroyed by the loss of an entire heavy industry? (And the loss of all the tax revenues provided by them?) Where on earth was the cost/benefit analysis to the US as a country?

      – Cheap steel for US consumers seems like a good deal. For those consumers who still have jobs and can still buy products. For the 20% of Americans who are unemployed or underemployed, having cheap steel benefits only one group: US business barons.

      – Who took into account the costs of socially and economically destroyed steel cities and towns? Detroit, Pittsburgh, were left as shadows of their former selves. Of course, US business leaders now had access to cheap foreign steel, they did not have to pay for the costs of those destroyed towns, and they managed to destroy the strength of the worker unions too when the US mills all closed down and everyone lost their jobs. What a WIN

    • KJT 11.2

      Don’t you mean the argument for free trade. “The theory of comparative advantage” was heavily qualified even by its first advocate.

      “Free trade” has been as ruinous to most of the worlds population as “free markets”.

      Cheats prosper at the expense of people who’s work adds to community wealth.

      Just another excuse to take money off the many and give to the few.

      Do you really believe every country in the world is going to pay back debt by out exporting all the others.

      Read up on Peak oil, peak money and peak resources.

  12. john 12

    http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/category/economic-despair

    Great read with 60minutes doco on the 99s (Those in NeoLiberal paradise of USA who have their unemployment cut off after 99weeks). With Key and Wodney economics profits come before people,in the US Corporations make huge profits by having their factories in China where they work for a fraction of the US wage. That American citizens who end up on the scrap heap are an externalised cost-not their worry buddy! Bye! Scroll down to 3rd report.

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    Stag At Bay: Twelve years ago, Winston Peters was still robust enough to come back from the political crucifixion which his political and media enemies had prepared for him. In his seventies now, the chances of a second resurrection are slim. We should, therefore, prepare for the last gasp of ...
    17 hours ago
  • Earth’s artificial rings
    Satellites pass over NZ all the time (literally). Here I focus on the 187 Planet Labs ‘Dove’ Earth-imaging satellites, and I show that one can determine in advance where they will be, enabling scientists on the ground to correlate their environmental and other data collection with opportunities to get imaging ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 day ago
  • Softy Jejune Parson – the new Mother Superior of Wellington
      The Council of Disobedient Women has learned that the Prefect of Aro Valley has been promoted to a new role with the blessing of the Pope of Wellington. Softy Jejune Parson has been appointed Mother Superior of Woke Wellington for the work she has been doing calling out heretics, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 day ago
  • Atlantic shakeup: US and UK leadership contenders ripping up the usual scripts?
    On both sides of the Atlantic, some purportedly “contentious” and “difficult to deal with” leadership contenders to lead the US and UK, as President and Prime Minister respectively, seem to have thrown a few spanners into the works of the normal messaging most are used to hearing constantly. Except they’re ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    1 day ago
  • Winston is the PM’s problem
    In Question Time today the Prime Minister was naturally facing questions about Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and his dubious party financing arrangements, which seem to violate electoral finance law. Her response was to pretend that it was nothing to do with her, and that she is not responsible for ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Australia’s secret prisoner
    A prisoner stripped of their name, imprisoned for a secret crime after a secret trial, with all details legally suppressed for secret reasons. A story by Kafka or Dumas? China? No, its just the latest stage of Australian tyranny:An Australian citizen was prosecuted, convicted, and jailed in the ACT last ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Bridges should put his money where his mouth is
    Stuff has more details on what New Zealand First's slush-fund has been funding, with much of the spending directly benefiting the party. Which makes it look a lot like hidden donations, rather than the completely-innocent-giant-pile-of-cash Winston is trying to portray it as. The Electoral Commission is now investigating, but Simon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • The APEC police state enabling bill
    I've joked before about how hosting international summits effectively turns part of your country into a police state for the duration. Well, New Zealand is hosting APEC in 2021, with events throughout the year in Christchurch, Wellington, and Auckland. And the government has put up a bill to give itself ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Why coastal floods are becoming more frequent as seas rise
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz I saw an article claiming that “king tides” will increase in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 days ago
  • The cost of a range clearance.
    It has been revealed that firing ranges used by the NZDF while deployed to the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in Bamyan Province, Afghanistan, contained unexploded ordnance that caused numerous deaths and injuries after the NZDF withdrew the PRT in April 2013. In 2014 seven children were killed when an unidentified ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 days ago
  • Still denying responsibility
    Stuff's story on NZDF's negligence around its Afghan firing ranges has produced a result, with a commitment from the Prime Minister for an urgent cleanup. But this doesn't mean NZDF is accepting responsibility for the deaths and injuries that have occured - they're still refusing compensation. Which given that the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A corrupt practice
    Last week RNZ broke the news on NZ First's mysterious "foundation" and its dodgy-looking loans. The arrangement seemed to be designed to evade the transparency requirements of the Electoral Act, by laundering donations. But now Stuff has acquired some of their financial records, and it gone from dodgy to outright ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Democracy “A Bit Bonkers” – Thoughts Inspired By Lizzie Marvelly’s Latest Co...
    Didn't See It Coming: NZ Herald columnist Lizzie Marvelly's latest column merits serious scrutiny because such a clear example of anti-democratic thinking is encountered only rarely on the pages of the daily press. Which is not to say that the elitism which lies at the heart of such social disparagement ...
    3 days ago
  • Colombia: historic memory, massacres and the military
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Initially it was reported that in an aerial bombardment that took place on August 30th seven children were massacred; the figure then went up to eight and then on November 11th Noticias Uno reported that, according to people from the community in close proximity to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    3 days ago
  • On the road to Net Zero, the next step is to update our UN pledge
    A lot has happened since the UN’s report on 1.5ºC was released in October 2018. New Zealand’s Zero Carbon Bill has passed, and enshrines the 1.5ºC goal in law. The UK and France have also legally strengthened their targets to Net Zero 2050. The School Strike For Climate and Extinction ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    3 days ago
  • Corruption as usual
    Next year is an election year, and Labour needs money to fund its campaign. So naturally, they're selling access:Labour is charging wealthy business figures $1500-a-head to lunch with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at its annual conference later this month. [...] On the weekend beginning November 29th, around 800 delegates will ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Fairer rentals
    Yesterday the government announced its changes to tenancy laws, including an end to no-cause evictions, limits on rent increases, and anonyminity for tenants who defend their rights against bad landlords (sadly necessary because landlords are scum who maintain blacklists of "uppity" tenants). They're all good moves, and have resulted in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Another NZDF coverup
    In 2003 New Zealand sent a Provincial Reconstruction Team to Afghanistan to support America's doomed war there. While there, they conducted regular weapons practice on local firing ranges, littering the landscape with unexploded ammunition. These ranges weren't secure - they're on land used by locals for animal herding - so ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • A loss for the Greens
    Green MP Gareth Hughes has announced he will retire at the election. Its understandable - he's been there ten years, and wants to actually see his children grow up rather than miss it while drowning in the toxic parliamentary sewer. But his departure is also a huge loss for the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • New era for Ngāti Kuri and Auckland Museum
    Words and images by Jacqui Gibson Gone are Auckland Museum’s days of doing science using a museum-centric academic approach, after Māori land rights holders Ngāti Kuri gave the museum an ultimatum.
    Tom Trnski holding a fossilised whale tooth from the Far North.Aussie-born Head of Natural Sciences at Auckland Museum ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • Circling vultures: Why MediaWorks TV is really in trouble
    MediaWorks announced in October 2019 that it intended to sell off its struggling television business and cancel or cut back on several popular local programmes, including New Zealand Today, Married at First Sight New Zealand and 7 Days. Its radio and outdoor advertising arms are currently performing well, but MediaWorks’ ...
    Briefing PapersBy Peter Thompson
    4 days ago
  • Scary Opinium Poll
    Westminster voting intention:CON: 44% (+3)LAB: 28% (-1)LDEM: 14% (-1)BREX: 6% (-)via @OpiniumResearch, surveyed this weekChgs. w/ 08 Nov— Britain Elects (@britainelects) 16 November 2019 This, of course, doesn't look good.  Labour have been chucking big, headline grabbing policies left, right and centre ... Well, maybe not right.  Left, left ...
    4 days ago
  • A coward’s ploy.
    Some readers may remember that I mentioned last year that I was applying for NZ citizenship. I filled out the paperwork and had my original citizenship interview in February. Everything went well until they discovered that, because I had spent five months in the US in 2017, I had not ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Left censorship and exclusion against gender-critical women: a Marxist critique
    by Deirdre O’Neill It is becoming quite acceptable for certain sections of the left to declare that people like me – women who are ‘gender critical’ – should not be allowed in leftist or anarchist spaces. Leaving aside the arrogance and implicit authoritarianism of this claim, its lack of critical ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • “Uncertainty” can be better solved with a better grasp of life’s inherent complexities…
    There is an article in The Conversation, written by Jeremy P. Shapiro (Adjunct Assistant Professor of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University), about what he sees as the psychologically-based underpinnings of three main matters that seem to vex people all around the planet. The article is titled “The Thinking ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    5 days ago
  • Citizens vs the Rogue Deep State
    . .   Blogger Martyn Bradbury has won his case against unreasonable search and surveillance against the NZ Police; and subsequent Police attempts to produce evidence in secrecy, in a closed Court. His case highlights a disturbing growing trend in Aotearoa New Zealand for State power to be used against ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Massey University’s free speech policy double-plus-good
    The Committee of Disobedient Women has intercepted an email from Dr Emma Eejut, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Massey University to the university’s Vice-Chancellor, Jan Thomas. Dear Jan, Thank you for your courageous move.  I think 10 pages of blether** should tie any of the students game enough to try holding ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Unacceptable
    That's the only response to the findings of the Ombudsman's investigation into LGOIMA practices at the Christchurch City Council:My investigation identified serious concerns about the Council’s leadership and culture, and its commitment to openness and transparency. In particular, Council staff raised concerns with me about various methods employed by some ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • There is what corruption looks like
    NZ First seems to be nakedly trying to enrich itself from public office:A powerful New Zealand First figure helped establish a forestry company that then pushed for money from two key funding streams controlled by a New Zealand First Minister. An RNZ investigation has found Brian Henry, lawyer for Winston ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Escape from Manus Island
    Behrouz Boochani is an award winning author and journalist. He is also a refugee, who for the past six years has been detained in Australia's offshore gulag on Manus Island, and in Papua New Guinea. But last night, with the cooperation of the WORD Christchurch festival and Amnesty International, he ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • When World’s Collide.
    Different Strokes: If a multicultural immigration policy imposes no obligation on immigrant communities to acknowledge and ultimately embrace their host nation’s most cherished traditions and values, then how is that nation to prevent itself from being reduced to a collection of inward-looking and self-replicating ethnic and cultural enclaves?THE COALITION GOVERNMENT’S ...
    7 days ago
  • Could There Be Method In Massey University’s Madness?
    Protective Zone: Reading the rules and guidelines released by Massey University, it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that its governing body considers the whole concept of free speech a disruptive threat to the orderly imparting of orthodox academic knowledge.IN TRUE ORWELLIAN fashion, Massey University has announced its commitment to ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: We need more trees, not less
    Farmers held a hate-march on Parliament today, complete with MAGA hats, gun-nut signs, and gendered insults. While supposedly about a grab-bag of issues - including, weirdly, mental health - it was clear that the protest was about one thing, and one thing only: climate change. And specifically, forestry "destroying" rural ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The IGIS annual report: Dead letters and secret law
    The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security released their annual report today, and I've been busy reading through it. In amongst the usual review of what they've been doing all year, there's a few interesting bits. For example, a discussion on "agency retention and disposal of information", which points out that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A referendum on bigotry
    The End of Life Choice Bill passed its third reading last night, 69 - 51. Thanks to a compromise with NZ First - which looks to have been necessary on the final numbers - the commencement of the bill will be subject to a referendum. Given the ugliness of the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why municipal waste-to-energy incineration is not the answer to NZ’s plastic waste crisis
    Trisia Farrelly, Massey University New Zealand is ranked the third-most-wasteful country in the OECD. New Zealanders produce five times the global daily average of waste per person – and they are getting more wasteful, producing 35% more than a decade ago. These statistics are likely to get worse following China’s ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Political parties and GMOs: we all need to move on
    Recently more than 150 post-graduate students and young scientists presented an open letter to the Green Party via The Spinoff, encouraging them to reconsider their position on genetic modification. Their target is tackling climate change issues.[1] Can any party continue to be dismissive about genetic modification (GM) contributing to ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Class, Identity Politics and Transgender Ideology
    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    1 week ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    1 week ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    1 week ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    2 weeks ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    2 weeks ago

  • New high tech traps will reduce the need for 1080 poison
    New Zealand First are celebrating the announcement of an investment of $3.5 million into five new trapping devices. These are a range of bait and trap devices, all designed to be left unattended for long periods of time. NZ First conservation spokesperson Jenny Marcroft says that this latest development will ...
    11 hours ago
  • Cowboy clampers will be stymied
    Clayton Mitchell, Spokesperson for Consumer Affairs The ‘wheel clamping’ Bill that will cap clamper fees to $100 passed its third reading in Parliament today. New Zealand First welcomes The Land Transport (Wheel Clamping) Amendment Bill to combat predatory wheel clamping behaviour in what is currently a largely unregulated business. Cowboy clampers are: gouging ...
    2 days ago
  • Mental Health Commission back on track
    Jenny Marcroft, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its first reading in Parliament. “Today’s progress takes serious action on the mental health and addiction crisis the country is facing,” says New Zealand First Health Spokesperson Jenny Marcroft. “The re-establishment ...
    2 days ago
  • New Zealand’s key assets are not for sale: national interest test delivered
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries Today the Government announced the delivery of the promise to protect New Zealand interests by applying a new National Interest Test to the sales of our most sensitive and high risk assets to overseas buyers. This further strengthening of the Overseas Investment Act will ...
    2 days ago
  • National interest test added to protect New Zealanders’ interests
    The Coalition Government is delivering on its promise to protect New Zealanders’ interests by applying a new national interest test to the sales of our most sensitive and high-risk assets to overseas buyers. Under current Overseas Investment Act (OIA) rules, assets such as ports and airports, telecommunications infrastructure, electricity and ...
    2 days ago
  • Electoral law breach allegations
    Rt Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First Allegations raised this morning by Stuff Limited / Fairfax concern a party matter but I am confident that New Zealand First has operated within electoral laws, now and for the last 27 years. Declarable donations were declared to the Electoral Commission. Our ...
    2 days ago
  • Wayne Brown hits back at critics: Ports of Auckland has to move
    The chairman of the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy (UNISCS) working group, Wayne Brown, has hit back at critics of his group’s recommendations to relocate the Ports of Auckland cargo operations to Whangarei’s deepwater port of Northport. The working group's recommendation to close Auckland waterfront to all but cruise ...
    3 days ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    4 days ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    1 week ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    1 week ago
  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Milestone of 1800 new Police officers
    The Coalition commitment to add 1800 new Police officers to frontline policing has been achieved with the graduation of 59 constables from the Royal New Zealand Police College today. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters say today’s graduation means 1825 new Police have been deployed all ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • PM appoints business leaders to APEC Business Advisory Council
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