web analytics

New Zealand’s weakest link

Written By: - Date published: 2:28 pm, June 7th, 2009 - 62 comments
Categories: economy, Environment, farming - Tags:

Is its business leaders.

There’s Keys, the Fyfes, the Weldons. Who all spend so much money to look good on the covers of magazines. Who expect us to love them. They want to be hailed as messiahs or Atlases carrying the rest of us. These are the muppets who banged their heads together for a day to come up with ideas for saving jobs. Could only come up with a watered-down version of the Unions’ 9-day fortnight idea and a cycleway. Three months later, they’ve saved 303 jobs. Meanwhile the economy is losing 300 jobs a day.

But this post isn’t about the Atlases. It’s about the next tier down.

We had a great big dairy boom over the last few years. Exploding demand in India and China mostly. What does a sensible organisation do during a boom? First, it recognises booms don’t last forever. It uses the fruits of the boom to pay down debt, expand capacity sensibly, and be ready to ride the down-wave. What did the corporate dairy farmers do? They used the boom time super-profits to speculate on an ever-rising boom.

They bought up beef and sheep farms and pine plantations. Started converted the land to dairy at huge cost. Took on more and more debt. Much of the new land is very marginal for dairy. Not enough water. Especially land that had just been under pine. The result – higher water demand, higher electricity demand, more run-off, more carbon emissions and fewer carbon sinks (Landcorp, which owns a lot of the land deserves a lot of blame for letting its leaseholders make these conversions. That’s SOEs for you. Stupid system to have public assets that are not managed in the public interest). Producing milk on these new farms is much more expensive. The average cost of producing a kilo of milk-solids in New Zealand is now $4.54.

The boom didn’t last of course. just as these new dairy farms were coming online the world economy has crashed. Now Fonterra’s payout is forecast at $4.55. That’s before the 12% tumble in the price that Fonterra got in its latest auction. A whole lot of dairy land, mostly new stuff, is now unprofitable. Those brilliant businessmen who plowed money into dairy are set to lose their shirts. No sympathy from me. They had it coming. Problem is they’ll drag the rest of us down with them.

That’s what we get for allowing these businessmen so much power over our country. If it were me I wouldn’t bail them out. I would wait until they start to go under. Then buy their farms at rock-bottom prices and turn it back into publicly-owned commercial forest.

62 comments on “New Zealand’s weakest link”

  1. Zittyisatit 1

    Translation….Key is evil …. business leaders are evil ……. the dairy industry is going to have a tough year but that’s OK because they are rich pricks and evil …… ahahahahahaha.

  2. spot 2

    “If it were me I wouldn’t bail them out. I would wait until they start to go under. Then buy their farms at rock-bottom prices….”

    …a strange quote on a site that champions the safeguarding of work/jobs for the common bloke(ess). Turf em all out on their ear I guess, watch the sector slide.

    How about a post on your views for sustainability in the primary sector.

    • djp 2.1

      heh, good spotting, ah, spot

      it is a strange quote indeed (considering the origin) and only serves to illuminate the moral quagmire that is bailouts

  3. Bill 3

    So whereas anybody with a modicum of common sense would have realised that unless you were in at the start, then converting to dairy was guaranteed to be an exercise in the art of getting burned…..the same could be said of house buyers and a million and one other buy now, get rich quick investment opportunities.

    So the small farmer who converted from sheep to dairy because he was going down the gurgler will now be bought over at a basement bargain price by “the big boys”; not the government.

    I’d rather see them bailed by government in the same way I’d rather see home buyers bailed by government and both with strings attached. Won’t happen though.

    Unfortunately we’ll see a further step towards monopolisation and a silent unreported rise in farmer suicides prompted by financial stress…

    • Ag 3.1

      .the same could be said of house buyers and a million and one other buy now, get rich quick investment opportunities.

      And who is responsible for that? Once upon a time business and investment was seen as a sober attempt to build long term value. That’s one reason most New Zealanders have a lot of respect for old companies that have provided services to them over the long term. This slash and burn and merger and takeover culture is quite new. Now it’s all about keeping the stock up. Contemporary business has little in common with the business of 50 years ago.

      When everyone is interested in making a quick buck rather than looking toward the long term, we now know what happens. The financialization of the economy has been bad news for everyone else.

      • Bill 3.1.1

        I disagree Ag.

        The tendency to monopoly has always existed under Capitalism and Capitalism has never been benign

        Once upon a time not so long ago, it was not orthodox to view individual human worth in terms of career, job and material accumulation. Wage slavery was railed against and became a reality only as a result of massive violence. The ascendancy of current orthodoxies that flow at least in part from our apparent acceptance of Capitalism’s vertical division of labour is the result of a number of interacting factors, some quite deliberate and others unintentional.

        Who’s responsible?

        People for accepting slavery, or people for imposing it?

        • Ag 3.1.1.1

          The tendency has always existed. The change, IMHO, is not mostly cultural, but technological. IT gives finance much more information than it used to have, and allows for a much finer grain of decision making when it comes to shifting money around. It has also meant that things move much faster than they used to.

          You can add to that the Hayekian spin on 60s individualism, and that would account for most of it IMHO.

          A lot of very silly people believed in the omniscience or near omniscience of markets. I guess it’s no different to other forms of religious faith.

          • Bill 3.1.1.1.1

            And without the market component of the economy, there would be no money in the shape of profit sloshing around the show.

            The IT stuff moves information. In a marketless economy there would still be a need to move information.

            Our culture gives rise to particular actions and foci. Reinforcing cycles exist between our culture and the resulting actions.

            Like destructive individual habits, it seems a case of breaking particular identifiable cycles by rooting out the primary driving force behind those cycles. In this case the market.

  4. Gordon Shumway 4

    So when it’s all government-owned, who makes the business decisions then? Why will “government” get it right.

    The last major business that the government decided to get into here was trains. Cullen fucked it up from the start MASSIVELY overpaying on the asset. Dickehead move which is at least as bad, probably way more so, that the diary farmers actions you’re criticizing.

    At least get some philosophical consistency.

    When will you guys realise that a decision-maker does not suddenly “get it right” because they are part of “Government”? History is littered with examples of the failure of centralization, yet you continue to bang on about returning to that model. Why?

    It is IMPOSSIBLE to derive and sort of policital/economic system where the business cycle no longer exists. Market enonomies need failure and success.

    As for “no sympathy” to businessmen, that’s they typical meanspirited rubbish that you expect from someone who simply does not understand the vitally important role that entrepreneurs play in modern society.

    • Zetetic 4.1

      “It is IMPOSSIBLE to derive and sort of policital/economic system where the business cycle no longer exists.”

      Well, I’m not one to say ‘impossible’ about things that can’t be proven experimentally or mathematically but you’re right in that booms and busts are inevitable in a capitalist system. That’s my point. So don’t use your boom time super profits on expansion that’s only viable if the boom never ends.

    • doc whose asking 4.2

      Gordon Shumway,

      You read as annoyed, as annoyed as farming folks around here. Let’s try a reality check.. what pushed farming costs up?

      More specifically, farming costs on-farm in enzed?

      Was it boom prospecting or prospectors. Ready market forces or business-minded people.. ?

      How far over the top would you say things had to have gotten before annoyance at one’s incapacity to deal with them was eliminated..?

      And so you’ve gotten a good steer on where I’m coming from, at what point of incompetence will farmers sellout their corporate holdings so some offshore modernist enclosure movement can sew up majority stakeholdings..

      To grow their presumption of control. Of course.

    • Bill 4.3

      “It is IMPOSSIBLE to derive and sort of policital/economic system where the business cycle no longer exists. Market enonomies need failure and success.”

      What drives the boom and bust? The profit motive of the market economy.

      What type of economy is needed? A non-market one.

      What’s IMPOSSIBLE?

    • doc whose asking 4.4

      hi,

      looks like when I posted separate comment a whoopi-doo group got all upset about what might appear to them a threat..

      leaving them aside, I was struck by your need of “philosophical consistency”, and asked for a reality check..

      here allow me ask you consider the weight of your own words.. that markets need success to fail.. the bigger the success the bigger the fail.. okay, if that’s what you want then at least you can own your own problems arising..

      then you talk of the entrepreneurial role in modern society.. and I would ask you for whom do they play, as you termed it… and do they play for home or away..

      unthreatening questions, seeking only that you continue thinking about these big things, consulting friends, advisers and others.. to enable a far greater capability and consistency… and founding a will for sustainable success..

      over to you

  5. Zetetic 5

    Not evil. Incompetent and greedy.

    This post is about sustainability to some degree. The problem with this dumb expansion of dairy into marginal land on boom time money is it was never sustainable.

    Now we’re getting into the bust that follows the boom. The corporate dairy farmers (the ones who live in Remuera, I’ve got less of a problem with the old cocky) will soon be demanding a handout to keep this vital export industry going. They should have been wiser and less greedy when the boom was on. Instead they acted like the bankers, betting on an infinite boom.

    • jarbury 5.1

      Seems like the root of the problem is an expectation that things can magically keep getting better and better forever.

      An interesting piece on this by Herman E. Daly, entitled: From a Failed Growth Economy to a Steady-State Economy looks at how it’s our obsession with growth in a world with finite resources that seems to be at the root of many of the problems we’re facing today.

      Link: http://www.theoildrum.com/node/5464#more

  6. Pascal's bookie 6

    “Market enonomies need failure and success.”

    Fair enough. No sympathy for the failures then right, Mr Philosophical Consistency?

  7. infused 7

    Well my post in the last thread was correct.

  8. The Baron 8

    Goddamn, tried this twice already. Not having a good day.

    Zetty, the majority of these people that you wish harm are either old cockies, or desperate ex-sheep farmers who turned to dairy once it became apparent there was no living left in sheep and wool. The vast majority of these people have nothing at all in common with Fyfe and Weldon.

    I find it pretty incredible that you propose a tough love approach for these people. The ordinary people in towns like Gore, Greymouth, Stratford and Cambridge do it pretty hard when the farms stop spending – yet you wanna screw these farmers down to buy back their properties at rock bottom, regardless of what these will do to these provincial economies, all because an unsubstantiated portion of them are owned by the urban rich. Not to mention the impact this would have on our exports.

    You scream murder cos the Government won’t save urban factory jobs, but you’re prepared to utterly screw the people of provincial New Zealand. What a strange sense of morality.

    • Zetetic 8.1

      I don’t wish them harm. Just don’t wish to give taxpayer charity to people who bet on an infinite boom.

      • The Baron 8.1.1

        Come on Zetty, according to you, these farmers are the same as the oh-so-evil Fyfe and Weldon. So, how do you propose to sort out those farmers that are deserving, and those that aren’t? By their postal codes? Can you substantiate your claim that dairy farming has been overtaken by the urban rich?

        I assure you it hasn’t – the majority of dairy is still owned by people that directly work or manage their holdings. I say again – these people and the towns around them will suffer due to this change of payout. And you advocate making it worse by watching them collapse, so you can buy the once productive land and turn it into forests, which won’t make an income for those towns or the economy for years.

        Face it, you don’t know what the hell you are talking about here, and have gone on with the same crass assumptions that all farmers are rich pricks who deserve to get f*cked over for your socialist utopia. Again – I love it how its A-OK in your book for the government to shit on the rural sector – do you hate them because they don’t vote labour?

        • Zetetic 8.1.1.1

          Yeah, we will suffer for people who over-expanded in the good times on the assumption the good times never end. The world is feeling it with the financiers. NZ will feel it in this dairy bust.

          I don’t hate the farmers. I just don’t want us to have to bail them out for their own mistakes. Personal responsiblity. You know?

          Weldon and Fyfe aren’t evil. They’re just greedy, arrogant men who want to be loved for it.

          • IrishBill 8.1.1.1.1

            It seems you are arguing moral hazard. Fair enough too.

          • djp 8.1.1.1.2

            right moral hazard.. when it is convienient

          • zittyisatit 8.1.1.1.3

            Git . farmers aren’t asking you for a bailout. Fucking tosser farmers have been looking after themselves for longer than you parasite.

  9. RedLogix 9

    The last major business that the government decided to get into here was trains. Cullen fucked it up from the start MASSIVELY overpaying on the asset.

    Getting really tired of this particular Tory lie as well. Toll’s initial asking price was $1b. It took 18 months of terse, hardknuckle negotiation to get it down to $680m. Remember that this was a one off sale, of a unique one off asset, with only one vendor (a very reluctant one at that) to one possible purchaser. In this sort of sale, there really is no such thing as ‘market price’, merely a number that the two parties can agree to…. and one which can be entirely different to any so called ‘book value’.

    The alternatives to this legitimate and negotiated sale, were for either the Govt to subsidise the privately owned Autralian company Toll by pouring hundreds of millions of public monies into OnTrack, or for Cullen to have used Crown power to unilaterally nationalise the asset… telling Toll to sod off with nothing. Which alternative would you have preferred Mr Shumway?

    • The Baron 9.1

      I’m sick of this one too… but:

      “Remember that this was a one off sale, of a unique one off asset, with only one vendor (a very reluctant one at that) to one possible purchaser.”

      This is the very reason why the deal shouldn’t have gone ahead. All the cards were in Toll’s favour, and is the very reason why Cullen overpaid.

      • Luxated 9.1.1

        I’m not sure where you get the idea that the government of the day overpaid.

        Purchase price: $690 million

        Debt purchased: $140 million

        http://www.stuff.co.nz//531008

        Book value of assets at time of purchase: $430 million

        http://www.stuff.co.nz/nelson-mail/business/2468426/KiwiRail-value-halves

        Current value: $349 million

        So what we have is $550 million paid for $430 million dollars of assets, considering that the government did not legislate renationalisation of the assets I would think this is a reasonable price in the circumstances. Or did you expect for Toll to sell ‘at cost’?

        The further $80 million devaluation is quite understandable in the economic circumstances, depreciation will have consumed a large portion of the difference in values as well.

        • George D 9.1.1.1

          Should’ve nationalised it properly – they should have been paid, but minus the value of the assets they depreciated.

          • Luxated 9.1.1.1.1

            I find this statement somewhat confusing. I’m interpreting this in the following ways:

            1) Toll should have been paid a token amount and the assets not paid for.

            2) The assets should have been purchased less future deprectiation.

            3) Asset cost + profit – mismanagement penalty.

            Or something else entirely. I’m genuinely confused here and would like some clarification.

  10. mark47 10

    hey im a sheep farmer last week 40 lambs 4000 bucks thank god for the dairy boom

  11. RedLogix 11

    This is the very reason why the deal shouldn’t have gone ahead

    So you are happy for the taxpayer to have continued effectively pouring hundreds of millions into OnTrack, propping up the profits an Australian owned rail company? That would have eventually cost the taxpayer far more than entire purchase price that Cullen paid.

    You really cannot have it both ways, claiming Cullen overpaid for the asset, when not buying it would have meant overpaying through subsidising Toll anyhow.

    What this really tells us was what a dreadful error it was selling the asset in the first place.

  12. Quoth the Raven 12

    That’s what we get for allowing these businessmen so much power over our country.

    That’s what you get for giving any group too much power. The problem is that power is concentrated in the hands of too few people, business and government. They work so closely together anyway, like church and state in times past.

  13. vto 13

    weak shit

  14. Doc whoisacoc 14

    That was a bit rude vto.

  15. Daveski 15

    What a strange strange post.

    The Govt is pilloried for not doing enough to save jobs yet Zed is dancing on the grave of the farmers.

    Strange also how Cullen’s policies that assumed the boom would roll on and on are universally applauded by the left too.

    Nevermind, Zed gets a reaction so it doesn’t matter about the content.

  16. Mockawaydoc 16

    Will Zet be pissed he(unknowlingly)funding the Shanghai biotech organ pig farming fiesta?.
    Zet ( like most of us) doesn’t like having to constantly bailout non working economic models
    – that is not so strange.

  17. doc whose asking 17

    Some courage on display here today,… one commenter talking “rock bottom prices” when the supposed evils by another relate supposed over-payment by the former Finance Minister.. for something else..

    Can’t say how the E-word strikes true upon the aforementioned supposed successful corporate business folks: can say, however, that valid substance is missing from relevant debate.

    How might the matter of CAO reference one of those names. Might the recent trade trip have proved educative.. or was China presented as something else.

    And just look at some of those connections.. their potential relevance etc..

    All the stuff of courage.. for those with the stomach – oops constitution is less rude for the easily offended – to digest important unboring detail..

    In your relevant service etc..

    .

  18. rave 18

    Its called land farming or land gambling, or wild south.
    Its the story of New Zealand (not Aotearoa).
    What’s new?
    Demands for land nationalisation, or land tax, was big in the 19th century as a way of making farming honest.
    This means no farming the ‘unearned increment’.
    Keeps land values down and the boom busts are less violent.
    Small farmers a more protected.
    Trouble is big farmers ran government.
    Right now the corporate farmers will make us bail them out.
    Watch John Key’s interest in NZ Dairy point the way.
    Answer is to tax capital gains.
    Stops parasites farming us poor suckers.
    No wonder Key is anti.
    No wonder there are so many anti-Keys.

  19. Zaphod Beeblebrox 19

    Really wish kiwis would stop putting ourselves down. Sure not all businessmen are perfect and sure they don’t all share our values and ideologies, but this is the same the world over. NZ has been blessed with some excellent leadership in all areas in the last twenty years and i wish we could highlight these people and seek to emulate their example. You may not read about them in the society pages of the Herald but for every dodgy property or finance tycoon their are young creative types producing companies like 42 below or Trade me or Miramar Studios.

  20. SPC 20

    Well the facts are, we have the lowest rate of R and D and lowest rate for reinvestment of profits.

    One reason is the single mechanism RB OCR which generally overvalues the currency (which is destructive to our export sector) and the other is our taxation regime not including CGT (which would finance the sort of R and D tax incentives common in more productive economies).

    Why does our business put up with this second rate policy regime – is it because of simplistic adherence to the anti-inflation agenda of the RB, is it primary focus on capital gains instead of improvement in productivity?

    As for Fonterra, investing the money from the dairy price boom in expanding production (in lower productivity land areas – increasing the cost of production per unit) rather than added value …

    • Zaphod Beeblebrox 20.1

      In reality NZ would be better off with a lot less dairying. It would much more profitable and less environmentally destructive to concentrate on more efficient enterprises like grain crops like corn and barley, fruit crops and speciality food products.
      With the impending food crisis which is inevitable as a result us running out of oil and the effects of global warming, I doubt that we will even be allowed to waste our water catchments, prime soils and clean air on an activity as wasteful as this.
      All this may be something for the NFF and Fonterra to ponder as they set a course for the future.

      • Jared 20.1.1

        Are you suggesting demand for milk solids will simply disappear overnight? Who will pay for this conversion, and who’s arse will roll when oversupply leads to a collapse in market price for grain? I question the suitability of current dairy land for such a conversion anyway. Ironically this post smacks of a belligerent approach to responsibility. Sheep Farmers who were faced with rock bottom wool and mutton prices converted to dairy farming to survive. The boom could never have survived indefinitely, but we have strong exports even if the milk solid prices are low at the moment. If you understood rural finances you would know that farmers use leverage adequately and understand the implications of cyclical market movements. But, like home owners who speculated on the housing boom, I don’t believe farmers have a right to a hand out (I don’t think they expect either). If they are in trouble, it is their problem, and they need to deal with the consequences.

  21. coolas 21

    Have you noticed the way Key, Weldon, & Henry Van de Fonterra all say, ‘Hey Look’ a lot, but they don’t seem to see much. Like a Recession on the way. I was warned by my accountant in 2007 that shite was on the way due to US credit heat. He’s a modest honest man with his finger on the pulse. Much too decent to be a CEO.
    Zetelic’s post is spot on. The ‘hey look’ guys are all puffed up. They do very well for themselves with massive salaries & bonuses but they’re modern day pirates robbing us all. Like Fay & Richwhite – what scum!

    • Pascal's bookie 21.1

      heh,

      on hearing ‘hey look’

      brain adds ‘it’s the goodyear blimp’

      always watch the hands.

      as it were.

  22. Trevor Mallard 22

    Minor factual point – Landcorp does not own the land that has/is being converted to dairy in the central north island. They are doing the conversions and leasing the land for a fixed term but we should not pretend that it would have stayed in forestry if they had not beeen involved. The important point is that the policy settings were wrong nad are wrong again now. It isn’t rocket science but it is really clear that dairy is not paying anything like its full share of emmissions and pollution costs.

    Getting the ETS right is part of the solution but just as important is getting something like the Taupo catchment arrangements up and running more generally.

    • George D 22.1

      Trevor, the “if it wasn’t me someone else would have” defence is pretty weak from a 8 year old. You had the power to block it. You could have banned conversions directly, through the introduction of law. You were confronted with this problem directly by environmental organisations year after year. You didn’t do it. You are responsible, along with the rest of the Labour Party.


      The important point is that the policy settings were wrong and are wrong again now. It isn’t rocket science but it is really clear that dairy is not paying anything like its full share of emmissions and pollution costs.

      Let me say explicitly two things.

      Firstly, the Labour Party for between 2002 and 2008 blocked the implementation of policy instruments that would have addressed this problem, either directly or indirectly.

      There are plenty of direct policy instruments, such as a ban on deforestation, higher fuel efficiency, the thermal ban*, etc., that could have been put in place, in addition to a whole of Government tax/ETS.

      There was an extended consultation period, with document after document produced. There were already a number of well established models, developed in the 1990s and in use overseas in 2002, which Labour could have adopted. Finally, a credible carbon tax proposal was established in 2005. Labour then dumped it. Chickenshits. Labour then spent another 3 years delaying on the next scheme.

      Secondly, the ETS Labour put in place (and National have removed) shelters agriculture very heavily until 2020.That is almost the opposite of putting a proper price signal.

      The Labour Party never considered climate change a priority, and gave the issue lip service. It implemented an ETS which subsidise polluters to the tune of billions, and lumps the cost on taxpayers.

      You’ve also taken a weak line on the destruction of our rivers and lakes by dairy.

      So when you say that the policy settings were wrong Trevor, I have to ask whether you were awake in cabinet meetings. Perhaps you can explain why you delayed and delayed and dumped, and then delayed some more.

      *the thermal ban was eventually put in place after 5 years of new gas stations and Huntly on coal, and it was one of the very few credible actions Labour took on climate change.

    • The Baron 22.2

      “The important point is that the policy settings were wrong nad are wrong again now”.

      How reassuring. What exactly were your bunch doing that all these things are only being found out now? Oooooh was this the stuff you would have gotten around to in the 4th term, along with Pay equality and OECD ranking improvement.

      Oh dear, if only I had have voted to keep you in. For shame.

  23. Mark M 23

    Zit

    ” Sorry but they will drag us all down”

    Do you mean the people who never take a risk , never create jobs for people like you.

    If there werent risk takers , that you seem to hate virulently ,where do you think your benefit payments would come from.

    Its people like you who give the left a bad name

    [lprent: The assumption that people who disagree with them are supping on the governments purse is what gives stupid wingnuts (like you) a bad name. You are most likely projecting your own selfish behaviour onto people who are not as self-centred as you are. Surprisingly, and unlike you, there are people who tend to think about the overall wellbeing of society rather than just how to screw everyone else to better themselves. A lot of them comment here.

    A lot of them run businesses or are the centre of the skills for running a successful business, taking the appropriate risks. It is really only the meathead wannabes (probably including you) who project such black and white perceptions on other people. Successful business people are very aware of how much they depend on other people’s skills to successfully avoid the disasters that their risk taking leaves them open to.

    If you can’t say anything intelligent, then troll elsewhere. Your previous comments don’t give me any impression that you have much to contribute. I’d also suggest reading the policy. ]

  24. the sprout 24

    National’s TOTAL lack of ANY plan so far is an utter f*cking disgrace.
    they deserve to be recorded in history as the One Term Wonders they will soon be known as come 2011.

  25. George D 25

    How is this post anything but an indictment on Labour

    Can someone please tell me whether the New Zealand Labour Party was, or was not, in Government for the last 9 years. Because after reading this post, I get the impression that they were not.

    • Maynard J 25.1

      There is plenty of criticism of Labour in there – why would you assume otherwise?

      You take a strange line – that it is impossible for Labour to be imperfect; you have preconceived ideas about what they could\should have done, and you are now looking back and seeing for the first time that they were not.

      I hope you do a lot more to get things done that you would like to see happen than complain about Labour on blogs and I hope you do those things with the alacrity with which you criticise Labour.

    • merlin 25.2

      I think you’re guilty of reading in words that aren’t there.

      Zetetic doesn’t mention any party in the post. It hardly reads as an endorsement of Labour or a defence of their time in government. The behaviour of Landcorp, an SOE, under Labour is expressly criticised.

      • George D 25.2.1

        I know that Zeteitec doesn’t mention any party in the post. That’s why these come out as general criticisms, as though responsibility does not lie directly with specific individuals who made deliberate decisions not to interfere or regulate particular parts of the economy, and let things run their course.

    • Trevor Mallard 25.3

      And at no stage did we have majority support in Parliament for either the carbon charge or deforestation legislation suggested. Remember the Maori party is often to the right of the Nats on these issues. There was probably no area where we spent so much energy for so little progress. George you and your mate Baron need to get real.

      • jarbury 25.3.1

        If only the Greens had got those 600 extra votes in 2005…..

      • The Baron 25.3.2

        Oh well, ain’t democracy a bitch eh Trev.

        Anyway, what a load of bollocks – you did so have the numbers. Christ, I cannot believe that you’re trying out such historical revisionism to try backup your partisan beat up:

        1999-2002: Labour + Alliance coalition, Green supporting – what was wrong with doing it there? You had a 6 seat majority then! Who opposed these measures – the Alliance? Or are you LYING ABOUT TRYING.

        2002-2005: Labour + Progressives (HAH), Greens and United Future supporting – you and the Greens had 61 out of 120 seats in the house. Did the Greens not come to the party? OR ARE YOU LYING ABOUT TRYING?

        2005-2008: Ahh now maybe only this one you can blame on the Maori party – given that they didn’t exist in the other two elections. But then again, when you sold your soul to Winston Peters, what could you expect?

        Trev, what a load of old cobblers. You could at least run a line that wouldn’t take me two minutes to refute.

        • Luxated 25.3.2.1

          Baron before you get on your high horse next time please do read what has been written.

          “And at no stage did we have majority support in Parliament for either the carbon charge or deforestation legislation suggested.”

          This is directly from Trevor’s post which you have replied to.

          The key words here are ‘legislation suggested’. To me this says that Labour could not find a suitable compromise which suited enough of the parties to actually pass a bill. The Greens typically want more environmentally than Labour is willing commit to, which would cause some problems with Labour not willing to risk scaring the horses.

          It is similar to the current situation in Australia, their ETS is currently in the Senate but is unlikely to pass. Labor supports the bill going through now (obviously), the Liberals want to wait until Copenhagen, the Nationals don’t want anything to do with it and the Greens don’t think it goes far enough. So in this situation you have nearly 91% or more of the house currently supporting the bill in principle but it still won’t pass (I’m unsure where the CLP, Family First or Nick Xenophon stand).

          • George D 25.3.2.1.1

            Trevor, you chose to go with Peters and Dunne. Your choices.

            You didn’t want the Greens in 2002.

            You weren’t prepared to give the Maori Party enough in 2005.

  26. mark47 26

    isnt the only reason we have fonterra because labour let them avoid the commerce commoison

  27. Galeandra 27

    ‘So when you say that the policy settings were wrong Trevor, I have to ask whether you were awake in cabinet meetings. Perhaps you can explain why you delayed and delayed and dumped, and then delayed some more.’

    While I have felt similarly disappointed, but unimpressed by the shrillness of this poster’s hectoring tone, I now accept that a lot of the waterish policy set in place was a reflection of the limited lengths to which the conservative fart tax complaining part of the NZ psyche would allow the Government to go. I think Labour probably settled for what could be rather than what should be.

    I have to say as a visitor to the site that I am underwhelmed by the clever-dick immaturity of some of the posters. Even with extremely troubled waters ahead for the global economy/environment, it seems unlikely we’ll ever achieve the necessary concensus to achieve really effective decision-making. We may well go down squabbling.

    • lprent 27.1

      …it seems unlikely we’ll ever achieve the necessary concensus to achieve really effective decision-making. We may well go down squabbling.

      Nature of the net, and it has been like that since I first started connecting to BIX via a dialup modem and an international toll call. There is value in eternally chewing the fat, you tend to find out exactly what kind of ‘gotchas’ are likely to spoil a perfect plan. Furthermore you’ll find that you get agreement that way. It is after all how the net was raised – one of the greatest engineering achievements of last century.

      Sure we get facile comments. You learn after a while who is worth listening to. Actual experience, skills, and ability to think tend to shine through.

  28. Pascal's bookie 28

    “We may well go down squabbling.”

    You just summarised the whole dang internet, in 25 letters.

    Surely there is some sort of prize. 😉

    But stick around please. More nice talkers makes for more nice talking.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    5 hours ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    5 hours ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    16 hours ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    19 hours ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    21 hours ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    21 hours ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    24 hours ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    24 hours ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 day ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 day ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    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 According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 days ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    3 days ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    3 days ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    4 days ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    4 days ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    5 days ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    5 days ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    5 days ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    6 days ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    6 days ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    7 days ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    1 week ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How much does flying contribute to climate 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 How much does our use of air travel contribute to the ...
    SciBlogsBy Shaun Hendy
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: The task before us
    Two weeks ago, the Zero Carbon Act became law. Right this moment, the Climate Change Commisison will be working on its initial budgets for 2022-25 and 2026-2030, and the UN has just given them a very clear steer:Countries must make an unprecedented effort to cut their levels of greenhouse gases ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2309) Mr. Spock
    Minor planet/asteroid (2309) Mr. Spock is named not for the character in Star Trek, but for a cat that was itself imperturbable, logical, intelligent and had pointed ears In a preceding blog post I introduced one of my favourite asteroids, (2472) Bradman, and also mentioned (6581) Sobers amongst a few ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Measles deaths and antivax misinformation
    Today the death toll from measles in Samoa rose to 32. All but four of the dead were less than 5 years old. Absolutely terrible, heartbreaking, news. That statistic alone should be enough to give the lie to the common claim by antivaccination activists plague enthusiasts that “measles is a ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Colombia: the state murder of Dilan Cruz
    by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh It is late here in Bogotá, almost 11.30pm on Monday the 25th of November as I write this. The day began full of hope with yet more massive marches throughout the country, a mix of the International Day of Non-Violence Against Women and the National Strike. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
    Anti-fluoride activists are rubbing their hands in glee over what they claim is “yet another study” showing fluoride harms the brains of children. But their promotion relies on IQ relationships which the paper’s authors acknowledge disappearing when outliers or other factors are considered. And they completely ignore other relationships ...
    1 week ago
  • The rise and collapse of classical political economy
    The feature below is the conclusion of A History of Economic Thought, whose author was a leading Marxist economist in Russia in the early 20th century, Isaac Ilyich Rubin.  The book arose from a course he ran at Moscow University following the Russian Revolution.  First published in Russian in 1929, ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Among my favourite asteroids: (2472) Bradman
    There are many thousands of asteroids with formal names, some humdrum but other more noteworthy (depending on your predilections). One of my favourites, the name of which I was involved in suggesting, is (2472) Bradman, named for the Australian cricketing great.  As a minor planet (synonym: asteroid) spotter, I have ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Some cheap soundbites i thought up while reading about the underwhelming Conservative manifesto
    Tory manifesto: big on austerity, low on promise, non-existent on delivery. The Tories: the party so big on ambition they couldn't be arsed writing a manifesto. MLK: "I have a dream!"BJ: "I'll just have a nap." Labour: Broadband!Tories: Narrow minds! Labour have hope, dreams and ambition. The Tories will save ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Measles vaccination required to travel to islands and Phillipines
    The Ministry of Health has announced that “people under the age of 50 travelling from New Zealand to Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji” are now on the list of national priorities for MMR vaccination. Given the outbreaks of measles in Samoa, Tonga, Philippines and Fiji, the Ministry of Health is ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Giving the finger to Beijing
    Hong Kong has been protesting for six months for, demanding democracy, human rights, and an end to police violence. Today, they went to the polls in district council elections - a low-level of government with virtually no power, similar to community boards in New Zealand. But while the positions themselves ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Colombia’s national strike
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh On Friday 22nd of November a curfew came into effect and troops were deployed on the streets, here in Bogota. It was the first time since September 1977 that a curfew had been imposed on the city. The decision was a cynical pre-planned ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • National supports slavery
    Meanwhile, while the government is planning to restore voting rights to prisoners, National is promising to turn our prisons into US-style slave-labour camps:The Opposition is proposing compulsory education, training or employment for prisoners who are serving sentences of two years or more. [...] On Sunday, National Party Leader Simon Bridges ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Erasing the infamy
    Last year, the Supreme Court confirmed that National's prisoner voting ban - a law so shoddily passed that it brought Parliament into disrepute - breached the Bill of Rights Act. This year, the Waitangi Tribunal added that it also breached the Treaty of Waitangi. And now, the government has finally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Trade unions that never fight the sex industry bosses
    Excerpts from Being and Being Bought, by Kajsa Ekis Ekman Spinifex Press, 2013. Ekman, a Swedish journalist and critic, brings together a Marxist and feminist analysis of prostitution and surrogacy in this groundbreaking book. This is the second part of a synopsis and brief commentary of the book by Daphna ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • A Team Approach to Tackling the Psychology Replication Crisis
    Dalmeet Singh Chawla In 2008, psychologists proposed that when humans are shown an unfamiliar face, they judge it on two main dimensions: trustworthiness and physical strength. These form the basis of first impressions, which may help people make important social decisions, from who to vote for to how long a ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Big Pharma has failed: the antibiotic pipeline needs to be taken under public ownership
    Claas Kirchhelle, University of Oxford; Adam Roberts, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and Andrew Singer, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology Antibiotics are among the most important medicines known to humankind, but we are running out of this crucial resource. Decisive action is needed if we are to retain access to ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bloody Great Political Story (From A Parallel Universe).
    Things That Make You Go - Hmmmm: “All right. Let me come at this another way. I’m guessing that what you’ve got in that box contains names, dates, bank account numbers – all the details you need to put Winston Peters and Jacinda Ardern squarely in the cross-hairs. So, the first ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Fisk
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Submit!
    The Environment Committee has called for submissions on the Climate Change Response (Emissions Trading Reform) Amendment Bill. Submissions are due by Friday, 17 January 2020, and can be made online at the link above. The bill makes a number of changes to the ETS, including linking it to the carbon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Message From Messenger Park.
    Coasters Turn Out In Droves: It’s precisely the widening gulf between those with actual experience of things like guns, chainsaws and drilling machines, and those who regulate their use, that accounts for the angry crowd at Greymouth’s Messenger Park on Sunday, 17 November 2019. In the rarefied atmosphere where decisions ...
    2 weeks ago
  • JFK’s assassination: a bit of physics
    There are perennial arguments about the circumstances of the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963, and in particular whether more than one shooter is required by the evidence (such as the Zapruder film). Those who know little about physics frequently claim that the sharp backwards motion of JFK’s head as ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Is car washing so bad we need to ban it?
    Apparently, some people enjoy washing their cars. Each to his or her own, I suppose. I mean, some people like duck shooting, some people follow Coronation Street, and some people’s idea of a good day out is to sit on a grass bank at Seddon Park and watch cricket all ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • If Shane Jones isn’t corrupt, he is trying very hard to look it
    Last week we learned that New Zealand First had apparently tried to enrich itself from public office, with a dodgy forestry company linked to a number of NZ First figures sticking its hand out repeatedly for government money. Today in Question Time Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones had his ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: We need to end fossil fuels
    Finally, governments seem slowly to be beginning to act on climate change. But its not enough. While they're publicly signing up to targets, they're planning to destroy the world by continuing fossil fuel extraction:The world’s nations are on track to produce more than twice as much coal, oil and gas ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • As bad as we expected
    Stuff has begun interviewing NZ First's secret donors, and it turns out that its as bad as we expected. They start with racing industry figure Garry Chittick, who is predictably grumpy about NZ First's coalition choices. Meanwhile, I'm looking at the list of pork NZ First has effectively given its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Second (And Final?) Crucifixion Of Winston Peters.
    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 ...
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks 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
    2 weeks ago

  • Eight Queen’s Counsel appointed under new criterion
    Eight Queen’s Counsel have been appointed under a process that includes the new criterion of a commitment to improving access to justice, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. “The new criterion was included this year. It emphasises that excellence and leadership in the profession can be seen through a wider, community ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Major expansion for Wellington’s Onslow College
    Onslow College in Wellington will get 20 new classrooms for more than 400 students, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. The much-needed investment will relieve growth pressure the school has been experiencing for some time. Seven existing classrooms which have deteriorated over time will also be replaced, bringing the total ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Talented young Kiwis awarded PM’s Scholarships to Asia and Latin America
    More than 250 young New Zealanders will add international experience to their education, thanks to the latest Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Latin America (PMSLA), Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. This round of scholarships supports 252 recent graduates or current students to undertake study, research or internships ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government to improve competitiveness and transparency in the retail fuel market
    Consumers will benefit from a more competitive, transparent retail fuel market as a result of changes the Government will be making in response to the findings of the Commerce Commission’s study of the fuel sector. “We accept the Commission’s findings and, as the Prime Minister has said, we’re ready to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • More cancer medicines for more people
    Five new cancer medicines have now been funded this year, meaning thousands of people have more treatment options PHARMAC has today announced that it has approved two new medicines for funding – fulvestrant for breast cancer and olaparib for ovarian cancer. This follows earlier decisions on advanced lung cancer treatment alectinib, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government acts to sort out electoral ‘coin toss’ problem
    The Minister of Local Government, Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the Government will consider making changes to local electoral legislation before the 2022 elections to fix the problems that have arisen where elections are settled by a coin toss.  The Minister says the recount process in the Murupara- Galatea ward at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • NZ to Join IMO Convention to Reduce Ship Emissions
    New Zealand will sign up to new international maritime regulations to reduce ship emissions and lift air quality around ports and harbours, Associate Transport Minister Julie Anne Genter announced today. Subject to completion of the Parliamentary treaty examination process, New Zealand will sign up to Annex VI of MARPOL, an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Bill to empower urban development projects
    New legislation to transform our urban areas and create sustainable, inclusive and thriving communities will tomorrow be introduced to Parliament, Urban Development Minister Phil Twyford said. “The Urban Development Bill gives Kāinga Ora-Homes and Communities the tools it needs to partner with councils, communities, mana whenua and private developers to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Early Learning Action Plan to kickstart long term change
    Today’s launch of He taonga te Tamaiti: Every child a taonga: The Early Learning Action Plan 2019-2029 provides the foundation for long-lasting changes to early learning, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says.   “Early learning will be one of the Government’s top education priorities going into 2020,” Chris Hipkins said.   ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Climate change lens on major Government decisions
    Major decisions made by the Government will now be considered under a climate change lens, Minister for Climate Change James Shaw announced today. “Cabinet routinely considers the effects of its decisions on human rights, the Treaty of Waitangi, rural communities, the disability community, and gender – now climate change will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New Tertiary Education Commission Board announced
    Education Minister Chris Hipkins today announced the appointment of Māori education specialist Dr Wayne Ngata and Business NZ head Kirk Hope to the Board of the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). Dr Alastair MacCormick has been reappointed for another term. “Wayne Ngata, Kirk Hope and Alastair MacCormick bring a great deal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Next phase of Pike River recovery underway in time for Christmas
    The next phase of the Pike River Re-entry project is underway, Minister Responsible for Pike River Re-entry Andrew Little says. “Fresh air will be pumped into the Pike River Mine drift this week, following acceptance of the plan for re-entry beyond the 170m barrier by New Zealand’s independent health and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Insurance contracts to become easier to understand and fairer for consumers
    New Zealand consumers will have greater certainty about their insurance cover when they need to make claims as a result of proposed government changes. “Insurance is vitally important in supporting consumers and businesses to be financially resilient when unexpected events happen,” Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Kris Faafoi said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • A new opportunity for Ngāpuhi collective and regional negotiations
    The Crown is providing an opportunity for the hapu of Ngāpuhi to rebuild its framework from the ground up for collective negotiations to deal with its historical Treaty claims, Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little and Minister for Māori Development Nanaia Mahuta announced today. The Crown is also ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Referendums Framework Bill passes third reading
    A Bill enabling referendums to be held with the 2020 General Election has passed its third reading. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Act is important for upholding the integrity of New Zealand’s electoral process. “The Government has committed to holding a referendum on legalising recreational cannabis at the next ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Referendums website and initial cannabis Bill launched
    The first release of public information on the two referendums to be held at next year’s General Election was made today with an informative new Government website going live. Additionally, the draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill has been released, showing the strict controls on cannabis that will apply if ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to ban foreign donations
    The Government is taking action to protect New Zealand from foreign interference in our elections by banning foreign donations to political parties and candidates, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. Legislation will be introduced to Parliament this afternoon and passed under urgency. “There’s no need for anyone other than New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Governments and tech converge to strengthen joint response to online terror events
    Governments and tech companies are holding a two-day workshop, hosted by YouTube/Google in Wellington, to test the Christchurch Call Shared Crisis Response Protocol. The workshop aims to refine and strengthen the response in the event of a terrorist attack with online implications. Companies, governments, civil society experts and NGOs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Cancer Control Agency to drive improved care
    The new independent Cancer Control Agency has formally opened today, delivering on the Government’s plan to improve cancer care in New Zealand.         Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Health David Clark marked the occasion by announcing the membership of the Advisory Council that will be supporting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Supporting small business to prosper
    Small businesses who deal with government departments are set to be paid faster and have improved cash flow as a result, under a new strategy released today. The Government is backing recommendations from the Small Business Council (SBC) and has agreed to implement three initiatives immediately to support business and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bill has biggest education changes in decades
    The Education and Training Bill 2019, introduced in Parliament today, proposes the biggest education changes in decades and is an important step towards improving success for all our learners, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. “The Bill’s rewrite of education legislation is long overdue. Indeed one Education Act, parts of which ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Bali Democracy Forum to focus on democracy and inclusivity
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio will travel to Bali to represent New Zealand at the 12th Bali Democracy Forum that will be held on the 5-6 December. “The Forum is a valuable opportunity for Asia-Pacific countries to share experiences and best practice in building home-grown democracy and fostering ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Innovative technology and tools to better manage freedom camping
    A package of new and expanded technology and other tools will encourage responsible camping and help communities and local councils better manage freedom camping this summer, Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. “Our Government has been investing to improve the freedom camping experience for everyone because we want to support ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Improving wellbeing by understanding our genes
    The government is laying the groundwork to understanding our genes – work that can help us tackle some of our biggest health challenges, like heart disease and diabetes, says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. $4.7 million has been invested in the Genomics Aotearoa Rakeiora programme. The programme will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government investing to future proof school property
    Nearly every state schools will receive a capital injection next year valued at $693 per student to bring forward urgent school property improvements, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today.  The one-off cash injection is the first project to be announced from the Government’s infrastructure package ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Infrastructure investments to be brought forward
    The Government has decided to bring forward major investments in New Zealand’s infrastructure to future proof the economy. “Cabinet has agreed to a significant boost to infrastructure investment. I have directed the Treasury to help bring together a package of projects that can be brought into the Government’s short and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Future-proofing New Zealand
    It is a great pleasure to be with you today in Whanganui. Like the Prime Minister I grew up with the TV clip of Selwyn Toogood booming “What do you say Whanganui, the money or the bag?” to an unsuspecting ‘It’s in the Bag’ audience. For those under the age ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand’s newest Great Walk, the Paparoa track opened – an asset for the West Coast
    New Zealand’s newest Great Walk, the Paparoa Track, was officially opened in Blackball today by the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage alongside the family members of the Pike 29 and Ngāti Waewae.  Local mayors and MP for the West Coast Hon Damien O’Connor were also in attendance. “Paparoa National Park ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • P-8A Poseidon base works commence
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark turned the first sod of earth on the infrastructure works for the new P-8A Poseidon fleet at RNZAF Base Ohakea today. “The Coalition Government’s investment in Ohakea will ensure the Royal New Zealand Air Force can manage, maintain and task the new fleet efficiently ahead ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Launch of the National Emergency Management Agency
    Civil Defence Minister Hon Peeni Henare today announced the establishment of the new National Emergency Management Agency from 1 December 2019.  The National Emergency Management Agency will replace the Ministry of Civil Defence & Emergency Management. It will be an autonomous departmental agency, hosted by the Department of the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NASA 2020 Internship applications open
    New Zealand tertiary students with top grades and a passion for space will once again be offered the opportunity to work with the world’s best and brightest at NASA, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Recipients of the New Zealand Space Scholarship are nominated by the Ministry of Business, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand to send more medical staff and essential supplies to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further support to Samoa in the wake of an ongoing measles outbreak in the country. Additional medical supplies and personnel, including a third rotation of New Zealand’s emergency medical assistance team (NZMAT), further nurse vaccinators, intensive care (ICU) specialists and Samoan-speaking medical professionals, will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cost less of a factor for Kiwis seeking GP care
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says new data showing a sharp drop in the number of people who can’t afford to visit their GP is a sign of real progress. One year after the Government made it cheaper for about 600,000 Kiwis to visit their doctor, results of the New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Trade for All Board releases recommendations
    The Trade for All Advisory Board has released its recommendations for making New Zealand’s trade policy deliver for all New Zealanders.  The report was today welcomed by Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker.  “Trade is crucial to this country’s economy and well-being, and the benefits need to flow to all ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Porirua housing partnership to improve housing in the city
    A partnership signed today between the Crown and local iwi, Te Rūnanga o Toa Rangātira (Ngāti Toa), will improve the quality of state housing in western Porirua, says the Associate Minister of Housing, Kris Faafoi. Contracts have been signed at a ceremony at Takapūwāhia Marae, in Porirua, between Ngāti Toa, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minster Delivers Erebus Apology
    E aku manukura, tēnā koutou. He kupu whakamahara tēnei i te aituā nui i Te Tiri o Te Moana, i Erebus I runga i tētahi maunga tiketike i riro atu rā tētahi hunga i arohanuitia E murimuri aroha tonu ana ki a rātou.  Kua titia rātou ki te manawa, mō ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • PGF backing Southland skills
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is supporting an initiative that will help Southlanders into local jobs, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced in Invercargill today. “I’m pleased to be in the great South today to announce PGF support of $1.5 million for Southland Youth Futures. This initiative is all ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Ten Southland engineering firms get PGF funding
    Ten engineering firms in Southland are receiving Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment to lift productivity and create new jobs, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones said today in Invercargill. Minister Jones announced over $4 million of PGF support for projects in the engineering and manufacturing, and aquaculture sectors and for ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Public service gender pay gap continues to close and more women in leadership
    The Government has made good progress towards eliminating the gender pay gap in the Public Service, Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter announced today.  The latest data from the annual Public Service Workforce Data Report, shows that the 2019 Public Service gender pay gap fell to 10.5% from 12.2% in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Safer speed limits for schools
    The Government is delivering on its commitment to make streets safer for kids to walk and cycle to school, by reducing speed limits to a maximum of 40 km/h around urban schools and 60 km/h around rural schools. “Our kids should have the freedom to walk and cycle to school ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago