Newsflash: Nation not a Business

Written By: - Date published: 8:11 am, September 2nd, 2010 - 50 comments
Categories: business, Economy, same old national - Tags:

Despite how (and for whom) National Ltd govern, the nation state is still not a business; nor will it ever be.

Bryan Gould has a good article on the difference between government and business – and why businessmen often make bad politicians (take note Steven Joyce).  Concepts that work well in business often don’t flow through to a government managing an entire economy.

For a start the economy requires government spending to be counter-cyclical.  You balance the books in the good times (thanks Michael Cullen), and spend in recession to keep money flowing – so it’s not harder for workers and businesses than needs be.  Labour understood and introduced a spending program just before the election.  They didn’t get to ramp it up properly, so we have far more unemployment than we need to have.  National’s program instead consists of cuts, an increase in GST to depress sales and the economy further, and tax cuts for the rich who have the ability to ride out a recession anyway.

National also fall for the “lump of labour” fallacy – the belief that there is a fixed amount of work available and that the task is to decide how that is to be shared out.  But by investing during a recession you create jobs.  And those jobs create incomes, which allows spending, which creates jobs, which…

Instead National cut.  Operating like a business that needs to batten down the hatches in difficult times they throw men overboard and cut the lifeblood of the country.  We all suffer.

Connected to this is that measurements of success are vastly different in business and government.  The businessman (& National Ltd) see only the famous “bottom line”.  It is all about the mighty dollar.  Governments are representatives of their citizens (all too often figuratively rather than literally); as such they should represent their best interests.  Much like CEOs forgetting the shareholders they’re meant to be enriching when they give themselves another hefty pay-rise, National fail to care about the citizens they’re supposed to be representing.

The measurements of success for a society is the health and happiness of its citizens, not the fiscal deficit.  Whilst we need to live within our means, no citizen is better off without a job.  They don’t do better when your policies and pay stinginess mean that teachers and health professionals are striking.  People aren’t happier the more you spend on prisons, their mental health is not improved by you cutting their access to ready education in their community.  They don’t lead fuller lives when you reduce the ability to get a good start in life with quality early childhood education.

National need to realise that a society is its citizens, not a set of numbers.  An economy is made of people, more than it is made up of dollars.  And government is for the people, not for the accounts ledger.

50 comments on “Newsflash: Nation not a Business ”

  1. Carol 1

    Thank-you, Bunji. I woke up thinking along the lines of your post this morning, especially these bits:

    The measurements of success for a society is the health and happiness of its citizens, not the fiscal deficit….

    National need to realise that a society is its citizens, not a set of numbers. An economy is made of people, more than it is made up of dollars. And government is for the people, not for the accounts ledger.

    And I was thinking we desperately need a government that shifts the focus back to the well-being of the whole society. I think that the first priority should be to articulate the kind of society the country wants, then to develop a range of policies that aim to deliver that. Within those policies should be economic & financial policies aimed at delivering that kind of society.

    But, instead, we have government run by accountants, business people, economists and financial advisors, who prioritise the economic/financial policies, then organise all the other policies around it.

  2. Bored 2

    I read the Gould article with interest earlier, and note that one of the first feedbacks stated this was pure Keynes and likely to draw the opposition of market economists. True, so I switched back to reading Tony Judt “Ill Fares the Land” in which his analysis basically states that the line between private delivery and public goods needed to be pragmatic. Neither has a monopoly of truth.

    From where any informed or critical observer sits neither a “Keynesian” Gould nor his “dry” critics are proposing anything realistic. If they were truly pragmatic they would recognise that both their economic paradigms rely upon a cornucopian abundance model on a finite planet. This is clearly a nonsense. Compound growth makes mathematically certain that limits will be reached, my critique is that neither models allow a flat line sustainable approach.

  3. Rob 3

    Very true Bunji. There is also an issue with it which I have been thinking about recently in the way money spent on staff returns to a government. When the government hires staff it actually gains back a third of the wages it pays them straight away through income tax, it will then proceed to accrue ever more when they spend that money and they get GST, the tax on the wages of the workers who sold it to them and the business tax on profits. It means that they are often losing a far lower amount of revenue than they budget for because it will return to the government as tax within a few months. Businesses on the other hand have only a very small amount of money spent on staff returned to them.

  4. david civil servant 4

    Whereas Labour just persecute those who disagree with them

    http://dimpost.wordpress.com/2010/09/01/blogcoms-unbellyfeel-labpar/

    • bbfloyd 4.1

      davi…. got any more irrelevant or obnoxious comment? you seem to have got lost on the way to kiwiblog.. turn right, and look for a likely rubbish tip. there you go…

      • david civil servant 4.1.1

        Don’t be a cunt bbfloyd.

        • The Voice of Reason 4.1.1.1

          Idiot.

        • Vicky32 4.1.1.2

          david uncivil servant, your language is completely unacceptable. If you must be insulting, vary it a bit, ease up on your feelings against women and perhaps say “don’t be a dick”… 😀
          Deb

          • david civil servant 4.1.1.2.1

            Don’t be a cock Vicky.

            • Loota 4.1.1.2.1.1

              Takes one to know one obviously, eh mate? After all

              “Vulgar language is the last resort of the inarticulate with nothing to say”

            • The Voice of Reason 4.1.1.2.1.2

              The teenage years are full of self doubt and disappointment, David. But don’t worry, one handed typists have their own support group now, so you don’t have to suffer in silence.

  5. Jenny 5

    Bailout ‘may’ boost the economy

    I am underwhelmed;

    So market cheerleaders for the South Canterbury Finance bailout, can only give, at best, a qualified prediction for any positive effects of the bail out, saying it “may” boost the economy. Gee whiz, what a crazy guy that John Key is, gambling all that public money on a “maybe”.

    In my opinion this is at best wishful thinking and at worst spin to cover up, the fact, that the pain of the recession is being unloaded from the well off onto the rest of us.

    Using the examples of how bailouts have panned out overseas should be the ground used for making predictions, for any benefits, if any, for the economy.

    Taking these overseas examples as my template, I would like to make a different prediction.

    #1The bail out will not make the slightest bit of difference to the economic indicators that count for most people.

    #2. Unemployment will continue to grow unaffected.

    #3. Finance companies receiving massive tax payer largesse, will not show any such mercy to their own defaulters, and will continue to wreak their vengeance on grass roots home owners, dumping more families on the street.

    #4 Rather than re-negotiate mortgages to more affordable levels for families and businesses, Finance companies will accelerate foreclosures.

    #5 To celebrate their good fortune from this tax payer funded windfall, managers and directors at Finance Companies linked to SCF will reward themselves, with golden handshakes, golden parachutes, above the rate of inflation salary increases with generous stock options as garnish on top, etc. etc.

    #6 By re-inflating the SCF bubble the bailout will prolong the nation wide recession.
    The effects being noticably marked in the South Island.

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Fallacy of Breaking Windows

      I’m not really surprised that our MSM resorted to such fallacy. They’re completely incompetent after all.

      And, yeah, your predictions are probably very close to the mark. The GFC is being used to enrich the already rich at everybody else’s expense.

  6. Their approach to Government is reflected in the prejudices of their supporters.

    These people generally believe that the state is bad, private is good, and they should be allowed to retain as much of their wealth as is possible. The concept of “common good” is poorly understood by them. They seem incapable of seeing that a strong state can achieve good things, such as schools, hospitals, infrastructure, superannuation and a safety net for the poor.

    Their cost approach continuously sees expenditure in these areas as being something that should be minimised.

    They think it makes for a better economy. They fail to understand the significant role of the state in ensuring that an economy is strong.

    They think they are better handlers of the economy but paradoxically they always seem to do worse for the ordinary person.

    You are right to mention Michael Cullen. Boy is he being missed right now.

    • Jenny 6.1

      .
      $1.3 billion of government money paid out to the speculators for Hubbard’s worthless South Canterbury Finance shares and bonds. Break out the $900 bottles of bubbly! Great news for the parasites, too bad for everybody else who happens to need a pay rise such as those pesky radiographers and teachers. This will also be paid for by all those unemployed people having their entitlements chiseled away and disabled people being hammered by the ACC and WINZ. Maier’s smug smile says it all…

      From the New Zealand Herald:

      Speculators reap fat reward as finance firm fails

      If indeed the government is running the company as a private business then they like many other managers of private businesses can easily see ‘their’ business as a cash cow with lots of perks to be distributed amongst themselves and their “speculator” mates.

      • Jenny 6.1.1

        How the architects of the recession made sure to insulate themselves, against the consequences of their own actions.

        Vernon Small reports that in 2008, the veiled threat of an investment strike by New Zealand’s financiers was what forced Helen Clark’s hand in setting up what Small calls this morally hazardous scheme.

        Vernon Small:

        Scheme’s moral hazards snare Government – and taxpayers

        Such is the way the corporates get their way against the best instincts of liberal leaders and left wing governments.

        capcha – “updating”

  7. rich 7

    I find that a bit amusing. Bryan Gould’s achievement as a politician was summed up in this quote: “He didn’t take losing the [Uk labour] leadership election badly. Apart from resigning his seat and moving to new Zealand”

    • Uroskin 7.1

      Just imagine what a better world we would have lived in if Tony Blair had lost the leadership race against Bryan Gould. We would have at least been spared TB’s autobiography.

      • Carol 7.1.1

        Yes, I think Gould came back to NZ because he was PO’ed with the direction the UK Labour Party (and thence UK politics generally), was going… ie rightwards.

        • TightyRighty 7.1.1.1

          but it got more venal and corrupt as the major players resorted to any desperate measure to remain in power. that means it was heading leftwards. still use velcro on your shoes too?

          • Vicky32 7.1.1.1.1

            Er, TR, whatever do you mean by “that means it was heading leftwards”?
            “. still use velcro on your shoes too?”
            Yup, I do…
            Deb 🙂

  8. Olwyn 8

    @Mickey Savage: National supporters claim to think that the state is bad. In fact they think it is bad only insofar as it fails to privilege them, and a startling number of their cheerleaders have been paid by the state for their entire working lives – Dr Brash springs to mind.

    Once upon a time a large number of National supporters would have accepted this sentence; “The measurements of success for a society is the health and happiness of its citizens,” but would have disagreed with the left over how these objectives are best achieved. Having abandoned such objectives, they seem to be left with no vision whatsoever, juggling the desires of their financial backers against the PR initiatives necessary to implementing them. The poor Wellington man who rang the police on the night they got elected looks more insightful with each passing day, even if the action he took was less than practical.

    • Bored 8.1

      Of course National supporters think the state is bad, but they do go down the law’n order path when they get frightened, insisting that the full force of the state be brought to bear…its a sort of applied schizophrenia.

      • Jenny 8.1.1

        This seemingly schizophrenic approach to the state, as expounded by right wing champions of the rich like ACT can be explained easily.

        The Right only want less state control and interference in the affairs of wealthy people like themselves.

        But when it comes to dealing harshly with the consequences of the social decay caused by their uncontrolled financial dealings, they are in the front ranks of those calling for harsher and more oppressive powers to be handed to the police, the army and the secret security agencies.

        This ‘reactionary’ impulse from the right to build up the repressive side of the state can sometimes even build the state into an independent unacountable power in itself, that even they and their sponsors can become frightened of.

        In Nazi Germany the rise of the racist ideology of Fascism was funded by financiers, as an opposition to leftists and trade unionists. Eventually like Frankenstein’s monster, the power of the state became so ubiquitous that even these sorts of people at the very top of society dared not speak any criticism of the state.

        • Bored 8.1.1.1

          Jenny, I would urge some minor caution when describing the “seemingly schizophrenic approach to the state “ as the being exclusive to the Right. We ignore any privileged group running a polity (and their consequent sense of entitlement) at our peril. For example the same behavior was common to the “nomenclature” of the authoritarian Left.

          In our “social democratic” construct of a state the extreme Right has moved the whole debate around the role of the state from the post Great Depression / WW2 centrist consensus to an extreme, which is now branded the “centre”. Highly unhealthy, and the Labour Party have been co-opted to this viewpoint. They need to stop talking the language of business and concentrate on the language of civil society.

  9. Draco T Bastard 9

    Actually, they don’t understand economics at all. Neither do Labour. This is because they believe it all revolves around money. The neoliberal pie-in-the-sky BS works with money as more money can always be printed. It doesn’t work in the real world as the resources have limits to them. How much we have, how much can be reused, how much is available at any one time and how much of the natural environment is needed to maintain life on Earth. Without taking any of those into account, which most economists and politicians don’t, the economy will always collapse and the final collapse will catastrophic.

    • Olwyn 9.1

      I am not sure whether the neo-liberals themselves believe this, or whether they just convince everyone else, so as to grab actual resources in exchange for high numbers on a screen, rather as previous colonists dazzled people with beads, blankets and whiskey in exchange for land. Look at NZ at the moment, where the land is worth more numbers than can be matched by what NZ can produce. And what do these numbers translate into materially but consumer items; the modern equivalents of beads, blankets and whiskey.

      • Bored 9.1.1

        Olwyn and Draco, the neo Libs dont really care about resources or the planet, only the transaction at hand. Its selective blindness for short term gain. And they dont care that their families and children will become extinct because that might interfere with current privelege / status. Its the “Hey live once live well and fuck you” mentality.

  10. Its convenient for NACT to blame the state as big brother, but the NACTS are actually the committee of the ruling class, converting the state into the Board of NZ Inc.
    The ruling class is driven by profit maximisation, it uses the national interest, and indiviudal freedom, arguments to divert attention from its class rule. That class rule dictates that only those policies that increase profits by screwing more value out of the working class need apply. This is especially true in a global crisis of capitalism when the ruling class is into a survival of the fittest struggle. SCF clients are losers in this fight, the infratils and banksters are the winners.
    Those who object are losers, whingers and scroungers by definition.
    It doesnt even need to pretend anymore that its ruling for all kiwis. It can get away with it because enough of them aspire to join the ruling class.
    Gould doesnt have any answers, the party he abandoned turned to the right and adopted Blairite market policies. There is no social democratic option because the ruling class doesnt want it or need it having captured the centre ground and divided the working class against itself. When workers unite and revolt against class rule, social democracy will be wheeled out again to keep the lid on with a few minor reforms.
    Such is capitalism.

  11. randal 11

    everyone knows that national is a dumping ground for dumb rich people who rely on slogans to do their thinking for them.
    their insistence on treating the whole economy as a business is stupidity in the hihgest extreme and the lack of percipience is dangerous when it is allowed to flourish as a policy that affects us all.
    drop the dumbos immediately.

  12. outofbed 12

    Mint Asset Management’s Shane Solly said it was outrageous that some investors had been able to buy the bonds at a discount last week only to have them paid out yesterday.

    “Those bonds were trading at quite deep discounts. Those people that paid 70c are [now getting a] dollar-something return.

    Denmark.> State > Rotten

  13. ZB 14

    http://emigratetonewzealand.wordpress.com/migrant-stories/
    Many of their accounts have a lot in common, the same issues crop up time and time again:
    * Low salaries
    * Problems finding work
    * Expensive, poor quality accommodation
    * Problems with the education standards
    * Feeling that NZ is actively mis-sold
    * Isolation
    * Crime
    * High cost of living
    * Lack of culture
    * Dangerous roads and drivers
    * No future for their kids
    * Missing family, friends, old lifestyles etc.
    * The ‘Kiwi way’, ‘WWINZ’ (won’t work in NZ) small mindedness, #8 wire mentallity,xenophobia, etc.

    Now look at the major parties claims…
    ACT – claims to protect consumers and taxpayers – that’ll explain the high cost of living, poor quality goods…etc.
    National – claims to protect business – that’ll explain the crime, no future for the kids.
    Labour – brought in rogernomics.
    Green promise great ecology and environment – nothing to deliver!

    The problem is simple, what NZ is doing doesn’t work. Sure the immigrant who don’t do well
    talk, exaggerate, but a lot of their concerns are now mainstream concerns – the canary in the mine.

    NZ youth have a highest suicide rate than older people! Unlike any other western nation
    where the old commit suicide more.

    National, Labour, ACT, UF, Maori, Greens, and all failing NZ. Why?
    Because the media has one voice, pro-right neo-liberal economics is all there is, profit profit profit.

    • Vicky32 14.1

      Sure, Labour brought in the Rogergnomes, but all of them, at their earliest opportunity became ACT…
      Therefore, I believe they simply hijacked Labout, who should not be blamed for them. That’s the way I see it anyway,
      Deb

      • Draco T Bastard 14.1.1

        No, Labour are definitely still following at least some of the failed policies brought in by the 4th Labour Government.

        Free-capital movement
        Ownership of NZ by foreign owners
        Cutting government back rather than using it as the driver of the economy as it should be

  14. I can’t read this shit without feeling angry, frustrated and powerless cos theres nothing i can do to stop it or influence it in any immediate or meaningful way.

    The whole culture of corporate capitalist greed and finance is so alien to, not just me, but i would hazard to say, Pasifikans in general, that short of selling our souls completely to be part of that culture, there seems no way to gain from it, exploit it to our advantage and still remain essentially Pasifikan.

    Not that i want to. So i guess the choice then, is to stop reading the shit and live in blissful ignorance like the rest of the silent, invisible underclass.

    If theres another choice i’d be glad to hear it ?

    • Draco T Bastard 15.1

      I can’t read this shit without feeling angry, frustrated and powerless cos theres nothing i can do to stop it or influence it in any immediate or meaningful way.

      I think you’ll find yourself in agreement with the majority there.

      The whole culture of corporate capitalist greed and finance is so alien to, not just me, but i would hazard to say, Pasifikans in general,…

      And most of the Pakeha as well. After all, the psychopaths that designed the system make up only a small part of the population.

    • Descendant Of Smith 15.2

      It’s not only pasifikans that don’t get this, there’s plenty of us of European descent that don’t get it as well.

      Part of the trick it seems to me is finding the communality that exists between New Zealanders who share some sort of view about a fairer more decent society.

      In my terms it is about an egalitarian society. Those are principles and precepts that I grew up with. One that still allows achievement and excellence and accomplishment but in recognising that while people have different skills and abilities there remains a commitment to the whole.

      A party founded on those sorts of principles would have my support.

      Egalitarianism (derived from the French word égal, meaning “equal”), is a trend of thought that favors equality of some sort. Its general premise is that people should be treated as equals on certain dimensions such as religiously, politically, economically, socially, or culturally. Egalitarian doctrines maintain that all human persons are equal in fundamental worth or moral status.[1] In large part, it is a response to the abuses of statist development and has two distinct definitions in modern English.[2] It is defined either as a political doctrine that holds that all people should be treated as equals and have the same political, economic, social, and civil rights[3] or as a social philosophy advocating the removal of economic inequalities among people.

      I also liked the notion of co-operatives and in particular the UK one highlighted in a post a couple of weeks ago. I’m not sure of all the practical aspects but it has motivated me to doing a bit more research around this and talk to others about it, including some growers of produce. This has also enlightened me of the terrible waste of corporates paying for crops ahead of time and compelling the growers to let them perish if not needed. There’s people in these communities that need food – including the poor, particularly Maori and Polynesian, people who harvest their crops for them for pretty crappy pay.

      From small acorns oak trees grow.

      • Descendant Of Smith 15.2.1

        Hmm I see a little synchronicity in thought occurring at the same time.

        The more I think about it the more ” The Egalitarian Party” sounds like a good name that clearly espouses what that party would/should stand for.

        Certainly Labour no longer stands for those that labour.

        • outofbed 15.2.1.1

          The Egalitarian Party/
          Greens are the closest we have got

          Ecological Wisdom:
          The basis of ecological wisdom is that human beings are part of the natural world. This world is finite, therefore unlimited material growth is impossible. Ecological sustainability is paramount.
          Social Responsibility:
          Unlimited material growth is impossible. Therefore the key to social responsibility is the just distribution of social and natural resources, both locally and globally.
          Appropriate Decision-making:
          For the implementation of ecological wisdom and social responsibility, decisions will be made directly at the appropriate level by those affected.
          Non-Violence:
          Non-violent conflict resolution is the process by which ecological wisdom, social responsibility and appropriate decision making will be implemented. This principle applies at all levels.

          • mcflock 15.2.1.1.1

            personally, my vote goes to the Alliance (official name: “Alliance yes it still exists and no JA hasn’t been a member for years”).

            Of the parliamentary parties, yes the Greens are definitely the nicest folk and probably the most socially-minded, but a few elections ago I had to make a choice between voting according to my beliefs and voting for a diluted set of my beliefs on the grounds that it’s “in with a chance”.

            I chose to vote according to my beliefs on the grounds that I couldn’t trust the Greens to act for NZ workers if they were given a choice between that and the lesser spotted West Coast rock slug, but I could be pretty sure that the Alliance would call foul on both issues. And I also felt it important that *somebody* in NZ be seen to stand up for democratic socialist values and solid controls on capital, other wise the concepts could well disappear in a sea of neoliberal pragmatism.

            I’m not suggesting that the Alliance will be kingmakers in parliament in 2011. I just think that if people voted genuinely for what they believed in (rather than viewing elections as a horse race where you get a prize if you back the winner), then NZ would be a much better place.

    • Puddleglum 15.3

      I know just what you mean Pollywog.

      Sometimes I wonder which is worse: That the elite are just a bunch of greed-obsessed soulless and corrupt people who feel fully justified in protecting and increasing their advantage; or, ‘the economy’ as currently structured actually DOES require the rest of us to ply the already wealthy and powerful with even more wealth and power for fear that we’ll lose our menial jobs, our sub-standard housing, our remaining health and our children’s already minimal prospects.

      I look out my window at the other houses in my street – crap rental accommodation, transient people living the lives of transients, broken footpaths, men in their late 50s riding rusty bikes back home from grubby jobs at 7 o’clock at night without any of those decorations of nifty flashing bike lights strapped to designer bike helmets. I think of the kids I see when I walk the dog – the younger ones with clothes that a rag doll would be ashamed to wear, the older ones (boys) skinny, hooded, swaggering and trying to look like their not shit scared by F-ing and blinding their way through a vocabulary you could fit on the back of a postage stamp.

      Then I think about how SCF investors are ‘cushioned’ from the horrors of losing their ‘investments’ because the people in my street – courtesy of a magnanimous government always concerned about us ‘little Kiwi battlers’ – are paying out or losing what little support they have from government to make life less risky for these investors because it’s supposedly in all ‘our’ best interests!

      Then again, I have this utterly irrational optimistic streak: Salvation sometimes does come – but usually not from the direction you expect.

  15. That the elite are just a bunch of greed-obsessed soulless and corrupt people who feel fully justified in protecting and increasing their advantage

    High Net Worth Individuals

    The message from on high is, that’s who we’re supposed to aspire to be like cos thats who the system is being geared towards.

    It’s what Key and English see themselves as, who they’re trying to attract to NZ, and who they’ve just proven they are willing to protect, no questions asked, when the chips are down.

  16. Kleefer 17

    “Concepts that work well in business often don’t flow through to a government managing an entire economy.”

    Governments can’t “manage an economy”. The less involvement the government has in an economy the better. Whenever the government intervenes in the economy it shafts one group of people and leaves them worse off. The current financial mess is a classic example of the failure of central planning, in this case of the money supply and interest rate through central banks.

    • Bunji 17.1

      Whilst the US reserve did keep interest rates too low and helped inflate a housing bubble, most of the current GFC was a result of a lack of regulation of the financial industry – ie a lack of government intervention.
      Perhaps you’d prefer a world where there was no government intervention and businesses could say your food, drink and medicine contained whatever they wanted to say, whilst it was laced with whatever was easiest for them. That’s pretty much the world the finance industry was operating in – you have an AAA+ investment that actually consists of NINJA (No Income No Job) loans.

    • Draco T Bastard 17.2

      Reality has proven otherwise. Remove the power of the people from the economy and watch as a few become incredibly wealthy and everyone else starves.

  17. ZB 18

    Government can’t manage the economy. Well no! Governments get in the way of
    economy! Well yes. Governments need to get in the way of those parts of the
    economy leading us down the wrong track.

    We need to get out of the way of citizens so they can start businesses.
    – do away with welfare and give everyone $10,000 tax credit (taken as a income
    support if the indivudal wants it.

    We need to get in the way of business friendly government.
    – do away with National and ACT parties.

    We need broadband.
    – do away with Telcom.

    Then watch the country turn around.

Links to post

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • A friend in uncertain times

    Day one of the solo leg of my long journey home begins with my favourite sound: footfalls in an empty street. 5.00 am and it’s already light and already too warm, almost.If I can make the train that leaves Budapest later this hour I could be in Belgrade by nightfall; ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 hours ago
  • The Chaotic World of Male Diet Influencers

    Hi,We’ll get to the horrific world of male diet influencers (AKA Beefy Boys) shortly, but first you will be glad to know that since I sent out the Webworm explaining why the assassination attempt on Donald Trump was not a false flag operation, I’ve heard from a load of people ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 hours ago
  • It's Starting To Look A Lot Like… Y2K

    Do you remember Y2K, the threat that hung over humanity in the closing days of the twentieth century? Horror scenarios of planes falling from the sky, electronic payments failing and ATMs refusing to dispense cash. As for your VCR following instructions and recording your favourite show - forget about it.All ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday Soliloquy for the week to July 20

    Climate Change Minister Simon Watts being questioned by The Kākā’s Bernard Hickey.TL;DR: My top six things to note around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the week to July 20 were:1. A strategy that fails Zero Carbon Act & Paris targetsThe National-ACT-NZ First Coalition Government finally unveiled ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • Pharmac Director, Climate Change Commissioner, Health NZ Directors – The latest to quit this m...

    Summary:As New Zealand loses at least 12 leaders in the public service space of health, climate, and pharmaceuticals, this month alone, directly in response to the Government’s policies and budget choices, what lies ahead may be darker than it appears. Tui examines some of those departures and draws a long ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    2 days ago
  • Flooding Housing Policy

    The Minister of Housing’s ambition is to reduce markedly the ratio of house prices to household incomes. If his strategy works it would transform the housing market, dramatically changing the prospects of housing as an investment.Leaving aside the Minister’s metaphor of ‘flooding the market’ I do not see how the ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 days ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted (Again!)

    As previously noted, my historical fantasy piece, set in the fifth-century Mediterranean, was accepted for a Pirate Horror anthology, only for the anthology to later fall through. But in a good bit of news, it turned out that the story could indeed be re-marketed as sword and sorcery. As of ...
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Friday, July 19

    An employee of tobacco company Philip Morris International demonstrates a heated tobacco device. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Friday, July 19 are:At a time when the Coalition Government is cutting spending on health, infrastructure, education, housing ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 8:30 am on Friday, July 19 are:Scoop: NZ First Minister Casey Costello orders 50% cut to excise tax on heated tobacco products. The minister has ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 19-July-2024

    Kia ora, it’s time for another Friday roundup, in which we pull together some of the links and stories that caught our eye this week. Feel free to add more in the comments! Our header image this week shows a foggy day in Auckland town, captured by Patrick Reynolds. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 days ago
  • Weekly Climate Wrap: A market-led plan for failure

    TL;DR : Here’s the top six items climate news for Aotearoa this week, as selected by Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer. A discussion recorded yesterday is in the video above and the audio of that sent onto the podcast feed.The Government released its draft Emissions Reduction ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Tobacco First

    Save some money, get rich and old, bring it back to Tobacco Road.Bring that dynamite and a crane, blow it up, start all over again.Roll up. Roll up. Or tailor made, if you prefer...Whether you’re selling ciggies, digging for gold, catching dolphins in your nets, or encouraging folks to flutter ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • Trump’s Adopted Son.

    Waiting In The Wings: For truly, if Trump is America’s un-assassinated Caesar, then J.D. Vance is America’s Octavian, the Republic’s youthful undertaker – and its first Emperor.DONALD TRUMP’S SELECTION of James D. Vance as his running-mate bodes ill for the American republic. A fervent supporter of Viktor Orban, the “illiberal” prime ...
    2 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Friday, July 19

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Friday, July 19, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:The PSA announced the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) had ruled in the PSA’s favour in its case against the Ministry ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • The Hoon around the week to July 19

    TL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers last night features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s release of its first Emissions Reduction Plan;University of Otago Foreign Relations Professor and special guest Dr Karin von ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #29 2024

    Open access notables Improving global temperature datasets to better account for non-uniform warming, Calvert, Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society: To better account for spatial non-uniform trends in warming, a new GITD [global instrumental temperature dataset] was created that used maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) to combine the land surface ...
    3 days ago
  • We're back again! Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live

    Photo by Gabriel Crismariu on UnsplashWe’re back again after our mid-winter break. We’re still with the ‘new’ day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Gut Reactions.

    Trump Writes His Own Story: Would the “mainstream” media even try to reflect the horrified reaction of the MAGA crowd to the pop-pop-pop of the would-be assassin’s rifle, and Trump going down? Could it even grasp the sheer elation of the rally-goers seeing their champion rise up and punch the air, still alive, ...
    3 days ago
  • Dodging Bullets.

    Fight! Fight! Fight! Had the assassin’s bullet found its mark and killed Donald Trump, America’s descent into widespread and murderous violence – possibly spiralling-down into civil war – would have been immediate and quite possibly irreparable. The American Republic, upon whose survival liberty and democracy continue to depend, is certainly not ...
    3 days ago
  • 'Corruption First' Strikes Again

    There comes a point in all our lives when we must stop to say, “Enough is enough. We know what’s happening. We are not as stupid or as ignorant as you believe us to be. And making policies that kill or harm our people is not acceptable, Ministers.”Plausible deniability has ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:The inside stories of KiwiRail’s iRex debacle, Westport’s perma-delayed flood scheme and Christchurch’s post-quake sewer rebuild, which assumed no population growth, show just how deeply sceptical senior officials in Treasury, the Ministry of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • What's that Jack Black?

    Ah-rah, deeSoo-guh-goo-gee-goo-geeGoo-guh fli-goo gee-gooGuh fli-goo, ga-goo-buh-deeOoh, guh-goo-beeOoh-guh-guh-bee-guh-guh-beeFli-goo gee-gooA-fliguh woo-wa mama Lucifer!I’m about ready to move on, how about you?Not from the shooting, that’s bad and we definitely shouldn’t have that. But the rehabilitation of Donald J Trump? The deification of Saint Donald? As the Great Unifier?Gimme a bucket.https://yellowscene.com/2024/04/07/trump-as-jesus/Just to re-iterate, ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • June 2024: Earth’s 13th-consecutive warmest month on record

    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Jeff Masters and Bob Henson June 2024 was Earth’s warmest June since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was the planet’s 13th consecutive warmest month on record, NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported July 12. As opposed to being focused in ...
    3 days ago
  • Connecting the dots and filling the gaps in our bike network

    This is a guest post by Shaun Baker on the importance of filling the gaps in our cycling networks. It originally appeared on his blog Multimodal Adventures, and is re-posted here with kind permission. In our towns and cities in Aotearoa New Zealand, there are areas in our cycling networks ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    3 days ago
  • Webworm Down Under Photos!

    Hi,I wanted to share a few thoughts and photos from the Webworm popup and Tickled screening we held in Auckland, New Zealand last weekend.In short — it was a blast. I mean, I had a blast and I hope any of you that came also had a blast.An old friend ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:30 am on Thursday, July 18 are:News: Christchurch's sewer systems block further housing developments RNZ’s Niva ChittockAnalysis: Interislander: Treasury, MoT officials' mistrust of KiwiRail led ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Thursday, July 18

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Thursday, July 18, the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day are:Verbatim: Climate Change Minister Simon Watts held a news conference in Auckland to release the Government’s Emissions Reduction Plan, including ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • The politics of managed retreat

    Climate change deniers are now challenging the Government over a key climate change adaptation policy. That begs the question of whether New Zealand First will then support Government moves to implement processes to deal with a managed retreat for properties in danger of flooding because of sea level rise and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • Some changes are coming

    Warm welcome again to those who are here. The Mountain Tui substack was officially started on the 2nd of July. I wrote about what led me here on this post. Since then, it’s been a learning to navigate the platform, get to meet those in the community, and basically be ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • About fucking time

    The US Supreme Court has been rogue for years, with openly corrupt judges making the law up as they go to suit themselves, their billionaire buyers, and the Republican Party. But now, in the wake of them granting a licence for tyranny, President Biden is actually going to try and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: False accounting and wishful thinking

    National released their draft 2026-2030 Emissions Reduction Plan today. The plan is required under the Zero Carbon Act, and must set out policies and strategies to meet the relevant emissions budget. Having cancelled all Labour's actually effective climate change policies and crashed the carbon price, National was always going to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • The Enemies Of Sunshine And Space.

    Our Houses? The Urban Density debate is a horrible combination of intergenerational avarice and envy, fuelled by the grim certainty that none of the generations coming up after them will ever have it as good as the Boomers. To say that this situation rankles among those born after 1965 is to ...
    4 days ago
  • Still the 5 Eyes Achilles Heel?

    The National Cyber Security Centre (NZSC), a unit in the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) dedicated to cyber-security, has released a Review of its response to the 2021 email hacking of NZ members of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC, … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Britain's Devastating Electoral Slip.

    Slip-Sliding Away: Labour may now enjoy a dominant position in Britain’s political landscape, but only by virtue of not being swallowed by it.THE BRITISH LABOUR PARTY’S “landslide victory” is nothing of the sort. As most people understand the term, a landslide election victory is one in which the incumbent government, or ...
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why right wingers think all governments (including their own) are incompetent

    Since open denial of climate change is no longer a viable political option, denial now comes in disguise. The release this week of the coalition government’s ‘draft emissions reductions plan” shows that the Luxon government is refusing to see the need to cut emissions at source. Instead, it proposes to ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy this morning are:Chris Penk is set to roll back building standards for insulation that had only just been put in place, and which had been estimated to save 40% from power costs, after builders ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • Open Letter to Pharmac

    All this talk of getting oldIt's getting me down, my loveLike a cat in a bag, waiting to drownThis time I'm coming downAnd I hope you're thinking of meAs you lay down on your sideNow the drugs don't workThey just make you worse but I know I'll see your face ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • A blanket of misinformation

    Two old sayings have been on my mind lately. The first is: “The pen is mightier than the sword”, describing the power of language and communication to help or to harm. The other, which captures the speed with which falsehoods can become ingrained and hard to undo, is: “A lie can ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 7:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 are:Scoop: Government considers rolling back home insulation standards RNZ’s Eloise GibsonNews: Government plans tree-planting frenzy as report shows NZ no longer ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Wednesday, July 17

    TL;DR: As of 6:00 am on Wednesday, July 17 , the top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day were:Simon Watts released the Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP), which included proposed changes to the Emissions Trading Scheme ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • “Shhhh” – National's 3 Waters is loaded with higher costs and lays a path to ...

    This is a long, possibly technical, but very, very important read. I encourage you to take the time and spread your awareness.IntroductionIn 2022, then Labour Party Prime Minister Jacinda Adern expended significant political capital to protect New Zealand’s water assets from privatisation. She lost that battle, and Labour and the ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    4 days ago
  • Plugging a video channel: Dr Gilbz

    Dr. Ella Gilbert is a climate scientist and presenter with a PhD in Antarctic climate change, working at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). Her background is in atmospheric sciences and she's especially interested in the physical mechanisms of climate change, clouds, and almost anything polar. She is passionate about communicating climate ...
    5 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” again

    Back in 2022, in its Open Government Partnership National Action Plan, the government promised to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation. Since then they've run a secret "consultation" on how to do that, with their preferred outcome being that agencies will consult the Ministry of Justice ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Crashing New Zealand's health system is not the way to prosperity, Prime Minister

    Another day, and yet another piece of bad news for New Zealand’s health system. Reports have come out that General Practitioners (GP) may have to close doors, or increase patient fees to survive. The so-called ‘capitation’ funding review, which supports GP practices to survive, is under way, and primary care ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    5 days ago
  • Closer Than You Think: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.

    Redefining Our Terms: “When an angry majority is demanding change, defending the status-quo is an extremist position.”“WHAT’S THIS?”, asked Laurie, eyeing suspiciously the two glasses of red wine deposited in front of him.“A nice drop of red. I thought you’d be keen to celebrate the French Far-Right’s victory with the ...
    5 days ago
  • Come on Darleen.

    Good morning all, time for a return to things domestic. After elections in the UK and France, Luxon gatecrashing Nato, and the attempted shooting of Trump, it’s probably about time we re-focus on local politics.Unless of course you’re Christopher Luxon and you’re so exhausted from all your schmoozing in Washington ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • How the Northwest was lost and may be won

    This is a guest post by Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which we encourage you to check out. It is shared by kind permission. The Northwest has always been Auckland’s public transport Cinderella, rarely invited to the public funding ball. How did ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Tuesday July 16

    Luxon has told a Financial Times’ correspondent he would openly call out China’s spying in future and does not fear economic retaliation from Aotearoa’s largest trading partner.File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy on Tuesday, ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Tuesday, July 16

    TL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day or so to 6:00 am on Tuesday, July 16 are:PM Christopher Luxon has given a very hawkish interview to the Financial Times-$$$ correspondent in Washington, Demetri Sevastopulu, saying ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Tuesday, July 16

    Photo by Ryunosuke Kikuno on UnsplashTL;DR: The top six announcements, speeches, reports and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last day to 6:00 am are:BNZ released its Performance of Services Index for June, finding that services sector is at its lowest level of activity ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The second crisis; assumption was the mother

    Late on the night of July 16, 1984, while four National Cabinet Ministers were meeting in the Beehive office of Deputy Prime Minister Jim McLay, plotting the ultimate downfall of outgoing Prime Minister Sir Robert Muldoon, another crisis was building up in another part of the capital. The United States ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Can we air condition our way out of extreme heat?

    This is a re-post from The Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler Air conditioning was initially a symbol of comfort and wealth, enjoyed by the wealthy in theaters and upscale homes. Over time, as technology advanced and costs decreased, air conditioning became more accessible to the general public. With global warming, though, ...
    6 days ago
  • Review: The Zimiamvian Trilogy, by E.R. Eddison (1935-1958)

    I have reviewed some fairly obscure stuff on this blog. Nineteenth century New Zealand speculative fiction. Forgotten Tolkien adaptations. George MacDonald and William Morris. Last month I took a look at The Worm Ouroboros (1922), by E.R. Eddison, which while not strictly obscure, is also not overly inviting to many ...
    6 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on the Trump assassination attempt.

    In this episode of “A View from Afar” Selwyn Manning and I discuss the attempt on Donald Trump’s life and its implications for the US elections. The political darkness grows. ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Law & Order: National Party 1, Police 0, Public -1

    What happened?Media is reporting that police have lost in their pay dispute with the Coalition Government.Some of you might remember that the police rejected Labour’s previous offer in September, 2023, possibly looking forward to be taken care of by the self-touted ‘Party of Law and Order’ - National.If you look ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the Trump shooting and a potential hike in fees for visiting the doctor

    Having watched Donald Trump systematically exploit social grievances, urge people not to accept his election loss and incite his followers to violent insurrection… it is a bit hard to swallow the media descriptions over the past 24 hours of Trump being a “victim” of violence. More like a case of ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā's Chorus for Monday July 15

    The exploitation of workers on the national fibre broadband rollout highlights once again the dark underbelly of our ‘churn and burn’ economy. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The top six things I’ve noted around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy today are:An extraordinary Steve Kilgallon investigation into ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Pick 'n' Mix for Monday, July 15

    Photo by Jessica Loaiza on UnsplashTL;DR: My pick of the top six links elsewhere around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the last three days to 9:00 am on Monday, July 15 are:Investigation: Immigration NZ refused to prosecute an alleged exploiter despite a mountain of evidence - ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • City Centre Rebuild: How Soon Is Now?

    Patrick Reynolds is deputy chair of the City Centre Advisory Panel and a director of Greater Auckland There is ongoing angst about construction disruption in the city centre. And fair enough: it’s very tough, CRL and other construction has been going on for a very long time. Like the pandemic, ...
    Greater AucklandBy Patrick Reynolds
    6 days ago
  • Peril, dismay, resolution

    This afternoon we rolled into Budapest to bring to a close our ride across Europe. We did 144 km yesterday, severe heat messages coming in from the weather app as we bounced along unformed Hungarian back roads and a road strip strewn with fallen trees from an overnight tornado. Somewhere ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Bullet the Blue Sky

    In the locust windComes a rattle and humJacob wrestled the angelAnd the angel was overcomeYou plant a demon seedYou raise a flower of fireWe see them burnin' crossesSee the flames, higher and higherBullet the blue skyBullet the blue skyThe indelible images, the soundtrack of America. Guns, assassinations, where-were-you-when moments attached ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s Journal of Record for Monday, July 15

    TL;DR: The top six announcements, rulings, reports, surveys, statistics and research around housing, climate and poverty in Aotearoa’s political economy in the three days to 6:00 am on Monday, July 23 are:University of Auckland researcher Ryan Greenaway-McGrevy published an analysis of the impact of Auckland's 2016 zoning reforms.BNZ's latest Performance ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The Kākā’s diary for the week to July 23 and beyond

    TL;DR: The six key events to watch in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy in the week to July 23 include:PM Christopher Luxon has returned from a trip to the United States and may hold a post-Cabinet news conference at 4:00 pm today.The BusinessNZ-BNZ PSI survey results for June will be released this ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Was The Assassination Attempt Fake?

    Hi,It’s in incredible photo, and we’re going to be talking about it for a long time:Trump, triumphantly raising his hand in the air after being shot. Photo credit: Evan VucciYou can watch what happened on YouTube in real time, as a 20-year-old from Pennsylvania lets off a series of gunshots ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • 40 years ago, inside the crisis that made modern NZ

    It had rained all day in Auckland, and the Metro Theatre in Mangere was steamed up inside as more and more people arrived to celebrate what had once seemed impossible. Sir Robert Muldoon had lost the 1984 election. “Piggy” Muldoon was no more. Such was the desire to get rid ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #28

    A listing of 34 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, July 7, 2024 thru Sat, July 13, 2024. Story of the week It's still early summer in the Northern Hemisphere. The season comes as our first year of 1.5°C warming ...
    7 days ago
  • Unsurprising, but Trump shooting creates opportunity for a surprising response

    I can’t say I’m shocked. As the US news networks offer rolling coverage dissecting the detail of today’s shooting at a Donald Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, and we hear eye-witnesses trying to make sense of their trauma, the most common word being used is shock. And shocking it is. ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    7 days ago
  • Escalation in the States as Trump is shot and his allies capitalize on the moment

    Snapshot summary of the shooting in the States belowAnd a time to remember what Abraham Lincoln once said of the United States of America:We find ourselves in the peaceful possession of the fairest portion of the earth, as regards extent of territory, fertility of soil, and salubrity of climate. We ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    7 days ago
  • Bernie Sanders: Joe Biden for President

    I will do all that I can to see that President Biden is re-elected. Why? Despite my disagreements with him on particular issues, he has been the most effective president in the modern history of our country and is the strongest candidate to defeat Donald Trump — a demagogue and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • Questions from God

    Have you invited God into your online life? Do you have answers for his questions? Did I just assume God’s pronouns?Before this goes any further, or gets too blasphemous, a word of explanation. When I say “God”, I don’t meant your god(s), if you have one/them. The God I speak ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The politics of money and influence

    Did you know: Four days ago, the CEO of Warner Bros Discovery (WBD), David Zaslav, opined that he didn’t really care who won the US Presidential election, so long as they were M&A and business friendly. Please share my Substack so I can continue my work. Thank you and happy ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • Auckland & Transport Minister Simeon Brown's insanity

    Excuse me, but I just don’t feel like being polite today. What is going on with Simeon Brown? I mean, really? After spending valuable Ministerial time, focus, and government resources to overturn tailored speed limits in school and high fatality zones that *checks notes* reduces the risk of deaths and ...
    Mountain TuiBy Mountain Tui
    1 week ago
  • Were scientists caught falsifying data in the hacked emails incident dubbed 'climategate'?

    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Were scientists caught falsifying data in the ...
    1 week ago
  • What Happened to David D'Amato's Millions?

    Today’s podcast episode is for paying Webworm members — and is a conversation seven years in the making. Let me explain.Hi,As I hit “send” on this newsletter, I’m about to play my 2016 documentary Tickled to a theatre full of about 400 Webworm readers in Auckland, New Zealand.And with Tickled ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Voting as a multi-order process of choice.

    Recent elections around the world got me to thinking about voting. At a broad level, voting involves processes and choices. Embedded in both are the logics that go into “sincere” versus “tactical” voting. “Sincere” voting is usually a matter of preferred … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago

  • Oceans and Fisheries Minister to Solomons

    Oceans and Fisheries Minister Shane Jones is travelling to the Solomon Islands tomorrow for meetings with his counterparts from around the Pacific supporting collective management of the region’s fisheries. The 23rd Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Committee and the 5th Regional Fisheries Ministers’ Meeting in Honiara from 23 to 26 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Government launches Military Style Academy Pilot

    The Government today launched the Military Style Academy Pilot at Te Au rere a te Tonga Youth Justice residence in Palmerston North, an important part of the Government’s plan to crackdown on youth crime and getting youth offenders back on track, Minister for Children, Karen Chhour said today. “On the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Nine priority bridge replacements to get underway

    The Government has welcomed news the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) has begun work to replace nine priority bridges across the country to ensure our state highway network remains resilient, reliable, and efficient for road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“Increasing productivity and economic growth is a key priority for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Update on global IT outage

    Acting Prime Minister David Seymour has been in contact throughout the evening with senior officials who have coordinated a whole of government response to the global IT outage and can provide an update. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has designated the National Emergency Management Agency as the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand, Japan renew Pacific partnership

    New Zealand and Japan will continue to step up their shared engagement with the Pacific, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.    “New Zealand and Japan have a strong, shared interest in a free, open and stable Pacific Islands region,” Mr Peters says.    “We are pleased to be finding more ways ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New infrastructure energises BOP forestry towns

    New developments in the heart of North Island forestry country will reinvigorate their communities and boost economic development, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones says. Mr Jones visited Kaingaroa and Kawerau in Bay of Plenty today to open a landmark community centre in the former and a new connecting road in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • 'Pacific Futures'

    President Adeang, fellow Ministers, honourable Diet Member Horii, Ambassadors, distinguished guests.    Minasama, konnichiwa, and good afternoon, everyone.    Distinguished guests, it’s a pleasure to be here with you today to talk about New Zealand’s foreign policy reset, the reasons for it, the values that underpin it, and how it ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Delivering 24 hour pothole repairs

    Kiwis and freight operators will benefit from the Coalition Government delivering on its commitment to introduce targets that will ensure a greater number of potholes on our state highways are identified and fixed within 24 hours, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  “Increasing productivity to help rebuild our economy is a key ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Peer Support Specialists rolled out in hospitals

    Five hospitals have been selected to trial a new mental health and addiction peer support service in their emergency departments as part of the Government’s commitment to increase access to mental health and addiction support for New Zealanders, says Mental Health Minister Matt Doocey.  “Peer Support Specialists in EDs will ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Consultation opens for the Emissions Reduction Plan

    The Government’s draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows we can stay within the limits of the first two emissions budgets while growing the economy, Climate Change Minister Simon Watts says. “This draft Emissions Reduction Plan shows that with effective climate change policies we can both grow the economy and deliver our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Benefit stats highlight need for welfare reset

    The coalition Government is providing extra support for job seekers to ensure as many Kiwis as possible are in work or preparing for work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston says. “While today’s quarterly data showing a rise in the number of people on Jobseeker benefits has been long ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • School attendance continues to increase

    Provisional school attendance data for Term 2 2024 released today has shown more students are back in class compared to last year, with 53.1 per cent of students regularly attending, compared with 47 per cent in Term 2 2023, Associate Education Minister David Seymour says. “The Government has prioritised student ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • $22.7m of West Coast resilience projects underway

    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed news of progress being made by the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) on the first of several crucial resilience projects underway on the South Island’s West Coast.“State highways across the West Coast are critical lifelines for communities throughout the region, including for freight and tourism. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Migrant school leavers to get part-time work rights

    The coalition Government is providing migrant school leavers with greater opportunities, by increasing access to part-time work rights for those awaiting the outcome of a family residence application, Immigration Minister Erica Stanford has announced.  “Many young people who are part of a family residence application process are unable to work. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Funding to support use of NZ Sign Language

    Seven projects have received government funding totalling nearly $250,000 to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). Initiatives that received an NZSL Board Community Grants this year include camps that support the use of NZSL through physical and sensory activities, and clubs where Deaf people and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Inflation data shows progress in economic recovery

    Today’s Consumer Price Index data which has inflation at 3.3 per cent for the year to July 2024, shows we are turning our economy around and winning the fight against rampant inflation, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  “While today’s data will be welcome news for Kiwis, I know many New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Experts to advise Minister on Oranga Tamariki

    The Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board has been re-established by the Minister for Children, Karen Chhour. “I look forward to working with the new board to continue to ensure Oranga Tamariki and the care and protection system, are entirely child centric,” Minister Chhour says. “The board will provide independent advice ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Expectations set for improved medicines access

    Associate Health Minister David Seymour says he has set clear expectations for Pharmac around delivering the medicines and medical technology that Kiwis need.  “For many New Zealanders, funding for pharmaceuticals is life or death, or the difference between a life of pain and suffering or living freely. New cancer medicines ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Regional Development Minister to host summits

    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones will hold a series of nationwide summits to discuss regional priorities, aspirations and opportunities, with the first kicking off in Nelson on August 12. The 15 summits will facilitate conversations about progressing regional economic growth and opportunities to drive productivity, prosperity and resilience through the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government delivers new school for Rolleston

    The Coalition Government is addressing growing demands on Canterbury’s school network, by delivering a new primary school in Rolleston, Education Minister Erica Stanford says. Within Budget 24’s $400 million investment into school property growth, construction will begin on a new primary school (years 1-8) in Selwyn, Canterbury.  Rolleston South Primary ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • New speed camera signs to improve safety

    The Government is welcoming the rollout of new speed camera signs for fixed speed cameras to encourage drivers to check their speeds, improving road safety and avoiding costly speeding tickets, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says. “Providing Kiwis with an opportunity to check their speed and slow down in high crash areas ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • NZ, Korea strengthen relationship

    New Zealand and the Republic of Korea continue to strengthen their relationship, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “New Zealand and Korea have a long history – from New Zealand soldiers fighting in the Korean War, through to our strong cooperation today as partners supporting the international rules-based order.    ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Investing for future growth in tourism and hospitality

    The Government is moving forward with recommendations from the Tourism Data Leadership Group, beginning with establishing a Tourism Data Partnership Fund says Tourism and Hospitality Minister Matt Doocey. “The Tourism Data Partnership Fund is funded through the International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) and will provide up to $400,000 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • 4000 more job seekers to get case managers

    A new over-the-phone employment case management service will see thousands more job seekers under the age of 25 supported to find work, Social Development and Employment Minister Louise Upston has announced. “MSD case managers provide valuable support to help people into work, but less than a third of those receiving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Trade Minister to attend G7 meeting in Italy

    Trade Minister Todd McClay will attend the Group of Seven (G7) Trade Ministers meeting in Reggio Calabria, Italy next week. This is the first time New Zealand has been invited to join the event, which will be attended by some of the world’s largest economies and many of New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Ministers reveal consequences for unruly Kāinga Ora tenants

    Ministers are pleased to see Kāinga Ora taking a stronger approach to managing unruly, threatening or abusive tenants, Housing Minister Chris Bishop and Associate Housing Minister Tama Potaka say.    “For far too long, a small number of Kāinga Ora tenants have ridden roughshod over their neighbours because, under Kāinga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up US visit in California

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has finished a successful four-day visit to the United States with meetings in California on his final day focusing on innovation and investment.  “It has been fantastic to be in San Francisco today seeing first-hand the deepening links between New Zealand and California. “New Zealand company, EV Maritime, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister leads Indo-Pacific Four at NATO

    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon today chaired a meeting of the Indo-Pacific Four (IP4) countries – Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea and New Zealand. The IP4 met in the context of NATO’s Summit in Washington DC hosted by President Biden. “Prosperity is only possible with security,” Mr Luxon says. “We need ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • District Court judges appointed

    Attorney-General Hon Judith Collins today announced the appointment of three new District Court Judges.   The appointees, who will take up their roles in July and August at the Manukau, Rotorua and Invercargill courts, are:   Matthew Nathan Judge Nathan was admitted to bar in New Zealand in 2021, having previously been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Urgent review into Wairoa flood response begins

    Environment Minister, Penny Simmonds today announced the terms of reference for a rapid review into the Wairoa flood response. “The Wairoa community has raised significant concerns about the management of the Wairoa River bar and the impact this had on flooding of properties in the district,” says Ms Simmonds. “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • NZDF’s Red Sea deployment extended

    New Zealand has extended its contribution to the US-led coalition working to uphold maritime security in the Red Sea, Defence Minister Judith Collins and Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today. “The decision to extend this deployment is reflective of the continued need to partner and act in line with New ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government provides support to tackle tax debt and compliance

    New compliance funding in Budget 2024 will ensure Inland Revenue is better equipped to catch individuals who are evading their tax obligations, Revenue Minister Simon Watts says. “New Zealand’s tax debt had risen to almost $7.4 billion by the end of May, an increase of more than 50 per cent since 2022. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Taking action to reduce road cones

    The Coalition Government is taking action to reduce expenditure on road cones and temporary traffic management (TTM) while maintaining the safety of workers and road users, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.  Rolling out a new risk-based approach to TTM that will reduce the number of road cones on our roads.  ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Celebrating 100 years of progress

    Te Arawa Lakes Trust centenary celebrations mark a significant milestone for all the important work done for the lakes, the iwi and for the Bay of Plenty region, says Māori Crown Relations: Te Arawhiti and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka. The minister spoke at a commemorative event acknowledging 100 years ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Foreign Minister to travel to Korea and Japan

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters will travel to the Republic of Korea and Japan next week.    “New Zealand enjoys warm and enduring relationships with both Korea and Japan. Our relationships with these crucial partners is important for New Zealand’s ongoing prosperity and security,” says Mr Peters.    While in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government creates MAG for retail crime victims

    The coalition Government is establishing a Ministerial Advisory Group for the victims of retail crime, as part of its plan to restore law and order, Justice Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee says.  “New Zealand has seen an exponential growth in retail crime over the past five ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Huge opportunity for educators and students as charter school applications open

    Associate Education Minister David Seymour says today is another important step towards establishing charter schools, with the application process officially opening.  “There has already been significant interest from groups and individuals interested in opening new charter schools or converting existing state schools to charter schools,” says Mr Seymour. “There is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Decreasing gas reserves data highlights need to reverse oil and gas exploration ban

    MBIE’s annual Petroleum Reserves report detailing a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural gas reserves shows the need to reverse the oil and gas exploration ban, Energy Minister Simeon Brown says.“Figures released by MBIE show that there has been a 20 per cent reduction in New Zealand’s natural ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Providers of military assistance to Russia targeted in new sanctions

    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced further sanctions as part of the Government’s ongoing response to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.    “Russia’s continued illegal war of aggression against Ukraine is a direct and shocking assault on the rules-based order. Our latest round of sanctions targets Russians involved in that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • OECD report shows New Zealand is a red tape state

    Minister for Regulation David Seymour says that the OECD Product Market Regulation Indicators (PMRI) released this morning shows why New Zealanders sorely need regulatory reform. “This shocker result should end any and all doubt that the Government must go to war on red tape and regulation,” says Mr Seymour.  “The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago

Page generated in The Standard by Wordpress at 2024-07-20T21:51:04+00:00