Open mike 18/04/2024

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 18th, 2024 - 51 comments
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51 comments on “Open mike 18/04/2024 ”

  1. Ad 1

    2,000 direct job losses in the public sector, and massive cuts to the subcontractor services in design, construction, policy advice, and beyond.

    This is how to collapse the Wellington region economy for over a term.

    • weka 1.1

      is that intentional? Or are they just ignorant of what they are doing?

      • Matiri 1.1.1

        Probably want to concentrate power/influence/money in golden triangle of Auckland Hamilton Tauranga.

      • mac1 1.1.2

        Here's Tova O'Brien's piece that gives some more context. Treasury did not prepare advice on the effects of these cuts. Not usual practice they argued but a unionist says it was when he worked for Robertson. Action before advice is not good practice generally. Is Willis acting on unsubstantiated 'reckons'?

        Is it intentional or ignorance? I suspect a lot was driven by haste to get the major changes going within 100 days and is more driven by political expediency and reckons than considered advice.

        I reckon……

        • Stephen D

          Oh to be a “consultant “ in Wellington. Given the precedent with Joyce, you’ll be able to charge $1000’s a day. And have at least 3 years work.

        • Drowsy M. Kram

          Anne Salmond: NZ is a democracy, not a company [11 April 2024]
          Opinion: How the weakening or avoiding of parliamentary and external checks and balances on executive power risks NZ becoming more authoritarian

          If a Prime Minister thinks of himself as a CEO, with the Cabinet as his executive team, the civil service as his employees (not independent, impartial advisors), and citizens as customers, the recipients of commercial services (not decision-makers on strategic matters), this is the inverse of the way a democracy should be run.

          Is Willis acting on unsubstantiated 'reckons'?

          "Independent, impartial advisors" would only impede Willux – it's payback time.

          And the effects of Willis' (reckon-based) actions don't matter, as long as her poor kids won't ‘suffer’ one more night of DVDs and Tip Top – "the horror, the horror."

          Here's how Willis reacted when asked about how much she stood to personally receive from her party’s tax cut proposals:

          ’In our family of two incomes we’d get $80 a fortnight. And kids, that means instead of movie night meaning DVDs and Tip Top at home, we might go out to the movies.”

          • tWig

            Chewie on Big Hairy News made the very pertinent comment that the analogy of citizens as clients is wrong. We are, in fact, shareholders.

      • Anne 1.1.3

        weka @ 1.1

        Ideological. Small Government Syndrome. Getting the country ready for privatisation.

        Greedy, shallow, small minded, stupid, uncaring. No grasp of the consequences, or if they do they don't care.

    • Cricklewood 1.2

      Given how quickly the public service had expanded is it all that bad, surely there is some advantage having skilled people come availble to the more productive sectors of the welli gton economy?

      • Anne 1.2.1

        Isn't the exponential increase in Public Service numbers in part at least caused by the exponential increase in immigration numbers over the past decade?

        In other words, it has been gathering momentum under both National and Labour governments, eventually requiring more Public Servants to service them.

        • Cricklewood

          I guess in part but seems to be exponentially higher than population growth. Certainly the growth in comms staff who seem to be there to avoid real communication between govt and the public has been massive and I dont think it would do any harm to prune a heap of those out.

      • Ad 1.2.2

        Wellington has very few other industries other than public service. Not much policy work in Weta Workshop.

        Those fired will be either retiring or moving city. Most are just lost to retirement.

        Also this guts the PSA's remaining union membership.

        • AB

          Most are just lost to retirement

          I can believe that. Having been laid off a private sector job at 60 and being regarded by prospective employers as too old, out of date and probably unmotivated – you eke out what you can for a few years in various gigs and then quit everything with great relief as soon as it's (almost) financially viable to do so. A lot of talent gets wasted. So it's annoying when Luxon witters on about wasteful spending, but seems ignorant of the waste of human intelligence that occurs within the supposedly 'efficient' systems he so worships.

          • Visubversa

            I suppose I was lucky – made redundant in the late 40's and got another job within 3 months. Left that job to retrain and to help look after my parents. Got a new set of qualifications and some experience in a related field and then got a permanent position just before my 58th birthday which carried me through to 66 and retirement. Did contract work in the same field part time for a couple of years – more for interest than $$$$$.

            Now fully retired and enjoying indolence.

            • Ad

              Hey congrats but keep your self-satisfied smugness to yourself while thousands of lives are ruined.

          • Ad

            We have to go back as far as the late 1980s when Richard Prebble reduced the size of the NZRail work for from 20,000 in 1984 to under 5,000 by 1991.

            That's the scale Wellington is facing.

            The poll sugar hit National will get in May's budget will ensure they repeat this killoff in 2925.

            And this is the last generation of public servants to have any redundancy clause beyond 4 weeks.

            This is just the start.

  2. dv 2

    How many have lost jobs in parliamentary services?

  3. weka 3

    good, simple explanation of the problems with gender self-ID in this snip of a discussion about the Australian case Tickle v Giggle (trans identified male/trans women alleging a women only app discriminated by not allowing him to take part).

    Gender identity is unable to be defined in law in any other way than the feelings of the person saying they are trans.

    How are women supposed to know that when a man says he is a woman he is a trans woman, and not some creepy dude saying he is a woman?

    Roxy Tickle's photo looks male (which is why he was removed from the app), and in subsequent communication (email/phone/text) Sall Grover only had his word that he is a TW.

    Tickle has been allowed to change the sex marker on their birth certificate, but again, once you have self- ID law, the only person that can verify their gender identity is the person saying they are a TW. That was the point of self ID law, so that trans people didn't have to go through a medical/legal process to establish that they have a gender identity that means x.

    Now apply that to every situation where a man says they are a woman: toilets, changing rooms, women's prisons, rape crisis and refuge shelters, medical exams, personal cares for disabled people and so on (there are additional reasons for not allowing males into women's spaces, TW are male and we exclude males generally fro those spaces for safety, privacy and dignity reasons).

    26m 30s in this twitter Space replay

  4. dv 4

    AND what will the cost of the redunancies be?

    Found this-

    Almost thirty staffers have quit Parliament's back office since Christmas – triggering payouts totalling nearly $250,000.

  5. weka 5

    Is Sex Binary? Live debate starting 11am NZT

    Oxford Union-style debate at MIT, with the following proposition: “Resolved, that sex is biological and binary, and gender identity is no substitute for sex in social policy.”

    Alex Byrne, Professor of Philosophy at MIT and author of Trouble with Gender: Sex Facts, Gender Fictions, and Holly Lawford-Smith, Associate Professor of Political Philosophy at the University of Melbourne and author of Gender-Critical Feminism, are arguing in favor of the proposition. Alice Dreger, historian and author of Galileo’s Middle Finger, and Aaron Kimberly, Executive Director of the Gender Dysphoria Alliance and co-host of the Transparency podcast, are arguing against the proposition. Nadine Strossen, professor emerita at New York Law School and former president of the ACLU, is serving as moderator.

  6. ianmac 6

    Funny that Erica has found the need to employ contractors to redeploy curriculum rewrite.

    After 3 minutes. Not contractors but "Short Term Sprint Group People."

  7. ianmac 7

    And funny how Seymour has managed to get more kids back to school with a plan about sicknes V attendance. No surprises there.

    • aj 7.1

      I don't see any reference to medical professional opinion in that article. Can't have 'experts' speaking.

      • bwaghorn 7.1.1

        We're being governed buy the rich angry denizens of talk back radio, or so it seems.

  8. joe90 8's all gone to shit…


    Some Gen Zers protest, claiming that higher incomes are a mirage since they do not account for the exploding cost of college and housing. After all, global house prices are close to all-time highs, and graduates have more debt than before. In reality, though, Gen Zers are coping because they earn so much. In 2022 Americans under 25 spent 43% of their post-tax income on housing and education, including interest on debt from college—slightly below the average for under-25s from 1989 to 2019. Their home-ownership rates are higher than millennials at the same age. They also save more post-tax income than youngsters did in the 1980s and 1990s. They are, in other words, better off. (the economist)

    • newsense 8.1

      I call BS.
      You’re an ACT voter iirc? Apologies if I got that wrong.

      Quick google, and this is mean, not median sorry shows costs have gone up- which is a rentier wealth transfer.

      disposable income is lowest for Gen Z since the silent generation in the USA and probably worse in NZ as our housing market is worse.

      • joe90 8.1.1

        You’re an ACT voter iirc?

        >50 years tribal Labour so please, wash your mouth out with soap!

        Anyhoo, the Economist compares income at the same age, statista compares current disposable income.

        • newsense

          I apologise! Though let us not forget that even the wombs of most tribal Labour hath brought forth sons such as Prebble and Douglas. And even Nash, Jones and Hipkins…

          My point being the level of income is somewhat irrelevant if such high barriers to entry exist in the property market and if rents and property prices have increased at the levels they have.

          Disposable income gives an idea of the net income of a generation- and that quick google suggests (in the US where there is less of a housing crisis) the younger generations getting a raw deal.

  9. newsense 9

    Labour people. Can anyone explain how one party can unilaterally break a 3 year contract with no compensation?
    From the Spinoff:

    There is no redundancy pay; no compensation. I’m a contractor. I was employed on a fixed term contract for three years. It lasted six months.

    • Craig H 9.1

      If the contract or employment agreement doesn't provide for severance payments, then the employer doesn't have to pay anything as long as they terminate the contract/employment in line with its provisions and applicable legislation.

      It's common for fixed term employees not to be eligible for severance compensation/payments because usually they are short term.

    • Cricklewood 9.2

      Ahh its all happy days earning the extra money as a contractor… until the worm turns and you're fucked.

      • Cricklewood 9.2.1

        I do wonder if the person in question had proper advice when taking on work as a contractor generally you have a lot less protections no entitlements and far more responsibilites like tax returns ACC and the like. Would need to be earning at least 30% more than an equivlant employee.

        I do find it suprising the Ministry under a Lab govt was using contracrors as opposed to fixed term employees for the roles.

        • newsense

          And they seem to have confused a fixed term employment contract with a contractor contract.

          I was confused about the nature of the contract. I guess we don’t know what the provisions are, but if it specified 3 years then surely unilaterally ending the contract early surely can’t be done. But again we don’t know the conditions.

          And if the contractor had 3 years impressed upon them enough to believe that was a meaningful part of their contract, (which does sound suspiciously like an employee relationship in fact) then that is very poor for a hiring practice under a Labour government.

          I guess before signing anything check with your union rep.

  10. David 10

    That pretty tough for you, I can’t imagine how this would feel. As you were on a contract, you will need some legal advice. But there may be a clause that says the contract can be terminated with a notice. This happened to someone I knew whose project was cancelled a couple of years ago. Good luck

  11. Jimmy 11

    Does anyone know why Gerry Brownlee met Gloriz in Auckland this week?

  12. Stephen D 12

    An interesting idea.

    Can’t see it happening. The USA is still a powerful player. Definitely not as long as NZ1 run our foreign policy.

    • Gosman 12.1

      It is also hypocritical given many of those very same nations he listed (including South Africa) seemingly don't have a problem with Russia carrying out war crimes in Ukraine.

  13. aj 13

    I just had this notification from Google Play:

    Doe this mean it's no longer possible to use passwords to confirm at all? you HAVE to use biometrics if your device is capable, facial recognition or fingerprint?

    We are getting a terribly long way down the track to total loss of privacy if that's correct.

    On Google Play, you can set biometrics (fingerprint or face) as your purchase verification method on mobile devices that have biometric capability. If you set biometrics, it means that you'll be asked to verify that it's you with biometrics each time that you make a purchase through Google Play.
    In the coming weeks, there will be a change in how you confirm your setting when you choose biometric verification. For mobile devices, when you're asked to confirm this setting, you'll use your fingerprint or face instead of your Google Account password.
    To keep your account secure, turn on purchase verification for every purchase. Avoid sharing passwords with others. If you use biometrics for purchase verification, use caution in storing biometrics of children or others on your device, as those could be used for purchase verification.
  14. Kay 14

    It's official- NZ is broken, in decline, and we are disillusioned and disenfranchised. Can't imagine why.

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