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Open mike 21/06/2022

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 21st, 2022 - 196 comments
Categories: open mike - Tags:

Open mike is your post.

For announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose.

The usual rules of good behaviour apply (see the Policy).

Step up to the mike …

196 comments on “Open mike 21/06/2022 ”

  1. SPC 1

    Money is changing hands in Israel – those who bet on an election before their 5th vaccine jab have won. Israel is to have its 5th election since 2019.


    So while Omicron variants 4 and 5 spread the jabbed up (neither being jabbed nor with "natural immunity" prevents infection) there is the risk while going to vote.

    The election comes in time to prevent Netanyahu going to court. There is about another year in the USA to go – presumably the GOP primary race would result in a stay of court proceedings for Trump.

  2. Sacha 2

    Home of the brave..

    • Sacha 2.1

      Their whole country is stuffed.

      • Sacha 2.1.1

        Mind you, it is unsettled everywhere right now..

      • Nic the NZer 2.1.2

        Some discussion around what a "Phillips curve model of inflation (with some 'glorified moving average' fudge variables wedged in)" means,


        I agree with the sentiment of this comment more than the facts as, the NAIRU theory (which Summers is likely applying) fundamentally rejects there being any useable Phillips curve trade off between unemployment and inflation.

  3. Blade 3

    This is a shocker interview with Julie Chapman, head Honcho of Kids Can. They are launching an appeal for funds because student poverty has never been worse.



    ''The principal of Henderson Intermediate, Wendy Esera, has been in education for 44 years and says student poverty is the worst she's seen.''

    I know some of this because my aunty was a primary school junior syndicate team leader. She was often buying shoes and clothes for about eight students in her class.

    We have all read the headlines you may say!

    Yeah, but I'm talking circa 2009. So I'd guess Chapman isn't exaggerating to gain extra funding given the present situation. The interview also talks of teachers ringing Kids Can in tears. Again I can believe that because my aunt burnt out and became ill. She retired before her time.

    The problem for me is with a question Kerre asked. Kerre said the government has pumped millions into this problem…where has the money gone? Good question. We know the school lunch scheme can be wasteful. And we know some parents… well, aren't good parents. The common retort is to say most parents are good parents and are honestly struggling and are doing the best they can. I don't doubt that, but I believe the numbers of sub standard parents is being underestimated. That area needs to be tightened up. But that means overhauling WINZ. If National attempt this once they become the government, their bull in a second hand store approach, will make things worse for everyone, including good parents.

    Next time you are in the supermarket and you see someone using a turquoise/ blue looking credit card you will know that's a Winz emergency food grant card. I see them on a regular basis. And sometimes the food choices in those trollies are appalling. And worse, one off, very expensive items: eg naan bread or a tray of donuts. These aren't a good choice of food item for a struggling family.

    https://www.aaap.org.nz/fix_winz_food_grants. ( open letter to the government)

    • Anne 3.1

      So the poor are not allowed to have a luxury item now and then after living on baked beans on toast and a bowl of rice for weeks on end?

      • Blade 3.1.1

        What a worthless comment. Don't forget it's taxpayer's money. In other countries they would be at the dump scavenging for food. The short answer to be truthful from my perspective is no. Do the people of Ukraine deserve the luxury of peace now and again? Yes, they deserve peace all the time. But in their present situation that cannot happen. Same with our Winz clients. In case you haven't noticed they are in an emergency situation. And, no, I don't have all the answers. All I know is it's people like you who are part of the problem.

        • Drowsy M. Kram

          What a worthless comment.

          All I know is it's people like you who are part of the problem.

          Poor people pay tax too, but good to know someone's keeping an eye on how 'the poors' pay at supermarkets – really shows your true worth, and true colours, imho.

          If your kete is full, then there's really no decent reason to be 'sharing hesitant.'

          Why poverty in New Zealand is everyone's concern
          Liang describes poverty as a "heritable condition" that perpetuates and amplifies through generations: "It is also not hard to see how individual poverty flows into communities and society, with downstream effects on economics, crime and health, as well as many other systems. Loosen one strand and everything else unravels."

          A Kete Half Empty
          Poverty is your problem, it is everyone's problem, not just those who are in poverty. – Rebecca, a child from Te Puru

          Children in poverty worry because they see the awful choices their parents are having to make [13 March 2022]
          And to see a child’s face when they’re handed a hot lunch, or a brand-new pair of shoes, or a warm jacket, no questions asked, I can assure you that look of joy never gets old.

          • Jimmy

            Many poor people are not tax payers. If they are only receiving a benefit they are not net tax payers.

          • Blade

            Nothing I haven't alluded too. Any ideas?

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Nothing I haven’t alluded too.

              So you say.

              Any ideas?

              Malcolm's 2017 analysis appealed to me. NZ is wealthy – redistributing a little more of that wealth would work wonders, imho. For example, I'd happily contribute to the tax on wealth proposed by the Green party – might not be required to contribute that much personally, but it's a decent thing to do.

              Greens call for urgent action to fix tax system [26 April 2022]
              The most straightforward solution is to introduce a Capital Gains Tax or a Wealth Tax on individuals’ net wealth over $1 million – not including mortgages and other debt. This would only apply to the wealthiest six percent of New Zealanders."

              Too much wealth is concentrated in the hands of a small number of Kiwis, and that's for real.

              More than two thirds of all financial assets are held by the top 5%

              The Sad Slide of a Once Equal Nation [4 July 2017]
              New Zealand, by most yardsticks, used to rival equal nations like Denmark. But New Zealand’s incomes have become much more unequal – and its problems much more pressing. Steeply progressive taxes could reverse that dynamic.


              More ideas on this in the 13 March 2022 comment I linked to @

              • Blade

                ''NZ is wealthy – redistributing a little more of that wealth would work wonders, imho. For example, I'd happily contribute to the tax on wealth proposed by the Green party.''

                The way I see it, taxing wealth runs into problems sooner or later. It will stifle innovation and be open to further creeping tax takes in one form or another in the future. The rich will a find a way to continue avoiding a wealth tax meaning more government resources to catch them. Savings may suffer and then the wealthy start looking overseas to move assets and business.


                But for me it boils down to an envy tax for wealthy people. Many who have built businesses and wealth up from scratch. I wouldn't have the cheek to tax the fruits of their labour.

                That said you may have seen the headlines awhile back where some wealthy individuals said they should be paying more tax. I say good on them. That's what democracy should be about. Not all rich people are rich pricks.

                Sooner or later the government always wants more. Even if only temporally.



                ''Under this proposal, the total tax on an income of $40,000 would drop from $6,020 to $4,000, and the total tax on a $400,000 income would rise from $122,920 to $206,000.''

                • Drowsy M. Kram

                  The way I see it, taxing wealth runs into problems sooner or later. It will stifle innovation and be open to further creeping tax takes in one form or another in the future. The rich will a find a way to continue avoiding a wealth tax meaning more government resources to catch them. Savings may suffer and then the wealthy start looking overseas to move assets and business.

                  Yes, that certainly is one way to see it. But what's the evidence that supports the way you see it? Apart from some “rich pricks” avoiding paying their fair share of tax – that’s a given. [Btw, why do you call them “rich pricks“? Are you suggesting that being rich increases your chances of becoming a prick?]

                  For example, is envy relevant to Danish innovation? Are Danes queuing to leave home? According to this 31 March 2022 article, NZ is the 10th happiest country, but Denmark is stable in 2nd place.

                  And the happiest place on spaceship Earth, for the 5th year running? Finland, despite being next door to Russia – who would have thunk it!

                  These Are the Happiest Countries in the World
                  Once again, the Nordic countries reign supreme.
                  For the fifth year in a row, Finland is number one when it comes to happiness. The country consistently ranks among the top education systems in the world, occasionally beaten out by countries like South Korea, Japan, and Singapore. Much of that success comes from a widespread reverence for teachers, who are required to have a master’s degree (their education is state-funded), and a pedagogical system that focuses less on quantitative testing and more on experiential learning and equal opportunity.

        • Tricledrown

          Blade having a good supply of food for lunches so no one feels left out is more important than your bean counting solution which stigmatizes those who are hungry .Blade do you suggest that those poor parents all be trained to be better parents.That would require a massive investment of social workers fixing the housing crisis fixing the intergenerational neglect and abuse. Universal benefits require much less bearaucracy to implement. Malnurishment has longterm effects meaning society will pay more in the future from poor education poor health leading to multiple generations of poverty unrealised potentials. Blade you are Morally and emotionally aloof punish the poor for being poor for making poor decisions because of poor education coming from poor families. Logic type thinking is emotional aloofness a type of mental disorder where people don't care about their fellow human beings. Neo liberal economics plays one sector the money hoarders against those who don't have the luck to be born into a non dysfunctional well off lifstyle.Blaming the poor for being poor drag themselves up by their bootstraps when in reality less than 5% of people who are born into poverty break the cycle. Neo Liberal politicians use unemployment to control inflation then blame the unemployed for their predicament ,When the poor are being kept poor to make the economy run under this model!

    • Ad 3.2

      Hey Blade next time you're at a supermarket judging what the poor can or can't have, do the world a solid favour and pull out your own card and pay for them.

      And see if you can do it while keeping your mouth shut.

      • Blade 3.2.1

        Hey, Ad. Who was judging? Just stating a fact from my perspective.

        I am paying. No need to pull out my card. What have you ever given to charity? Probably like some socialists I know… when it's time for the the hat to go around, they are in the toilet having a dry one.

        • Ad

          This is what a judgemental asshole sounds like when commenting on the poor:

          And sometimes the food choices in those trollies are appalling. And worse, one off, very expensive items: eg naan bread or a tray of donuts. These aren't a good choice of food item for a struggling family.

          Stick your facts up your ass and donate more instead.

          If you think that's judgemental, that's how the poor feel with your eyes on them.

          • Robert Guyton

            Blade, while searching for something to inflame readers of The Standard, settled upon this.

            Tomorrow, it'll be something else of a similar nature, with similar intent and effect.

            Bad faith player.

            • In Vino

              Well said, Robert.

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Bad faith player.

              True dat. Maybe useful as an occasional reminder of just how deceitful and self-serving a 'player' can be (reminiscent of Dirty Politics) – but every day?!!

            • Blade

              Ah, Robert. Of course you would turn up. But with what?

              ''Blade, while searching for something to inflame readers of The Standard, settled upon this.''

              As a matter of fact this problem is about to explode. That's a whole new generation of malcontents in the making. Maybe coming to a street near you.

              Now child poverty was a mainstay of Labour's agenda. And they delivered big bucks to try and fix the problem. It hasn't worked. So what the hell is National going to do? And will the problem become any better.

              ''Tomorrow, it'll be something else of a similar nature, with similar intent and effect.''

              What type of wankery is that meant to mean? You are a Letie, yet I see little empathy. This should be your patch of concern. Maybe because it only effects mainly brown kids in some cases.?

              Give us some ideas, Robert. I have some. I doubt you have any.

            • Barfly


            • Bearded Git

              Well said Robert….I don't read his trash any more.

          • Blade

            The defence will rest. Such anger and angst. Let's just keep the status quo..kapai. We can't criticise the poor…only rich pricks.

            • Robert Guyton

              I thought this from you, Blade, was priceless!

              "Hey, Ad. Who was judging? Just stating a fact from my perspective."

              Well and weaselly done!
              With regard your reply @ 11:59, I’ll quote you;

              “What a worthless comment”

            • Drowsy M. Kram

              Boo hoo, "rich pricks" "can't criticise the poor" – 'priceless'. "Rich pricks" need hobbies, and some get off on kicking people while they're down, imho.

              Ruthanasia was controversial as the National Party had fought the 1990 election on a manifesto promising "The Decent Society" and implicitly repudiating the radicalism of the Fourth Labour Government.

    • Sacha 3.3

      We know the school lunch scheme can be wasteful.

      Really? Do link.

      • Blade 3.3.1

        Yes. I can give you personal experiences if you want?


        ''The Ka Ora, Ka Ako programme was first rolled out to primary schools with high levels of need in 2019. The funding was expanded to some high schools in 2020 and 2021, at a cost of $220.6 million over two years.''


        Now, I need to ask myself a question: Am I being trolled, or is the ideological castle being challenged by barbarians at the gate. Probably the latter, leading to the former.

        • Sacha

          Thank you. That's helpful.

        • Ad

          Such profound intellectual laziness you have.

          You can check out the actual results from the programme here.

          Ka Ora Ka Ako | Healthy School Lunches: interim report – Education in New Zealand

          There's another evaluation coming out from the expanded programme as well.

          Stuff's Act-led foolishness is the reddest of red herrings when the actual policy results are more young people are less hungry and are learning better.

          • Blade

            It's not about the success or otherwise of the programme. And Julie Chapman has said it isn't working in many cases…. It's about the waste. Waste means a waste of taxpayers money and faults somewhere in the delivery of the programme.

            • Yeah, it's about the waste!

              A sheep farm in Arabia, anyone? Or a flag referendum?

            • Ad

              Yes it really is about the success of the programme.

              Everything else is just media hype that fools like you buy into.

              Every policy to the poor has waste, what matters isn't the waste.

              It's how you help people.

              And this programme is helping people by the hundred thousand.

              • Blade

                Yeah , and if we cut the waste, a whole lot more poor folk can be helped. And once again, I remind you – ITS NOT THE GOVERNMENTS MONEY TO WASTE..IT'S OURS.

                  • Blade



                    1. the branch of linguistics and logic concerned with meaning. The two main areas are logical semantics, concerned with matters such as sense and reference and presupposition and implication, and lexical semantics, concerned with the analysis of word meanings and relations between them.

                      • the meaning of a word, phrase, or text.

                    The fact is the people own the government…at least they should.

                    • Incognito

                      Utter BS again, we don’t “own the government” and neither “should” we. It’s clear why you must rely on TB talking points to form your ‘opinions’ because you have not the slightest clue of how things are in the real world, let alone how they should be. You live in a TB fantasy world in which the Wizard is called Mikey.

                    • Louis

                      laugh Incognito

                    • BladE

                      Depends on how you see your government. I see it like these guys.


                      Funny how a Leftie doesn't see it that way. But you guys do have some strange ideas.

                    • Incognito []

                      Yup, doesn’t surprise me that a TB junkie uses Quora for ‘info’.

                      In your own words, if you can, which of the answers in Quora best describes the way you ‘see it’? I’m sure you have a favourite.

                    • BladE

                      See my original statement then take your pick of comments.

                      You diss sites and information and talkback you don't like at your peril.

                    • Incognito []

                      Nope, you’re wrong, I don’t diss the sites and TB, I diss the lazy unthinking army of braindead zombies who rely on them for their cognitive existence and I diss the maleficent malcontents who use the talking points and propaganda from those sites and TB for nefarious agendas and interests. Put it all on the table and let the sunshine in, is my motto.

                      You’re troll-like by refusing to point to an answer that reflects or represents the way you ‘see it’. So, you were just wasting my time with your link to Quora. Yup, definitely troll-like behaviour.

                      BTW, your concern about my peril is quite endearing but I can assure I’m fine.

                    • Nic the NZer

                      Its a lot more fundamental than semantics. If the government is dependent on tax payers to provide the money then it would clearly be impossible to change currencies. Countries relatively recently have retired entire currencies and replaced them with new ones (for various reasons).

                      Consider the situation in France in 1999. At this time France has decided to adopt the Euro and replace the Franc. In your conception the government is a bit stuffed because nobody outside the government has any Euro in France. That's going to be a problem because you can't collect Euro from people who got none making adopting the Euro problematic.

                      Once we realize its government money however the way this works is simple to understand. The government will spend Euro, Tax in Euro and issue exchanges for Franc as the public wants. In fact this is what was implemented across multiple European countries at the same time.

        • Molly

          Those lunches look unappealing, even if they have nutritional value.

          It may be worth looking at successful lunch programmes to see what can be learnt. Universal lunch provision may also reduce social stigma.

          French school dinners: https://www.tasteofhome.com/article/this-is-how-french-school-lunches-are-different/

          If this seems like a hefty meal, it is! The lunch provides about 40% of students’ calories for the day.

          Another article with some of the downsides:


          In my opinion, the French approach demonstrates what can be done by communities when food–and teaching children to love eating healthy food–is a priority. Note: unlike the United States, there is no national school lunch program in France. All of the lunches you’ll read about here are funded by local municipalities. Three-course (or even four-course) freshly-prepared hot lunches are provided to over 6 million French children in the public school system every day. Even without national subsidies, these meals cost, on average, $3 per child (and prices for low-income families are subsidized),

          • Blade

            Great article, Molly. Something new has to be tried.

          • Ad

            No, there are no signs of stigma just because not all schoolchildren don't get them.

            No, the policy design isn't the same as for the French and neither is the menu.

            Healthy school lunch programme pays off | PPTA

            • Molly

              I understand that, Ad. And have downloaded the report from the link you've posted to read on another device. I did have a look at the summary though, and the measurement criteria.

              I was posting the links because the French school lunch intention, implementation and experience seems to have a wider perspective that may be valuable to consider (from the 2nd link):

              Here’s a quote from the website of a school near Paris: “Mealtime is a particularly important moment in a child’s day. Our responsibility is to provide children with healthy, balanced meals; to develop their sense of taste; to help children, complementing what they learn at home, to make good food choices without being influenced by trends, media, and marketing; and to teach them the relationship between eating habits and health. But above all else, we aim to enable children to spend joyful, convivial moments together, to learn a ‘savoir-vivre’, to make time for communication, social exchange, and learning about society’s rules–so that they can socialize and cultivate friendships.”

          • Belladonna

            And, actually, in practice, sometimes they both look unappealing and are poor nutrition.

            A friend who is a teacher at one of the schools with the free lunch programme, has been posting photos.

            They hit a new low last week: 1 stale white bread bun, with a slice of processed cheese and a smear of jam (yes in the same bun). That was it.

            The kids didn't eat it (not surprisingly, I wouldn't have).

            The teachers did an emergency trip to the supermarket, and came back with bread, and peanut butter. So the kids had something in their tummies for the rest of the day.

            There was a very nice brochure sent out to parents, describing (with pictures) what will be provided. However, the quality has been on a significant downwards spiral. And the quality checks that the Ministry are supposed to carry out — have been completely absent.

            Look, I know (believe me, I know), feeding kids is tricky. One week they're all over tomato and cheese sandwiches, the next they turn their noses up at exactly the same thing.
            But, providing a basic wholemeal bread sandwich with a decent filling, isn't rocket science – and doesn't need to cost the earth. Mandarins are cheap at this time of year, as are kiwifruit. One in each lunchbox is a quick and easy way to get some vitamins (especially Vitamin C at this time of year) into the kids.

            I get the feeling that some of the contractors are making a healthy profit, and the kids aren't getting a healthy meal.

        • Louis

          From your own link Blade

          "Schools either gave spare lunches to kids to take home or sent them to local foodbanks, so the programme wasn’t wasteful"

          • Blade

            Initially It was. That's the problem. And if you believe all schools give unwanted spare lunches away you are dreaming. We are talking double handling and poor focusing on individual school needs.

            • Louis

              Your opinion is incorrect Blade. Another example from your link "Crawford and Walters send surplus lunches to community centres, where any member of the public can pick them up that afternoon"

    • Whispering Kate 3.4

      Some supermarkets do self police what comes to the check out. I know a loved one always made sure she was buying essentials when she was given food grants. She made sure she bought items she couldn't normally cover in her benefit such as kitchen spray cleaning or vitamins anything too expensive to fit in her normal supermarket shop. Granted she thought the checkout tellers were "nazis" but accepted it.

      • Blade 3.4.1

        Yes, I have noticed policing of food grants is different depending on the supermarket. My local supermarket caters to the low earner /beanie demographic. They can buy whatever they want. However, that may be because the people that frequent my local aren't the type you say no to. The bash is always a possibility. So maybe they just take the path of least resistance. I don't know. However, if all supermarkets are meant to be limiting what a food grant can purchase, I believe that needs to be enforced.

        And maybe do away with benefit payments altogether, and have a central hub that pays for everything? A bureaucratic nightmare at present to implemented for sure. But if you consider we are close to becoming a cashless society, it would be an easy step in future.

        BTW – was your loved one using the old paper food grant transaction, or did they have the much easier card system? The old system could hold a line of shoppers up for ages while everything was checked.

        • Louis

          For pete's sakes, do you hear yourself Blade?

          • Blade

            Yes, I'm hearing myself. But I'm hearing nothing from you.

            • Louis

              Then you appear to have no self awareness. Obviously you are hearing something from me Blade, or else you wouldn't be replying. One wonders if you spend your time skulking around supermarket checkouts. It's clear that what you want to do is police what beneficiaries receive and what they spend their money on, because you are under the delusion that beneficiaries are spending your money. Well, it's not your money and what people spend their money on is none of your business.

              • BladE

                Yes, it's my money…taxpayers money. I have a right to stick my nose in. Stop playing your silly games. This WAS a socialist paradise. But not anymore.

                ''One wonders if you spend your time skulking around supermarket checkouts.''

                ''It's called situational awareness. And no, I don't skulk around supermarkets. I have better things to do. That you haven't noticed what I notice means you are half asleep…as your comments show.''

                • Louis

                  No, it is not your money Blade, as I have already explained to you in another post. Obviously you don't have better things to do and you have no right to stick your nose into someone else's business.

    • Populuxe1 3.5

      We know the school lunch scheme can be wasteful.

      So is an independent judiciary and juries. So is having a general election every three years. So is having a free press. Your point?

      • Blade 3.5.1

        Well, let's use an example:

        A garage mechanic is spilling 150mls of oil every time he does an oil change. That's a lot of oil depending on how many cars he services in a working week. That's money down the drain that could be used for other garage essentials or expenses.

        Solution: sack the mechanic if he's at fault. However, if he's spilling oil because of the way the garage is configured, or because he has to follow guidelines on how the oil change must be done, then those hinderances must be removed or altered to streamline the operation, stop wastage and save money.

        • Populuxe1

          Except that public social services are nothing like small private businesses and it would be supremely ridiculous to compare the two.

          • Blade

            No it wouldn't. Household budgets and efficiencies apply in principle across the board. Sort it out…not by increasing bureaucrats. But by holding them responsible for the jobs they do.

            • Incognito

              Since you seem so concerned with food waste:





              Wag your finger at those spoiled little brats at school who won’t eat their provided lunches, courtesy of the Taxpayer. Perhaps they should learn how precious food is and the resources that go into producing and transporting it and perhaps they should learn to minimise and manage waste; don’t they teach them anything useful at school nowadays??

              • Blade

                I agree with the your last paragraph. The little brats haven't time to be taught how precious food is because climate change, Maori culture and other environmental issues are being taught.

                Therefore, let's check where the money is going from government, and the criteria to distribution of free food lunches in school. Then cut out or cut back on schools wasting kai ( maybe make kids a accountable). For example my nephew attends what would be a decile 8 school. He forgoes his substantial breakfast and lunch available from his home in favour of a three course meal at school. These schools should be cut from the free food programme for starters.

                • Robert Guyton

                  "The little brats haven't time to be taught how precious food is because…"

                  Shouldn't your "little brats" be taught "how precious food is" at home, by their parent/s/care-givers?

                  I imagined you to be the "personal responsibility" kind.

                  Aren't you a 3 "R"s Brash-o-phile?

                  • Blade

                    What did your little brats learn.. slicing mung beans to make a meal go further.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      Was that your second attempt at humour?

                      Please use the "humour" tag.

                      Makes it easier to tell.

                • Incognito

                  Since when does central government provide 3-course meals to decile 8 or any decile schools?

                  Sounds like you’re making up shit again.

                  Of course, kids are too busy during their lunch breaks with learning about CC, Māori culture, and other environmental issues to focus time on food. These kids have such limited attention span, can only focus on one thing at a time, that they use talkback as their main source of ‘information’ later in life.

                  You obviously haven’t raised any children yourself because you’d know that home-packed lunches (not so much the snacks, funnily enough) often come back home unfinished and sometimes even untouched. That’s what afternoon tea and fridges are for, brilliant inventions!

                  Let the waste minimisation and management start at home, continue at school, and last a lifetime. A bit like learning, really. You didn’t click on any of the links, clearly.

            • Populuxe1

              Um, no, they literally don't. A government budget is nothing at all like a household budget. That's a ridiculous assertion. Governments can create legal fiat currency backed by natural resources and labour, and it can license banks to create credit, which does the same thing. Countries have been doing this for centuries – households can't. And unlike a business a state can't just fire non-productive units – well, they can, but that would be a crime against humanity.
              Furthermore bureaucrats perform actual functions and are too busy to also have to put up with the kind of performance assessments you are suggesting, because that would give them even less time to do their jobs, making them even less efficient.

              • Blade

                This from Google.

                ''Are government and household budgets the same?

                But the spending goals of governments and households are simply not the same. The purpose of a government budget is to help the entire economy, whereas a household budget is mainly concerned with its own financial situation.''

                You are quite correct with some of your assertions. However, both government and households have the following in common:

                How is the government similar to households?

                Much like households, governments have regular income and expenditures. They both take on outside debt and if their debts get too high, they can get into trouble. But unlike households, governments can, and do, print money. Governments also have the power to change their income levels by raising taxes.

                I wrote:

                '' Household budgets and efficiencies apply in principle across the board.''

                For example, apart from the obvious similarities, households can act in a limited way like a government.

                ''Governments also have the power to change their income levels.''

                So do households if you think about it. Take on boarders for example.

                Of course there are differences like tax take and printing money.

                • pat

                  Of late I have come to consider that government finances are indeed more like a households than not, despite the constant refrain that they are not (methinks they protest too much)….while governments may have the ability to theoretically 'print' money while households do not, the consequences of abusing this are the same as for a household that overindulges on credit….perhaps the real difference between households and governments is not so much in the field of finance but rather in the ability to enforce its will….. so long as it can.

                  • BladE

                    Depends on how you see your government. I see it like these guys.


                    Funny how a Leftie doesn't see it that way. But you guys do have some strange ideas.

                    • BladE

                      Whoops,wrong reply pat. Try this one:

                      ''Perhaps the real difference between households and governments is not so much in the field of finance but rather in the ability to enforce its will….. so long as it can.''

                      Very true.laugh

            • Incognito

              You're diversion trolling. The healthy school lunches programme is nothing like running an SME, they're completely different in scope, intent, and implementation. Private households are a different thing yet again.

            • Robert Guyton

              Blade: while you're here: you’ve sparked my interest with what you wrote earlier about your organic farm and your use of rock-dust, seawater, lawn-clippings and biochar for making your 10 acres fertile. It’s your biochar that I’d like to ask you about, if I may.

              Where do you get it from? How much do you need for your 10 acres and how do you apply it? I’ve read about the value of biochar and some of the historical uses. You mentioned “activating” your biochar before applying it; how do you do that? It all sounds innovative and exciting!

              • BladE

                'I'm sorry, Robert. I gave you my best before; wasted my precious time on you. And my reward was you shat on me. I like to think I learn from my mistakes. It’s a pity because I have a real passion for this stuff and I like helping those out who have a similar passion.

                • Robert Guyton

                  I see you're posting with a swollen "E", Blade.

                  Sad that you can't bring yourself to share your intimate knowledge of those subtle organic practices you employ. Who knows what else you get up to on the farm that would be of interest to other gardeners and farmers here on The Standard. Your use of vortex technology for potentising water for your crops sounded fascinating! Oh, that we could hear more about that! And deploying rock dust as a long-term, slow-release fertiliser – how forward-thinking that sounds! Then topping-up your nutrient applications with sea-water! Wowsers!

                  Our loss, I suppose. No-one would have expressed their incredulity, had they know you'd take such offence to being tested that way.

                  Hei aha (I slipped that in because of your Maori heritage).

            • Jimmy

              "Sort it out…not by increasing bureaucrats. But by holding them responsible for the jobs they do."

              Please refrain from making sensible comments like this on here. Now go wash your mouth out………they must not be held to account. It is not the Labour way.

    • gypsy 3.6

      "Kerre said the government has pumped millions into this problem…where has the money gone?"

      Clearly not into anything that actually achieves results. But then this government has form for 'pumping' money into problems and getting little in the way of results.

  4. Ad 4

    Here would be a fun job for the new South Island water entity: take over the assets of the Kurow-Duntroon Irrigation Company.

    Irrigation firm owes more than $50 million | Otago Daily Times Online News (odt.co.nz)

    This lot were up to their eyeballs in debt to Waitaki District Council and Crown Irrigation Investments Ltd (Set up under Key to massively expand dairy irrigation).

    Of course the shareholders might be able to finesse some kind of re-financing.

    But what a great opportunity for the new Crown water entity to take over 5,500 hectares of irrigation and invite good farmers to farm for high profit and high sustainability.

    • Sacha 4.1

      Intensive dairy farming in that part of the country is not sustainable. Hence irrigating and fertilising like mad.

    • Bearded Git 4.2

      On those numbers it looks like the state will end up owning the irrigation scheme …not a bad outcome.

    • Stuart Munro 4.3

      It's great countryside round there – plenty of options beyond dairy if you've got a bit of water. Half the battle though, might be to aim for smaller multicrop farms, rather than unrelieved pastoral or vineyard or forestry.

      Smaller farms in Korea often have rice fields, a couple of paddocks of table grapes, an enoki or shitake mushroom field, and a handful of hand raised cows – not so much a monoculture.

  5. joe90 5

    Meet Vice President-elect of Colombia Francia Márquez.

    When Colombians elected their first leftist president ever on Sunday, they also elected the country’s first Black vice president: Francia Marquez, a single mother who worked as a maid before challenging international mining interests as a fiery environmentalist. Her victory marks a turning point in a country plagued by social inequalities and historically governed by conservative elites.


    • Robert Guyton 5.1

      Thanks, joe90 – this is interesting and encouraging news indeed!

      • Bearded Git 5.1.1

        Great news Joe. I travelled in Colombia for over 4 months 10 years ago and boy do they ever need a leftist president to spread the wealth.

        Mind you we need a wealth tax here too.

    • Subliminal 5.2

      She is the real deal and could be the actual nail that fixes shut US military hijinx in arming drug cartels against poor Colombians. All that is left now is for Lula to take back Brazil. This will be a tough nut to crack with the US potentially focused on keeping Bolsonara in charge

      • joe90 5.2.1

        Nearly $500 million US aid last year says she'll make all the right noises but in reality, do the bare minimum.

  6. Molly 6

    For those interested in local government, and grass roots community organisations, Inspiring Communities is a good resource to sign up for:


    Tomorrow's webinar panellists: Penny Hulse, Jill Day, Sam Broughton


    Join our passionate panellists for this important webinar. The current Local Governance Review process provides an opportunity to think beyond current Council structures and mechanics, hear about the various perspectives, co-governance opportunities, bright spot examples and much more!

  7. Poission 7

    German PPI ( primary producers index) inflation goes through the roof,hitting 33.6% with electricity inflation over 90% as well as key agriculture inputs.

    To alleviate the crisis,the German energy minister (green party) has asked for the decrease in electricity generation in Gas (to allow for reserves to be sustained for winter) and asked for the increased generation by coal thermal plants.

    The UK and Austria have also reinstated coal fired generation.

    The German payment of 15B euros to subsidise the thermals,is twice the forex reserves of Pakistan which cannot afford the high spot rates for LNG forced by European demand.Hence Pakistan goes to severe conservation.

  8. Ad 8

    Great that a Minister took the hint before the Fletchers Gib Board story went even more ballistic.

    "The Minister for Building and Construction Megan Woods has set up a Ministerial taskforce with key construction, building consent, and supply chain experts to look at what more can be done to ease plasterboard shortages, including the potential for legislative or regulatory change."

    Plasterboard Taskforce Set Up To Ease Shortages | Scoop News

    Pretty astounding that the Minister of Consumer Affairs Mr Clark hasn't stepped in since this is a near-total-monopoly screwing the entire house construction market.

    But at least Woods is acting on her new brief.

    • Peter 8.1

      David Seymour got in on the act in Parliament. I thought the private enterprise free market approach was the way to go. Is that's what's operating? The market knows best, someone will make financial killing. Isn't that how it's meant to operate?

      Surely the Government getting involved should be anathema to him.

    • Herodotus 8.2

      But at least Woods is REACTING on her new brief, due to embarrassment. Fixed that for you AD.

      FFS what has she been doing ?? This shortage has been an issue mid last year, perhaps it is time that ministers in this government went out and interacted with people, instead of being out of touch !!!!


      "The August/September 2021 lockdowns caused significant disruption across the building industry. The lockdown created a backlog of orders for Winstone Wallboards to pick and deliver and resulted in longer lead times"

  9. Subliminal 9

    Former Aus FM, Bob Carr lays out a path by which Julian Assange could be freed by the new PM Albanese.

    He laments the lack of any kind of national pride that allowed Morrison to accept such extreme treatment of an Aus passport holder and points out the obvious track record of support by Aus to all things US. Time for the lapdog to show some mongrel

    • Bearded Git 9.1

      Great link Sublim. Good to see Bob Carr is still in fine form. Great article….I shared it to fb.

      I keep buying the Wikileaks t-shirts, though someone did say to me the other day they thought it said "free lasagne"

    • RedLogix 9.2

      Carr outlines the obvious face-saving measure that could well bring this monumentally stupid episode to a close. If the US security establishment and the Clinton Dems are the bad guys in this debacle – the entire UK establishment, their media, their Courts and Parliament have been to made to look like craven fools.

      Everyone knows the original charges were politicised bollocks and the entire thing was an exercise in sustained bullying that has backfired badly. End it.

  10. Belladonna 10

    Whoever is doing the PR for Andrew Little, needs to work on his messaging.
    He may be correct, in his narrow interpretation, that there is no Hospital 'crisis' – but the rest of NZ is surely seeing and hearing about one in practice at their local Emergency Department.

    Denying this is simply playing into the perception that he is badly out-of-touch with reality in his Health portfolio.


    It's pure jam for the opposition.

    • pat 10.1

      The smartest thing Little ever did was give up the leadership…the second smartest thing may have been to quit politics.

    • gsays 10.2

      I had really high hopes for health when Little became minister. TBF they were raised when Dr Clark was appointed but dashed quick smart.

      Little has raised the ire of the nurses in the past with his 'blurring the numbers' during the recent wage round, between wage increase and the pay parity. Which, incidentally still isn't settled. The DHBs trying to go back on the understanding of when the pay parity would be backdated to.

      As you say, Little needs better advisors. He could instruct the DHBs to agree to the NZNO's figures and wrap it up in a press release that is heavy in the acknowledgement of the dedicated service the nurses have shown through Covid, Win-Win.

      • Craig H 10.2.1

        Too late for that now, the DHBs cease to exist in 9 days.

        • Belladonna

          At which point we will magically have enough doctors, nurses and allied medical staff, the 'postcode lottery' of healthcare will cease, health outcomes for all Kiwis will improve, and the vast sums saved will be able to be used to expand the health services. /sarc/

          Yeah, I don't believe it either.

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