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Open mike 25/06/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 25th, 2011 - 56 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 link to Policy in the banner).

Step right up to the mike…

56 comments on “Open mike 25/06/2011”

  1. Wow Cactus Kate is seeking to stand for the ACT party.  She would actually bring something to the party, the ability to argue coherently.  

    It would be a shame though if she replaced Hillary Calvert.  That particular combination of blind prejudice, sense of superiority and lack of empathy would be difficult to recreate.

      • prism 1.1.1

        Perhaps Heather Roy feels that Don Brash has more chauvinistic attitudes to women than the previous leader, Alasdair Thompson’s recent sweeping generalisation being a final warning.

      • logie97 1.1.2

        Now let’s see, why was 9 years such a wonderful cut-off point? That’s it, she will qualify for all the travel perks but even better whe will get that gilt edged pension while the rest of us will see our GSF and similar schemes tampered with and reduced. Makes you sick.

        (Now how can the rest of us get our noses into that trough?)

    • just saying 1.2

      All we need is the Queen of Thorns standing for Mana, and Imperator fish for Labour, for some brilliant debates and a much more interesting election campaign this year.

      Not claiming QoT actually supports Mana.

    • Pascal's bookie 1.3

      >Brash should then seek three top drawer candidates for ACT to make a strong team of six first rate potential MP’s.

      Here is where I will differ from I suspect his viewpoint and state this does NOT under ANY circumstances include John Banks. Brash needs three list candidates without the baggage Banks brings. Banks is just awful. He makes you want to consider voting Len Brown. Two time losing Mayoral candidate Banks is political desperation at its finest. He’s horrible and awkward, moreso around women. I am extremely tolerant of male idiosyncrasy and even I find Banks the pits. His political philosophy isn’t even close to ACT’s. He’s toyed once with ACT and didn’t have the metal. Banks would be a Shakespearian re-run of the return of Douglas.


      Plenty more in there, like how the list needs to avoid giving loud mouthed political shit stirrers high placings just because they fill some gender or ethnic demographic niche.

  2. prism 2

    Global finance and tax haven huge use by UK and USA. Look for book called ‘Treasure Island’ from Nicholas Shaxson. On Radionz on Replay Sat 25/6 bit after 8am in dense and probing discussion with Kim.

    Says Ireland has been and still is a tax haven and that caused the conditions resulting in the name of Celtic Tiger for them, which have now spiralled into them being one of the PIGS group. He says that tax havens have led the move to compete by states to have lower company taxes.
    Confirms with details what thinking and worried people on this blog realise and argue about.

    Our own financiers Fay and Richwhite and others tried out the Cook Islands as a tax haven. I remember that a Cook Island politicians meeting was said to have been paused while some document connected with the foreign financiers was signed. Joky Hen has suggested some such role for us. I am sure that his financial background would fit him to introduce this.

    Shaxson says that the havens are servile entities to the tax avoiders/evaders so allowing them to virtually write enabling legislation. At home these would meet democratic procedures, some debate, so better to go where the entity is Free to do what they like. ‘Freedom is another word, for nothing left to lose’? (Me and Bobby McGee)

    An emailer to the radio pointed out that in the 90’s here the government decided to drop taxation for overseas companies, but not nz ones. Others would know how this works and the arguments for it. Probably one is that we need investment cash. But what do we get from that cash? A number of poorly paid jobs for the locals in the main?

    The next speaker is Irishman Philip Lane on economic vulnerability – so listen on for another facet to this hard flawed diamond of world financial practice.
    Oh oh I put gummint and got into moderation – have corrected but hope this comes out before the radio interview with Lane is over.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.1

      Others would know how this works and the arguments for it. Probably one is that we need investment cash. But what do we get from that cash? A number of poorly paid jobs for the locals in the main?

      Actually, we don’t even get poorly paid jobs – foreign investment usually results in employment going down as the foreign rentiers seek more profit.

  3. millsy 3

    I find this article about Housing NZ very disturbing

    Things are going to be very ugly when this happens. All I can see coming from this policy is more homelessness, and more mothers and babies crammed into seedy boarding houses. One of the reasons why the ’35-’49 Labour government introduced state housing was because of the state of the slums in Auckland. Now a National government with no memory of what life was like pre 1935 is hell bent on bringing the back.

    And Vicky32 – start worrying,

    • prism 3.1

      Housing NZ has been a landlord with variable concern for its tenants for some time. The government has been unwilling to invest in more state housing but opened the rental market for low income prospective tenants by providing accommodation allowances which provide a reliable subsidy to the property owner, and that has helped fuel the housing bubble. The government providing state housing at an affordable rate for a beneficiary at a top of one/third of
      the benefit would have acted as a price floor for private owners, but government brought its own rentals up to market levels some years back.

      If housing start accounts were set up whereby government meets in some proportion, the amount that savers put in, and then gives an extended, say ten year, period of set affordable interest rates say 5% on a low-price house or apartment mortgage to those savers, there would be less people wasting overseas exchange by buying imported consumer stuff, but putting that money into things for their house and their own betterment.

      The inability to get rid of tenants who create a noisy, unsafe or negative environment is probably fuel to Housing NZ changes. The women with Mongrel Mob connections have cost the country considerable money because Housing NZ wants them out because they are not good tenants with their circle of friends and family presumably making the neighbourhood unpleasant and unsafe. Perhaps the Mongrel Mob can get community money to put up its own houses to cater for its polygamous-like culture.

    • Anne 3.2

      Very interesting millsy.

      I live in an old part of Auckland that could be described as up-market. In amongst the privately owned homes are pockets of state housing that were probably built between the 1950s and 70s in the main. I have noticed in the past 12 months that many of them have been sitting empty for a long time now. They are in good condition and seem to have been freshly painted but no sign of any tenants. I’ve come to the conclusion the NAct govt. is planning to sell them after the election.

      First they take away peoples’ jobs, and now they plan to take away the chance of a decent roof over their heads.

      • millsy 3.2.1

        Your conclusion is correct Anne.

        Come the 28th of November, we are going to see the biggest mass evictions in this country’s history.

        • Jim Nald

          Re the NACT government’s lack of investments and support to generate a more diverse economy for jobs:
          – this also means that the government is pushing out our friends, newly made redundant work mates, siblings to Australia and overseas countries.

          Our children will be pushed out next.

          At this rate with this government, don’t even think of having your next two generations in this country.

    • Treetop 3.3

      I think that the govenment need to be very clear on what they are proposing to do with the accommodation supplement before the election. If anything the amount needs to be increased, there is no way that a person on a low income can afford a mortgage.

      • millsy 3.3.1

        Ironically it was the previous National Gov. that replaced the 4% housing corp mortgages (one of which Paula Bennett got) with the accomodation supplement. It effectively replaced a programme which was designed to be a genuine hand up to help people to independence (and which was successful at it to boot), and replaced it with a state handout.

    • Deadly_NZ 3.4

      Oh look they are doing to the housing lists that they did for surgical waiting lists. You not urgent or dying then your off the list.

      • Draco T Bastard 3.4.1

        Actually, it was Labour that did that to the surgical waiting lists. National complained about it at the time.

  4. Jenny 4


    Kathleen Mcbride · Little Silver, New Jersey
    · Reply · June 20 at 10:29pm

    Sheri Arbit Harris
    I do not like the looks of that!
    · Reply · Tuesday at 12:08pm

    Michelle Lipman Jeskie
    Me neither.
    · Reply · Tuesday at 6:29pm

    Paige Harris Klein · Administrative Assistant at Paladin Academy
    Not good…
    · Reply · Wednesday at 5:35pm

  5. uke 5

    Concise critique of the rhetorical phrase “politics of envy” from the blog of the UK protest group Art Uncut:

    Why is the phrase ‘politics of envy’ deemed acceptable?
    14th March
    Quick blog to register hatred of the regressive phrase ‘politics of envy’. If an individual realises that those in the socio-economic group they were born into die a decade younger on average, or that their children’s life chances are significantly less than the children of those who can afford private education, or that the wages of those in ‘higher’ socio-economic groups have risen many, many times faster in the last thirty years than the wages of those in their own, and as a result of this realisation gets a bit angry, I think that we should call this ‘legitimate grievance’ rather than ‘petty jealousy’. The phrase ‘politics of envy’ is very ugly indeed. I hope in the future this phrase is deemed unacceptable in the way that racist or homophobic terms are now deemed unacceptable.
  6. William Joyce 6

    Like lawyers, you can always find a scientist who will disagree with you, and here’s one…….

    • ianmac 6.1

      And William, don’t you love the last sentence:
      “The prime minister does not share the view of Mike Joy, and has no further comment to make.”

      • freedom 6.1.1

        images of John in the office, fingers waggling above his head going nyah nyah nanaanyah

  7. ZeeBop 7

    Sick? Then you don’t need food? How about you dance for your food?
    Welcome to NZ. Future Focus policy means the sick will be threaten
    with the reduction and cessation of money to by food, health care, pay
    rents. Zeit Heil.

    Doctors may if patients don’t take their medicine stop feeding
    them hospital food, if they are too poor to have relatives bring
    them food, how is that the Doctors problem?

  8. ianmac 8

    What happens if a country defaults on its financial obligations? Iceland though having only 330,000 population did so and fed up with the mainstream parties elected some Bob and Ben likeness instead.
    What would happen if Greece or Portugal or Ireland took the same stand? What would happen if Bill English dealt with NZ needs rather than that of the Credit Agencies.
    Iceland bears watching. (And they promised a polar bear in their zoo.)

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      the main threat is that NZ would no longer be able to access borrowed hard foreign currency for which to pay for critical overseas imports incl. fuel, drugs, machine parts, information technology.

      Travel overseas would become near on impossible as the value of the NZ dollar collapses. A simple Big Mac in Sydney would end up costing NZ$30 or NZ$40, if you could get anyone to change your NZD to begin with.

      In this capitalist international game it is always better to be a net lender rather than a net borrower.

      As long as you don’t lend to basket case countries of course. French and Germany banks who were lending ginourmous sums of money into Greece would have known looking at Greece’s national income, that those loans could not be paid back in any kind of commercially acceptable timeframe.

      • Herodotus 8.1.1

        There was a country that tried this policy of Autarky and look what happened to Albania, they regressed more so than any other East European country. Turkey may yet have to follow this policy just to keep the $$ flowing.
        As some have commented regarding petro-chemicals – for this group of products the policy could become a reality by default. Hate to see all our earnings being spent on debt servicing and oil !!

        • Colonial Viper

          Iceland unilaterally told their creditors where to go and for the moment, it seems to be working better as an approach than what Spain and Greece have done.

          • Herodotus

            Iceland did display boldness that has ben lacking elsewhere. But when you live in a country that has everything now going its way (Once Global Warming really takes off, and we see a replay of the early 2nd millenium) and that it has eyjafjallajokull that can stop Europe in its tracks whenever it so desires !!
            I cannot see how Greece can solve its financial issues, like America all that happens is a build up of pressure until it finally blows up (with a few growing excedingly wealthy at the expense of the masses). That is the problem with what Greece gave us, democracy. We the voter will not vote for pain (Turkeys and Christmas) and the pollys have no idea or fortitude re the (painful) cure.
            On a side issue Icelands demise resulted in my team relagated to the 1st division, so there was some paid experienced 🙂

            • Colonial Viper

              Question is, is the pain proposed being evenly shared?

              How is it for instance that in the case of Greece, none of the bondholders/big investment banks are being asked to share the pain, say by taking 25% haircuts?

              It seems that it’s only ordinary Greek citizens and Greek workers being asked to suffer.

              • Herodotus

                This to me seems like a replay of Muldoonism or a poorly semi managed Economy. Where our living stds are propped up by borrowings, we (in this case Greece) has been very generous to its citizens given what it was able to earn. We, as most 1st world countries are in various forms are in the same boat, one day we will come to reality and have to accept dramatic decrease in living stds. Just as well as the filthy rich (many faceless individuals and families that the popularis has no idea who they are ) have their nest egg to “Go Private” when the crap hits the spinning thingy.
                This also displays the weakness of the EU in that here are the rules e.g deficits, current accs and who followed them and who policed them? Now we have G.B. being asked to assist in the bailout and they are not even part of the Eurozone.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Greece has had a massive problem with tax evasion and corruption for years. No doubt about that.

                  Question remains, are ordinary Greeks and Greek workers going to be the only ones who suffer for the foolishness of their elites consorting with the investment banking and international finance types.

                  one day we will come to reality and have to accept dramatic decrease in living stds.

                  And to repeat the question again in a different way: who is this “WE” you are talking about who is going to have to “accept dramatic decreases in living standards”?

                  Is it just the ordinary workers and people again? How about the richest 2% of NZ society, are they going to accept dramatic decreases in THEIR living standards?

                  Or are they, as the pattern is emerging, just going to use the rest of us as a buffer to keep the status quo for themselves.

                  Note that National did not cut MP’s own super schemes when they cut KiwiSaver. Another example of the pain not being evenly shared.

                  • Herodotus

                    My referring to “We” are all those who do not have enough to not care less because most 90%+ require the benefit of the collective not to live off our”success”.
                    And re Greece there was from my reading a wide acceptance of tax evasion, yet again we see who benefits from all this speculation and not paying their social contributions for all. AND WE STILL BAIL THEM OUT !!!
                    Yes re Nat agreed yet Lab were the same in power remember the 2-4% pay rises we all got (most years behind inflation and further behind the real cost of living increases) and the PM and MPs being in double digit pay rises and blaming the detached, impartial system (that they set up)?And they increased their tax free allowances to over $13k no basis for it just another (elephant in the room )perk. At least in old NZ it was far more egalitarian when blue/white/Mp’s/City councilors and the chiefs of industry did intermingle at baches, sports and schools. Now (technically NZ is not a class society yet by acedamic definition) we are progressing into a well divided society, with all the infighting and positioning from those groups who are all losing out and going backwards, bar the top 2-5% of the pop. and very few can see it.

                    • logie97

                      ianmac and c.v.
                      I just wonder if those big producer economies would actually let New Zealand become a basket case. They would also have too much to lose. We are a good and reliable market. New Zealand has always been a first world country. I cannot believe that forces within the producer industries would let their governments let NZ go down the plug. They might force austerity measures on us, but the minions might also demand a re-dividing of the cake. I think the likes of the absentee investors in our economy are the ones who have the most to lose. We are an energy rich nation, and we would be able to take back ownership of our resources… begins to sound better all the time… yep let’s default and take our nation back.

  9. Morrissey 9


    Blithering old Alisdair Thompson is not the only powerful bully confronted by Helen Kelly in the last twelve months. Please enjoy this blast from the recent past…

    Helen Kelly: “Peter Jackson is a spoilt brat.”

    October 20th, 2010 by Altaira

    Ataahua, one of our Kiwi connections, just posted on our Hobbit discussion board that Helen Kelly, president of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions (CTU) has just been interviewed on Newstalk ZB. Highlights:

    The move offshore is financially-driven, not actor-driven
    “The issue is that countries are offering double the tax breaks (of New Zealand). Warners are in the process of doing as much damage as they can (to the NZ film industry) to get what they want. “New Zealand can compete on films if the tax system is right. We have to have the right financial conditions to compete.” She said New Zealand competes on talent and skills and we shouldn’t have to accept lower overseas conditions to be competitive.

    A resolution was close
    “We’re working with SPADA. Warners is fully aware that we’re within an inch of resolving this but they’re deciding to go this way. “The union is the way to unionise the film industry, and what is the problem with this? We have manufacturing and call centres going offshore, and are you suggesting that our actors shouldn’t be unionised?”

    PJ’s role in the dispute
    “Peter Jackson is a spoilt brat, and saying that in this country I know is sacriligious. He organised a meeting last night through Weta Workshop and wound those technicians up with false information. They were played like a fiddle and took the bait. He shared information that we’re forbidden from sharing and said it’s the performers’ request to meet that has hurt The Hobbit. It is the fault of Three Foot Seven to move the movie to film The Hobbit.”


    • Murray 9.1

      Didn’t she get her arse kicked over that.

      • RedLogix 9.1.1

        Well now you come to mention it Murray, I have to say that I recall Alisdair’s behavior towards Helen Kelly during one TV interview as especially sneering and demeaning to her as a woman. It stuck in my memory as an interesting moment, revealing the man’s inner convictions in all their retro-ugliness.

        So yes Murray.. it’s transpired an arse got kicked alright.. and it hasn’t been Helen Kelly’s.

      • Morrissey 9.1.2

        It was Peter Jackson that looked and sounded utterly out of his depth through that fiasco. He usually sat glumly and pathetically, while his terrifying minder and spokeswoman Philippa Boyens did all the talking.

        In stark and telling contrast to Jackson, Helen Kelly was articulate and strong throughout that unpleasant confrontation.

  10. weka 10

    I see the TTT byelection thread has disappeared. Hopefully it will be back after 7pm.

  11. mikesh 11

    “the main threat is that NZ would no longer be able to access borrowed hard foreign currency for which to pay for critical overseas imports incl. fuel, drugs, machine parts, information technology.

    Travel overseas would become near on impossible as the value of the NZ dollar collapses. A simple Big Mac in Sydney would end up costing NZ$30 or NZ$40, if you could get anyone to change your NZD to begin with.”

    This assumes of course that other countries will no longer wish to buy our products. This seems unlikely given that food shortages seem to be looming. In fact a slight drop in the dollar would probably be beneficial. And, let’s face it, default on our part would probably lead to a large reduction in payments for “invisibles”.

    • Colonial Viper 11.1

      – Yes we will still sell a lot overseas, but when you look at the balance of payments you can see that we will be shortages of hard foreign currency fairly fast.

      – A slight drop in the dollar to say 70c would be hugely beneficial for NZ industry. I was really talking of say a 90% (or larger) drop, which would occur after a loan default.

      None of this is unmanageable of course, Iceland and Argentina are still around, and those are only a few recent examples.

      • KJT 11.1.1

        Mostly our real tradeables sector is in credit.

        It is invisibles, mostly interest and profit repatriation which keep us in deficit.

        A drop in the value of the dollar would help of course.

        • Colonial Viper

          Thanks for the pointer. Nationalisation of a few banks might be handy too.

        • RedLogix

          Yes KJT… it’s astounding how many folk have no idea about this fundamental structural imbalance in our economy. The root cause is simple:

          Far too much of the NZ economy has been sold to overseas owners

          Now there is nothing wrong with some direct foreign investment as long as it meets two conditions:

          1. It actually creates new wealth and opportunity, as distinct to merely capturing existing assets to rent back to us.

          2. It is balanced by a similar level of FDI by New Zealand overseas; in other words the investment flows in and out of the country roughly balance each other over the medium term.

          NZ has categorially failed on both counts. As a result something in the order of 7-9% of our GDP dissapears offshore EVERY year. This is one of the most important reasons why NZ has failed to meet it’s potential in the last 30 years or so, and why the extreme neo-liberal, free market experiment inflicted on this country was completely wrong.

          • Draco T Bastard


            Try and tell the politicians that though.

          • Colonial Viper

            RL, I’d add a third condition which is really making part of 1. that you have already listed more explicit.

            3. It brings new scientific, technological or process capabilities to New Zealand which add value to our economy and which we did not have before.

  12. Bunji 12

    The public service is feeling the pain of all Bill’s cuts…
    Ministry of fear and insecurity as state servants wait for axe

    • marsman 12.1

      Fear and insecurity for state servants, fear and insecurity for solo mums, fear and insecurity for earthquake victims. The National Party do fear and insecurity very well, choose a group within society and pick on that group. Provides distractions for their real business which goes on in back-rooms and involves shady deals.

  13. Jum 13

    Found this in the on-line comments of NZH and a follow-up reply from Josh – thank you Josh.

    Just Me (North Shore City)
    09:05 AM Friday, 27 May 2011
    No, no change in my vote.
    At least National will make some money off the sales, unlike Labour who sold Tranz Rail to Toll for $1. Yes, not a typo, One Dollar. And then they bought it back for $665 million minus the profitable road transport division.

    Josh (New Zealand)
    10:31 AM Friday, 27 May 2011

    Uhh, actually Toll sold the tracks to the Government for a dollar. New Zealand Rail Ltd was sold in 1993 to Wisconsin Central Transportation Corporation and two other investment groups who proceeded to strip it of valuable assets in order to pay down debt and lease costs that were unaffordable. TheGovernment then purchased the company back in 2008 for $665 million dollars to avoid the complete destruction of NZ’s railway system, and to prevent the continued degradation of services.

    Just more Crosby and Textor John Key clones peddling their lies on national media. Surely the Herald picked up on it. If they did and left it in the comments then that makes liars of them and their foreign owners too. We had enough nasty lying against Labour in the 2008 election. This year NActMU will do whatever it takes. Labour, Progressive, Greens don’t turn your backs on anyone remotely like a NActMU MP or party follower. They are patently dangerous to New Zealanders wanting to retain what is left of an egalitarian society.

  14. Robert M 14

    What a joke, toll were even less constructive than Tranz Rail. David Richwhite gave rail a Chance, they tried and tested whether the freight system was any use, invested in a lot of new track and fast wagons in 1993-8, ran the freight trains at maximum speed, even tried to make the long distance passenger trains which labour under Kirk, Freer, Douglas and Prebble would never spend any real money or new investment on, work. Clark and Ron Donald just scrapped them. Eay Richwhite brought the second hand Brit rail carriages and the Perth units that gave passenger rail a chance in this country.
    The toll trains cruised around this counry in Australain national war bonnet colors. They were basically Australain corporate mafia who never invested a cent of real money in NZ. Jum get back to Sth London and Cameron and Borris will treat slum dwellers like you in the appropriate manner

    • Jum 14.1

      Robert M.

      Robert M said “Jum get back to Sth London and Cameron and Borris will treat slum dwellers like you in the appropriate manner”

      And why would you think I would be needing to go back to South London? I’d much rather stay here and highlight your idiocy, you nasty little creature.

      Public transport is a public good for the use of New Zealanders who need to get from A to B without a car. You bxstards are so selfish and greedy that you have no empathy for those people.

      The issue is never about making a profit; your idiot Key/Joyce government is deliberately under-resourcing rail in favour of road. Fay/Richwhite were two of the criminal class that ripped all New Zealanders off; Bolger’s government sold Rail in 93 and we lost a useful apprenticeship scheme.

      The best result that occurred was Cullen buying it back; it made no difference in the end what we paid for it because whatever money was left was given by your idiot Key/English government to rich pricks.

  15. Morrissey 15

    Lowkey: Our Taxes Are in the Bullets Being Fired at People

    This guy is an entertainer with a heart, a conscience and a brain. Respect!

  16. Jim Nald 16

    Men struation or Men cold:


    Something to flu mmox Alasdair Tamponson

  17. FYI folks – forwarded on behalf of Sue Henry (who doesn’t have a computer)

    25 June 2011

    PRESS RELEASE: Response from Sue Henry Spokesperson Housing Lobby:


    “Thousands to come off housing list” By Simon Collins Saturday Jun 25, 2011

    “With the continuation of Auckland’s serious housing crisis and families still languishing in sheds, garages and overcrowded and sub-standard accommodation, including those left homeless in Christchurch – the last thing any decent Government should be doing is privatising the state housing stock, using charities such as the Salvation Army and ‘trusts’ in a mixed economy to do it,” says Sue Henry, Spokesperson for the Housing Lobby.

    “It is totally unacceptable to have Government policies in the 21st century that create instability, transience and homelessness.

    There are several other aspects that are very concerning:

    The ‘housing crisis’ will not be fixed by taking people off the waiting list.

    Prime Minister John Key promised that there would be no asset sales in this first term of government. This is what John Key promised on 14 April 2008:


    “Transcript: Agenda IV’s John Key
    Monday, 14 April 2008, 10:57 am
    Article: Agenda

    GUYON Alright you rightly point out it was sold by the National government in 1998 now that brings us to this position. What is your position now as a National Party on state asset sales?

    JOHN Well National’s had some time to reflect on that and the position that we’ve decided to have is the following one. That in the first term of the National government there will be no state assets that will be sold either partially or fully.

    GUYON So no state assets, you’re completely firm on that?

    JOHN That’s right.”

    “But Housing Minister Phil Heatley has said ‘some iwi groups wanted to take over managing state houses rather than buying them, but the Government wanted to sell them.’

    Prime Minister John Key is breaking this promise.

    The proposed sale of any state housing stock must cease forthwith.”

    Housing Lobby Spokesperson Sue Henry drew attention to what Prime Minister John Key had stated on 12 March 2007 – that he didn’t ‘ favour a move back to market-related rents.’


    Before the 2008 election, National’s stated policy on housing, as declared by Phil Heatley on 22 July 2008, included the following:

    National Party promised to keep at least the existing number of state houses if it wins this year’s election.

    National would not sell state houses to outside investors, as it did in the 1990s, and would use the proceeds of sales to tenants to buy or lease new state houses.

    “We won’t be running down the state housing stock. We acknowledge that we need it.”

    Mr Heatley said the party would now keep Labour’s policy of fixing state house rents at only 25 per cent of the tenants’ incomes except for tenants on high incomes.


    “This will be yet another broken promise,” says Ms Henry.

    “Why then would the ‘social housing unit’ (which should also be scrapped forthwith because it has no public mandate), be asked to ‘propose a new system of subsidising housing costs to replace the income-related rent subsidy for state houses?,” she continued.

    [He [Housing Minister Phil Heatley] told the Weekend Herald that the new social housing unit, due to start in the Department of Building and Housing on July 1, would be asked to propose a new system of subsidising housing costs to replace the current income-related rents for state houses and accommodation supplement for the private sector within the next six to 12 months.’]

    “This is ludicrous.

    The Income Related Rent Subsidy (IRRS) works extremely well for tenants trying to manage on a low income.

    The system is not broken.

    It doesn’t need to be tampered with by vested interests,” concluded Ms Henry.

    Sue Henry
    Housing Lobby

    Ph (09) 575 6344

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    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    18 hours ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    19 hours ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    2 days ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    2 days ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    2 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    2 days ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    2 days ago
  • Letter to a friend
    by Don Franks Hi David, Nice hearing from you, I’m glad to hear you’re getting by okay in these grim times. You asked how’s it going for us back here in New Zealand. You would have heard that the whole country is locked down and with breaks for exercise and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
    . . Lock Down: Day 3 – A photo essay with observations . March 28: First day of the first weekend in Lock Down. It feels like it’s been weeks since only Level 3 was declared last Tuesday, only four days ago. Woke up this morning to RNZ; coffee; toast, ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    3 days ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    3 days ago
  • Rāhui day 3
    I’m here in lockdown with my flatmate and her two girls (6 and 2) and it. is. a time. They’re usually really active so to start with the only boardgame in the house is the copy of Guess Who that the 6 year old got for her birthday. Flatmate commented ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    3 days ago
  • A test of civil society.
    The CV-19 (COVID) pandemic has seen the imposition of a government ordered national quarantine and the promulgation of a series of measures designed to spread the burden of pain and soften the economic blow on the most strategically important and most vulnerable sectors of society. The national narrative is framed ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 2
    . . Lock Down: Day 2 – A photo essay with observations . March 27 – Day 2 of our Strange New World. The Park and Ride near my suburb, usually filled with hundreds of vehicles, had just… four; . . Another drive into Wellington City on a highway nearly ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    4 days ago
  • How Do You Feel? What Do You Think?
    Fortune's Children: Under extraordinary pressure, the leader of the Government and the leader of the Opposition will each show us what they are made of. Have they been blessed with intelligence, grace, wit, poise, toughness, empathy and humour – and in what measure? More importantly, to what extent have they ...
    4 days ago
  • Landlords are NOT an essential service
    If you’ve ever had the misfortune of having to rent a property on the open market in New Zealand, which is one of the most expensive in the entire world, you’ll likely be keenly aware of just how arrogant and entitled landlords and their real estate agents can be.Unfortunately for ...
    4 days ago
  • A “new Society” post-COVID19 will definitely emerge. The question is: on what path?
    Society-wise, aside from the specific morbidity shall we say of the medically-oriented aspects of this COVID-19 crisis, what is unfolding before the world is in more than one way an instructive study of humanity and reactions to a high intensity, high stress environment in real time. Friends, we are at ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    4 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: Everything you need to know about the wage subsidy
    Right now low waged and insecure workers are feeling the economic brunt of the looming #Covid19 Recession. In response legal advocate Toby Cooper* and hospitality and worker’s rights advocate Chloe Ann-King, are putting together a series of legal blogs about your employment rights: In this legal blog we outline some ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    4 days ago
  • The massacre of prisoners in Modelo jail, Bogota, March 21
    by Equipo Jurídico Pueblos and Gearóid Ó Loingsigh (25/03/2020) An escape plan in question On the night of March 21st and the early morning of the 22nd, the forces of the Colombian state stormed into the Modelo prison in Bogotá, murdering 23 prisoners and injuring 83, in response to the ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • We are not America
    When the government banned semi-automatic weapons in response to a terrorist atrocity, gun-nuts were outraged. Mired in toxic American gun culture, they thought owning weapons whose sole purpose was killing people was some sort of "constitutional right", a necessity for "defending themselves" against the government. Now, the Court of Appeal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • When will we know the lockdown is working?
    Just before midnight on Wednesday March 25, Aotearoa New Zealand entered a countrywide alert level four lockdown. For at least the next four weeks, everyone who isn’t an essential worker is confined to their bubble. We are doing this to stop the explosive growth in people contracting and dying from ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    5 days ago
  • Lock Down: Day 1
    . . Lock Down: Day 1 – A photo essay with observations . Day one of the Level 4 nationwide lock-down (or, DefCon 4 as I sometimes cheekily call it) started at 11.59PM on 25 March. For a moment, most of the nation held it’s collective breath. In that brief ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • A Compelling Recollection.
    Broad, Sunlit Uplands: How those words fired my young imagination! Or, perhaps, it is more accurate to say: how those words fused, in my young mind, with the image printed on every packet of Fielder’s Cornflour. Always fascinated by history, especially modern history, I cannot hear Churchill’s wonderfully evocative words, even ...
    5 days ago
  • The Warehouse – where everyone gets a virus
    . . 24 March 2020 9.46AM Number of covid19 cases in Aotearoa New Zealand: 102 . As of 11.59 on Thursday, most of New Zealand will go into “lock down”. People will be expected not to travel to work; not to socialise; and to stay home. I will not be ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    5 days ago
  • Aggressive action to address climate change could save the world $145 trillion
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections A respected research group, Project Drawdown, finds that deploying solutions consistent with meeting the Paris climate targets would cost tens of trillions of dollars globally. But crucially, those outlays would also yield long-term savings many times larger than the up-front costs. The new 2020 Drawdown ...
    5 days ago
  • After the Pandemic
    It will pass. What happens next? Not immediately, but longer term. There are many opinions, fewer certainties. Will it “change everything!” as many confidently, and contradictorily predict? In this post I look at how foresight can help bound some of the uncertainties so you can more objectively consider the future. ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    6 days ago
  • Coronavirus – Cuba shows the way
    We’ve been meaning t write something on Cuba and the coronavirus but have just discovered a very good article on the subject in the US left publication Jacobin.  The article looks at how Cuba, a poor country but one where capitalism has been done away with, is leading the way ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Using privacy law to prevent the death penalty
    In 2018, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey - two British citizens who had purportedly been stripped of their citizenship by the British government - were captured while fighting for Isis in Syria. The British government then conspired to hand them over to the US, and agreed to provide evidence ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • It’s Time For Disaster Socialism.
    Transformers: The disaster of the Great Depression was transformed into a new and fairer society by the democratic socialism of the First Labour Government. The disaster of the Covid-19 Pandemic offers a similar transformative possibility to the Labour-NZ First-Green Government. Seize the time, Jacinda! You will never have a better ...
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #12, 2020
    Tamper with The System? Well, we already are. But there's a difference between accidentally trickling sand into a precision gearbox versus formulating a plan to alter it on the fly with improvements in mind. One action is more or less innocently unscrupulous, the other amenable to earning an easy ...
    6 days ago
  • Avoidable hospitalisations: Helping our health system get through COVID-19
    Associate Prof George Thomson, Louise Delany, Prof Nick Wilson While it is possible that New Zealand can use intense public health controls to eradicate COVID-19 from the country – we must also plan for other scenarios where thousands of New Zealanders are sick – including many urgently hospitalised.1 Better resilience ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    7 days ago
  • Raise the Bar: 10 questions to ask your employer proposing redundancy
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or being ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    7 days ago
  • An equitable way to support business
    The Herald reports that the government is planning to lend billions of dollars to large businesses to keep them operating during the pandemic. As with mortgage relief, this is necessary: we need companies to stay in business, to reduce the economic damage and help things get restarted again when this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Hard News: Together Alone
    We're about to do something unprecedented as a nation. We hope that by taking this extraordinary action before a single life in New Zealand has been lost to the deadly novel virus we will save tens of thousands of lives. Our  lives. We'll do it together, in households, in isolation ...
    7 days ago
  • Why timing is everything: ‘A time to refrain from embracing’ starts today
    “There is a time for everything,    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”So writes the author of Ecclesiastes, a book in the Old Testament that’s counted as a ‘wisdom’ book and written as if by an unnamed king of Jerusalem. But who would have thought there would be a time ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    7 days ago
  • Dealing with the Covid-19 Tsunami.
    I was surprised when the prime minister described the Economic Response to Covid-19 package as the ‘largest peacetime government spend in New Zealand's history’. Reflecting – checking through history – I realised that the term ‘spend’ was crucial and the package had no income tax cuts. Even so, it has ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • What about renters?
    The government today announced the latest part of its pandemic relief package: a six-month mortgage holiday for people whose incomes have been affected by the pandemic. Which is great, because these people are going to need help, and that's what the government should be doing. At the same time, it ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Living within our means.
    Years ago the Argentine sociologist Carlos Weisman wrote a book titled “Living within our Means.” It was a critique of Argentine society that focused on the paradoxical question of why, in a land of plenty, there was so much economic instability, inequality, corruption and political turmoil. His conclusion was basically ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Transparency and the pandemic
    Parliament will be leading by example and adjourning tomorrow after a special sitting to consider an epidemic notice and state of emergency. Day-to-day oversight of the government will be delegated to a select committee. But that's not the only overight mechanism. The OIA will still be law, and (so far) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • ‘Overjoyed’: a leading health expert on New Zealand’s coronavirus shutdown, and the challengin...
    Michael Baker, University of Otago Overjoyed. That’s not a word epidemiologists normally use, but that’s how I felt after hearing Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s announcement about New Zealand’s COVID-19 shutdown of everything except essential services for at least four weeks from midnight on Wednesday. More than anything, I just ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • One way to solve the housing crisis
    How much homelessness is caused by house hoarding? We're about to find out. The pandemic has destroyed tourism, which means that house hoarders who put their hoarded properties up as short-term tourist rentals are now offering them on the ordinary rental market:Property investors are pulling properties from Airbnb to offer ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The pros and cons of planting trees to address global warming
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Bruce Lieberman It seems like such a simple, straightforward, empowering idea: plant trees – a lot of trees – all over the world, and watch the planet’s temperature fall. Who doesn’t love a tree or two, even far more – the right ...
    1 week ago
  • Not a grand coalition, but a government of national salvation
    According to Newshub, Simon Bridges is open to joining a “grand coalition” with Labour as we hunker down to go into a month long lockdown. The idea is sound. Before now, the role of the opposition was to scrutinise and oppose. In the context of what almost amounts to a ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Raise the Bar: hospitality workers & wage subsidy entitlements
    Kia ora my name is Chloe Ann-King* and I am the founder of Raise the Bar, a campaign and non-profit that gives free legal aid, advocacy and tautoko to hospitality workers in Aotearoa. Right now all over our country hospo workers are being fired at will, having shifts cut or ...
    PosseBy chloeanneking
    1 week ago
  • Lifting our game against COVID-19
    We need to be lifting our game against COVID-19. You and I need to help those working to prevent the spread of COVID-19 while they’re trying to lift the testing and treatment efforts. We don’t want to be playing this game running backwards. Best to play it solidly forward, from ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • The maths and ethics of minimising COVID-19 deaths in NZ
    Prof Tony Blakely, Prof Michael Baker, and Prof Nick Wilson The NZ Government must do more to clearly articulate its COVID-19 strategy: eradication or ‘flattening the curve’ mitigation. But to do so means understanding the maths and ethics of both these strategies. In this blog, we adapt our work for ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • All aboard the Covid Train
    A few days ago I was starting to write something about the pandemic, which now seems unconscionable. It took the form of a letter to an agony aunt:“Dear Deidre, I have an ugly confession. I am quite excited by Covid-19.”This is how the piece went:“I’m not a psychopath, honest. Although the ...
    PunditBy Phil Vine
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #12
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Climate Feedback Article Review... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Reviews... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters The likelihood of extreme events ...
    1 week ago
  • We are all socialists now
    Last week, the government announced a $12 billion initial package to support people during the pandemic. Today, the Reserve Bank is buying government bonds - effectively printing money - to keep up the money supply during the crisis. Normally such moves would have the right apoplectic. Instead, the National Party ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A plea to experts: safeguard your role in public life
    I am a pundit, somebody who opines and comments on the news. There are no real qualifications to punditry though having a rudimentary way with words and good general knowledge helps. That is one reason there is a constant oversupply of would-be pundits and why it is quite hard to ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    1 week ago
  • Enlightenment when?
    I recently encountered the following prescription from a Faculty of Education at a leading New Zealand University. At first I wondered if it was another product of the postmodern generator (http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/), designed to create gibberish in the postmodern form, but I’m told it is real: The “schooled” society: Towards the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Corballis
    1 week ago
  • What the Crisis Can teach Us
    The coronavirus pandemic has of course had a major impact on individual lives and on societies as a whole. But, long after the crisis has passed (assuming it does), we will begin to realise that its real and lasting significance lies in the lessons it has taught us, if only ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Hammering home measures to stop COVID-19
    COVID-19 has plunged Aotearoa New Zealand (indeed, the world) into territory that, while maybe not totally unprecedented, certainly hasn’t been seen during the lifetimes of most of us here today. Our borders are closed to non-citizens, we’re being told not to gather in groups of more than 500 outside/100 inside, ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
    1 week ago
  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Life asserts itself regardless
    by Cultural Worker Late March 2020 amidst the virus. With gigs crashing and burning all around it was without much hope that I called a long standing rest home booking: “ Hi, I’m supposed to be entertaining at your place this afternoon – is it still on?” “”If you don’t ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
    Whenever people demand real change from their politicians, we're told that "politics is the art of the possible". The implication is that change isn't possible, so we'd better just get used to the sucky status quo. But now that there's a pandemic, a lot of things we were previously told ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
    Together: In leading New Zealand through the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister could do a lot worse than allow herself to be guided by the spirit of collective sacrifice and co-operation that animated the New Zealanders of 80 years ago. Most Kiwis alive today have had no opportunity to prove their ...
    2 weeks ago
  • GFC vs Covid-19
    It is said that generals fight the last war. In the case of the early stages of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) they had learned from the Great Depression of the 1930s and they fought intelligently and successfully. Later their advice would be ignored in favour of the Austerians who ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • Nobody Left Behind.
    Solidarity Forever: All over the world, the arrival of the Covid-19 virus has exposed the fragility of the walls we erect around ourselves and our loved ones. It has shattered our illusions of autonomy and revealed to us how utterly dependent we all are on other human-beings. Finally, we see ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
    Looking across the various arguments for/against the leading candidates to take the Democratic Nomination, you might honestly be very hard pressed to tell. There are a number of things that have now started happening since Amy Klobuchar and “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg both threw the towel in and immediately (and ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Abortion law reform a win for women
    by Daphna Whitmore Abortion is no longer in the Crimes Act in New Zealand. The law reform passed yesterday and now abortion is a medical matter between a woman and her doctor. Many women’s groups and progressive people have campaigned for reform for decades. The women’s liberation movement and some ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
    Doug Specht, University of Westminster and Julio Gimenez, University of Westminster When fake news, misreporting and alternative facts are everywhere, reading the news can be a challenge. Not only is there plenty of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, climate change and other scientific topics floating around social media, you also ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
    Michael Baker, University of Otago and Nick Wilson, University of Otago With some of the toughest border restrictions and a newly-announced NZ$500 million boost to health services, New Zealand is among a small number of countries with a strategy to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. New Zealand is also fortunate in ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
    As expected, the government has introduced a sessional order to allow Parliament to operate during the pandemic. You can read it on the Order Paper here, but the short version is that questions and motions can be filed electronicly, select committees can work remotely, and the the Business Committee can ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • When a virus goes viral: pros and cons to the coronavirus spread on social media
    Axel Bruns, Queensland University of Technology; Daniel Angus, Queensland University of Technology; Timothy Graham, Queensland University of Technology, and Tobias R. Keller, Queensland University of Technology News and views about coronavirus has spread via social media in a way that no health emergency has done before. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago

  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
    The Government has tasked a group of industry leaders to seek out infrastructure projects that are ready to start as soon as the construction industry returns to normal to reduce the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones say. The Infrastructure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    6 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
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    6 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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    7 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
    Immediate freeze on rent increases Tenancies will not be terminated during the lock-down period, unless the parties agree, or in limited circumstances Tenants who had previously given notice can stay in their if they need to stay in the tenancy during the lock-down period Tenants will still be able to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
    A State of National Emergency has been declared across the country as the Government pulls out all the stops to curtail the spread of COVID-19. “Today we put in place our country’s second ever State of National Emergency as we fight a global pandemic, save New Zealanders’ lives and prevent ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
    Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has today announced details of the Government’s support package to keep key air freight moving and ensure New Zealanders retain access to essential goods during the four-week level 4 lockdown. “The Government is working with airlines and air freight operators to ensure New Zealand’s key ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
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    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
    Good afternoon  The Cabinet met this morning to discuss our next actions in the fight against COVID-19.  Like the rest of the world, we are facing the potential for devastating impacts from this virus. But, through decisive action, and through working together, do we have a small window to get ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
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    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
    The Government is backing the Reserve Bank’s latest action to support the economy by reducing longer-term interest rates, meaning lower costs for businesses and mortgage holders, and a lower currency to help our exporters. The Minister of Finance has signed a memorandum of understanding and a letter of indemnity with ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
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    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
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    1 week ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
    Associate Health and Whānau Ora Minister Peeni Henare has today announced the Government’s plan to support Māori communities and businesses in the face of COVID-19. “Our Government’s $12.1 billion economic package will help many Māori whānau, workers and businesses, whether it’s through wage subsidies, income support and worker redeployment, or ...
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    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
    The Government and the hospitality industry have worked together to produce guidelines to assist with managing and reducing transmission of COVID-19, Health Minister David Clark announced today.  The guidelines developed between the Government, Hospitality New Zealand and SkyCity Entertainment Group, set out how the new restrictions on physical distancing and ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
    Four stage Alert System for COVID-19 announced New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2 – Reduce Contact New Zealanders over 70 and those with certain medical conditions told to stay at home as much as they can to reduce risk of contact with the virus Workplaces to implement ...
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    2 weeks ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
    Kia ora koutou katoa I’m speaking directly to all New Zealanders today to give you as much certainty and clarity as we can as we fight Covid-19. Over the past few weeks, the world has changed. And it has changed very quickly. In February it would have seemed unimaginable to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
    JOINT MINISTERIAL STATEMENT BY SINGAPORE AND NEW ZEALAND AFFIRMING COMMITMENT TO ENSURING SUPPLY CHAIN CONNECTIVITY AMIDST THE COVID-19 SITUATION  The COVID-19 pandemic is a serious global crisis.  As part of our collective response to combat COVID-19, Singapore and New Zealand are committed to maintaining open and connected supply chains. We ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Transit between Australia and New Zealand
    Travel restrictions, closing our border to almost all travelers came into force from 23:59 on Thursday 19 March 2020 (NZDT).  All airlines were informed of these restrictions before they came into force. Immigration Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says “The transit of passengers between Australia and New Zealand has been agreed upon and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago