Open mike 27/06/2015

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, June 27th, 2015 - 34 comments
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34 comments on “Open mike 27/06/2015 ”

  1. Paul 1

    Petrobas got permission to drill for oil.
    Look what happened in Brazil.

    http://gu.com/p/4a3bt

  2. Olwyn 2

    A good, concise article on Greece and the EU. It outlines what’s at stake, and shows, indirectly, why Western left wing parliamentary parties are prone to fail their supporters – they continually find themselves between a stone and a hard place.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/manuel-barcia/greek-economy_b_7665240.html

    Independently of whether you are extreme left, extreme right, extreme centre (and yes, there is such a thing as extreme centre) or a moderate of any kind, you will have to agree that what is unfolding before our eyes today is a struggle for the future not only of the European ideal, but also of neoliberal capitalism…
    and
    Whether Syriza wins or loses the battle, the good news is that there has been a battle in the first place. The war against this sort of neoliberal capitalism that cares not about people but money is full on now.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 2.1

      “the good news is that there has been a battle in the first place”… you know this is a catastrophic human rights disaster for the Greek people right?

      • Olwyn 2.1.1

        I was quoting from an article written by someone else. However, what is happening in Greece was a catastrophic human rights disaster before the election of Syriza – I take the author to mean that it is good that the current government is at least standing up to those who are inflicting the disaster.

  3. Penny Bright 3

    Fighting the neo-liberal ‘public is bad – private is good’ mantra at Auckland Council – PROVE IT!

    Got speaking rights at the Auckland Council Governing Body meeting on 25 June 2015 – exposed how there is no such thing as ‘public’ transport in Auckland, and asked why should the public subsidise that which we no longer own, operate or manage?

    http://councillive.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/video/250615-governing-body-items-7-part-2-11

    (Scroll to 7.30 for the start of my presentation …)

    There are 10 private bus companies, 4 private ferry companies and a French multi-national company operating and managing Auckland trains.

    How much do Auckland citizens and ratepayers subsidise PRIVATELY owned, operated and managed ‘passenger transport’ services?

    If the private sector got to own, operate and manage passenger transport services because they were purportedly ‘more efficient’ – then why do they need public subsidies?

    Where’s the ‘cost-benefit’ analyses that PROVE that public subsidy of private passenger transport services is a more ‘cost-effective’ use of public money than providing PUBLIC transport, under the ‘not for profit’ PUBLIC SERVICE model?

    Why aren’t the Mayor, Councillors and Auckland Council staff asking these questions?

    Why are Auckland citizens and ratepayers being told to pay a $114 per year ‘transport levy’ – when the question of the ‘cost-effectiveness’ of public money being used to subsidise privately owned, operated and managed ‘passenger transport’ apparently has never been asked?

    (I am supposed to get an extensive OIA reply from Auckland Transport by
    3 July 2015).

    Penny Bright

    http://www.pennybright4mayor.org.nz

  4. Rodel 4

    John Stringer on Colin Craig:according to Philip Matthews in ‘the Press’

    “Colin seems to say whatever he needs to say to get what he wants and he disregards people he doesn’t need. He changes the narrative to suit his objective.”

    In other words Just another Tory politician.

    • JanM 4.1

      Exactly – is Stringer naive or cynical?
      I was brought up as the daughter of a Methodist minister (now quite removed from all of it), but I cannot get a grip on these right-wing religious weirdos, or work out how they justify their entitled, essentially unchristian stance !!??

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      +1

  5. For those interested I have posted on my website about “The role of writers as truth tellers – and the threat to freedom of speech” http://www.mandyhager.com

  6. Skinny 6

    This headline gave me a laugh on One News Facebook feed. Appears to me someone is having a crack at Hosking;

    “TPPA is one step closer to becoming reality in New Zealand. You can probably guess where Mike Hosking stands on the matter. Warning: If you’re among the many who oppose the deal, this may get your blood boiling”.

    • ianmac 6.1

      I heard Hosking raving on 7 TV1 last night on the subject of TPPA. He says TPPA is a marvellous opportunity and all those doom-sayers should butt out etc etc. What Hosking should be asked is how comes that he knows what is in it for NZ?
      And does he know what the contents in TPPA are? I don’t know. We don’t know.
      So either Hosking is in the elite group who do know, or he is a raving biased stooge.
      (PS I watch TV1 7 so I can judge it. Wouldn’t be too bad if Hosking wasn’t there.)

      • Skinny 6.1.1

        I heard an interview with that dude Jessie Mullens who originally co hosted Seven Sharp. He went on about feeling bullied on the show hinting at Hosking but stopped short of naming him. I think I’d wind him up abit if a ran into him and wait for him to over step the mark and give him a crack for bullying Jessie, call it Karma lol.

        • Jilly Bee 6.1.1.1

          I think you mean Jessie Mulligan, Skinny. Jessie was a guest panelist several years ago at the Great Mt Albert Debate, (a major fundraiser for the Mt Albert Branch of the Labour Party) always a great night out with heaps of fun with the debate.

          • Skinny 6.1.1.1.1

            Yes that’s him. Sounds like a decent guy Jilly Bee no wonder Hosking picked on him!

  7. Penny Bright 8

    FYI.

    Freedom of expression is alive and well on the NBR!

    Taking on ‘Rogernomics’ from ‘inside the tent’ – as it were?

    My comment in response to a post by Rodney Hide:

    “State’s waste leaves fewer leftovers

    WEEKEND REVIEW Fri 26 Jun
    We should all be wishing Jordan Williams and the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union every success.”

    ———————————————————————
    Sorry Rodney – I beg to differ.

    In my considered opinion, the ingrained and chronic waste of taxpayer and ratepayer money at central and local government, has arisen from the myth and mantra upon which neo-liberal ‘Rogernomics’ was/is based.

    The ‘public is bad – private is good’ myth and mantra.

    Under this myth and mantra – services previously provided ‘in house’ under the single layer, not-for-profit, public service model, have been replaced with a double layer, for profit private sector model – where consultants ‘project manage’ works contractors – all out to make as much as they can.

    As soon as you get into contracting – you get into ‘contract management’.

    Government and Council ‘in-house’ staff are regarded as being too dumb to do that – so in come the consultants.

    A single layer public service ‘BUREAUCRACY ‘ is replaced with a double layer of private sector ‘CONTRACTOCRACY’.

    How on earth can that be a more ‘cost-effective’ use of public money?

    Where’s the ‘prudent stewardship’?

    Where’s the ‘cost-benefit’ analysis?

    How is this not corporate welfare – on steroids?

    Who else is asking THIS question Rodney?

    Kind regards

    Penny Bright

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      A single layer public service ‘BUREAUCRACY ‘ is replaced with a double layer of private sector ‘CONTRACTOCRACY’.

      How on earth can that be a more ‘cost-effective’ use of public money?

      It can’t be but it does make the rich so much more profit.

  8. Morrissey 9

    This shameless imposter should be in prison

    The late, great George Burns often quipped that the most important attribute for an actor is sincerity; fake that and you’ve got it made. Nowhere is that truism more appropriate than in the obscene farce of American politics.

    In December 2013, there was widespread anger after a shameless impostor perpetrated an outrageous display of fakery at the funeral service for Nelson Mandela. Comments included: “He was moving his hands around, but there was no meaning”; “What happened at the memorial service is truly a disgraceful thing to see”; “Disgusting”; “Shameful hypocrisy” and “It should not happen at all.”
    Here’s a photo of the fraudster, waving his arm in the air….

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/deaf-interpreter-nelson-mandela-memorial-fake-officials-article-1.1544251

    Six months before that outrage, the impostor had disgusted the world with a display of OTT method acting….
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2013/jul/01/barack-obama-nelson-mandela-robben-island-video

    And now, unfortunately, the impostor is at it again. This time he’s pretending to be Martin Luther King….
    http://edition.cnn.com/videos/us/2015/06/26/obama-sings-amazing-grace-during-pinckney-eulogy-sot-nr.cnn

    • ianmac 9.1

      Morrissey. If you say Obama is an imposter I suppose you would suggest that Key cliche-ing over the Whanganuian plight is equally impostering. Surely not?

      • Morrissey 9.1.1

        As horrible and hypocritical as Key is, he is not presiding over a world-wide programme of torture, kidnapping and extra-judicial assassination.

  9. Draco T Bastard 11

    It appears that the government is going to sell the state houses to Australia:

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1506/S00499/national-to-put-state-houses-in-overseas-hands.htm
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA1506/S00500/dont-sell-our-state-houses-to-the-aussies-mr-english.htm

    Good for Australia but we get to see even more of our hard work going to support foreigners for no gain.

    • marty mars 11.1

      Can’t quite work out why you say, “Good for Australia” – do you mean it is good for the Australian country or good on those Australians?

      This idea is foul imo – this english state housing clusterfuck needs to be shut down and tied off.

      I agree with Labour, “Bill English should face reality and admit his state house sell off policy has collapsed.” and the Greens on this, “Bill English is also admitting that no-one in New Zealand wants to buy them, and that his grand sell-off plan is in tatters”

      http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11472186

      • Draco T Bastard 11.1.1

        Can’t quite work out why you say, “Good for Australia” – do you mean it is good for the Australian country or good on those Australians?

        I mean Australia is going to be getting richer at our expense. I thought that was fairly obvious from the entire sentence.

        This idea is foul imo – this english state housing clusterfuck needs to be shut down and tied off.

        Yep. It’s just more legalised theft of NZs’ assets and wealth.

        • marty mars 11.1.1.1

          “I thought that was fairly obvious from the entire sentence.”

          Well I asked for clarification as nicely as I could – pity you couldn’t answer the same way – although that may be mean because that might be as nice as you can be.

          “A Gold Coast non-profit charity, Horizon Housing, had visited New Zealand this week to look at the houses. It was interested in possibly buying at least 400 state houses.”

          Is that, “Australia is going to be getting richer at our expense”?

  10. Michael 12

    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jun/26/gay-marriage-legal-supreme-court

    Same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states in the USA!

    The White House is also lit up in rainbow lights in celebration! https://www.facebook.com/WhiteHouse/videos/vb.63811549237/10153566817364238/?type=2&theater Truly amazing sight.

    Being able to love who you love and show a legal commitment is a human right. Hopefully the USA legalising it will push other countries to, like Australia. There is much more to be done on global LGBTQ+ rights, including where in some countries you can be jailed or executed simply for being who you are, but hopefully this is part of a global movement towards equality.

  11. Penny Bright 13

    Where is the electoral mandate for the privatisation of State Housing – via ‘social housing’?

    How desperate and obscene is THIS?

    ————————————————————-

    Hundreds of New Zealand’s state houses could be sold to Australians, Bill English said this morning.

    Appearing on TV3’s The Nation this morning, Finance Minister Bill English said it was possible state houses could be sold to an Australian company.

    A Gold Coast non-profit charity, Horizon Housing, had visited New Zealand this week to look at the houses. It was interested in possibly buying at least 400 state houses.

    “So far it looks interesting to us, Horizon Housing’s chief executive Jason Cubit said.

    “We’d like to expand our business because we’re good at it and we [will] hopefully make some surpluses and re-invest it into the community.”

    English told The Nation that Australians would be able to buy the state houses if they were registered as community housing providers.

    Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Tywford described English’s admission as “the latest lurch in the Government’s stumbling, half-baked housing policy”.

    “Bill English should face reality and admit his state house sell off policy has collapsed. The Salvation Army didn’t want a bar of it. Iwi leaders said they’d only take them if they got them for free.

    “Now Bill English is so desperate to keep his failed policy afloat that he’ll even flick the houses off to the Aussies,” he said.
    ………

    Penny Bright

  12. Penny Bright 14

    What do folks think about this one?

    Especially the suggested remedy to ‘ghost housing’ in Auckland?

    ————————————————————————-

    As the Auckland property market continues to heat up, our readers share their ideas for cooling it down. Peter Johnson says it’s simple math.

    The numbers are self-evident – any high school student can work out these questions yet the so-called experts can’t see the basics:

    Question 1: If New Zealand has net immigration of 55,000 each year and 80 per cent move to Auckland, assuming we have four people per house how many extra houses are needed each year in Auckland?

    Answer 1: 11,000

    Question 2: If Auckland needs 11,000 houses per year just for immigration and is only building 7,500, how many houses short is Auckland each year?

    Answer 2: 3,500

    Question 3: If Auckland has been building 3,500 houses less than demand each year for 10 years, how many houses is Auckland short of?

    Answer 3: 35,000

    Question 4: Basic economics states that free market pricing is a combination of supply and demand. If supply is low but demand is high, what will happen to the commodity price?

    Answer 4: The price will go up

    Here’s how we answer these questions in relation to Auckland housing:

    Limit immigration: If we do not have the housing we have nowhere for immigrants to live. In effect it is time to hang out the No Vacancy sign until there is a surplus of housing.

    Build more houses: This is part of the plan and it should continue until the backlog is dealt with.

    Ghost housing: Auckland has the housing stock, it just has low utilisation, which in some ways could be seen as market manipulation. A simple law that makes it illegal to have a house unoccupied for a period of 12 months without a suitable reason should be implemented. To have a situation where houses are being bought for capital gain and taken out of circulation to add heat to the market is ridiculous. Failure to have your house occupied could result in forfeit to the crown for forced sale.

    Special legislation, similar to the Christchurch rebuild legislation, to fast-track building in Auckland: We have the skills, experience and personnel for the agency in Christchurch right now. Also, the agency that handled the fast-track of building Christchurch is about to be made redundant.

    How can we reduce demand?

    Firstly, by reducing immigration, as above.

    We can also give New Zealand citizens first rights over residents and over foreign buyers. If you are a New Zealand citizen then you can have multiple ownership rights. If you are a resident then you can only own one house – the house that you live in. If you want to have multiple houses then you need to commit to New Zealand and become a citizen.

    Anyone from overseas who wants to buy housing in New Zealand needs to stand in line behind New Zealand citizens and then residents. The house must first be offered to the domestic market and if it does not sell then it can be offered overseas.

    If the property does sell overseas for a premium then an overseas purchase levy of 10-20 percent as way of tax/stamp duty must be paid on both purchase and sale. If we are going to sell property offshore to the detriment of New Zealand citizens then there should be some additional benefit to New Zealand.

    Overseas interests can only own property for a maximum of 50 years, then the property must be put on the open market to give New Zealand citizens a chance to purchase their land back at market rates.

    I see the problem as very simple math. I know there are complexities of foreign exchange flow into New Zealand propping up a poorly performing economy, but the price we are paying is just too high.

    This is basic math and economics 101. Trying to sell us on the idea that supply will fix the problem is utter dribble.
    ———————————————————————
    Penny Bright

    • G C Cameron 14.1

      People don’t immigrate to Auckland Penny – people immigrate to New Zealand. If there is no housing in Auckland, new immigrates will have to live in another city or town. If the Hilton is full try the Holiday Inn – not the park bench.

      Also immigrates have been known to bring money into New Zealand and spend said money to build themselves a house(s), which ‘in theory boosts the economy’. Hanging out the ‘No Vacancy’ sign is premature – though your point is received.

  13. Penny Bright 15

    Has the Murray McCully – in my view – the ‘Minister of Bribery’s sordid Saudi sheep gate debacle, been the reason why National have not supported
    ALL ‘facilitation payments’ being outlawed as BRIBES?
    ————————————————————————-

    The Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Legislation Bill:

    Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand minority view

    The Green Party supports the majority of the Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Legislation Bill in its current form.

    The Green Party intends to continue with its support of this bill; it will bring us in line with our obligations under various international treaties and conventions dealing with national and international organised crime and corruption, and it will strengthen our ability to effectively respond to people trafficking and private sector corruption.

    However, the Green Party holds the view that this bill is a missed opportunity to address the issue of facilitation payments, which will still be excepted from the foreign bribery offence under section 105C(3) of the Crimes Act 1961–

    (3)This section does not apply if—

    (a)the act that is alleged to constitute the offence was committed for the sole or primary purpose of ensuring or expediting the performance by a foreign public official of a routine government action; and

    (b)the value of the benefit is small.

    The Ministry of Justice departmental report refers to these payments as being for things such as “small payments relating to the grant of a permit or licence, the provision of utility services, or loading or unloading cargo.

    The Ministry commented that these payments do not yield an “undue advantage”, and that measures in the bill to ensure the recording of these payments mitigate any concerns that the exception may be abused.

    However, the select committee heard persuasive submissions on the issue from the Human Rights Commission, Transparency International New Zealand and Michael Macaulay, Director of the Institute for Governance and Policy Studies at Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Government.

    These ‘grease’ payments are bribes, no matter their size, and help breed a culture where low-level corruption is permitted and accepted, contrary to international guidance from groups like the Serious Fraud Office, the UNCAC Implementation Review Group, the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, and the OECD.

    New Zealand is seen as a leader in public sector ethics and transparency, and we are proud of that legacy.

    It is disappointing that when provided an opportunity to take a strong stance on a controversial and unethical practice like facilitation payments – a stance already taken by the United Kingdom and Australia, and allegedly being pursued in China and India – we choose to split hairs about semantics and ‘balance’, leaving the door open for facilitation payments and subtly undermining our international reputation for honesty and transparency.
    ———————————————————

    Absolutely agree with the Greens on this point.

    After the sordid Saudi sheep gate debacle – in my view – ALL political parties should support the outlawing of ‘facilitation payments’ as BRIBES – end of story.

    Penny Bright

    • G C Cameron 15.1

      Facilitation payments are fine with me if the desired result is achieved. Money certainly is a motivator. Facilitation payments aren’t a silver bullet though and diffidently could run parallel to bribery. If you have to bribe someone you should ask yourself, “do I really want to be in business with this kind of person/company”. I don’t see the government using facilitation payments as a magic wand… …yet…

      mmmmmmm tasty lamb

  14. katipo 16

    ‘Aotearoa Now’ a Short film by from Ryan Fielding.

    crikey!

  15. NathanHaines 17

    Clearly McCully has had a bad week.
    1. Found out lying to cabinet about the real reason behind the Saudi Sheep in the desert saga
    2. Had to go to the dentist
    3. But this tops them all. His performance last night saying he was going to solve the Israeli – Palestinian conflict 1 day into the job. This sounds like he is either trying to take the heat off the Saudi Sheep saga or, is suffering under the heat and has gone completely mad! I would suggest both. If he thinks he can get the UN into accepting his way of thinking on the Palestinian issue when he can’t even get a bilateral relationship sorted.

    Maybe a very interesting cabinet conversation on Monday.

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    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Carbon dioxide is the main culprit behind climate change. But in second place is methane: a greenhouse gas stronger than CO2, ...
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: More ETS failure
    A few weeks ago, I blogged about the (then) upcoming ETS auction, raising the prospect of it failing, leaving the government with a messy budget hole. The auction was today, and indeed, it failed. In fact, it was such a failure that no-one even bothered to bid. Its easy to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The Return of Jacinda.
    Oh, take me, take me, take meTo the dreamer's ballI'll be right on time and I'll dress so fineYou're gonna love me when you see meI won't have to worryTake me, take mePromise not to wake me'Til it's morningIt's all been trueEarly morning yesterday, well before dawn, doom-scrolling.Not intentionally, that’s ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • How good is the interim NW busway?
    This is a guest post by Pshem Kowalczyk, a long-time follower of the blog. With great fanfare, just over six months ago (on 12 November 2023), AT launched its interim busway for the NorthWest region, with the new WX express service at the heart of the changes. I live ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    5 days ago
  • Consumer confidence collapses after Budget, in contrast with rest of world
    The first widespread survey of consumers and voters since the Budget on May 30 shows a collapse in confidence. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The belt-tightening and tax-cutting Budget delivered on May 30 has not delivered the boost to confidence in the economy the National-ACT-NZ First Government might have ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • The end for the Air Force 757s
    The Air Force 757 that broke down with the Prime Minister on board in Port Moresby on Sunday is considered so unreliable that it carries a substantial stock of spare parts when it travels overseas. And the plane also carries an Air Force maintenance team on board ready to make ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • At a glance – Was 1934 the hottest year on record?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    6 days ago
  • It's not New Zealand they've never heard of, it's him
    Sometimes you’ll just be so dog-tired, you can only keep yourself awake with a short stab of self-inflicted pain.A quick bite of the lip, for instance.Maybe a slight bite on the tongue or a dig of the nails.But what if you’re needing something a bit more painful?The solution is as ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” II
    Last month I blogged about the Ministry of Justice's Open Government Partnership commitment to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation", and how their existing efforts did not give much reason for confidence. As part of that, I mentioned that I had asked the Ministry for its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why the Biden “peace plan” for Gaza is doomed
    After months and months of blocking every attempt by the UN and everyone else to achieve a Gaza ceasefire, US President Joe Biden is now marketing his own three-stage “peace plan” to end the conflict. Like every other contribution by the US since October 7, the Biden initiative is hobbled ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    6 days ago
  • Raised crossings: hearing the voice of vulnerable pedestrians
    This is a guest post by Vivian Naylor, who is the Barrier Free Advisor and Educator at CCS Disability Action, Northern Region, the largest disability support and advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also advises on AT’s Public Transport and Capital Projects Accessibility Groups. Vivian has been advocating and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    6 days ago
  • Leaving on a Jet Plane
    So kiss me and smile for meTell me that you'll wait for meHold me like you'll never let me go'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet planeDon't know when I'll be back againOh babe, I hate to go“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Barbara Grady Illustration by Samantha Harrington. Photo credits: Justin Lane-Pool/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, European Space Agency. In an empty wind-swept field in Richmond, California, next to the county landfill, a company called RavenSr has plotted out land and won ...
    7 days ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
    Although NZ readers may not be that interested in the subject and in lieu of US Fathers Day missives (not celebrated in NZ), I thought I would lay out some brief thoughts on a political subject being debated in the … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    7 days ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
    TL;DR: Chris Bishop talks up the use of value capture, congestion charging, PPPs, water meters, tolling and rebating GST on building materials to councils to ramp up infrastructure investment in the absence of the Government simply borrowing more to provide the capital.Meanwhile, Christopher Luxon wants to double the number of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
    When I was invited to come aboard and help with Greater Auckland a few months ago (thanks to Patrick!), it was suggested it might be a good idea to write some sort of autobiographical post by way of an introduction. This post isn’t quite that – although I’m sure I’lll ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
    Hi,Tickled was one of the craziest things that ever happened to me (and I feel like a lot of crazy things have happened to me).So ahead of the Webworm popup and Tickled screening in New Zealand on July 13, I thought I’d write about how we made that film and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
    One occasionally runs into the question of what J.R.R. Tolkien would have thought of George R.R. Martin. For years, I had a go-to online answer: we could use a stand-in. Tolkien’s thoughts on E.R. Eddison – that he appreciated the invented world, but thought the invented names were silly, and ...
    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
    A listing of 35 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 9, 2024 thru Sat, June 15, 2024. Story of the week A glance at this week's inventory of what experts tell us is extreme weather mayhem juiced by ...
    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
    After a busy week it’s a good day to relax. Clear blues skies here in Tamaki Makaurau, very peaceful but for my dogs sleeping heavily. In the absence of a full newsletter I thought I’d send out a brief update and share a couple of posts that popped up in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
    Now in the land of Angus beef and the mighty ABsWhere the steaks were juicy and the rivers did run foulIt would often be said,This meal is terrible,andNo, for real this is legit the worst thing I've ever eatenBut this was an thing said only to others at the table,not ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    1 week ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    1 week ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashIt’s that new day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for our chat about the week’s news with special guests:5.00 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    2 weeks ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how moderates empower the political right
    Struth, what a week. Having made sure the rural sector won’t have to pay any time soon for its pollution, PM Christopher Luxon yesterday chose Fieldays 2024 to launch a parliamentary inquiry into rural banking services, to see how the banks have been treating farmers faced with high interest rates. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Thursday, June 13
    In April, 17,656 people left Aotearoa-NZ to live overseas, averaging 588 a day, with just over half of those likely to have gone to Australia. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Thursday, June 13 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Our guide to having your say on the draft RLTP 2024
    Auckland’s draft Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) 2024 is open for feedback – and you only have until Monday 17 June to submit. Do it! Join the thousands of Aucklanders who are speaking up for wise strategic investment that will dig us out of traffic and give us easy and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • The China puzzle
    Chinese Premier Li Qiang arrives in Wellington today for a three-day visit to the country. The visit will take place amid uncertainty about the future of the New Zealand-China relationship. Li hosted a formal welcome and then lunch for then-Prime Minister Chris Hipkins in Beijing a year ago. The pair ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 weeks ago
  • Fossil fuels are shredding our democracy
    This is a re-post of an article from the Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler published on June 3, 2024. I have an oped in the New York Times (gift link) about this. For a long time, a common refrain about the energy transition was that renewable energy needed to become ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    28 mins ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
    The Department of Internal Affairs [Department] is making a significant upgrade to their Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which blocks access to websites known to host child sexual abuse material, says Minister of Internal Affairs Brooke van Velden.  “The Department will incorporate the up-to-date lists of websites hosting child sexual ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New vaccine research aims to combat prevalent bovine disease
    A vaccine to prevent an infectious disease that costs New Zealand cattle farmers more than $190 million each year could radically improve the health of our cows and boost on-farm productivity, Associate Agriculture Minister Andrew Hoggard says. The Ministry for Primary Industries is backing a project that aims to develop ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Making it easier to build granny flats
    The Government has today announced that it is making it easier for people to build granny flats, Acting Prime Minister Winston Peters and RMA Reform Minister Chris Bishop say. “Making it easier to build granny flats will make it more affordable for families to live the way that suits them ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
    Trade Minister Todd McClay, and China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, today announced the official launch of Negotiations on Services Trade between the two countries.  “The Government is focused on opening doors for services exporters to grow the New Zealand’s economy,” Mr McClay says.  As part of the 2022 New Zealand-China Free Trade Agreement Upgrade ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister Luxon meets with Premier Li
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon met with Chinese Premier Li Qiang at Government House in Wellington today.  “I was pleased to welcome Premier Li to Wellington for his first official visit, which marks 10 years since New Zealand and China established a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership,” Mr Luxon says. “The Premier and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Government and business tackling gender pay gap
    The coalition Government is taking action to reduce the gender pay gap in New Zealand through the development of a voluntary calculation tool. “Gender pay gaps have impacted women for decades, which is why we need to continue to drive change in New Zealand,” Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Funding Boost for Rural Support Trusts
    The coalition Government is boosting funding for Rural Support Trusts to provide more help to farmers and growers under pressure, Rural Communities Minister Mark Patterson announced today. “A strong and thriving agricultural sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy and one of the ways to support it is to ...
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