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Open mike 27/10/2011

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, October 27th, 2011 - 139 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…

139 comments on “Open mike 27/10/2011 ”

  1. Bored 1

    Scumball Key has been up the Kapiti Coast yesterday selling the concept of asset sales to the oldies…..sad and desperate individual. Cannot express enough contempt for this parasite and anybody scuzzy enough to buy into his nasty world view.

    • Lanthanide 1.1

      Seems like fertile ground for such a campaign – asset sales generate revenue now and a lot of them won’t be around in 20-30 years time when the sale really starts to bite us in the ass.

      • Colonial Viper 1.1.1

        Granny and gramps selling their grandkids down the river of serfdom.


        • Jum

          Colonial Viper,

          My town is like a giant old folks home – it’s like the dawn of the living dead, hobbling around on sticks – all these people have lived a good life under the 1935 Labour Party egalitarian philosophy; they will not be affected by the ’67’ change, yet they are against the change. They will all vote NActCon.

          Rest home villages are popping up like triffids all over the place, all the same colours – I want to scream “for goodness sake, paint a giant flower on the wall. Show me you have a life going on in there”.

          Some of them, and these are the people I know, are full of life and would certainly want their grandchildren to have a lifestyle such as they once had – green, active, pollution-free – but those older people are too few in my town.

          Youth is paying for the olds’ gobbling up of resources, cheap house ownership in many cases, the abundance of jobs and the backing of a decent welfare system.

          Somewhere along the way, the olds got greedy; credit cards came along and so did the trillion dollar marketing propaganda. Now the olds blame the young for ‘wanting it all now’, but they taught that philosophy to the young by their own greedy and selfish actions.

          Labour needs to get back in; it needs to increase the pension age. There is plenty of time to prepare and let’s face it; with at least a minimum wage of $15 everyone will be able to prepare, not just the few.

          I particularly like the part where people who have worked in heavy manual jobs will get treated with respect with special dispensation given the heavy duty work they do. You cannot keep doing that sort of work.

          I put the man (or woman) with the shovel on top of the heap and the CEO, sitting in the sterile office, acting like a god, ruining people’s lives with a stroke of a pen – like the smiling assassin, Key did moneytrading and still does with bad policy – at the bottom.

          How we ever bought into the idea that somehow a person with the ruthlessness to reach CEO level was somehow better than the man with the shovel makes me feel bad. The CEO may have more skills, did the study, took on the responsibility, got more money – I understand all of that.

          But, it does not make him or her BETTER than the man or woman with the shovel.

          • Puddleglum

            A few generalisations (speaking as someone approaching ‘olds’ status on a steep incline) but, otherwise, agree.

            Well said – and with passion, which is always good to see. 

          • prism

            Jum That’s an impassioned comment from the heart and experience. I’m unhappy about people having to deal with WINZ as possibly unemployed, till they are 67. I haven’t been in for a while but I believe it can be really shitty.

            I’ve been thinking about the large numbers of people in the older age group and the difficulties they have getting jobs, and that they are competing with younger people for them. It is hard to have reached a senior age and be treated as a dispensable worker of no value which in casual jobs is often the way for older people..

            I have suggested that voluntary work in approved positions where the work adds to the community wellbeing as an acceptable alternative to paid work. It is not popular as an idea with old age pensioners who can’t get past the idea of entitlement as if all the tax they have paid over the years has gone into a superannuation savings chest. Not so, until the recent start by a Labour government of payments, but abandoned (for now) by NACT.

            And lastly as more people live to older ages, the politicians still refuse to allow euthanasia so that people can make a choice of following a set of legal requirements so they can die when they feel they are ready to go. Alzheimers and other dementias are increasing and no thoughtful person would want their children to go through the increasing care needs and deterioration of the loved one until the brain is annihilated and only the body remains.

    • aerobubble 1.2

      We can’t afford it.

      The cost of libraries, the cost of ring fencing gas or electricity supply.

      The cost of RMA, or a oil cleanup vessel!

      WE need cars to be louder damnit, ACT is doing the
      businesss allowing refitting of existing older car
      fleet vehcicles to allow for excessive noise vandalism
      and noise graffii.

      And why? because we don’t have a world standard tax system,
      we have to have our profits quickly, a high return fast, that
      pushes up the demand for borrowing and weights us down
      with a risk premium and makes our country a magnet for
      speculative currency excess.

      So of course when I can’t even buy a burger from burger king
      becuse the gas is out, i know Key has our back, he had nine years
      in opposition to know how to fix th ecomony, and three years
      to do it.

      And all without a capital gains tax.

      Are you completely blind, the mans a genius. I’m
      willing to accept no burgers and the jokes about
      Auckland party, power, or the next billion dollar loses.
      As long as we keep key

      how darn you criticize our shit pm and his shate

    • freedom 1.3

      http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/election-2011/5858306/Asset-sales-promoted-to-seniors“National would use the estimated $5 billion to $7b the sales would generate to buy other assets. “At the end of this process we will own more assets, not less, but the mix will be different.””

      I must have missed something when they announced the asset sales. I thought the sale was to pay down debt? Now he says it’s to buy more…what assets are they buying?

      • Bored 1.3.1

        There are few depths to which this larcenous crew will not sink to in order to loot the countries assets for the benefit of their mates. There are no investment plans, the only “assets” they wish to buy are loyal votes and funding from the fat cats of this world.

        The only reason I can see for Nats selling assets is to ensure they can keep paying for the tax cuts they bribed the electorate with last time. Scumballs.

        • aerobubble

          Without a modern tax system companies and individuals will continue to
          reap quick capital gain profits at the expense of economic resilience.
          Now its the gas thats fallen over. Labour has accepted the need to
          shift our tax system into a high gear, its not too costly, its too
          costly if we don’t. Why? Because a company that has to
          worry more about the bottomline, in line with comparable
          companies abroad, will inevitable play a longer game.
          What’s shocking is the world is in crisis economically
          because it doesn’t play the long game, and in NZ we play
          and even shorter game!!! Carried by farming and farmers.

        • prism

          Bored – “This larcenous crew”.. of NACTS buying “loyal votes and funding” – I don’t know if they even have to do that to draw in loyal supporters. I think there is a snob value that makes some people cling to National no matter what they do. It’s like the Anglicans had their High Church services and the Cathedrals which you would attend if you felt you were rising socially and financially, and Low Church which was for the others. NACT and Labour get similar sentiments I think.

          But this is is a generalised statement about the emotional response to NZ political parties! I don’t mean that everybody who votes Labour is a wharfie, and my impression is that the blue collar workers seem to have been replaced by lawyers. I think that those who vote National are often following an upwardly-moving social concept and don’t want to ally themselves with Labour people who they consider as lesser ‘workers’.

      • Lanthanide 1.3.2

        They’re selling power stations so they can buy some white-elephant Roads of Notional Significance.

        • aerobubble

          The new Waikato expressway avoids the river gorge and goes over the hills through a
          valley north to Auckland.

          I can’t help think that once oil price double again the road will be a
          desert as drivers opt to take the flat route on the old gorge line and send
          freight by rail.

          We do need the upgrade but its like the referendum, why would anyone
          who fought for MMP vote it out and let National decide the committee
          overseaing the alternative.

  2. AAMC 2

    Great discussion of Occupy movement..


    Kicking off on Oakland…

    Prof Steve Keen on RT Capital Account

    • Bill 2.1

      Here’s a thoughtful analysis of the movement itself, rather than of the surrounding political environment that it seeks to offer a counter weight to, that might interest you.


      • AAMC 2.1.1

        Thanks Bill. Great article and ideas for moving forward.

        My reading in the last few days suggests this I beginning to appear in the New York franchise, with people realizing they can participate in the movement without physically being at Zucotti Park.

        The Occupy London Times launched today http://theoccupiedtimes.com/ and the Occupy Wall St Journal and twitter and YouTube are showing the beginning of a successful occupation of the Media.

      • Puddleglum 2.1.2

        Yes, a very thoughtful analysis Bill.

        For me, the notion of ‘occupy’ is really about occupying the space within which power concentrates. You don’t achieve that by putting in place a vehicle for the concentration of power.

        Having a new, embedded form of interaction between people should be the aim. I say ‘new’, but actually it’s the oldest form of interaction on record.

        Despite appearances to the contrary over the past 10,000 years, sustainable hierarchy isn’t in our blood. We are not a hierarchical social species – hence the millenia of bitter conflict and oppression.

  3. The signs have been there from the start but International Socialists seem to be pushing themselves forward more in Occupy Dunedin as internal debate continues over where the “protest” should go from here.

    Is this the real problem?
    Serious questions should be asked about whether Occupy around the country is just a front for ISO.

    • Wow, socialists are interested in changing the economic system.

      Who would have thunk it? 

    • KJT 3.2

      The occupy movement must have really struck a nerve with PG.

      What is he scared of.

      People may actually gain a say in their own Government!

      Or is he just supporting his corporate backers???

      • Draco T Bastard 3.2.1

        What is he scared of.

        The most terrifying thing of all – Change.

        • Pete George


          What’s really funny about all you in auto-diss mode, the changes I’m proposing in Dunedin North (and have been for months) are very similar to changes to democracy that a number of ex-Occupiers want to see.

          • marty mars

            you’ve outed yourself as a lowrider for deliberately doing what you falsely accused your political opponents of doing. We need less of your type in parliament and politics.

          • Draco T Bastard

            The “changes” you’re proposing keep everything the same but have you at the centre instead of no one.

    • pete, I thought they were commies – is this your campaign – reds under the bed? so yesterday pete, so last century. I think your pre-emptive attack on your political opponents is low and using Occupy as a weapon to further your personal ambitions, even lower.

      • Pete George 3.3.1

        I’m actually talking to ex Octagon protesters to see how to try and advance Occupy without the hijackers holding it down.

        There’s a lot of disillusionment here. Occupy is not supposed to be a front for “the workers party”.

        • marty mars

          maybe you set up an alternative Occupy based around you then you can control the hijackers and make sure you achieve your goals.

          • Pete George

            That’s being considered.

            • marty mars

              and how is that not doing what you accuse others of doing? Occupy pete does have a ring to it.

              • I’m not doing it. I can only support anything positive from the sideline at this stage.

                • Petey
                  Make up your mind.  At one stage you say you are considering setting up #OccupyPetey and the next stage you say you are not.  Which is it?

                  • I haven’t said I’m considering it. I’m not, it’s clear that would be incompatible with the campaign I’m involved in.

                    I said it is being considered.

                    • What?
                      Someone else is thinking of setting up #OccupationPetey?
                      Petey has a fan club?
                      Say it isn’t so …

                    • McFlock

                      So someone or something other than you is considering “maybe you set up an alternative Occupy based around you then you can control the hijackers and make sure you achieve your goals”?
                      If you’re not the one considering it, is the considerer Peter Dunne? His hairdo?

                    • you can slide and slither all you like – your tongue is forked.

                      This is what I said “maybe you set up an alternative Occupy based around you then you can control the hijackers and make sure you achieve your goals.” Notice the you’s and yours. So some exOccupiers are using YOUR ideas (that you have been wedded to for years) and although you are in discussion with them it is nothing to do with YOU. Pathetic!

              • marsman

                ‘Tedious Pete’ has more of a ring to it.

              • Sanctuary

                I think I’ve read and seen of Pete George and his whiney clinging to the coat tails of the no-percent party to see why Pete George is your classic United Future man.

                The Occupy movement in Dunedin has done us all a favour, by exposing this letters-to-the-editor busy body as a charlatan, just like to coiffured has-been that is his inspiration. With his attitude to the Occupiers, we’ve seen his surface of faux-reasonableness is simply the charade of a faker and deceiver. On the first issue that he can be measured on, Pete George is exposed as little more than a narrow minded small town authoritarian, Dunedin’s own pensioner Colonel Blimp.

                Here is a bit of advice Pete George: Give up politics. Walmington-on-Sea has a platoon whose requirements closely match your age and talents. I suggest you head there ASAP.

            • mickysavage


              maybe you set up an alternative Occupy based around you then you can control the hijackers and make sure you achieve your goals


              That’s being considered

              So socialist takeover bad but United Follicle take over good?

              • Ianupnorth

                All pigs are equal, but some are more equal than others, especially when called Pete

              • Bill

                What is the difference between Occupy being potentially co-opted by a parliamentary party or by non-parliamentary groupings from the same ‘representative’ tradition?

                Both scenarios introduce secondary agendas which eventually come to dominate proceedings. Both introduce a power imbalance to any meaningful democratic process leading to a disempowerment of the individual citizens involved. Both eventually create and a false or misleading impression of any professed movement.

                Pete may be hypocritical. But he does make a valid point nonetheless.

                A movement that allows the greater influence of organisations to play a part in its determinations is no movement at all, but rather a coalition with disempowered on-lookers. Or to put it another way. Movements are democratic and individually empowering. Coalitions aren’t.

                There was a post concerning all this, written before the Occupations happened.

                Over or Into The Wall?

                • AAMC


                  I don’t know Pete outside this blog, but I too feel the local franchise of #Occupy is currently not as inspiring as it is in the US and the UK and Spain. What is so successful there, the representation so broad and the decision making so horizontal, neither political parties of established movements can successfully co-opt it.

                  Until the youth in NZ, outside the established organizations and traditional activists start to participate, I’d much rather focus on the progress being made abroad.

                  This is a brilliant article…


                  • Lanthanide

                    I just don’t think that the #Occupy people in NZ have as much to complain about those in the US or EU.

                  • Bill

                    From the article …

                    Freedom means being able to think critically and act courageously, even when confronted with the limits of one’s knowledge. Without such thinking, critical debate and dialogue degenerates into slogans, while politics, disassociated from the search for justice, becomes a power grab, or simply hackneyed.

                    And. This very process (of silencing critical thinking) and of disabling the ability to act are present within some Occupy’s.

                    Organisations imposing or introducing programmes and/or agendas achieves an over all dumbing down or narrowing of dialogue and the marginalisation and eventual disengagement of any non-conformist points of view or people.

                    And even where organisations are absent, action is stymied through the stultifying application of consensus to every matter or issue. Democracy does not imply, as many in Occupy seem to believe, that every decision must be the subject of consensus.

                    • This very process (of silencing critical thinking)

                      I thought you were talking about here for a minute. Apart from you Bill all everyone else has tried running inteference.

                      Regarding Occupy Dunedin I have had the freedom to voice my opinion outside the occupation and also a number of times on site, but I have done nothing to limit anyone else’s freedom to express their views.

                      I can’t say the same of the attack squads in action here who seem to be intent on smothering alternate views with personal attacks and either lies or deliberate misinformation,.

              • I was told from the start onsite that there was to be no party politics but individual opinions were welcome. I haven’t promoted party politics at all onsite.

                I know Green Party members who were involved who chose not to display party material onsite becasue they thought it was against the spirit of Occupy. They weren’t happy about other obvious influences.

                All you have to do is follow the several related FB pages to see the divisions and disagreements due to the influence of factions. As has already been posted here that lead to threats of assault on Tuesday.

                But carry on the personal attacks if that’s all you can come up with.

  4. vto 4

    A two week old baby has been found alive in the rubble of Turkey’s earthquake FOUR DAYS after the shake.

    Recall rescuers at the Christchurch earthquake found nobody alive from one day after the shake. It was questioned at the time. It seemed odd that no further survivors had been found alive after such a short time.

    This fact raised one huge question about the competency of Chch’s rescuers and whether the rescue system meant that survivors died subsequently from factors not directly due to the quake. i.e. the rescue was poorly executed resulting in unnecessary deaths post-shake.

    This question remains well alive in the minds of many in Christchurch and it is yet to be answered.

    • Lanthanide 4.1

      Um, a lot more people were trapped (and killed) by Turkey’s quake than Chch. Simple statistics means there are going to be more people to rescue.

      Mortality when trapped in rubble drops off fairly quickly so only 2/100 people might survive 4 days and be found, if you’ve got 1,000 people buried as opposed to 200, that’s 20 people that have the potential to be rescued after 4 days instead of just 4.

      What’s better – 200 people being trapped and no one being rescued after day 3, or 1000 people being trapped?

      • vto 4.1.1

        I realise the statistical implications. But my points still stand. The Turkey quake simply highlights this issue once again, and as said, the issue has not been fully answered yet although I understand it is the next part of the inquiry.

  5. millsy 5

    Yet another school thinks that parents can just shit money out

    Its time we threw Tomorrow’s Schools out, and returned to a more centralised education system, because the system as it stands seems to be principals are out of control loose cannons, and parents arent really having much say about these things. especially in having to buy a very expensive device or risk their child falling behind futher and further.

    • logie97 5.1

      Yep, Tomorrow’s Schools philosophy has lived up to predictions. Schools run as businesses. Oddly enough, in high decile schools the boards actually have immense power whereas in lower decile schools equally savvy teachers and pressure groups know how to work them as well.

      The disastrous government laissez-faire attitude to the development of IT in schools is manifested by the storerooms full of well-intentioned BOT purchases now sitting idle gathering dust. (A member of the BOT might have connections with a city business that is upgrading their systems and get a “super-generous” offer of getting the redundant PC’s for the school. Yep, that’s it, let the kids cut their teeth on yesterday’s low performance hardware.) You could argue that billions have been wasted by schools floundering to introduce IT into their curriculum.

      And then there is the issue of “readers.” The publishers must have rubbed their hands with glee when they knew that they were getting an open door to the budget holders for books in schools.

      • Colonial Viper 5.1.1

        You don’t need advanced computers in schools.

        Are you over 30? Know how to use an iPod? An iPad? Windows 7? An Android smartphone?

        Tell me, how did the computers you were working with at school 20-25 years ago possibly prepare you to use any of those catastrophically advanced pieces of equipment?

        You see, it just doesn’t matter whether the PC a school pupil is using today is brand new and state of the art or 5 years old and used. Both of them will still be pieces of junk 25 years down the track.

        • logie97

          Agreed, but you do need some form of direction from a more central source rather than ad hoc development within schools … massive duplication of policies, everyone reinventing the wheel, and no real standard.

        • lprent

          I always remember with great fondness the full height one gigabyte SCSI hard drive I brought for my 486 50MHz home computer in ? 1991 ? It served well for until about 1995. After it failed (to the great comfort of my ears that had grown sensitive to the whine), it then spent another 5 years as a door stop that had origionally cost a few thousand dollars. There was so much weight in the damn thing that no door held open by it could do anything except what the slab of metal told it to do.

  6. millsy 6

    Radio sport pulls out of Plunket Shield commentary

    The Kiwi tradition of listening to the cricket over the summer has the first nail hammered into its coffin. While this may not bother people here, I belive that it is one of the conseqences of privatisation, and how the standard of media has declined over the past 20 years or so. I presume we will have Murray Deaker drone on and on instead.

    • Very sad news indeed, no more first class cricket on the radio. 🙁

      • lprent 6.1.1

        Ah why do you think that is sad news?

        The only think more boring than watching cricket is listening to long turgid hours of people blathering about nothing much through its many hours of dead time.

        It was always rather relaxing to play cricket because of all of that dead time. Nice idle way to expend weekend time (in those faroff days when I had very little to do)……

        • Brett Dale


          It was more of a memory trigger, you know as a kid out in the back yard, having a bbq, listening to Paul McEwan plodding along to a century.

        • Puddleglum

          My 81 year old mother has become a sport junkie since my father died in 2002 and she’s been living on her own.

          She has an old transistor radio that she carries everywhere with her around the house and garden of her ownership flat, usually tuned to newstalk in the morning and radio sport at other times.

          She often has cricket matches on the radio when I visit during the summer. She’ll be upset by this news. 

  7. Joe Bloggs 7

    Look’s like the hapless Anthony Robbins should stick to the study of neural networks because he’s crap at economics.

    Moody’s have just confirmed New Zealands AAA credit rating.

    According to Moody’s senior credit officer,the Treasury’s pre-election economic and fiscal update on Tuesday was largely in line with expectations. “The future path of government deficits and debt is overall not too different from earlier projections. As a result, this document does not change our thinking about New Zealand’s rating…

    Now there’s a poke in the eye with a sharp stick for the doom-sayers.

    [lprent: You don’t think that it is significant that they felt an announcement was required? I think that Anthony was spot on looking at the risk.

    However, I think that bringing up something about an author in a comment that is unrelated to either the comment or the post or the discussion falls under the general category of stalking and intimidation of one of my authors. Bad bad bad idea.

    And I’m already annoyed with reading your later trolling..

    You just lost your right to comment here after the election. Banned until 27th Nov ]

  8. The science of September 11. On hour for those who want to educate themselves!

  9. joe90 9

    Andrew Sullivan: You Say You Want a Revolution.

    The theme that connects them all is disenfranchisement, the sense that the world is shifting deeply and inexorably beyond our ability to control it through our democratic institutions. You can call this many things, but a “democratic deficit” gets to the nub of it. Democracy means rule by the people—however rough-edged, however blunted by representative government, however imperfect. But everywhere, the people feel as if someone else is now ruling them—and see no way to regain control.

    • Bored 9.1

      Nice post Joe. What really gets stuck in my craw when listening to the media and politicians we have is that the moment you oppose their stance you become painted as taking a “radical and marginal” viewpoint.

      Therefore if you oppose financial corruption you become an extreme leftist, if you oppose the corporatisation of democracy you are branded as anti capitalist. Which is why I despise National (and to a lesser extent Labour), they have become subsumed by corporate interests, they are in the pay of the money men as are the media. Their complicity condemns them, and I cannot see any way to reform this than a collapse of the economic status quo. Roosevelt famously referred to this scenario as being fascist. That is the true velvet glove nature of our corporatist state.

  10. DeeDub 10

    I, and many of my friends have had posts deleted by facebook.

    The posts were of this video from TV3.

    It seems someone is asking facebook to remove them? Whom?

    • Ianupnorth 10.1

      I am blocked from several Nat MP’s pages for merely asking their opinion on certain things – e.g. How much of the $38 billion you have borrowed from overseas is for tax cuts? and “Is it really true that John key was in Hamilton putting up billboards when he could have been in Tauranga liaising about the Rena?”
      They really don’t like criticism, removed quick as a flash; they probably have Farrar sitting in a cave doing that.
      All I can say is keep up the good work!

  11. Wow big call
    Labour is going to put up the age of retirement albeit gradually.  Totally responsible but a big call politically.  It will show that Key is being totally irresponsible in gutting the Cullen Fund and Kiwisaver AND refusing to put the age up.
    Brave, brave campaigning.

    • There is no age of retirement. This is about the age you get National Super.

      I agree that Key is irresponsible ignoring the issue, I criticised his stand for that in a public meeting in Port Chalmers last night.

      But I don’t think Labour have got it right either, unless there are variations in the detail. Simply pushing up the age disadvantages manual workers, it disadvantages ethnic groups (eg Maori) with lower life expectancies, and it disadvantages people with lefe xpectanncy shortening medical conditions like diabeties.

      • mickysavage 11.1.1

         Geez Petey stop being pedantic.  “Age of retirement” is shorthand for “age that National Superannuation starts and you can retire if you want”.  Use the latter phrase if you want but it looks sort of retentive.

        • Pete George

          It’s not pedantic, they are two different things. Some people retire before they are eligible for national super, and some after.

          • mickysavage

            Pete this is one of your trolling habits.  Respond to a significant event by deflecting.  Do it again and I will follow you around for the rest of the day and call you a troll.

            • vto

              You two seem to follow each other around already mr savage. Like a couple of people wandering around in their own world bickering away at each other oblivious to everything around them…

    • higherstandard 11.2

      I’d support an increase in the age of entitlement – do you know what it’s going up to and when it would be introduced ?

      • Bored 11.2.1

        The question HS is why would you support raising (or dropping) the age? I get the feeling that nobody here is actually thinking, observing and most importantly projecting. In the near future there will be less work, and more real need.

        Here is an alternative: younger people need the income to raise families, build an asset base etc far more than empty nesters should. Younger people generally have more energy for the harder tasks. Maybe we have the wrong people doing the work at different ends of their lives. As a 50 something I have no mortgage, some independent means, and if the income got cut in five who cares? In a sane world I would be pensioned off on the condition I did some needed work that attracted no margin like grandchild care, looking after the real oldies, etc.

    • just saying 11.3

      I’m not expecting there to be a pension by the time I get there.

      But for those who will be affected, I hope provision has been made for full early super for those whose bodies have been munted before retirement age. Lot of people could do with that right now.

    • vto 11.4

      Excellent, expose the charlatan Key for what he is – a cheap and nasty populist.

      Anyway, raising the age needs to happen (as does means-testing) and I would suggest that most people will see it as ok. Many more people today expect to work a little longer and, further, many of the younger ilk don’t expect that super will be around at all when their time comes. Even some of those on the verge of super will no doubt support it – unless they are greedy buggers of course.

      Just like the capital gains tax – solid policy that works to NZ’s longer term benefit.

      Labour, though less often a party I support, has traditionally done the big things in NZ. Good to see it continues to lead to way forward for NZ.

      Can anybody name something significant that National has done? Something on a par with the creation of the welfare system, nuclear-free, super, etc? Conservative is as conservative does I suppose …..

      edit: I imagine also that many older superannuitants who already receive the super will support it too because it doesn’t affect them. It will affect only a minor few.

      • KJT 11.4.1

        Raising the age does not need to happen.

        The meme that retirement is going to cost us too much is part of TINA, which has been repeated so often that even the left now believe it.

        Already commented here. http://kjt-kt.blogspot.com/2011/06/on-retirement-pensions-and-age-of.html
        “In fact super has been so effective in removing poverty amongst the elderly it should be extended to everyone in the form of a guaranteed minimum income. There is no excuse for having people with inadequate food and housing in a country which is capable of supplying an excess of both internally”.

        The idea that we cannot feed and house our elderly in a country that is capable of feeding and housing many times the current population is bullshit.

        It does need to be means or work tested. No reason to pay it to someone who is still working and earning $1000/day.

        Even since Muldoons election bribes to superannuates i’ve worked on the assumption that there will be no super when I retire, so it will not affect me much.

        Not very fair on manual workers whose knees are stuffed by 60, Maori and others who do not live long into retirement now.

        A gradual rise will impact most on Gen x and y, not us boomers, so savings will be little.

        It is alright for paper shufflers to talk about working until 75. For the rest of us we will often be incapable of working in our jobs well before.

        A courageous policy would be extending super to everyone in the form of a GMFI.

        Affordability in future depends on how much we invest in a sustainable future economy. Not how much is invested in dodgy offshore markets.

        • Colonial Viper

          Don’t panic. Retirement age can always be brought down again if alternative funding or super mechanisms are found 🙂

        • Draco T Bastard

          The biggest problem with seeing money as the economy is that you lose sight of the real economy and the true resources that a nation has available to it especially after those resources have been privatised and used to only benefit the few as happens in capitalism.

        • Vicky32

          Maori and others who do not live long into retirement now.

          My parents (English and NZ-Scots) were two of those. My father died at 54 and my mother at 62, my brother at 42… I am already older than I ever expected to be. I have been unemployed for the past 2.5 years (and working for the past 4 weeks to my surprised delight) but if the work ends soon, as it’s supposed to, the NS is my only chance of an income higher than UB. Will I make it? 😀
          7 years to go, and I feel as if I am sodding 91 like Betty Driver who just croaked…

    • Draco T Bastard 11.5

      NRT has a write-up on it. I tend to agree with him.

    • marty mars 11.6

      I’ll pop this comment here too from the other thread greg so you don’t miss it 🙂

      What are your views on the inequality facing tangata whenua whilst saving (or trying to) for retirement, and after retirement. Should any political party address this inequality, which is increased when the retirement age is increased because of reduced life expectancy for tangata whenua. How does this fit with the promises in the treaty, or with any political party attempting to govern.

      I know you are concerned about the boomer bulge greg but what about the inequality.

      • vto 11.6.1

        mr marty, would that policy also extend to other groups with lower life expectancy such as males? It would be quite nice to pick up the super 6-7 years before others…

        • marty mars

          no – I am talking about the inequality facing tangata whenua – you know, the indigenous people of this land.

          But i have no problem with advocates for any group laying out their case. What do you think about the issue re tangata whenua vto?

          • vto

            The issue is an entirely reasonable one and worthy of examination. Whether it is politically acceptable in our current landscape though I doubt very much. And I imagine that the practicalities and detail would be horrific – everyone would jump up and down who has a lower life expectancy and want it. Because of course it would need to be applied equally and have an absence of any race component, in accordance with good non-racist practice.

            Better would be Gareth Morgan’s proposal for a universal living allowance applied throughout a person’s lifetime. Then all of these anomolies would disappear and everyone would be guaranteed of at least some kind of basic living allowance.

            p.s. – your mention of indigineouity implies that you still think they should have a special place apart from the rest …. ? Not that we need to rehash that again eh.

            • marty mars

              I have talked about this here http://mars2earth.blogspot.com/2011/10/lower-maori-retirement-age.html

              I am not sure what you mean about the ‘race’ component – you did get that i’m JUST talking about tangata whenua. The cost, setting up, admin etc are all red herrings that simply distract from the realities of fronting up to the disgrace and shame of the inequality faced by the indigenous people of this country. I’ll say it again so we have no misunderstandings vto – EQUALITY – at the moment we do not have that.

      • mickysavage 11.6.2

        My father is a boilermaker and the only one of his age who survived into his 70s so I hear what you say.
        If a worker has flogged themselves out they deserve to be able to retire early on an invalid’s benefit.
        Tangata whenua’s life expectancy is so poor because so many of them work in similar jobs.
        I even think (gasp) that Petey’s suggestion about allowing people to opt to retire early should be given further consideration.
        But at least for me I think I should work a bit longer rather than expect my kids to have to work harder to support me.

    • eter Dunne comments on Labour’s lame rush job to be diferent to National, and suggests how it should be done.

      Labour’s 67 Super policy ‘same lame thinking’

      “First, it tries to solve a problem that is not there, and second, if it was there, the solution would not be two decades of timidity,” Mr Dunne said.

      “We have the same old parties having the same old debate between 65 and 67, but if you make KiwiSaver compulsory, there will simply be no 65 or 67 issue.

      “Make KiwiSaver compulsory and you have a sustainable situation where you can then give New Zealanders full choice on when and how they retire with UnitedFuture’s Flexi-Super policy.

      “Flex-Super would then allow people to take their superannuation at a reduced rate from 60, or at an enhanced rate each year they delay taking it up until 70, if they so choose,” Mr Dunne said.

      He said that at a time when Labour should be providing innovative alternatives for New Zealanders to consider, they were delivering “doctrinaire, uninspired and ill thought-out dross”.

      • Blighty 11.7.1

        Pete George. Explain the mechanics of Dunne’s policy. How do you determine the NPV of a person’s entire pension so you know how to spread it out over varying time periods?

      • Colonial Viper 11.7.2

        Labour is making KiwiSaver compulsory, AND ensuring that it is not used as an excuse to do away with NZ Super.

  12. aerobubble 12

    Janet Frame was not a recluse, revisionism bollocks.

    People who are sensitive make more mistakes and
    so withdraw, so invariably some happen to be great
    writers and thinkers. Frame was exposed to mad
    people and would have spent even more time
    absorbing them.

    So Janet frame could not have been the writer she
    was, the person she was, without being reclusive.

    So why this revisionism, reclusive people are still
    social animals, they just withdraw, take flight more

    • Uturn 12.1

      I guess it depends who does the revising and the mood of the buying/reading public and which personality trait is socially ascendent: extroversion or introversion. In a world of big business pop culture, introversion doesn’t sell all that well, but behind every good movie or literary masterpiece, there is a “reclusive” writer doing the chops. At least Janet Frame found a mode of communicating with the world. Many don’t.

  13. Cloaca 13

    Who are the people currently “negotiating” for the Mt Roskill nomination, rather than concentrating on the current election ?

    [lprent: Can’t see how this has anything to do with the post – moved to OpenMike ]

  14. Cloaca 14

    Send for Mike Williams – he is neede to go to Melbourne.

    And stop those bickering over the Mt Roskill nomination and get back to winning the election now.

    [lprent: Again, can’t see how this has anything to do with the post – moved to OpenMike. And if I see another one out of context, then you’re getting the chop for trolling until after the election. ]

  15. AAMC 15

    About to kick off in the states, NY straight onto street, not footpath. Which caused arrests last time.

    Marching in Oakland and NYC in unison to city hall to protest use of force in Oakland last night.

    Live tweeting at

  16. randal 16

    hey lprent.
    giving the trolls some shit huh!
    you need help then call randal for pointless but satisfying abuse.

    [lprent: Thanks for your (ummm) generous offer. But I’m steadily increasing my trophy room with scalps, ears and other anatomical specimens. So I won’t be requiring extra help as I cull the sick and the lame out of the herd.

    However pointed but satisfying abuse may be indulged in. ]

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      Do you charge or do you offer your services for free?

    • prism 16.2

      Who do you call (for pointless and satisfying abuse)? Politicobuster! Pollybuster? When words fail us on some incredible event can any of us call on you randal?

  17. gingercrush 17

    Hmm I see Labour has made Kiwisaver compulsory and plans to increase employer contributions up to 7% eventually. Its a good policy for Labour actually along with raising the retirement age (something National would never be able to even if Key hadn’t promised not to do it).

    It makes no sense whatsoever though to increase employer contributions without increasing employee contributions.

    • Lanthanide 17.1

      In Australia, it’s a flat 9% employer contributions, and employee contributions are completely optional.

      Probably in Australia you would find cases where the employer increases their contribution if the employee does also, and that would be part of the salary and benefits package that the employer offers to their employees.

      What I want to know, is if Labour will roll back the employer contribution tax that National are putting in next year.

      As it stands, I’m on 2%/2%, and when they start taxing employer contributions I’m effectively going to go to 2%/1.34%. Then when they bring the minimum up to 3%/3% I’m effectively going to be on 3%/2%. So next year I’ll get less than I got this year (not even counting the reduced government contributions), and the year after I’ll pay more and only return back to the amount I currently get from my employer.

      • Colonial Viper 17.1.1

        good question, worth checking out.

      • Chris 17.1.2

        I would’ve thought they aren’t intending to roll it back. Purely based on the fact that if they were it would’ve been included in the policy today. Could be wrong though.

  18. prism 18

    I just heard Blenglish being interviewed by Mary Wilson. He made the point when discussing the gas pipeline failure that if it was government owned then steps could be taken to monitor it but because its privately owned that’s difficult. And for Vector to put another pipeline in would mean that the price of gas might go up beyond customers’ willingness or capacity to pay.

    Arent’t these the points that the thinking left (as opposed to the Roger Douglas/Treasury cohort of the past) have always made and which have been ignored or derided?

    Some pertinent comments in GrabOne from Brian Gaynor 27/8/2011 quoted in NZHerald 27/10/2011 – Brian Gaynor: Decline and fall of Kiwi private enterprise

    In December 1986, all of the 10 largest companies had private sector origins, and most were named after their creators.
    Top 10 company founders included Ron Brierley, James Fletcher, James Wattie, Bob Jones and Frank Renouf. Chase and Equiticorp were also dominated by individuals, Colin Reynolds and Allan Hawkins respectively.
    Thirteen years later only Carter Holt Harvey and Brierley Investments remained in the top 10, and Brierley’s value is down from $5481 million to $1097 million.

    At the end of 1999, three of the top 10 companies – Telecom, Contact Energy and Auckland International Airport – had public sector origins.
    The latest top 10 list, based on Wednesday’s closing prices, includes six former publicly-owned companies; Telecom, Contact Energy, Auckland International Airport, Vector, Port of Tauranga and Air New Zealand….

    These top 10 sharemarket value figures show that New Zealand businessmen and women have lost the ability to create great companies and the domestic sharemarket is now heavily reliant on former publicly owned organisations.

    • Draco T Bastard 18.1

      Arent’t these the points that the thinking left have always made and which have been ignored or derided?

      Yep but, hey, can’t go round having reality mentioned as it may knock the delusion that the free-market and privatisation works from peoples head.

  19. uke 19

    Government report says richest 1 percent doubled their share of US national income

    A study released Tuesday by the [United States of America] Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reports that the richest 1 percent of US households nearly tripled their income between 1979 and 2007 and doubled their share of the national income.
    The report also concludes that the top 20 percent of US households increased its share of national income while every other quintile saw its share decline. The top 20 percent received 53 percent of income in 2007—that is, its income surpassed the income of the other 80 percent of Americans.

    The massive growth of social inequality over the past three decades has been the result of an unrelenting ruling class offensive against the working class.

  20. Sookie 20

    The mentally challenged commenters were out in force on Stuff today, going off their nut about Labour’s Superann policy (brave, sensible move but foolhardy methinks) and spaffing themselves over the return of the vile bigot Paul Henry to television. Someone get me the f*ck off this ship of fools/bogans. Oh and TV3, you’re banned from my telly. Most of it is crap anyway so no big loss, but Campbell is better than teh Walrus.

  21. John 21

    Raising the age to 67 is basic sensible, scientific economics, work is good. Here’s another basic of work is good, and a fundamental of future society building, no fucking unemployment, no work ghetto, no bastards and bastards sons to be constantly demonised and whipped. Every wants to spend, (their 80 years here) in N.Z in health and growth.

    Sort the country out, it’s 2011 and New Zealand’s ( little islands in the deep ocean) only sustainable future is to be the Glowing light of the area, the holland of the south pacific , the jewel of the oceans, which it is, the last islands (b)reached by man .

    • prism 21.1

      John – Your comment hangs together like those odd Google references that have a dictionary of words that will strike a match in any search heading.

      • Chris 21.1.1

        Haha when you say that it really does.

        Also I would like to point out that I have always considered scientific economics an oxymoron (by always this is actually the first time that I have ever seen it before, but still…).

  22. Chris 22

    Has there always been the authorization down the bottom? Or has that just gone up recently?

    It’s hilarious anyways.

    • lprent 22.1

      Got pissed off by a dickhead the other day. We don’t need it. But I figured that I should give fair warning before I chew people’s heads off….

  23. John 23

    “John – Your comment hangs together like those odd Google references that have a dictionary of words that will strike a match in any search heading.”

    I’m a marketer of ideas, good ideas, not illogical ideas, not bank driven ideas, banking is the industry any sane prime minister would reform quickly, what an unproductive fuckfest that is.

    • McFlock 23.1

      I thought marketers liked short sentences of 12 words or less? Try using full stops as you paddle along the stream of consciousness.
      You went from “idea marketing” to “fuckfest” in one sentence, and not in a “please give me a loan so I can start a swingers club/sauna”.

  24. randal 24

    I am always available for a fee.
    heres a sample: ***NEWSFLASH***, john keys declared inane!

  25. Jenny 25

    Science dissects the invisible hand.

    AS PROTESTS against financial power sweep the world this week, science may have confirmed the protesters’ worst fears. An analysis of the relationships between 43,000 transnational corporations has identified a relatively small group of companies, mainly banks, with disproportionate power over the global economy.

    New Scientist


    “The Occupy Wall Street claim that 1 per cent of people have most of the wealth reflects a logical phase of the self-organising economy.”

    Dan Braha of the New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI)

    The self-organising economy, (A.K.A. The Invisible Hand) made more visible.

  26. millsy 26

    Work till you drop. Vote Labour.

    • Puddleglum 26.1

      In a better world, ’employment’ would be seen as the problem, not the solution.

      • Colonial Viper 26.1.1

        Doesn’t have to be capitalist employment. Beautifying public schools, conservation work, caring for the elderly and the infirm, creating a new work of art for the town centre.

        People need to have a role in and a contribution to their communities.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Doesn’t have to be capitalist employment.

          No it doesn’t but that’s what Labour means. I’m with Puddleglum, employment should be seen as the problem.

          People need to have a role in and a contribution to their communities.

          Yep, but it shouldn’t be forced through a threat of poverty as we have in this psychopathic capitalist system (Especially what we have under a NAct government).

          • Puddleglum

            Yes, that was the employment I was signifying with the scare quotes.

            The employee-employer relationship lowers a sense of autonomy and self-respect. You are, in effect, selling part of your life to someone else so that it can be used to attain their ends rather than your own (or your community’s).

            It isn’t called ‘wage slavery’ for nothing.

            The greatest stress is experienced by low-status individuals in our society.

            That shouldn’t be surprising since the greatest stress for a social animal that depends for its emotional wellbeing primarily on the worth accorded to it by others, is to be explicitly marked as being of little value. 

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