Open mike 30/04/2016

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, April 30th, 2016 - 63 comments
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63 comments on “Open mike 30/04/2016 ”

  1. Tautoko Mangō Mata 1

    Rules, Rights, and Resistance: The Battle Over TPP and TTIP
    Streamed live 5 hours ago
    April 29, 2016 The New School live coverage of their conference titled “Rules, Rights, and Resistance: Joseph Stiglitz, Lori Wallach, and more

  2. Gristle 2

    On Thursday and Friday John Campbell has been chasing the EQC down to try and get to the difference between what the enabling legislation says the EQC has to and what it has been doing. The problem is that the EQC is supposed to restoring property to a as new state, whereas they have been operating on the basis the property should only be restored to a pre-quake basis. The gap between those two standards is massive and there is a big difference in the amount of work required to be done and the costs of such work.

    A stream of Home owners have supplied Campbell with documentation that shows that the EQC cited that the work was to be completed to pre-quake standard. On this basis EQC assessments of work would be coming in around the $30,00 to $45,000 level. On a disturbing number of instances this work budget would bounce around until after the 5th or 8th assessment the work budget would get up to $300,000 or even $600,000.

    The EQC and Mr Brownlee both maintain that the EQC has consistently operated to the “as new” standard of repair despite there also being reams of internal documentation from the EQC saying that repairs were to be to a”pre-quake” standard.

    Blatant lying but why?

    The EQC has a cap limiting the amount of money it covers per event to $115,000. This figure is commonly referred to a “cap”. The goal of home owners appeared to be to get the EQC to agree that the repair work was “over cap” and at this point the insurance companies would be liable for the cost of repairs.

    IMO there has been a political decision to manipulate repair assessments downwards by using a lower standard of repair not only to save money for EQC but also to save claims being made on insurance companies.

    For a while after the quake insurance companies stopped issuing new house insurance. Without house insurance the banks will not issue a mortgage. Without mortgages the sale of houses would have rapidly diminished. The property bubble would have been stopped.

    Trying to insulate the insurance companies from the costs to puts a new spin on the socialisation of risk. Here the corporate risk is pushed all the way back to the individuals rather than the usual Neo-Libs response of pushing it onto the general taxpayers.

    • jcuknz 2.1

      I heard the Thursday broadcast and was disgusted by the EQC spokesperson’s stance and the whole matter is very worrying for house-owners living in an earthquake region, which is most of NZ.

    • gsays 2.2

      i agree gristle, from a distance, the whole christchurch/insurance/rebuild/state mix has had a stench to it.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.3

      IMO there has been a political decision to manipulate repair assessments downwards by using a lower standard of repair not only to save money for EQC but also to save claims being made on insurance companies.

      That wouldn’t surprise me. If the insurance companies had actually paid out what was needed they would have gone broke.

      Trying to insulate the insurance companies from the costs to puts a new spin on the socialisation of risk. Here the corporate risk is pushed all the way back to the individuals rather than the usual Neo-Libs response of pushing it onto the general taxpayers.

      Putting it on to the taxpayers would have meant increasing the taxes upon the rich and there was no way that National was ever going to do that.

      Why Insurance Should be a State Monopoly

  3. Penny Bright 3

    How on earth was it right, proper or lawful for Auckland Council Controlled Organisation (CCO) Auckland Transport, to make a by law on ELECTION SIGNAGE?

    In my considered opinion, any by law on ‘election signage’ should be the responsibility of Auckland Council, and should not attempt to restrict election signage on private property to the 9 weeks of the ‘official’ election period.

    I have formally notified Minister of Transport Simon Bridges of my intention to petition him to exercise his lawful authority under s.22AC of the Land Transport Act 1998 to ‘disallow’ Auckland Transport’s ‘Election Signage By Law 2013’ in its entirety, because of its ‘inconsistency’ with the following enactments:

    The underpinning Land Transport Act 1998

    The Local Government Act 2002 (s.155 (3) – Council By Laws cannot be inconsistent with the Bill of Rights Act 1990)

    The Bill of Rights Act 1990 (s.14 – Freedom of Expression)

    Full credit to Minister of Transport Simon Bridges for his speed in taking action on this issue:

    “Ms Bright has joined the fray, telling the council she will petition Transport Minister Simon Bridges to declare the bylaw – which comes under his portfolio – illegal.

    She will seek support from other candidates and interested parties, and has urged candidates to defy the bylaw, by advertising from private property before the nine-week election period.

    Auckland Transport’s election bylaw noted that it considered Bill of Rights issues, and believed it complied.

    Ms Crone said any thought of legal action would come further down the track, and she had contacted the council today asking it to review its stance.

    Transport Minister Simon Bridges said he had sought legal advice on the bylaw, as well as his powers as Transport Minister to disallow transport-related bylaws.

    He said he had written to Auckland Transport asking them to clarify the original purpose of the bylaw and to advise how they believe the bylaw was consistent with the Land Transport Act 1998 and the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990. ”

    Penny Bright
    2016 Auckland Mayoral candidate
    (‘Activists’ – get things done 😉

  4. maui 4

    A most engaging interview with former Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis. Gives you an update on the Greece financial situation, a situation so bad you hope it never catches on here.. The interview is split over several videos

    • Nick 4.1

      +1 gives great clarity on the different ideologies and who is actually driving the madness

      • Pat 4.1.1

        Sadly, though obvious for some time now he won’t be heeded….just as they dismissed him when Minister…..logic has nothing to do with it.

  5. You Never Put An Investment Banker On The Board Of A Pension Fund!

    And that is exactly what happened when they put Ira Bing took a seat on the board of the Cullen fund

  6. greywarshark 7

    A cute dog pic from facebook with a deeper! illustration of our present day life. I thought the two canines to be very photogenic, but the smaller one closer to the grassroots looks more thoughtful while the taller ones, with tongue hanging out in a cheerful way, seems above it all and unconcerned at having dirty feet.
    doggie don’t

    • Anne 7.1

      A cute photo. Thanks gws. I thought the little fellow looked quite chuffed with him/herself while the golden retriever (I’ve had a couple of those in the past) was being his/her usual happy go lucky self.

  7. G’day, Standardistas! A big, big thank you to all readers who have visited the Meat Workers Union’s support site since Thursday. I’m told that T shirt sales have gone through the roof!

    It’s not just the income that’s important, it’s the message of solidarity you send when you buy one as well. I know it’s much appreciated by the workers that The Standard stands with them.

  8. mac1 9

    Topical and typical. Good satire. Drivers of European cars beware- you have nothing to lose but your socks.

  9. Sabine 10

    hmmmm – and chicken are coming home to roost

    Brian Fallow: Shh – don’t mention the pension
    11:41 AM Friday Apr 29, 201615 comments

    Quote: “The age of eligibility is 65, it is universal and not means-tested (though it is taxable) and it is indexed to the average wage, not CPI inflation.

    The Government insists this is perfectly affordable.

    And so it is, provided you are indifferent to the mounting cost, whether that takes the form of higher taxation or cuts to other things the Government spends money on.

    The Treasury has done some thinking about what the options are for a fiscally sustainable approach to retirement income – just in case the Government ever moves on from John Key’s reckless commitment that the entitlement parameters for NZ Super will never change on his watch.” Quote End.

    • millsy 10.1

      Of course, Brian Fallow will never have to worry about facing life in his cut down NZ super with a couple of hedge fund sinecures, some lucrative financial consultancy work and his NZ herald column.

      • greywarshark 10.1.1

        Brian Fallow has found a good thing here in discussing old age government superannuation.

        Always topical and of interest, can be left untilled for a period and then spring forth once again, with its foreboding tendrils with serrated edges promising to cut into our lives and wellbeing. It has a dark side that gives drama, holds all mature people’s attention and focus, unlike really important things like wages insufficient to live on, no better future to work for because there aren’t enough jobs and working hours to go around, no improvement in conditions for our young people and families, housing being rorted by the wealthy as the only thing of substance and reliability to invest in.

        Such shitty economic management. But we must turn our eyes away from the execresence that is NZ life. Superannuation is the answer. Hold the changes over our heads like a Damocles sword. In fact it is subsidising the country’s economy, a regular injection of money from government that keeps us all from collapsing like an old balloon.

        Wikipedia gives Fallow’s genetic strain.
        A fallow field is land that a farmer plows but does not cultivate for one or more seasons to allow the field to become more fertile again.
        The practice of leaving fields fallow dates back to ancient times when farmers realized that using soil over and over again depleted its nutrients.

    • One Two 10.2

      The big lie which is not talked about openly in NZ , is of course that super is completely affordable. So are schools , hospitals and all other essential services

      The lies around debt and its servicing are being used as cover to degrade quality of life, by cutting

      Those who talk about cuts should openly challenged

      • Jenny 10.2.1

        Workers have never been more productive,

        Society has never been wealthier,

        Super has never been more affordable.

        We just gotta tax the rich to pay for it.

        Just getting ’em to pay the tax they owe might be a good start.

      • Draco T Bastard 10.2.2


    • Colonial Viper 10.3

      If the Left continues to support our reliance on a debt based money supply then of course we can never afford good things for Kiwis.

  10. The Chairman 12

    AA warns Z Energy’s Caltex takeover could lead to higher petrol prices

    The AA is particularly concerned about 95 octane, with Z and Caltex the only suppliers in North Island cities.

    “That means Z will be able to control the price of it. There will be no price competition.”

    Commerce Commission chairman Mark Berry said the watchdog had “laboured long and hard” over the decision.

    It did not believe competition would be substantially changed.

    Z shares surged 10.5 per cent to $7.90 on the news, and are up by 50 per cent in the last year.

    Commissioner Jill Walker’s view was that there was evidence co-ordination was already occurring in some markets, which the merger would further entrench.


    • The Chairman 12.1

      Labour say “while it is some comfort that Z Energy is a New Zealand-owned company, it now owns around 50 per cent of all petrol outlets. Observers have noted it has consistently raised its prices earlier than its competitors.

      “What’s more, this decision undermines the Commerce Commission’s own guidelines which highlight industry dominance of over 40 per cent as a red flag.”

      It was only the other day Housing NZ was ticked off for failing to tender six major contracts in breach of the agency’s own procurement rules.

  11. greywarshark 13

    Interesting comment from Maori Hekia Parata about why she does not think it should be a set part of schools’ curriculum to learn about our NZ history. Those of us who are interested have long known we need to know more about the early Maori and Pakeha relationship, the wars and the effect of colonisation. It is unfortunate that Affluenza has been caught by RW neo liberal Maori who have found it comfortable to be in the Gnats fold.

    Education Minister Hekia Parata encourages schools to teach both sides of New Zealand history – the colonial and the Māori – but said she would not go as far as making it compulsory.
    “Because that is not the New Zealand way, we do not compel specific things. I’m not requiring every school to teach coding even though there is a group who wants that to happen.”
    “Because that is not the NZ way, we do not compel specific things”. Since when, and who decided that? Oh then, the National Standards don’t exist, forcing everyone and their teachers to teach exactly to the curriculum that has been set, and all must comply to a set standard no matter what their readiness for that learning may be. Ensuring all know their country’s full history would do a lot to prevent the outbreaks of racism and mad rantings from the ignorant who often justify unfair behaviour against Maori on the basis of half-digested pap. As far as I can see education department strictures are very rigid and do compel. What twisted words and thinking from this elite Maori woman.

    • Anne 13.1

      …twisted words and thinking from this elite Maori woman.

      There’s nothing “elite” about Hekia Parata. She’s New Zealand’s Mrs Bucket Bouquet. I bet she also sticks out her little finger when holding a cup of tea…

  12. Pete Redd 14

    So there’s a national security “D Notice” or DA Notice out on the NZ Media. Anyone have any clues as to what it concerns?

  13. weka 15

    Eugenie Sage ‏@EugenieSage 11h11 hours ago

    “The cairn is a monument to our stupidity.” Murray Rodgers @ 6 yr anniversary of loss of regional democracy at ECAN.


  14. RedLogix 16

    For the Steven Keen followers:

    Fairly long and very dense; but even if the dynamic modelling leaves you behind, the underlying message remains clear: capitalism is inherently unstable. It cannot be reformed out of it.

    • weka 16.1

      Do they present any solutions?

      • Colonial Viper 16.1.1

        Keen has developed computer modeling tools which are able to help economists generate far better and more realistic answers.

        Further his ideas like a debt jubilee and rental based mortgages provide important alternatives to today’s major economic problems.

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