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Phil Quin resigns from Labour

Written By: - Date published: 12:37 pm, July 14th, 2015 - 390 comments
Categories: China, cost of living, Financial markets, Globalisation, housing, overseas investment, phil twyford, tenants' rights - Tags:

Labour’s calculated but badly judged weekend adventure into race politics is reverberating.

I find it cynical that Twyford, Little and Labour aren’t “courageous” enough to hold firm on something like the CGT, a tax which would directly impact the comfortable property portfolio owning middle class in Auckland, but they are somehow “courageous” enough to step up and point the finger at the Chinese (when they are now outbidding that same comfortable Auckland middle class and their kids for $900K Mt Eden villas).

Let’s be clear here: apart from popular posturing, no political party appears to have any clue on how to make an Auckland first home affordable for the average worker earning $50K pa, let alone those many who are earning less.

Ban foreign ownership of NZ land I say. But make it an issue of economic sovereignty (a phrase Twyford never used in the weekend), not of race.

Quin says in an email to the Labour Party General Secretary, Tim Barnett:

Dear Mr. Barnett

In light of Labour’s calculated decision over the weekend to deploy racial profiling as a political tactic, I resign my membership of the party.

I am stunned that Labour, as a matter of conscious political strategy, would trawl through a dubiously ­acquired list of property buyers to identify Chinese­sounding names. Even as I write the words, I can scarcely believe that senior party leaders – or anyone of good conscience, for that matter – thought it an advisable course of action. That they are now defending it – even attacking Susan Devoy for her principled comments on the subject – compounds my disappointment.

I lived and worked in Rwanda for several years, including in 2014, during the twentieth commemoration of the genocide against the Tutsi minority. Many of my former colleagues, still dear friends, are among the few who survived the slaughter. They taught me something about what happens when political parties start compiling lists based on ethnicity. Nothing good can come from racial profiling of the kind Labour chose to employ in pursuit of a headline and a poll bump.

It seems to me that what Quin is saying, is that the road to hell is paved with good intentions – and that Labour should have known better. I am trying to find a link to Quin’s full resignation letter. Edit – Here it is: (thanks Stephanie Rodgers!)

Meanwhile Bryce Edwards has compiled a list of top tweets around Labour’s ill-judged racial foray. My favourite from that well known right winger Raybon Kan:

Raybon Kan ‏@RaybonKan

No wonder John A Lee had a tough time in the Labour Party. Lee?!? What sort of a name is that mate? Have you bought a house?!?

As I have been saying, Labour has wondered into the middle of a minefield and it doesn’t even know it yet.

390 comments on “Phil Quin resigns from Labour ”

  1. His name is Phil Quin.

    • Colonial Viper 1.1

      Thanks Patrick – corrected

    • dukeofurl 1.2

      Never heard of him !

    • Old Mickey 1.3

      who is he ?

      • mickysavage 1.3.1

        He is no left wing saviour. He has attacked the party publicly for years and think we made a bad decision in keeping Helen Clark as leader. He with the Paganis are firm believers of Blairite third way politics, the sort that gave us the beneficiary on the roof speech from David Shearer.

        He was also allegedly in the process of setting up an alternative left wing party and/or faction within Labour based on Progress in the UK. I suspect that we will see some more activity on this part so his self martyrdom needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

        • heather

          I agree with you, Phil was talking about ‘people from overseas coming and buying our houses’
          It is interesting, I can not think of another country in the world where you can get off a plane, and buy and house or and island and go home!
          This has been blown out of all proportion by the National Party and their followers with a deliberate intent to cause trouble.
          I too have been a member of the Labour Party for a very long time, and I want to see New Zealanders being able to purchase houses, I do not feel I have to resign from the Labour Party.

        • lprent

          Indeed. I’ve always considered myself to have been out on the right of Labour because of my intensely international business and economics background. But I’m socially strongly liberal and given to trying to provide workable upward mobility (the latter part distinguishes me from the ACToids – they seem to have social Darwinism genetically wired into their psyche).

          But I have never figured out what in the hell those bozos like Quinn were trying to achieve. Sort of socially conservative basher with a rather strange crony capitalistic bent. But I really suspect that it has more to do with some kind of “I want power/I love the game” leverage than actual thought through convictions.

          Anyway, I’d be rather pleased to see them fade to obscurity.

        • leftie

          In my humble opinion, it is no great loss this pretender has resigned. Labour is better off.

          • Thom Pietersen

            Agreed – part of the ideological nutbar PC brigade – Labour – working people, working, not bloody bludging. Maybe he could join the elitist arse sitting privileged geoglobal money party (I’d bang in a bit of totalitarianism – if people would keep shtum about the price of a TV).

        • Irascible

          In all my years in the Labour Party I’ve never met, heard or seen Phil Quin taking an active or positive role at any level. Anything I’ve ever heard about him has been derogatory and derisory. His resignation should, therefore be seen for what it is, grandstanding by a nonentity in an effort to rebuild his often ignored ego.

        • Chris

          Quin will be very pleased he managed to snag ethnicity as the issue to resign on. Right-wing twat.

  2. Sacha 2

    If they were ‘courageous’ they would be standing behind their racist dogwhistling rather than insisting everyone has them wrong.

  3. Anne 3

    Glad he’s gone and I hope he takes his right-wing third way friends (eg. Josie Pagani) with him. They can set up their own little think tank and run down Labour (as they have been doing for a very long time) ad infinitum.

    • D'Esterre 3.1

      @ Anne: “Glad he’s gone and I hope he takes his right-wing third way friends (eg. Josie Pagani) with him. ”

      Yup. Were I a Labour party member, I’d be delighted at his departure.

    • Dave_1924 3.2

      No room for other voices in a broad church Labour Party then Anne? Serious question and not trying to wind you up. Am actually interested in what you believe is the core of NZ Labour Party these days? Cheers

      • greywarshark 3.2.1

        @Dave et al
        There must have been an earthquake. Its started the grandfather clocks going, swinging their pendulums. The works haven’t moved since probably before 2000 which is why there are new, naive questions about matters that were stale a decade ago.

        Or may be it’s just such lovely troll bait.

    • Sanctuary 3.3

      +100 Anne

      All this has done is given the likes of Quinn and whole pile of other middle class, identity politics Blairist ex-Labour types the fig leaf they needed to start honest about the fact they now
      vote National. Bye bye, you won’t be missed.

    • greywarshark 3.4

      Too right, not too left! The Mighty Quin has had his day, and he’s getting so old that he can’t tell an indicative statistic from a firm researched one based on properly collected statistics. But from what i have read of him, he never has. Bet he is doing some good business with the Chinese and that has governed his ‘principled’ resignation.

      Unfortunately you can’t always get good political help these days. So resignation to the reality frequently happens.

    • leftie 3.5


    • whateva next? 3.6

      ad nauseum rather! Labour is about co operation, cohesion and compromise, not a federation of self interested separatists. Time to sort the wheat from the chaff.

      • Anne 3.6.1

        ad nauseum rather!

        That’s the word I should have used. Reached the age when the mind seems to go a blank sometimes. Thanks for the correction. 🙂

  4. weka 4

    Who is Phil Quin?

    • Colonial Viper 4.1

      a former Labour staffer, usually considered to be on the right wing of the party.

      • Paul 4.1.1

        So hardly a loss then.

        • Tracey

          is that the point paul? you usually want ethics from our reps

          • Paul

            I want us to be able to discuss the crisis of housing in New Zealand. Clearly members of the ACT Party are trying to close down this discussion.
            It is not racist.

            As one commentator put it ‘any reasonable country will realise that if they do not allow foreign land purchases in their own country then they should have little expectation to be allowed to buy land in other countries – this is not a racist argument but one of protecting your land for your citizens.’

            • Amanda Atkinson

              Stop talking about ACT all the time then, Paul. ACT is irrelevant. No one cares what they say or think, except you. Why? Your ACT comments don’t even make sense.

              • Paul

                Your views on unions previously stated suggest shared ideas with that extremist party.

                • Your act is more ACT than act – doesn’t that worry you?

                • Amanda Atkinson

                  Answer the question. I am sure your obsession with ACT is not directly at me, so for everyone else’s benefit, perhaps you’d like to say something sensible, and explain “why you care what ACT says”, and why you think this debate is being framed by ACT. I think most Standard readers have enough intelligence to make up their own minds about this, depsite what ACT says. What is ACY saying about this? I haven’t heard a peep. Anyway, Twyford is on the right path. He’s got a good policy. Do ACT agree with his housing policy? Enlighten us because I have no idea. If they do, is it suddenly a bad policy, just because ACT agree (if they indeed do) with Tywford in wanting foreigners to build new houses, not buy existing ones?

                • Amanda Atkinson

                  Oh right, I am an extremist because I spoke about 1 bad union experience. Carefully missing out that I am pro union, and have majority of positive union experiences. As I said before, you are irrelevant, Paul, and so is your vote. Centre votes win elections, not lefty extremists. If you want the left to win, you need us to vote centre left again, like we did when Helen was running the ship, instead of centre right. I’d suggest a change in your approach, if you want centre voters to come left with you again.

                  • Paul

                    Disagree totally.
                    You sound like a fan of Blair, Quin, Pagani etc.
                    Following the ‘middle road’ has been the death of the Labour Party as it has adopted more and more neoliberal policies to appease the wealthy elite and bankers.
                    It is only countries that have stood up to neoliberalism that have freed themselves.

            • weka

              As one commentator put it ‘any reasonable country will realise that if they do not allow foreign land purchases in their own country then they should have little expectation to be allowed to buy land in other countries – this is not a racist argument but one of protecting your land for your citizens.’

              Has anyone who votes on the left and who is raising issues of racism actually said that it’s racist to not allow foreign ownership? Because that’s not what I’ve been hearing, but I might have missed something.

              • I haven’t read anyone saying that. Paul is disingenuous in his dutiful deflection.

              • Nessalt

                the problem isn’t with banning foreign ownership. the problem is identifying one particular group of foreigners as the problem and therefore foreign ownership must be curtailed. THAT’S racist!!

                • weka


                • mickysavage

                  The problem is that one particular country’s banking system has $21 trillion in deposit accounts waiting to be spent. This is enough to buy Auckland’s total housing stock about 50 times over.

                  Can someone say how we can discuss this particular aspect without it being considered racist?

                  • Nessalt

                    the yellow wall of chinese capital? cmon mickey, think harder about the framing.

                    “historically low, even negative interest rates world wide have created a flush of hot money looking for a return. NZ’s relative prosperity, stability combined with the startling recovery from the twin effects of the GFC and a massive earthquake flattening it’s second most important city, make it an attractive investment prospect for international investors. A loose financial regulartory framework designed to encourage foreign investment has created a surging housing market in the largest city auckland. this has priced new zealand residents out of the market and has put the home ownership dream beyond reach for a whole generation. Labour will stop the inflow of foreign capital into our current domestic housing stock to ensure the bubble the national government has allowed to balloon does not tank the nations hopes of further prosperity. labour will to allow foreign investors or potential residents the opportunity to own housing stock in new zealand as long as it is a new build, built on leasehold land with standard 99 year lease terms at favourable rates available to all.”

                    the answer is so simple and allows labour to craft a broad fiscal policy platform that favours all around it. regular lease payments on government land, home ownership is back on the table, concerns about hot capital flowing in to dormant assets whose only attribute is it’s scarcity are completely allayed. the housing stock is increased. A thoughtful, positive policy that pays tribute to the hopes and dreams and positivity of new zealand and truly shows a sense of fair play.

                    or “yellow peril at our shores and doors”. your choice, this isn’t my labour party any more either.

                  • weka

                    “Can someone say how we can discuss this particular aspect without it being considered racist?”

                    Put it in a sovereignty context rather than an economic one.

                    Focus on a range of inter-related policies.

                    Give examples from all over the country that demonstrated this is about many different countries that have more wealth than NZ (and exchange rate issues).

                    Start a discussion why who owns land is important (which of course is very complex because of NZ’s history, and a problem for Labour because it by and large still supports neoliberal capitalism).

                    Bring in associated issues of social housing (govt and local body), why so many people want/need to live in Auckland, why the people have no control over this, wage rates, the banking system, etc etc.

                    I’d also go off on a tangent about the building industry and why it’s so expensive to build a house now, or why so many barriers are being put in the way of people who can build good houses cheaply.

                    • North

                      Yeah, Mickey Savage should really be saying – “There’s a nation in this world which I won’t name which has $21 trillion slopping around, just dying to be spent outside of the nation I won’t name…….”

                      You think that’d make a scrap of difference to the domestic-politics invigorated, born-again Nelson Mandela’s on the right ? Or the ‘immaculate’ putatively of the Left. Rather than screeching “racist” they’d be screeching – “Racist, without the balls to name the nation we all know he’s referring to !”

                      Morality check here – how many of the screechers (if they even know about it) care to consider Nelson Mandela’s assertion that Zionist Israel is an apartheid state ? While squatting on their Khandallah sofas viewing the biennial Gaza fireworks, sighingly remarking – “Well, they will fire those rockets !” Not heard much about ‘racism’ in that context.

                      Classism is inextricably tied to racism. Seems it’s overpoweringly seductive, just sometimes, to express outrage – the ‘sometimes’ being when politically rather than philosophically perceived ‘racism’ is seen to relate to a ‘class’ which the screecher readily identifies with.

                      Nah……don’t give a fuck about the $21 trillion and the broad consequences of a truly inflationary scenario for New Zealand. “Whatever happens, I’ll never be touched. Now……let’s angrily disport Our Sometimes Morality !”

                      PS: CV is NOT a subject of my comments. Neither are various others I respect – Marty M – too many to mention actually. Snobs Left or Right and KeyFuckers out for a stroll – Yes.

                    • weka

                      Yeah, Mickey Savage should really be saying – “There’s a nation in this world which I won’t name which has $21 trillion slopping around, just dying to be spent outside of the nation I won’t name…….”

                      Nice rhetoric, but you get that that’s not what I am saying right?

                    • Ergo Robertina

                      That’s a false dichotomy in respect of sovereignty versus the economy – that’s kind of the point.
                      But anyways, Fran O’Sullivan’s piece in the Herald tonight on what she calls an ”issue of major public importance” is the best thing I’ve read during this debate/debacle.
                      She says home ownership figures being at their lowest since 1951 mean the problem has to move past political point scoring.


                    • North

                      No reply button to your comment to mine below ending “…..that’s not what I am saying right?”.

                      I accept that Weka. Would actually add you to the CV and Marty M list.

                      Just doing a spray on arseholes who couldn’t really give a fuck about racism. ‘Day Trippers’ so to speak.

                    • weka

                      “That’s a false dichotomy in respect of sovereignty versus the economy – that’s kind of the point.”

                      How so? Labour aren’t talking about sovereignty as far as I can tell. Parker said Labour policy had changed for economic reasons. This means that in the future if economic reasons dictate that we’re better off with foreign investment then that’s what Labour will do. Core principles.

                    • weka

                      cheers North.

                    • onya North – I enjoy your posts – kia kaha

                • greywarshark

                  The problem is that people can’t look at what facts we have dispassionately and analyse them without an emotional reaction that gets in the way of reasoned thinking. And that’s not racist, it’s a fact.
                  And the odd comments against Paul just reveal your inadequate capacity for critical thinking.

                  • Nessalt

                    that’s the problem here. phil twyford showed no dispassion or analytical reason. just saw a preponderance of chinese names and leapt for the easy headline. as you’ll see somewhere in my response to mickey, the comment seems to dissappear, i just critically smashed the yellow peril argument out of the park with a few well chosen points.

                    you can’t just say things are fact, especially when you don’t know that they are. basing an opinion of a list of surnames gives everyone cause for doubt about validity. well, anyone who can think critically and not blindly toe the party line

                    • McFlock

                      yep, you sure blew that straw man out of the water. /sarc

                    • Nessalt

                      what straw man argument? care to refute any of the points?

                      your unceasing positivity must really endear you to your fellow humans. /sarc

                      you’re the guy in the corner at work parties who mumbles into his drink before making some out of context random remark a little to loudly aren’t you?

                    • McFlock

                      Nobody has made a (to quote you) “yellow peril” argument.

                    • Nessalt



                      only 60,100 results on google for Early NZ Yellow peril, but the similarities start to build with two hits.

                      know we’ve established that it’s not a straw man argument, got anything else McFlock? a few doozies from your selection of woman-in-her-place jokes?

                      [Any more use of that racist term and you’re gone. TRP]

                    • McFlock

                      I know the term. It has nothing to do with Twyford or Little or the media releases and debate over the last few days. Labour did not make anything close to that argument, let alone in those terms.

                      Pretending that you “smashed the yellow peril argument out of the park with a few well chosen points” when nobody made that argument is indeed a Straw man argument:

                      A straw man is a common form of argument and is an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent’s argument, while actually refuting an argument which was not advanced by that opponent.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      phil twyford showed no dispassion or analytical reason. just saw a preponderance of chinese names and leapt for the easy headline.

                      No moron, that’s not what he did. He had the data available analysed and reported it’s findings. For doing this he got called racist by the broad spectrum of people from those on the Left doing an all out emotional reaction and not listyening to reason to the morally and ethically challenged RWJNs.

                      i just critically smashed the yellow peril argument out of the park with a few well chosen points.

                      There has been no ‘yellow peril’ argument put forward by anybody except you.

                      you can’t just say things are fact, especially when you don’t know that they are.

                      Right, so now you’re calling people liars without any basis.

                      basing an opinion of a list of surnames gives everyone cause for doubt about validity.

                      No it doesn’t. The methodology has been explained and it makes sense. Sure, it’s not going to be 100% perfect but it does show trends – trends that we need to react to via legislation.

                      well, anyone who can think critically and not blindly toe the party line

                      There’s only one group reacting blindly and that’s the group reacting emotionally and it includes you.

                • Thom Pietersen

                  Foreigners – Yes, not ethnic races. Non sovereign purchasers of land. Using nationally recognised names as a basis V known resident numbers and probable purchase numbers. Racist, racist, racist…

                  The names were a statistical input. Just like most judges in the Maori land courts had English sounding names when we decided to take over the whole of the Waikato because the young night watchman got done in.

                  I’m so fucking offended!

          • dukeofurl

            Thats what people who have never been in government say- principles come first

            The Wellington mayor could tell you about a few rats she had to swallow

    • leftie 4.2


      A rightie who pretended to be left. Quin should have joined the National Party.

  5. Sabine 5

    Who is Phil Quin?

    Have never heard of him?

  6. Tracey 6


  7. John Williams 7

    I’m surprised that Quin was still a member. He’s been acting in a very deleterious pin-head manner for years.

    Even one of Labour’s most strident critics, Trotter, doesn’t believe it’s racist.

    What surprises me about the likes of Quin, Viper, et al is they clearly don’t mind those who don’t have an unending funding stream shut out of owning a house in Auckland for ever!

    Already house ownership in NZ is the lowest since 1951!

    • Tracey 7.1

      please list you practical steps to turn it around

      • Stuart Munro 7.1.1

        1 Ban foreign ownership of all NZ land.
        2 Set up a reacquisition process – say 5 years notice then state acquires at 80% of GV
        3 Commence a state building program concentrating on small units with 1-2 bedrooms. These should be transitional housing and should in many instances be apartments.
        4 Progressively tax local multiple property ownership. rate steps at 5,10,20,50 & 100 properties. Fixed term exemptions for builders – 2 years from foundations
        5 Introduce a rebate on income tax for non property owners.
        6 Create a pharmac-type state building materials supplier to compete with the current monopolies.
        7 Create a cloud sourced free archive of pre-approved housing plans.
        8 Waive or depreciate student loans on building trades education.

        9 add other ideas to this list.

        • Clemgeopin


          Some good thinking there. Worth considering some of those.

          I too have a few other ideas…but I will not publicise them here for now because the clueless National Party crooks will simply copy and plagiarise them like they have done with a lot of previous Labour government’s policies!

          Instead, I will email my proposals direct to the Labour party for consideration.

        • Colonial Viper

          Nice Stuart Munro – the beginning outlines of an actual comprehensive POLICY PROGRAMME to deal with the lack of affordable housing in Auckland (and the rest of NZ). Not just a two dimensional magic bullet approach which our pollies seem to love.

          • Stuart Munro

            Well if I can do that off the top of my head, perhaps the policy resources of Labour and the believe-you-me really concerned communities of Auckland can come up with an integrated program that will:
            1 fix the problem
            2 drive these treacherous and ineffectual scoundrels pretending to be a
            government into the sea (or carbon-positive recycling facility).

    • weka 7.2

      “What surprises me about the likes of Quin, Viper, et al is they clearly don’t mind those who don’t have an unending funding stream shut out of owning a house in Auckland for ever!”

      I don’t know about Quin, but if you think that’s what Colonial Viper has been saying then you are a highly advanced idiot. Go read what he actually says instead of making shit up.

  8. Phil Quin had been in the Labour Party again? Oh well, I guess he can get back to his barbecues and caucus coups now. Oh, and his writing, his writing that lots of people read on his blog. Phil Quin. Man, a resignation letter. From such a principled guy who had so much to offer the party. Phil Quin.

    • Stuart Munro 8.1

      Yes, a tragic loss to Labour – right up there with Stringer’s loss to the CCCP.
      We might even call him ‘a second Stringer’.

  9. Shona 9

    Yeah nah. No dog whistle . And who cares anyway ? The Foreigners fucking over our casino economy are fearsomely racist in their attitudes to us. They see us as stupid and lazy and say so in their media . So fuck em! We haven’t had the nous to protect our economic sovereignty we deserve the present situation.Irrespective of how ugly it gets. Too late now for moral high ground. This pathetic political correctness has us hoisted on our own petard.

    • Roflcopter 9.1

      Hmmm… where do they say that? Cite?

      And since when has it been racist to call someone stupid and lazy?

    • ankerawshark 9.2

      Shona 100+++
      There was a quote in the Herald, possibly from the Chinese News in NZ website, but don’t quote me on that saying we are lazy and spend $100.00 on beer and that’s why we can’t afford housing..

      • weka 9.2.1

        Ok, so if I can find something in the Herald that’s say misogynistic, can I assume you are too because you come from the same country as the people who publish the Herald?

        • ankerawshark

          Weka@9.2.1. I wasn’t making a generalization about the Chinese. I said there was a quote in I think The Herald, that one of the comments from someone who is Chinese made is that the Chinese work hard so deserve to own property and (I guess Pakeha NZders are lazy, beer drinking and that’s why they can’t afford housing.

          I have yet to read anybody putting down the Chinese. All we are saying is it looks very strongly like a significant amount of Ak’s real estate is being bought by People who had a Chinese name and when we control statistically for how likely those with a particular Chinese name are Chinese, then it looks like 39% of the house purchasers are Chinese, when they are only 9% of the population.

          We use statistics all the time. Some a very detailed statistics, some are perhaps not as rigorous. In the absence of rigorous statistics we need to use the best we can get. Especially if it supports lots of anecdotal evidence.

          • weka

            “I wasn’t making a generalization about the Chinese”

            Ok, I’m confused then. I thought you were strongly agreeing with Shona who seems to be saying that because some other people are racist we shouldn’t worry if we are racist also.

            Re stats,

            Do you have a problem with NZ residents/citizens who are Chinese immigrants buying property in Auckland?

            Do you have a problem with NZ residents/citizens who are descendents of Chinese immigrants buying property in Auckland?

            Because I don’t understand why someone being Chinese and buying land in Auckland is worse than someone being American or French or Martian and buying land in Auckland. Or someone being American or English buying land in the South Island (which Labour has promoted and supported in the past btw).

            • ankerawshark

              Hi Weka,

              If I gave the impression that I thought it was o.k. to be racist that was the wrong impression. I saw one comment from a Chinese person re lazy and beer drinking. Thats pretty rude and using a cultural stereo type of NZders. It also implies that only hardworking people deserve to buy a house.
              I have no problem with any resident, Chinese English or whoever buying a house to live in. I don’t like property speculation by anyone, but think it is particularly problematic from overseas speculators, a lot of whom I believe to be Chinese. But it makes no difference to me if they are English, American or from wherever. BTW I was/am very against the Australian trust buying up our state houses.

              I don’t consider myself a racist although I wouldn’t walk around proclaiming that “I am not racist”. That is because of my experience with feminist consciousness raising. That if you live in a paradigm that is sexiest and racist, then don’t take for granted that some of those beliefs don’t seep through unconsciously. I believe it is better to scrutinize and challenge one’s beliefs.
              I like many marched in the Springbox tour. My husband is Maori (I know that doesn’t necessarily mean much). I live in a very multi-cultural neighbourhood, which I value as much as anything because the people here are all great neighbours, good community etc. The diversity is good too
              Actually it is frustrating hurtful to think people may think I am a racist because I support this material coming to light. But it want stop me from speaking out about overseas investors and I am grateful to Phil Tywford for shining a torch on this issue. NO ONE to date has presented any evidence whatsoever that Chinese investors aren’t buying a significant amount of residential property. NO ONE. The evidence might not be perfect, but its good enough for me. You see if we are not open to it then we get into denial…………and this is what has happened over lots of important issues e.g. sexual abuse of children. I won’t be part of a culture of denial.

      • Heartbleeding Liberal 9.2.2

        I have a feeling that this interview was a farce. It read like one.

      • leftie 9.2.3

        Here is the article from the Herald of a Chinese investor who doesn’t live in New Zealand telling Kiwis to stop grumbling and work harder if they want to buy a house in Auckland, and he asks ” Why do you spend $100 on beer when you can save it and spend it on your house one day?”

        Chinese: Kiwis should save harder

        <a href="http://m.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11478720

        • Thom Pietersen

          Damn straight – we have no right to our culture, and what our forefathers worked for… we need to work like iPhone production leemings forced off their farmland, or have the nuance to fiddle away windfall money. Stuff you racist!

          • leftie

            @Thom Pietersen

            Yep, I became extremely angry too when I read that article in the Herald.

  10. Ad 10

    Front page of the NZHerald Sir Don McKinnon gets it.
    You don’t have to like him, but he knows this is damaging our reputation in China.

    Big picture: if Labour want to shut out foreign house-buying capital, expect pretty serious international blowback, both from investors and at diplomatic level.

    • Paul 10.1

      No it’s a threat.
      As one commentator put it ‘Translated – We have to be careful we don’t upset a major trading partner! Our Sovereignty be damned!’

      Like the Greeks, we simply have to suck it up to the big guys. We are not allowed to have democratic rights.

      • Ad 10.1.1

        So Labour’s armchair real estate warriors may not need to quake, but they do need to accept they are small, with little influence, unlikely to win, and risk of making things worse.

        • Paul

          That sounds might defeatist of you.
          No doubt you also think we should sign the TPP.

        • Draco T Bastard

          What would you say if the point was put to referendum and the peoples decision was to ban foreign ownership and investment altogether?

    • Tracey 10.2

      is china offended by all the other nations who have restrictions and taxes on foreign ownership or just us? do they trade with aussie… uk… usa or canada?

    • John Williams 10.3

      Bollocks!! Hasn’t stopped Australian, British, Canadian investment!

      • Ad 10.3.1

        Labour has not framed Australian, British, or Canadian investment.

        • McFlock

          Because the naming methodology doesn’t have >90% consistency for those demographic groups.

          • Colonial Viper

            Yes, highlighting foreign sounding names is more reliable. But Labour should have broadened its rhetoric to include all offshore buyers of NZ land. It didn’t.

    • Draco T Bastard 10.4

      if Labour want to shut out foreign house-buying capital, expect pretty serious international blowback, both from investors and at diplomatic level.

      Our sovereignty isn’t a concern of those outside of NZ. It is to NZers.

    • vaughan little 10.5

      not true about the damaged reputation thing.

      the 9% of AKL chinesisch citizens from the get go were bracketed off as being not part of the problem, by definition.

      i actually disagree with Labour on this, because it’s precisely recent migrants (a small percentage of the 9%) who are best placed to exploit local knowledge in channeling hot money into the economy. so a small part of the 9% will likely be punching above their weight when it comes to damaging the local economy. as has been said, that’s not their fault because it’s all legal and they’re doing what’s good for them. the fault is with NZ’s lawmakers, and they need to step up and change the law.

      but that’s beside the point. labour from the start were saying there are two groups of chinese in the property market, one group is just fine, one group is not. you can’t be clearer than that, and anyone seeing racism is simply ignoring labour’s methodology.

      • Roflcopter 10.5.1

        Oh, so because they weren’t focusing on ALL Chinese, they’re only mildly racist?

      • Sacha 10.5.2

        “labour from the start were saying there are two groups of chinese in the property market, one group is just fine, one group is not. ”

        Go back and listen to Twyford’s own words. That is simply not what he actually said. Sweet that you would like it to be true, but honestly why do you think so many people across the political spectrum are reacting like this?

    • vaughan little 10.6

      “china’s watching you”. thanks for your input, don, but we’re a democracy and we’ll move ahead with public debate.

    • SPC 10.7

      Oz got a better trade deal than we did and they have restrictions on foreign ownership.

    • North 10.8

      So we’re already fucked are we Ad ? We have only one choice do we ? We just lie down and say “Anyone else ?”, do we ?

      If what you say has any attachment to reality then the dangers of unlimited cheap foreign money, are palpable. Only the already rich will have the “Brighter Future”.

      You like that Ad ?

  11. dukeofurl 11

    “Phil Quin had been in the Labour Party again? ”

    The only readers of his blog was the beehive drones who feed Slater and Farrar

  12. shorts 12

    the issue and point Labour misses with their entire tactic is these Chinese or wherever they are from people aren’t doing anything wrong…. these speculators and investors are 100% within their legal rights in NZ and therein lies the problem – its not a (PRC) Chinese problem its a kiwi problem!

    The labour leadership would be better off saying lets stop being bloody idiots and tighten up our laws to stop foriengers buying everything that is and isn’t nailed down in our country. Instead they’ve insulted a lot of people which seems silly given the popularist nature of modern day politics

    • Tracey 12.1

      they have been saying your second paragraph but 49% just nod to this govt.

      • shorts 12.1.1

        I get that, its the Chinese part that wasn’t needed that someone decided would be a good strategy that has and will continue to see labour MPs siting on the opposition benches checking their property portfolios

        I expect little but corruption from National – from Labour I demand more than mishandling

        • Tracey

          neighbours just sold a run down villa on 900m2 section. hard to subdivide cos front house cant be moved or demolished and driveway is too narrow to meet regs.



          • Visubversaviper

            It is not hard to get approval to demolish a pre-1944 house. All you need to do is to show that it is not worthy of scheduling – not a speicial example of its type and no-one important lived there. It protects the realy good stuff but not run of the mill type villas.

            The developer would have know that.

            • Tracey

              so they can apply to have the current situation revoked?

              • Visubversa

                No, if it is the pre-1944 overlay, they apply to remove or demolish the villa. Restricted Discretionary under the Unitary Plan. Unless the villa is really special, consent is likely to be granted.

          • RedLogix

            OK … I’m in Auckland right now visiting my father. He lives in a small street with just 22 houses. Him and the neighbour are the last two non-Asian owners left.

            Knock on door just after dinner tonight. Asian agent offering three times the QV for the place. Explained their buyers want to get in before the door is closed. Didn’t really care how much they paid – the more the better it seemed.

            This is insane.

            • mickysavage

              Which suburb?

              • RedLogix

                Epsom of course.

                I should add that I more or less played him a bit. My dad doesn’t want to sell on any terms right now, and I strongly suspected this agent was playing a ‘bait and switch’ scam himself.

                So on reflection I don’t think his offers were real, but nor are they being made in a total vacuum either.

                My father was pretty wound up about it.

            • Anne

              Insanity is the new sanity Redlogix. And be careful about repeating personal experiences here because you are likely to raise the ire of the trolling brigade. Anecdotal evidence is depicted as hallucinating at best… vile racism at worst.

              In light of the huge publicity you would think they might lie low for a while. You should have played along with him/her and requested a card. It might have been useful to see what transpired – maybe evidence for further down the track.

              • my god – lie low – maybe we need an underground railway just in case a labour supporter is out there jotting number plates down for The Man

    • tinfoilhat 12.2

      yep – pretty much.

      Instead as is the usual case Labour have shown themselves to be at best political incompetents and at worst dog-whistling xenophobes/bigots.

      • Tracey 12.2.1

        what? ALL those countries restrict foreign property purchase and yet china still trades with them..

        • alwyn

          There was a New Zealand expatriate, living in China, who was interviewed on what the Chinese reaction would be. It was on this morning’s “Morning Report”.
          His basic point was that the Chinese wouldn’t have the slightest difficulty with restrictions on foreign residents, or even immigrants having restrictions placed on their being able to buy property.
          The problem was that a major political party was singling out Chinese specifically and it was that fact that would be seen as racist, and offensive.

          • Tracey

            well when do we expect trade and tourism to begin dropping cos of this?

            i remember when shipley oppressed freedom of movement/protest to save chinese sensibilities…

          • Thom Pietersen

            We have to be honest – there is a save face thing in national Chinese culture – and I will get slammed for this, but I would put it alongside westerners paternalistic tendencies, funnily enough demonstrated here…

    • Colonial Viper 12.3

      Yes, the Auckland housing bubble is a serious problem which the NZ leadership class has let expand since 2001/2002.

      • Tracey 12.3.1

        the last time auckland central property prices went backwards was after the 87 crash… but they bounce back quickly.

        • Macro

          Actually there was a dip in the market around 2000 – prices went down for a while, before lifting again in 2002-3. The office I was in in Green Bay listed 1 house in 3 months! There was nothing selling – and no vendors. It wasn’t a good time to try one’s had at real estate 🙂

    • McFlock 12.4

      Well, they have been.
      And the tories said that foreign ownership wasn’t really happening all that much. And refused to measure it.

      It’s the child poverty problem all over again, only this time the data isn’t centrally collected let alone publicly available. Tory business as usual.

      So Labour used a metric that was, frankly, as dodgy as fuck (not so much due to the names/frequency matching, just sample bias issues etc). To get the point across that the only metric even vaguely available at least provides an indication that the problem of overseas/non-resident speculation exists an inflates the Auckland market.

      So the steps need to be*:
      a) demonstrate a problem probably exists;
      b) get an accurate measure of the problem (registered NZ-non-resident dwelling owners);
      c) if the measure demonstrates the existence of a significant problem, solve it.

      *well, for those of use who need real-world data because we can’t read the matrix as it flows by, anyway

      • Tracey 12.4.1

        and why wouldnt they want to measure it…

        • McFlock

          If you close your eyes and then insist you can’t see anything bad, people are just discriminating against the blind if they call you a liar.

        • keyman

          real estate agents are make a killing land owning Epsom torries are making a killing and if the money flow from china stops house prices have a major correction back to a level this economy can pay for on new Zealand incomes. government doesn’t want know !

          • Tracey

            Peter Thompson being all contrary about this data…. this Nat Party donor has 500 Chinese agents on his books and specifically tells people if they want a high price then use B & T cos of the number of its agents in China or with Chinese mainland contacts…

            He is making shitloads off this particular market an is specifically promoting it. I know cos last year after we took our house off the market I got his letter telling me to use their Chinese connections to get the highest price..

  13. tinfoilhat 13

    @CV I know you are trying to fight the good fight from within Labour, but as I have said before we would welcome your energy and passion with open arms in the Green movement.

  14. Shona 14

    Yeah? Well trading insults is start.

  15. Paul 15

    Chris Trotter.

    ‘China now stands where Britain stood: an economic colossus with expectations of this country that New Zealanders are only reluctantly beginning to comprehend. The thought that the Chinese might want something in return for opening up their market to our milk powder and baby formula has come very late to the ordinary Kiwi.

    That Labour is leading the discussion about how much, precisely, the Chinese have a right to expect from New Zealanders is entirely fitting. After all, it was Labour who sealed the deal. It was Labour, too, who presided over the electorally unmandated “turn” towards Asia in the late-80s. That they are, at last, addressing the misgivings expressed to me by Sonja Davies’ all those years ago, is to be applauded – not condemned.

    Labour’s Chinese whispers have nothing to do with racism. They’re about national sovereignty and the people’s will.’


    • weka 15.1

      oh ffs. We’re not talking about China. We’re talking about people who bought houses in Auckland who have names that sound Chinese. Can you honestly not tell the difference?

      • Galeandra 15.1.1

        oh ffs. We’re talking about China. We’re talking about people with capital from China who bought houses in Auckland but no one will tells us how many so we assayed lists of buyers and counted the names that sound Chinese. Can you honestly not tell the difference?

        • weka

          Yeah, I can tell the difference, that’s the point. You obviously didn’t understand what I just said. We (the people talking about racism), are talking about how Chinese people were targeted. That’s not about China. I assume you understand that there people in NZ who are Chinese or of Chinese descent who don’t actually live in China right?

          • McFlock

            A significant sector of the resident population appears to be purchasing houses at something like six times the rate of equivalent sectors.

            Would there at least be some basis for examining why that might be, and measuring likely factors involved in that situation, or even whether it’s a measurable difference within the resident population as opposed to the vagaries of global economics?

            • weka

              Yes. But not the way Labour tried to do it.

              • McFlock

                All Labour did was establish the first sentence, because that’s all that the available data was capable of.

                Frankly, I’d be impressed if anyone could explain how a domestic population segment could purchase houses at six times the rate of everyone else when that population’s national median income is significantly less than the majority of the population when mortgage numbers are static or falling. There seems to be a mismatch in the inputs.

                A register of overseas dwelling ownership is the logical next step in figuring out what’s going on.

                • weka

                  Can you please explain to me why the words China and Chinese needed to be used in this press release?


                  • McFlock

                    To link it with the current media reports and debate on the recent research.

                  • mickysavage

                    Weka believe me I have a pretty good idea of what is happening in Auckland. There is a tidal wave of investment coming in from overseas. Local people cannot do anything about it. Either we put restrictions on or we give up on the notion that our society should have an expectation that ordinary people can own their own home.

                    • If chinesesoundingnamed persons never bought another property in auckland would the problem be fixed?

                    • lprent []

                      You mean a non-resident one?

                      Nope, but I suspect that the rate of increase in housing prices in Auckland would drop to close to zero like it usually does after our usual 2-3 year housing craziness. There would still remain the problem of having a surplus of some kinds of housing in some areas and an acute shortage of other types in many areas.

                      There is a lot of housing tied up with people who have pretty well paid off their housing but can’t find any suitable housing to move to. So they are staying put. And this isn’t just older people. A large chunk of the mid-40s are like that these days. Paradoxically having the type of bull housing market we have at present in Auckland doesn’t mean that people get what they need, they get what the developers think that they can get the most profit from. That is the mansions (good for asset values for overseas investors) or micro bedroom apartments and townhouses that give the highest rental yields.

                    • weka

                      “Weka believe me I have a pretty good idea of what is happening in Auckland. There is a tidal wave of investment coming in from overseas. Local people cannot do anything about it. Either we put restrictions on or we give up on the notion that our society should have an expectation that ordinary people can own their own home.”

                      Right. So do you understand that I’m not against the issue being raised and addressed? (the issue being overseas money, not the Chinese). That in fact I want restrictions put in place, far more than what Labour are talking about. I want a ban on overseas ownership unless there is a bloody good cultural or environmental reason (fuck the economic reasons). I want to see our immigration policy changed so that cultural reasons become more important than economic ones (imagine if we’d spent the last 30 years prioritising cultural immigration from China rather than economic immigration).

                      I mean, I live in the country and I have a pretty good idea of what’s happening in the bottom half of the South Island with rural land. It’s the same story. Overseas money whether from immigration or overseas investment is outcompeting locals. Locals can’t do anything about it. This isn’t new. Successive governments (National and Labour) have been supporting and promoting this situation. I read that thing earlier about Labour’s history and like you I remember when we were told we were part of Asia etc. FFS, some of us have been against foreign ownership for decades.

                      I just don’t get why it’s so hard to understand that focusing on the Chinese is very problematic, although it’s just occured to me that Labour could be unaware of the long standing problems elsewhere in the country that overseas money has created.

                      Let me put it another way. The problem isn’t the Chinese. It’s the governance of NZ. I’d have a bit more sympathy for Labour if I saw them doing a genuine mea culpa (and throwing in an apology for Rogernomics while they’re at it), instead of what looks to me like an attempt at protecting investor class assets.


                  • adam

                    Weka I feel I need to do a public service and link to what bill said to me the other day.

                    China Crisis

                    There is a real disconnect and twisting of the view point that the twit Tywford chose to put him comments in racial terms, and as a left wing person, I find that repulsive. I don’t know why we are being blasted for saying that – it’s probably a lot of things. But, when they cool down in maybe a week or so – sane heads may see what we are trying to say, does not at any level diminish the need to look for, and offer solutions to, the housing crisis in this country.

                    A crisis which extends from social housing to rights for people renting. To many of us being serf like tenants. As the ranting has got a little less vitriolic in the last day or so, and I hope people will get down to the business of extending the debate.

                • weka

                  supplementary question. What would you want to see happen if there are signicant numbers of Chinese NZers buying housing in Auckland? (ie significantly above the 9% population).

                  • McFlock

                    I’d probably want to look at it in the same way we look for reasons why groups are over- or under-represented in other areas. Why are men over-represented on boards of directors. Why are Maori over-represented in prison. Do more rich kids go on to tertiary education (incl polytech) than poor. Why do European kids have more gromment surgeries up to the age of 5, when Maori and Polynesian kids massively outstrip European…

                    and many more.

                    As a general rule, I ask first whether there is a real, measurable difference. If so, what factors are at play other than the demographic cut in question- is ethnicity simply a proxy for poverty or something. Does the disparity really matter. Does it require specific interventions, research, or will it solve itself as macro policies have an indirect impact on the cause of the disparity.

                    • weka

                      I think that sidesteps what I was asking. Which is, what happens if we find out it’s NZers that are part of the problem, (who happen to be Chinese or Chinese descent)? Shall we start kicking them out? Auditing them to see where their money is coming from?

                      Much of my argument comes from the fact that I’ve seen this shit for years in the South Island, only it’s mainly the English and US immigrants that have been the problem. I don’t see anyone race profiling them though.

                    • lprent []

                      Yes it has happened forever. In Auckland we get these bumps when we either have a big bump in immigration numbers or the construction industry focuses on commercial for too long.

                      BTW: That includes internal immigration. I suspect the 2011 kickoff of the current price ramp was triggered by the influx of people from Christchurch post-quake, and then continued by investment speculation from offshore money.

                    • McFlock

                      Ok then: let’s assume that all of the criteria I mentioned have been met: that there is a measurable and significant difference in landlording amongs NZers of Chinese descent, and the trading activity is escalating housing prices beyond affordability of most people, and we know all the wheres and whyfors as to what’s going on, no research required.

                      That means that either the purchasers are leveraging off their properties (well, mortgages are static, so this is definitely fantasy land) or they are buying with cash. One can be controlled with financial market regulations on the level to which properties can be levied by investors. Ther other can be controlled by either progressive capital gains taxes or a variety of other measures.

                      Or, maybe, this hypothetical situation is not the result of unfair advantage given to capital, but some factor that means a small cluster of people use their money better (not even a directly ethnic cluster as such, just a confounding factor), so buy more properties. Maybe rather than restricting the traders, we learn from them to improve everyone else’s skills.

                      The point is that there’s no ethnically-based response, because it’s not an ethnically-based situation. It’s a situation that happens to be currently skewed towards one identifiable ethnicity because of the global economy. But this skewing strongly indicates that the nats claim of 1% is bullshit.

                    • Thom Pietersen

                      Family money, societal disenfranchisement, and education. No, more no less.

          • Galeandra

            Yeah, I do understand as my sister is one, cept she now lives in Oz. Mean time I regard expressions like ffs as tantamount to yelling at people. in reply to above

        • Paul

          Can’t believe how all these people are desperately trying to make this a race issue, as opposed to a sovereignty issue.
          Maybe they just want to close down a vital debate.

          • Anne

            Because that was the perception they chose to make when the story broke over the week-end. Together with the Clayton’s celebrity mob (eg. Bryce Edwards, who stick their finger in the air and go wherever the media flow takes them) they now have to justify their stance. That usually means refusing to read all the evidence available including those of us WHO ACTUALLY LIVE IN AUCKLAND and have seen and experienced the overwhelming evidence.

            • marty mars

              Little and twyford knew the potential for blowback but they considered the cost acceptable. The cost is the debate and perception raised – totally foreseeable and forseen. So what’s the problem? That they ham-fisted it? That they underestimated the blowback? That by framing the issue the way they did they distracted from the real point that they could have made? That they point they are making is childish in it’s simplicity and understanding of the issues relating to overheated property markets?

              So when you go to your next auction you’ll be bad-mouthing any asian looking person will you? – yeah that will fix the problem.

              • lprent

                That they point they are making is childish in it’s simplicity and understanding of the issues relating to overheated property markets?

                Please consider that in my view you just described yourself in that statement? I really suspect that you underestimate exactly how pissed off a lot of Aucklanders are getting over this debacle of a market here.

                Sure there is a building shortage – mainly because those National/Act idiots in Wellington keep getting in the frigging way with silliness like their mandated Auckland supershitty that took years out of the build cycle.

                But we’re way past that now. The prices are responding to silly money chasing the rewards from two years ago.

                • weka

                  I suspect that Aucklanders also underestimate how many people outside of Auckland are rolling their eyes a bit and going, yeah, we know. It’s not like this issue hasn’t been going on in NZ for a long time, not just Auckland.

                  (plus there’s the issue of Aucklanders coming south with their big bucks and raising house and land prices that way)

                  • lprent

                    Oh I know that is happening. But house prices seldom go as crazy downcountry as they do up here. The exodus is real as well.

                    My parents for instance when they retired. Why live around Auckland when they could realise the assets and live in Rotorua a lot cheaper.

                    But you notice that it has largely stopped now? The people remaining in Auckland are those who are here for the work and/or the lifestyles and/or family.

                    That is why the house prices down country have slowed right down.

                    I’d love to live on a hill in Dunedin, or up in Central, or any number of places.

                    However I’m addicted to programming, and these days the most interesting area for me is with writing code for specialised vertical market hardware. There are hundreds of firms doing that here, and probably less than a hundred through the rest of the country. Organisations cluster around each other and their common support infrastructure companies.

                    Lyn is the same. She does documentaries and works at the uni doing that and media as well. In NZ, the facilities and the people for that are up here.

                    Both of us need international airports close because of the supply chains and the markets.

                    When we retire, ie if Lyn retires before I drop dead – she is 16 years younger than I am and I already had a myrocardial infraction, then you can probably expect us to move down country. Maybe back to her home town in Invercargill, or her well remembered town of Dunedin.

                • “I really suspect that you underestimate exactly how pissed off a lot of Aucklanders are getting over this debacle of a market here.”

                  No I get it thanks. Labour have read the tea-leaves and will get exactly what they deserve… meanwhile the problem will continue to the next part of the cycle as it always does.

                  • lprent

                    mm: Possibly. We’ll have to wait for the next part of the cycle.

                    However in the meantime there is this structural problem in Auckland that needs solving. Like many others up here, I couldn’t really give damn who solves it. I just want it to stop getting so much worse.

              • Thom Pietersen

                They already are Marty – is that not a problem? It’ll only get worse, people tend to devolve into tribalism when under attack.

                I’m going to sit in an ivory tower and bleat pious platitudes.

                • “I’m going to sit in an ivory tower and bleat pious platitudes.”

                  Don’t do it Thom – fight racism it is so corrosive your world will disintegrate in front of your eyes if you don’t – stand up, be brave.

          • marty mars

            YOU are the one trying to close the debate down – own it ffs

      • Paul 15.1.2

        So you disagree with Chris Trotter?

        • weka

          I disagree where he says there is no racism. And I’m not convinced that Labour are mending their ways to make up for what they’ve done in the past. That’s just going off the bit you quoted, I haven’t read the whole article.

      • Amanda Atkinson 15.1.3

        Don’t worry Weka, Paul thinks it’s all ACT’s fault this debate. Apparently you Weka, and anyone else who think the race card has been played, have been hood winked by ACT. Me, I think Twyford has an excellent, sensible, logical policy to help Auckland housing. Dial down demand by banning foreigners from buying existing houses, and dialing up supply by encouraging all investors foreign and domestic to build new houses, not by existing ones, makes complete sense. There is not 1 single benefit to NZ in a foreigner buying an existing house here. It’s just a real shame that his good ideas are being lost in this race debate. Bad move Phil.

        • weka

          I can tell you I have no idea what ACT have been doing on this issue, other than a few comments here saying that they’re using the racism thing against Labour.

          If a foreign investor builds a new house in NZ do they own it? How about the land it’s on?

  16. Tracey 16

    hmm trade and diplomatic problems…

    does china trade with usa or aussie… or uk… or canada cos they all restrict or tax foreign property buyers…

  17. Mark 17

    Well if thats all it took to get rid of that prick, the Labour Party should have done it ages ago. Now if we were really lucky Josie might join her good friend. That would be the icing on top.

    • Roflcopter 17.1

      Why don’t you suggest a Labour MP start having a go at the Islanders…. that might do it.

      • Paul 17.1.1

        ‘Labour’s Chinese whispers have nothing to do with racism. They’re about national sovereignty and the people’s will.’

        • Roflcopter

          They could have said that, without mentioning China/Chinese, or any other foreign country…. but they did.

          Twyford, Little, Parker… playing the unbecoming race card.

          • Paul

            Do you think non-doms should be allowed to own houses in NZ?
            What did you think of Trotter’s article?


            • weka

              Paul can you please link to something where Labour talks about sovereignty and the people’s will?

              • Paul

                Did you read Trotter’s article?
                That did.

                • weka

                  I’ve read it now and I can’t see anything that quotes Labour talking about sovereignty and the people’s will. Can you please cut and paste the bit you think is relevant?

              • weka

                ‘Non-doms’? Who came up with that term? I have family living overseas who are NZ citizens. Are you suggesting that they shouldn’t be allowed to own land here?

          • Shona

            China is the problem. The data released by Twyford shows that. Whose paying you to troll anyway? Roflcopter ( so passe)This issue is way overdue to be dealt with. Hence the smearing of LAbour over the proposed CGT at the last election farce. National’s paymasters don’t want that. Our dollar would drop without the Chinese speculators( by far the biggest group in terms of numbers of buyers of domestic housing in Auckland ; admittedly foreign corporations spend larger sums on agricultural investment properties)The government has to do what it’s foreign backers tell it to do. We are the same as Greece . We have been sold down the river by our government.And Key is the most corrupt leader we have ever had. Kiwis are stupid, greedy drongos. We deserve everything that is happening to us. And it is going to get much much worse.

            • Colonial Viper

              China is the problem. The data released by Twyford shows that.

              Interesting. Was China the problem between 2001 and 2007 when Auckland house prices climbed from $300K to $600K, or has China only become a problem now that Auckland house prices are up over $800K?

              I agree that hot money flows out of China (and other countries) need to be clamped down on hard. But both the last Labour Govt and this National Govt let the property bubble grow and grow.

              • McFlock

                If we’d kept decent stats of foreign ownership, you could have an answer as to whether 2001-07 increases were due to China, US, Aust, or domestic speculation.

                But we didn’t so you can’t.

              • lprent

                Possibly when Auckland prices climbed by an average 26% in a single year?

                NRT: This is wrong

                Looking at the forecast for the coming year, it looks to me like we will either get more than that again (or have a bust). Over this last couple of years, I have been looking for a new apartment. Initially there weren’t any available of the right types. But now there are a lot being built around where we live and want to buy. The supply situation after 5 years of nothing at all is starting to ease as finally the building gears up.

                But we’ve been unable to find anything even vaguely in our price range. They start at $800k and go up for places that are actually worse than my current apartment (that I brought for $170k in 1997). While we have good incomes, they aren’t good enough to pay more than thousand dollars a week for something that is 20 sq metres larger.

                The auctions we’ve attended recently have all been won by the people on the phones – ie agents. The people at the banks say the money isn’t coming from them. There is clearly a *lot* of overseas investment money coming in. At least Labour has identified a probable source.

                Aucklanders have been used to rising house prices for a long time. I’d have to calculate that 2001-2007 (BTW: where is the link?) average, but that looks less than 10% on an annual basis (because of the compounding effects). The difference between slow rises in prices and bloody rapidly increasing spikes is considerable.

                Perhaps you’d like to pull your head out of your high indignation rascist taunting arse and start to deal with the issues everyone up here is having to live with. Perhaps being one of the people down country allows you the luxury of acting that way. But Aucklanders don’t. The costs are too high.

                BTW: I’d point out that on my observation that the vast majority of the people who are waxing indignant about this on this site appear to me to be not living in Auckland. The noisiest and most indignant (like Phil Quinn) are certainly not currently Aucklanders.

                • Karen

                  Here is a graph showing CPI adjusted median house prices in Auckland from 1992 to 2013. I was looking from one that went from 1980 but need more time for that.

                  I live in Auckland. I bought a one bedroom cottage in 1980 for $25,000. Two years later the cottage next door, which was the same size, sold for $44,000, so rapid increases in house properties in Auckland are not new, and there was no overseas speculation in the early 1980s.

                  I do think there is a problem with overseas based property investment but I think there are a number of reasons that house properties in Auckland are increasing rapidly, including local speculators and land banking.

                  My problem with what Twyford and Salmond did is that racial profiling based on names was bound to be seen as an attack on Chinese generally, including long term residents. The research itself was less of a problem than the framing.

                  • vaughan little

                    9% vs 39%. if it were racial profiling they would have cast all 39% as illegitimate. but they didn’t. get some nuance.

                    • Karen

                      It is racial profiling because it focusses on names that that indicate a high probability of Chinese ethnicity.

                  • lprent

                    Useful graph. I’d point out that there have been a further 20 months of growth in the high 20% range. That has happened when there was no significiant inflation – unlike the 1980s when our current annual inflation was the common monthly inflation rate.

                    When these kinds of really rapid pushes have happened in the past excluding inflation (including in the 1980s) they lasted for quite short periods – typically about 2 years before they stalled. That was because they would hit the limits of what people could afford to pay from their income.

                    ~46 months without a letup is somewhat extreme. Especially when there hasn’t been virtually any increases in income. And the higher density supply situation is starting to get dealt with in the central city. But I swear that the price velocity is actually increasing in our preferred type of property even as the supply gets better.

                    Stats has always had a problem with people attacking the techniques without bothering to check its accuracy.

                    I’ve used the name frequency based systems for estimating canvassing for Labour. For both gender (because so many people don’t put Mr/Miss/Mrs/Ms on the rolls or have Dr, Prof etc), ethnicity, family style, and a whole pile of other guesses. There are known issues with accuracy. But it is always >90% and usually >95% accurate for most parts of Auckland for a number of ‘ethnic’ (actually regional name) groups. And that is with the levels of intermingling of names that happens between families of our citizens and residents.

                    BTW: The gender accuracy is even higher when you use the whole of NZ to do the calculating on first names. My first name being an obvious example. There were about 5 male Lynns known in NZ the last time I looked.

                    I welcome this to the debate because I’ve been getting increasing pissed off with trying to find a new apartment. To the point where you may find The Standard coming to you from my front room in Aussie or the US or even China where there is interesting work (essentially there is none in the rest of NZ for me) and affordable housing of the size that the two of us now need.

                    Trying to buy a new place with our costs jumping from ~$1500/mo to ~$4000/mo and increasing at about 26% per year just isn’t worth the effort of staying here for.

                    • Karen

                      You are right about much higher inflation in the 1980s – I’d forgotten about that.

                      Not sure you will find Australia any better – Australian cities are having the same problems in spite of having a CGT and non-residents having to do new builds. My understanding about Sydney and Melbourne is that houses and apartment blocks are being built by non residents, but many are being left empty because renting is too much of a hassle. They are relying on a a capital gain because of the housing bubble.

                      I’d love to know how many properties in Auckland are empty .

                    • lprent []

                      I’d love to know how many properties in Auckland are empty .

                      So would I. Anecdote says quite a lot based on quite a few people over the last year telling me about ones close to them. However there really isn’t anyway to tell.

                      With Aussie, The two big cities are over 4 million.

                      But ….
                      Brisbane 2.0 million
                      Perth 1.8 millon
                      Adelaide 1.3 million

                      Auckland 1.4 million.

                      There are jobs in all of those places and 3 bdm median house prices in Adelaide are a leisurely AUD 400k.

                    • Sacha

                      Cool graph here too, showing the influence of non-local finance over time:

                      [lprent: Wow that is telling. You can see when the investment money pours in, and it isn’t from the banks ]

                    • lprent []

                      I have some strong quibbles about this. To be precise, I suspect that it is the number of house that were vacant on the night, but where the people who normally occupy them were elsewhere. I could be quite wrong about this. I was meaning to go back and look it up, but as usual ran out of time.

                      If it is, then it probably doesn’t show the housing that was deliberately vacant.

                      I’d love to know how that data was measured.

                    • Sacha

                      @lprent Impressive graphed data, eh.
                      Believe the other is from an official dataset but cannot recall which.

                    • Thom Pietersen

                      Actually, something I’m hearing more and more me and my suffering are looking to whether we have to go – we’ve missed the boat.

                      Not the country I grew up in.

                • Lindsey

                  I went to a Council Hearing yesterday on a proposal to build an apartment develpment in Kingsland. I don’t mind about most of it, except the 7 level block facing the Res 1 (heritage) street. Apartments starting at $800,000 and up to $1.3mill. No laundry facilities and 6m2 balconies instead of the required 8m2. Parking 4 levels underground.

                  • lprent

                    7 stories in Kingsland. Is that for the residential? 4 levels of parking?

                    Outside of the CBD or town centres (New Lynn for instance) I can’t see a reason for more than 4 levels + 2 of parking dug in.

                    Or 3 level townhouses with parking below. Not that I’d ever live in one of those again – the stairways are just so much dead space.

                    My apartment block has 3 levels residential and 2 parking dug in. Nice 10ft stud, 2 carparks, and in my a case polished concrete floor.

                    It has exactly one problem. 51 square metres of internal living space was fine for me on my own with my office at home habits. It is too small with two of us both with office at home habits.

                    Looking around for large places with 2+ bedrooms in the 70-100 sq metre range, they all seem to have two bathrooms, crazy layouts for clothes and storage, etc etc. In other words a lot of effective space wasted to silly walls designed for rentals to group of 3+ people. Low ceilings because people aren’t meant to live there. They are meant to sleep there.

                    Rabbit hutches.

                    • Sacha

                      “Low ceilings because people aren’t meant to live there. They are meant to sleep there.”

                      That’s worrying. How can councils/governments set building standards to discourage that sort of thing?

                    • Lindsey

                      Yes, up to 7 levels of apartments with a big hole underneath for 4 levels of parking. Old Kiwi Bacon site up the road from me. Mixed use development 317 -319 New North Rd and 20 and 22 Aitken Terrace. Plans on the Council website.

                • Anne

                  What irritates me lprent (@ 2:38) is the fact that the racist taunt you refer to is being used because the culprits happen to Chinese. But what if the ethnicity of the foreign investors had been European – or to be more specific German, Dutch or French. What if they were American or South African with assistance from their respective governments? The problem is the same and would attract the same response from Aucklanders in particular. Would that be framed as racist?

                  • lprent

                    By someone – probably. By so many from such a wide range, probably not.

                    National’s PR line dribblers seem to just see votes used to “the devil you know” to sustain their failing government. Personally I suspect that they and many others are under rating the ability for Auckland’s residents to make up their own mind about who to vote for regardless of the noisy local power brokers and speakers for communities pretensions. Just as Labour has been doing for years.

                    Personally I blame Winston Peters and a whole pile of populist fever running back to the 19th century for the left’s reaction. After having the bigots with their “yellow peril” running around for so long, the left has some reflexive unthinking attitudes of their own. Rather than concentrating on the issue in economic policy terms, outside of Auckland they are reacting to it in reflexive anti-Winston mode.

                    • Anne

                      A reflexive perception without comprehension of the reality of the situation in Auckland. Perhaps we need to swap domiciles with our more southern counterparts for a couple of years. I think the ‘perception’ of many out-of- towners might change.

                    • Thom Pietersen

                      A lot of the left actually like (probably not right, respect) Winston. Why’s that? Is he actually a bigot? May be some of us dislike the ideological left bigotry and the removal of the concentration around hard work and reward, while being fair and just.

              • Macro

                Actually CV Auckland house prices went down around 2000. I know, I was selling real estate then. Some of the early gains around 2003 were the market correcting itself. And yes the market was being influence at that time by foreign investment – namely Korean and South African at that time. The North Shore grew substantially at that time as 50,000 Korean and South Africans flooded into the area.
                The difference here though was that these were actual migrants, bringing money into the country – not the speculative off shore investment that we we are seeing now. I know that it is happening from personal experience, Mickey can tell you it is happening because he see it every day, Red knows that it is happening – his dad just had an offer on his property for 3 times the QV, and those of us who are living here know that it is happening because we see it day by day. And its almost exclusively form one country, with a power of loose change burning holes in investor pockets, and it is very easy to do, and even if the person” buying” the property resides in NZ the actual money behind the deal and the actual purchaser lives off shore and has no intention whatsoever of actually living here. I know it has been happening since 2010 because the people who bought my property in 2010 live and work in China and do not live in NZ, and never have and used a proxy to buy the property.

            • Roflcopter

              The Xenophobia is strong with this one.

            • Tanz

              I did not vote for him and would love to see him voted out. agree, Key is our most corrupt leader ever…yet strangely, the majority luuurve him. Sickening.

      • Mark 17.1.2

        I know you are just an out an out fuckwit but why do you have to confirm it every time you make a post here. What I really want to know is what the tipping point for you fucking off to join another one of your neo liberal wanking mates like Quin on the sidelines. Please tell us, I am up for it

        • Roflcopter

          Awesome reply, did your Mum help you with the spelling?

          • Mark

            Take your hand off your johnson when you are posting otherwise you just come across as a gold plated wanker. I notice how you completely ignored the question. Mind you that is always the way with you fuckwit tory arseholes. You have the gall to come on here and preach about racism when you represent the most vile, degenerate political party in New Zealands history. Ethics and morals provided free of charge by Mike Sabin.

            • Roflcopter

              ooooo… best bit of cut/paste abuse I’ve seen in days. *thumbs up*

              • Mark

                Deflection is your only defence isn’t it fuckwit. Can’t talk about ethics or morals because you don’t have any.The idea that any right wing tosspot like yourself would understand morals or ethics is irony at its best. But here you want to sit on your high horse and preach how terrible we all are.
                Go fuck yourself. The abuse has started yet you fuckhead. There was a time when I just ignored fuckheads like you but not anymore.

                • Roflcopter

                  Sorry, I missed the bit after “wah wah wah”

                  I haven’t said how terrible everyone is…. just the racist ones.

                  Now, go back and check yer meds before you pop a vein or something.

                  • Mark

                    Fuck, you are the real deal wanker. Mommy not changed your nappies today because you appear to be full of shit. You would need someone to do everything for you because you are such a conflicted arsehole. You haven’t got the faintest what you are talking about but that doesn’t stop you opening your shit mixer and spewing forth.
                    All you want to do is divert, divert, divert.
                    Remember, for someone to take a moral position, one first has to have some morals and ethics. As a fuckwit right winger you are an immediate fail. National has had its ethics and morality guidelines set out by Cameron Slater and Mike Sabin.
                    And then you want to come on here and take the moral high ground.
                    You and your national cronies are in the sewer pit and your opinion is regarded accordingly.

                    • Thom Pietersen

                      Haha Mark – let Roflcopter hang off mummy’s teat a bit longer.

                    • Roflcopter

                      Wow, you’re up to 4 paragraphs! Head up your next reply as “Chapter 1: Morals and Ethics”.

                      Be sure to include as many nasty words as possible.

                  • Mark

                    Are you still here fuckwit. It must be really difficult to keep diverting and never face up to the issue. I understand in a way because being in the sewer pit with the Nats means the last thing you ever want to talk about is ethics and morality. But I will keep reminding you as you do have to hold fuckheads to account so I will be be your shadow from now on.

                    • Roflcopter

                      Really…. you go on the attack to cover for the fact that you support Twyford’s race-baiting as a way of getting rid of Quin, and then set to lecture others on morals and ethics.

                      You really are a fine piece of work… you must be so proud!

                      *thumbs up*

                    • Mark

                      You support a party that protects kiddie fuckers. That lets young children die in freezing homes. That runs sleeze campaigns from the Prime Minsters office, that won’t feed hungry children. Thats just a fraction of what you have signed up for as one of the scumbag Nats supporters and you want to talk about ethics and morality. You don’t really want to discuss ethics and morality because you can’t defend these arseholes. And your one of them. A protector of kiddie fuckers.

                    • Roflcopter

                      Congratulations: You have reached Level 2!

                      (you’ve got to be the most disgusting poster that’s ever graced The Standard)

                    • Mark

                      Divert, divert divert. You support a party that lives in the sewer.
                      By association you live there too. And you want to come on here and talk about morality and ethics. All Nats supporters have to have tunnel vision or else they would have to face the harsh reality they are scum buckets. You are a scum bucket. You haven’t even attempted to defend the National party and its revolting behaviour because its impossible.
                      If you don’t want to be associated with [r0b: deleted – over the top] you need to change your political party. Until you do you are one of them.

                    • Roflcopter

                      Keep going, I’m sure you can do better than that… you’ve repeated it five times already… try something new… go look up some new naughty words in the dictionary.

                    • Mark

                      Answer the question fuckhead because it ain’t going away. You support a party that protects kiddie fuckers, that lets children die of the cold and won’t feed hungry children. And you want people to accept that you are an ethical and moral person. Impossible. You are a scum bucket National supporter. I know the reason you can’t answer is you have no defence when you support the sewer party.

                    • Roflcopter

                      Damn, and I thought you were just warming up… looks like you’re just a bot, repeating, repeating, repeating.

                      C’mon, have a REAL good go at it….

                    • Mark

                      Just a National Party sewer rat. Down with the slime and filth merchants but I am sure you would say you an upright and model citizen. Unfortunately belonging to the sewer rat party makes that impossible. Just admit that you are a piece of slime and scum and we can move on.Until you face reality and admit that your support of the vile and degenerate sewer rat party reflects on you, I will just carry on.

      • North 17.1.3

        Why have a go at the Islanders, particularly ?

  18. Puckish Rogue 18

    Labour misses the point? Say it ain’t so…

    • Paul 18.1

      Questioning foreign ownership of housing has really got you right wing trolls active hasn’t it?
      Look at the comments under most Herald reports on the subject and count the number of comments in favour of Twyford in comparison to those against.
      But I guess that’s your focus groups are already telling you this and that’s why you and Gosman are working overtime at the moment….

  19. KK 19

    Good riddance.

  20. Mike the Savage One 20

    Phil Quin has been one of the political liabilities within Labour, I’d say, given some of the stuff he presented in the past. His views are perhaps better at home within National or ACT, I wonder:




    Will Josie Pagani be next on the way out? There may be hope for Labour after all, despite of Phil Twyford having put the cat amongst the pigeons, in a manner that could have been done a bit more professionally and carefully.

    I think Phil has just realised that Labour is not heading the way he would like the party to go.

  21. maui 21

    Probably a good thing, Quin can now hang with Pagani and Leggett more and work out how Labour becomes a better form of National, and destroy more of the Labour vote with it.

  22. Jenny Kirk 22

    Great to see him go ! He’s just a parasite and rightwing with it.

    And it wasn’t racist. It was just a bold step to make the government sit up and take a bit of notice of what’s happening in the Auckland property market (and the rest of the country too). There have been too many stories and anecdotes and friends’ tales about the number of foreigners – especially Chinese – who have flown in to go to Auckland auctions, done their bidding, and flown out again. Its real. And it needs to stop. Good on Labour for finally bringing it out into the open .

    • Tracey 22.1

      classifying people by their names isnt as dodgy as by colour? Really?

      • Dave_1924 22.1.1

        you seem to be fighting a lonely fight Tracey on this topic. I agree with you the racial profile was very poorly done.

        The issue is house affordability in Auckland and rapid, bubble like price rises that are currently occurring.

        Labour needs to be smarter in framing it and while its difficult due to lack of official stats on offshore buyers of AKL residential property its not impossible. Just go at the Government with anecdotes relentlessly – from what I have seen online it resonates as true with Aucklanders that they are being outbid by offshore interests.

        When the Government says no numbers to back the ancedotes – hit them with “you’re obviously not talking to your electorates because its all anyone is talking about”..

        Facts based discussions are best but that doesn’t mean a campaign can’t be waged without them when the campaign theme resonates with the target market namely Auckland Voters….

        • Karen

          Well put Dave.

        • Tracey

          i know there is a housing affordability issue in auckland. and can tell you my first home in morningside cost 145k in 1991 and sold for 410k in 2001 with onlt 25k spent by us on it.

          we need to address both supply and demand.

          i like twyford. alot. but this data was an own goal. not that “chinese” are labours target constituency so i guess they were sacrificing them to their target audience? i think too many forget how many generations of NZers trace back to chines immigration. in the 1800s and early 20th century.
          Ad should be please tho. he has been wanting LP to stoop to nats level if it means winning an election… kind of Orewa-esque

        • Sacha

          Thanks. I agree the topic is important and that the framing can be done better.

      • Thom Pietersen 22.1.2

        Bloody hell. let’s not observe and question our mindset.

    • Roflcopter 22.2

      Twyford et al., have offended Chinese enough for them to feel the need to take out full page advertising to put across their side of the story.

      If you can’t see the damage you’ve done to Chinese relationships, in particular, and our status as welcoming of a multi-cultural society, then you you deserve everything you get.

      • Jim Nald 22.2.1

        This isn’t good. I hope Labour will be building bridges asap. Caught up with The Standard’s posts and big thanks to Stephanie Rodgers whose antennae during the weekend very quickly picked up on the problematic interview on TV3’s The Nation and gave the heads up about the concerns involved.

    • John Shears 22.3

      What a change to read a level, calm , factual , post with no swear words and nobody vilified. Go Jenny.
      Oh! and by the way it is not Rascism, please take note trolls.

      • lprent 22.3.1


        I probably don’t help much. But I’m afraid that I always prefer getting my point across rather than being polite about it.

      • Tracey 22.3.2

        i am not a troll. neither is weka. disagreeing with you doesnt make us wrong.

  23. Policy Parrot 23

    I find it thoroughly amusing when National and its friends accuse Labour of racist dogwhistling – when it was the Nats that spent 18 months using racist dogwhistling about the average Kiwi summer weekend day at the beach being under threat from the ‘uppity natives’. They even suckered themselves in their deluded world view so much that they were using facetious “kia-ora’s” in their emails to each other.

  24. ankerawshark 24

    Yes just one question. If Labours figures about Chinese investors who don’t live here buying up Ak properties for speculative purposes turn out to be true, do those of you who are throwing around the racism label then think it is o.k. for us to discuss this problem????? Or are we not allowed to discuss it, even if it is true.

    Because I think Labours figures are likely to be true. That’s because there is a lot of anecdotal reports of it happening and they did look at what statistical possibility each name that was possibly Chinese would be Chinese and controlled for that.

    For me it is a little bit like getting good statistics about sexual violence. A lot of it not reported, but we know the rates are higher than what is. And we accept it is a problem. We don’t then say, “that’s really sexist we are hurting men’s feelings”

    BTW Good the issues has forced the resignation of Phil Quin.

  25. Tanz 25

    What gets me is that National are saying what Labour used to say and Labour are saying what National used to say. Good on Labour for taking up the issue, but what a pathetic response from National and co. They really don’t want to address anything; they are in bed with China all the way, and don’t care that our kdis’ birthrights are being sold down the road. Instead of being able to even discuss the problem, anyone concerned about China’s large take up of our property is labelled a racist. Where are the real men ??

  26. Puckish Rogue 26


    Yes, yes purging is good, purge the elements we don’t like from the broad church so that the broad church of Labour may best represent NZ

    • Paul 26.1

      It’s amazing how staunchly the members of the extreme right trolling community defend Labour’s right wing clique.
      You’d almost think you had a vested interest in them being in the Labour Party.

      • tc 26.1.1

        +1 Phil Quin along with Pagani and most of the other so called ‘left’ commentators in the MSM are all part of the DP multi faceted assault strategy.

        It’s why they get airtime and why this faux outrage angle has been taken by Quin as sheeple fodder that will be feed into radio rant land/hoskins/henry etc

      • Puckish Rogue 26.1.2

        Its a broad church right up until someone has a differing opinion

    • Stuart Munro 26.2

      Great selfie!

    • Tracey 26.3

      its like the self righteous right have erased Orewa speech and the recent attempt to hoodwink Ngati Whatua from their memories

  27. BlueSky 27

    “Ban foreign ownership of NZ land I say.”

    Ban ownership of land I say.

    At best people should be able to rent land paying the nation for the privilege. Increase the rent/ confiscate for exploitation.

  28. My tuppence worth about Phil Quin:

    Glad he’s gone, wish he’d gone a long time ago. National and ACT are his ideological home and they’re welcome to him. The NZ Labour party doesn’t need constant undermining from people who use their membership as a device to destroy the party from within. It’s cheap, cowardly and dishonest.

    Good riddance, Phil. You were very, very average.

    • adam 28.1

      I think, you point to the major problem of labour being a so called broad church party. To many of these people undermining the voice of working people.

      People need to get, to begin with, and for a very long time, labour was a party of radical opposition to the excesses of capitalism. Just read the original Maoriland worker or a printed copy of The Standard, mark one.

      Labour being a middle of the road, moderate party does no one any favours – it’s why I’ve said – It’s holding working people back. I hope people like you te reo putake and others can weed out these cheap, cowardly and dishonest members whose natural home is in a party like act or national. They are the ones who keep the boot at working peoples throat. It’s time more of them were pushed.

    • dukeofurl 28.2

      Isnt Phil running these days with Slater at Whaleoil- being the ‘labour sources he talks about constantly’

  29. Jim Nald 29

    The comments here and on related posts on TS bring home the very important point that the messenger and the message matter greatly and require careful choice or selection, whether it is Phil Quin or Phil Twyford.

  30. Enough is Enough 30

    Brilliant post.

  31. BlueSky 31

    No wonder John A Lee had a tough time in the Labour Party. Lee?!? What sort of a name is that mate? Have you bought a house?!?

    A good number of my relatives are Lee’s and of Irish ancestry. NZ citizens of at least 4 generations. Not a drop of Chinese to be seen though and I’m pretty sure none can afford a house in Auckland.

  32. Adrian 32

    You’re all missing the point, this money is Chinese GOVERNMENT money, lent at really ridiculously low rates to encourage wide-boys to buy off-shore assets.
    When the wide-boys fall over the Chinese Government claims the asset as the liability is to the Chinese Government owned banks.
    Clever, eh.
    Are we all comfy, read relaxed, about that?

    • Visubversa 32.1

      Or what is not Chinese Govt $$$ is ripped off from the Chinese people through corruption and/or exploitation, laundered through bribing Indonesion Govt officials to look the other way while they burn rainforests to plant palm oil. How else would a 24yr old Chinese guy buy a big commercial building in Takapuna?

  33. vaughan little 33

    clearly the people crying racism are wrong on this one, and using the resignation of a solitary unwelcome-anyway party member as the headline is just one more sign of how weak the position is.

    this is a problem that needed highlighting and labour is deservedly copping increased popularity as a result.

    however, chinese migrants cannot be expected to have the sophistication to understand the national political culture – i think you have to grow up in it, have grown up in something similar, or be quite involved to grasp what’s going on in nz politics. chinese tend not to integrate well into the cultures they land in, and i understand why many of them will be feeling worried about this. i sincerely hope that labour has figured out a strategy for engaging with local chinese communities on this problem, to communicate where labour is coming from, but i doubt they have. so labour has probably foreseeably created unease amongst a vulnerable population that isn’t famous for understanding what’s going on around it in nz.

    and lets remember that while labour is clearly not racist, their research will be picked up by quite racist people, and it’ll make the cultural environment a less pleasant one to be in for chinese migrants.

    • Sacha 33.1

      Pfft. When you dogwhistle, you expect some barking. Labour’s ‘leaders’ knew exactly what they were doing by framing this as a problem with Chinese people rather than with foreign investors.

      No use ducking and weaving now when the consequences arrive. And there will probably be a nice polling bump from people deserting Winston First (which may be larger than the numbers leaving Labour for the Greens). Embrace the redness. And do carry on making sweeping generalisations about other cultures. It’s the way to a brighter future, I hear.

    • vaughan little 33.2

      so to sum up, this needed to happen but there were always going to be some negative consequences, which a super-sharp labour could have positioned itself better to partially mitigate.

    • cogito 33.3

      “a vulnerable population that isn’t famous for understanding what’s going on around it in nz.”

      LOL. They understand enough to go to auctions, buy houses and donate to the National Party.

  34. Fustercluck 34

    Um…”Chinese” is not a “race” it is a name we give to the citizens of the nation-state of China. There are many “races” (for those who believe that the term means anything at all) in China.

    What is being discussed is the unbridled effects of Chinese capital flight on the NZ economy in general and the real estate market in particular.

    Those that raise the “race card” on both sides are merely hoisting a straw man.

    As long as NZ has permissive overseas ownership regulations we will continue to see our land snapped up as a safe investment for those seeking refuge from the latest crisis of capital.

    For our currency-trader PM to avoid discussing the implications of capital flight, i.e., how he made his money, is yet another of the herd of elephants in the room and a massive lie by omission!

    • Galeandra 34.1

      Well made points. Sacha will be along in a while.

    • Sacha 34.2

      ‘Chinese’ is an ethnic group of people who live in many nations including China and (gasp) New Zealand.

      We have had a problem for over a decade in NZ of foreign capital inflating our unregulated residential property bubble. For most of that time the main sources were nations like the US, UK and Australia but in the last couple of years (and especially months) China has grown dominant.

      It makes sense for Labour to look there (and practically it is harder to distinguish US/UK/Australian surnames from Pakeha ones).

      As an opposition party who wants to draw attention to that problem it makes sense to pin the responsibility on the current NZ government that has done nothing about it because the rating agencies they worship are quite happy for NZ to be balancing our obscene foreign debt levels with more foreign equity.

      There are ways of doing that which do not cloud the message with echoes of historic and current racist attitudes towards specific ethnic groups. Despite Labour’s woeful incompetence at political messaging for the last 7 years, this seems likely to be a deliberate choice to do otherwise. It may clarify what Labour stands for. Some will like that, some won’t.

      It may signal a coalition with NZ First and not the Greens. Some will like that, some won’t.

      The discussion may move on to the underlying core issue in coming days, but it sure gives the government an easy way to avoid that if they can simply chant ‘racist’ across the debating chamber and rely on the media to faithfully relay that to voters.

      Maybe that’s a risk worth taking? I guess we will find out.

  35. Binders full of women 35

    Three friends have recently bought houses all have Anglo sounding names ( even the French one) all 3 are foreign…. This clusterlabfuck reminds me of the angst that hit USA re japan bashing in the 80s…. They were buying everything … Yet when they checked (obviously had some kind of register….. Of property or capital inflow) japan was a lowly sixth after uk holland ( vast swathes of manhattan) Italy Canada and even Australia…

    • Fustercluck 35.1

      You will note that my comments pertained to capital flight of a generic type, not Chinese or American (although both are an issue…Harvard University has been as aggressive a buyer of dairy farms as any Chinese entity). Perhaps you should look up from your binders long enough to properly read a post before you twitch on the keyboard again.

      • Fustercluck 35.1.1

        Should have said: “Capital flight, currently Chinese, but of any nationality in general.” Binder may have caught me with a lazy edit. Damn!

    • Sacha 35.2

      “holland ( vast swathes of manhattan)”

      reclaiming territory.

    • Thom Pietersen 35.3

      Please go to an Auckland house auction – before you dribble all over your keyboard. The Global macro economics have changed since the 80’s – that was mainly commercial property – NOT our homes.

  36. NZJester 36

    I can’t believe he was stupid enough to believe the National party line that it was race based. Or was he just a right-wing stooge trying to undermine Labour from the inside as others have suggested and now showing his true yellow and blue colours? The Chinese just happen to be the biggest block from overseas who are currently investing in New Zealand houses because there are no restrictions on them doing so. This was the only way that an estimate could be produced on how much of the market is being driven by non resident buyers due to no register of non resident NZ house buyers being kept. It is not just the non resident Chinese nationals that we do not want buying up NZ properties upping the going price, but all non resident buyers regardless of race.
    If they came to live here and feed some of that money positively into our economy we would welcome them.
    National is just trying to sweep under the cover their inaction on preventing this bad property bubble that is well out of control and leaving a large number of houses vacant so they can be easily on-sold again for a profit causing rental prices to climb also.
    Maybe a lot of the people with no permanent roof over their head should be able to start squatting in any house left vacant for more than a year. They should however pay a fair pre property bubble rental price into a holding account for the owner and not be able to be kicked out as long as they treat the property with due care!

  37. G C 37

    Bye Phil bye – nobody cares

  38. Robert 38

    the Chinese wont give a flying fuck about any of it!
    they are more than likely Nat voters anyway, and key and Co will now increase more incentives for more too invest here and how more corrupt can you be than to just import more voters?
    ban all foreign land buying and shouldn’t be allowed to vote for atleast 5-8 yrs or receive any benefits. unless refugees imo

  39. SPC 39

    It is said that by the right that the left uses the cry racism to shut down debate.

    But it is the right that uses the cry xenophobia when national/New Zealanders interest is raised. This is done for class reasons, only those who own property here gain by being able to on-sell it to foreigners (whose involvement bids up the value of local assets).

    Today given so much of the foreign capital available for investment is sourced in China, the natural interest of the property/land owning class is to cast national self interest as either racist, or as having consequences for trade with China – as if our trade deals future is predicated on their disposition towards us, rather then the terms of any treaty.

  40. les 40

    such precious,indignation from some.If it looks like duck…..

  41. Heather Grimwood 41

    Scanning the column bit late in the day, but get strong vibes that it is somewhat mischievous/troublemaking towards Labour, with some ( as did Phil Quin) not listening or reading carefully in first place and so not sufficiently objective.
    This only plays into the hands of the Nats ( especially Steven Joyce who seems to be tasked with this) who are whipping up a general hysteria on false facts.
    Remember also that many newly immigrated folk from whatever ethnicity will not have the language competency to differentiate between fact and the falsity
    which is being blown up and repeated with such enthusiasm presently.
    I grieve.

    • Sacha 41.1

      “not listening or reading carefully”

      The responsibility with any communication lies with the utterer, not the receiver.

  42. cogito 42


    This guy is off his rocker. Idiot.

  43. Vaughan Little 43

    NZjester colonial viper is no stooge. he’s concluded that Labour is being racist because its put lots of effort into this whole china buyer thing without equally robustly addressing the other contributors to le bubble. he’s old school left who believes in structural reform and is pissed at labour for neglecting that side of things for the past million years.

    imo we should shut down foreign speculation and go after the banks. stop them lending money into existence.

    • Colonial Viper 43.1

      If Labour had really really really wanted to play the race card there were a dozen ways that they could have wedged the issue smarter than they did.

      Instead they played dumb politics. That’s why I’ve been calling Labour “inept.” I reckon the people in the Labour Party hierarchy who planned and calculated this were all Pakeha with roughly zero idea of the subtleties involved in say Singaporean born Chinese who are Kiwi citizens vis a vis wealthy foreign mainland Chinese investors.

      Too bad the Labour caucus doesn’t even have a single Chinese or East Asian MP within it that they could have asked.

      In summary, Labour decided to make a big call out to Waitakere Man (and Woman) using some good old fashioned race tagged red meat.

      • te reo putake 43.1.1

        Yeah, though none of what you say is true. Labour have not played the race card. There is no way to be honest about the information they had without identifying where the money is coming from. So they’re being damned by the right for not dog whistling, which is their preferred method, and damned by some on the left who are using faux outrage instead of their brains. It’s quite a bind.

        Still waiting for anybody to show that there is any racism and still waiting for alternative ways this info could have been used without it being trolled. Perhaps you could help me on the latter, CV? How could our party have done this. You reckon there’s many, many ways. Can you let us know what they are?

        • adam

          I’m bewildered that you can’t see the race card has been play, te reo putake, – I really am.

          Maybe you could try looking at the way the issue has been framed through the sociological lens of reflexivity.

          I also agree with author in the link below, on how many on the left have been nation gazing, or nationalist in their approach to dealing with this capitalist globalisation process we are in. Rather than using our tradition strength, of being true internationalists.

          How many who comment on this web site say they talk with allies and political associates across the globe on a daily, or even weekly basis? Or, that they even care about the workers in far off lands?

          • te reo putake

            Facts aren’t racist, adam. As I said in a post, it’s uncomfortable. But it remains a fact that Chinese non doms are screwing the Auckland house market. If Labour had done anything less than be upfront about the facts, that could well have been racist. That is, to hide the truth, but just hint about it would have been a dogwhistle.

            So Labour very deliberately did not play the race card, they went with being honest, but that isn’t going to stop the right (who are the experts at subtle bigotry) to say that they did. Happily, I think most Kiwis are just ignoring the bollocks and concentrating on the real issue. And that’s the damage being done to NZ by doing nothing about an identified problem.

            • marty mars

              disingenuous – “So Labour very deliberately did not play the race card,” – bullshit – ffs that is bloody orwell territory

              • Nope. It’s just the fact of the matter. They could have been devious, built it up over a few days, dropped hints, dogwhistled, teased it in blogs, primed loaded questions in parliament or any manner of shenanigans, but instead, they went with a open presentation of the facts. There really, really is no racism here. If there was, why hasn’t someone managed to explain how it’s racist? I’m guessing its because, um, it’s not.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Once operators like Keith Ng, Tze Ming Mok, Kiwiese, myself, Raybon Kan, and others have declared Labour’s tactics as somewhat poorly, its as good as gospel. Let alone Judith Collin’s husband Mr Wong-Tung ffs.

                  • bite your tongue – this area is designated for creating new truths not the old outdated ones. Let those in the know tell you exactly what you should think impertinent fool.

                • I have explained it but you quibbled about a small detail and didn’t address the multitude of points I honestly raised. Sure I found that offensive but I got over it.

                  Playing the race card can be done in many ways – some overt, some covert – those distinctions are irrelevant to the playing of the card.

                  You are in denial imo

                  • vto

                    I agree full denial

                    It even has the power inbalances going on as well

                    A Quite extraordinary display

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Chinese who grew up in NZ like myself are quite familiar with little sleights and innuendo from even Primary school days. You’d never even bother making a fuss. Why bother after all. If it had been Winston doing his thing, we would all have yawned and just got on with our day as usual. What I believe has shocked a lot of Kiwi Chinese this time around was that the barbs came from a totally unexpected and random corner – Labour.

                  • Look, I really appreciate the effort you put in, marty. You’re the only person I’ve seen even come close to establishing a case. But even then, you can’t quite make it stick, because, actually. it’s not racist. The fact is that non dom Chinese are distorting our market. It’s not racist to say that, because it is true.

                    • vto

                      I would never get away with that explanation

                    • lol at least you didn’t say, “With all due respect…” thanks for that.

                    • Ha! I’m not that patronising (am I?). I was saying on another forum that one of the most remarkable things about the last few days is how little moderation has been needed. This issue has been a shining example of how good most of TS’s commenters are. We’ve been able to argue, debate, disagree and chide each other without going over the top. It’s really cool.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      The fact is that non dom Chinese are distorting our market. It’s not racist to say that, because it is true.

                      Oh its not the statement which is racist. And yes, the statement is definitely true.

                      The bit which is racist is not the statement, but the omission: that non dom (and frankly, foreign dom) hot money from all over the world is distorting our market, not just from the PRC. Hundreds of mostly empty holiday homes in Wanaka and Queenstown, anyone? Bought up by millionaires from USA, Canada right through to UK and the rest of Europe. Distorting the market. Not mentioned.

                    • Nah, that’s still not racism. If it’s a fact that the dominant group of speculators come from China, and it does seem to be the case, then saying so is not racist. The method for identifying that fact might be crude, to use Little’s phrase, but the result stands.

                    • @TRP

                      No you aren’t thank the goddess. And yes I think overall tone of this debate has been a good example of how good this site is.

                    • adam

                      Your missing mine and other peoples’ point te reo putake – you can take you facts and figures as read. That is not the point ffs. How many times have people got to say this – that they way Tywford framed, then presented his argument was racist. The content is just the content. It’s how he chose to present the content which is the dam problem. And why myself, and others on the left are calling him a racist twit.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      adam – this is not really centred around Twyford, mores the worry. A whole team including the Leaders Office was involved in synthesizing and vetting the angle and the content that Twyford acted as front man for, on TV.

                    • Quite probably right, CV. And boy, isn’t it a change to have the team working together and getting some traction. We haven’t seen this level of cooperation in years.

                    • adam

                      Colonial Viper I think I just threw up in my mouth. I honestly thought he’d gone rouge in his framing and presentation. *sigh*

              • Thom Pietersen

                2 + 2 = 5 in new (lefty nutbar) speak – that’s Orwell territory ‘mind control’ marty mars. What could we use as the potential basis of facts? Nope? Oh yup, we’re at war with Eurasia or is that Eastasia. I’ll just wait for a spin of the moral compass.

          • Heather Grimwood

            The race card is being played NOT by Labour, but by those making a big deal out of promoting their fabricated ‘scandal’ to safeguard big deals of their own.

            • Skinny

              It is blowing up in the Nats face and Joyce knows they will have to do more than Zero Hours & Swamp Kauri smoke and mirrors charades.

              Well played Labour we all know scratch beneath the surface and the redneck back lash comes out in the hundreds of thousands.

              Central China deserve a serve for blatantly fueling land banking in foreign countries by its Nationals.

            • adam

              Yes as a disabled person who can only work 1/2 days, can you please tell me where my big deal is. Because since the age of 16 I have never been able to work full time ( a short period in my early 20’s – but I drank to do that – which I thought was a bad idea – so I stopped) – I’ve been a renter my whole life, so I’ll wonder out loud – what is the big safeguard are you talking about.

              So Heather Grimwood before you go for the grand generalisation, maybe yo could ask if I have another agenda. And well yes I do. I dislike racism with a passion, I hate racists I think they are lowest sort of scum. Yeah, you heard me, with former national Leader Don Brash holding a very special place in Hell for his low scum ball nature.

              You know what, I really am getting sick of those on the left in this country, who seem to think it’s OK to make a villain out of anyone else on the left who is saying the dribble that came out of the Twit Tywfords mouth was racism. His framing and continuation of the same threads – even through his so called clarification were sickening.

              It was the worst type of racism – it was from someone who should be standing up against it – not promoting it. I’d rather have it come from a skinhead, then you know they are just another cracker. Mind you I suppose I should get some good cheese this week to go with all the new crackers I’ve discovered.

        • Colonial Viper

          Perhaps you could help me on the latter, CV? How could our party have done this. You reckon there’s many, many ways. Can you let us know what they are?

          Sure mate. Given that the entire staff of the Leaders Office and a bunch of MPs involved in creating this strategy couldn’t figure it out, here is the basic plan:

          Firstly, stop Grant Robertson from hiding off in the shadows outside the fallout zone. He should have been out for the last week making a big noise about the dangers to NZ of China’s massively collapsing financial markets, drawing attention to fears in Canada, Australia, UK etc that Chinese money was going to flood into those markets.

          Secondly, find a few young Kiwi Chinese faces willing to come forward and say what a tough time they are having trying to find their first home in AKL. Do a few other similar things to wedge between Kiwi Chinese (as good) and foreign big money investors from Asia (as bad).

          Thirdly get Twyford to go on air with the name list, say that the list is merely indicative of a very large issue – foreigners buying up Kiwi land, making homes unaffordable; get a repeat from Grant Robertson on the dangers of hot money capital flows into a small market like NZ. Emphasise principles of economic sovereignty and Kiwi land for Kiwi citizens and permanent residents.

          Fourthly – follow up this week with some very gutsy and innovative policies to halt the sale of Kiwi land to foreigners, and to stop the flood of hot money flowing into NZ boosting up our property prices and our exchange rate. (Don’t just solely rely on old has-been policy from 2014!)

          I’ve even got a follow up strategy to link this all up to regional development and boosting manufacturing, etc. but that’s enough for now as
          Labour is clearly struggling to chew gum and walk at the same time.

          • te reo putake

            Sweet! That’s good plan, actually, CV. Thanks for taking the time to lay it out. I’d leave Robertson out, myself. Much better to have one face fronting it, but I can see how he could add a layer to it. Re: the policy, that would be my one criticism of Labour so far. They should have been banging the ‘and Labour will do this about it’ drum right from the start. But the message is getting out that Labour, the Greens and NZF do have policy to knock this speculation on the head.

            Again, thanks. Nice work.

          • Karen

            Thanks CV. I copied this post and sent it to Phil Twyford and Andrew Little.

            I think I need to stop reading the Standard for a while because I am just getting too upset by the number of left wing people who don’t seem to get what was so wrong about the way Twyford handled this issue.

            • Jim Nald

              Hang in there, Karen. Thanks for your comments.

            • Heather Grimwood

              To Karen….sure Phil Twyford should have in my opinion included all O/S non-resident buyers of NZ housing, but my contention is that participating in discussion just plays into Nats hands. I assure you I have always travelled left, considerably left …… often from rash activism, but sometimes a considered manner is wise.

  44. Colonial Viper 44

    John Moore gets it:


    Labour – a party running on empty

    The Labour Party still adheres – officially at least – to a programme of social justice and equality. But the problem for Labour is that as a pro-capitalist party, it must accept the fundamental paradigm of economic liberalism and the structures of the modern global economy that define modern capitalism. Both Labour and National see the global capitalist system as a given, and so any New Zealand government is both constrained and defined by the realities of the shifting nature of this international system. Therefore for nominal left parties like Labour, a crisis of identity persists because today even minor leftwing reforms seem impossible.
    It shouldn’t be like this. After all, concerns around issues such as poverty and inequality have dominated people’s consciousness since the financial crisis. Yet throughout the Western world, traditional parties of the left like Labour have completely failed to benefit from this growing sense of unease over stagnating living standards for the majority, and disquiet at the lavish lifestyles of the West’s economic elite.

    Labour, as with other social democratic parties such as in Europe and Australia, no longer offer and promote bold reformist programmes to the electorate. Instead we see such parties playing around with any populist rhetoric that they hope can gain them traction. And so here in New Zealand we are now seeing the hollow shell of a party that is Labour, descending into the politics of racism in attempt to differentiate themselves from the more openly pro-globalization National Party. Equally, Labour is now trying to win over voters who currently support the outright anti-Asian and xenophobic New Zealand First Party. Cynical politics indeed.

    • Atiawa 44.1

      What “bold reformist programmes” would capture the attention of the NZ electorate right now, enough to increase Labour from a 30% vote winning party to a 40 – 45% main coalition leading governing party?

      • Colonial Viper 44.1.1

        There is none. This is because the NZ public has relatively recently figured out that (for the most part) Labour only proposes policies in order to win votes, and not because it truly believes in them and backs those policies to the hilt.

      • Reddelusion 44.1.2

        Labour just giving up the ghost and collapsing into the national party 😀

        On a more serious note I just don’t think people are as unhappy as you think Prople don’t like change but steady as you go, barring a crisis. Labours issue is it is a looser brand, led by perceived looser, I don’t really think what ever they put up people would buy. the phone is off the hook

  45. geoff 45

    Phil Quim quits……and nothing of value was lost

  46. keyman 46

    never heard of him so wont miss him sounds like a twat

  47. Robert 47

    what else can labour do? they state the obvious and get slammed by nats, who gives a shit! and the Chinese and others knew sooner or later it was bound to come up! wake the f up NZ. national are selling us down the river.
    stop voting for the Tory scum. their current leader isn’t even going to live here, similar to what’s been portrayed

    • Reddelusion 47.1

      Here we go again, the whole country is been duped barring the likes of the enlightened Robert. As long as the left keeping thinking this way with their ugly language too boot and the attacking of their own who dare not prey at their alter of delusion or achieve their view of socialist purity they are truly rooted

      • Weepus beard 47.1.1

        Jesus, what a mess that post is. Up your game, please!

      • te reo putake 47.1.2

        Weirdly, the “whole country” seems to be able to identify the real issue, if the message boards and talkback are anything to go by. But disingenuous righties are going to carry on with the faux outrage, because that’s the only alternative they have to actually agreeing that something needs to be done about foreign exploitation of our housing market.

        • Weepus beard

          Perusing other, more diverse message boards, it looks like even the right wing agree with everything Phil Twyford has put forward and also agree with his reasons for doing so.

          Only the greedy person with speculative property investment value to lose is against the end to which Twyford is pointing.

  48. Mike the Savage One 48

    So TV3 news had this topic at the start of their nightly newscast, presented as if there is wider dissent within Labour, and members (in plural) appear to be defecting. But while that story went on, they only presented ONE member, who resigned, Mr Phil Quin.

    Where is the objectivity, I ask?

    There is obviously some discussion within Labour, about what Phil Twyford did, and what Andrew Little appears to support, while firmly denying that it has anything to do with xenophobia or even racism, but I cannot see mass defections.

    It seems the MSM are at it again, trying to present a “divided” opposition, within Labour. Maybe Phil Quin has friend within the MSM, giving him more attention than he may deserve.

    • Atiawa 48.1

      Yep and sooooooooooo predictable.

    • You left out the bit where they screened video of Nazi concentration camps, with quotes from Quin getting all Godwin on Labour’s ass. If this guy was an “influential member,” thank Christ his “influence” ends here.

      • Mike the Savage One 48.2.1

        Yes, thanks for reminding me, that sent a chill down my back, mischievous, absolutely mischievous, but not surprising.

      • Weepus beard 48.2.2

        Really? TV3? That’s sick.

    • Reddelusion 48.3

      Racial stereotyping is racism no matter what Little thinks, it is what other people think that’s the issue here. It stirs the pot of those who are racist and further cements and or justifies their views, similarly it is what such statement mean to every day Chinese who are stigmatised that matters, not what the two immigrant twitford and Little think . Labour where well aware of what they where doing here. This makes it even more deplorable, they can’t hide behind a lack of statistics. they new very well what the secondary effects of this stunt would be but decided to go ahead any way for political gain, bugger collateral damage to a minority group

      • McFlock 48.3.1

        Racial stereotyping is actually the opposite of what Labour have done here.

        They have the assumption that all NZ resident self-reported ethnicities have roughly the same house purchase rate, and that the observed discrepancy is therefore probably due to overseas speculation.

        • Thom Pietersen

          Mmmmm if not, why not? Why would it seem other NZ ethnic groups are performing so badly? I wonder whether we should undertake some racial profiling? Poor education, lack of dosh? We should look at a way to target assistance.

          • McFlock

            Well, the first step would be to actually establish that there is a disparity in purchase rates for the resident population, and the level of activity of overseas investors.

            I’m a firm believer in not doing too much work before (or even after) a situation has been assessed.

      • te reo putake 48.3.2

        And yet there was no racial stereotyping. Mind you, I’m guessing you don’t actually know what it is, do you?

  49. Blue 49

    Good riddance to Quin – that’s probably the only bright spot to come out of this fiasco.

    Labour finally did something that captured the public’s interest and landed a solid blow on the National Party. They have nothing to defend themselves with, having denied there is a problem with foreign ownership, refused to measure it and blatantly lied about the scale of it.

    The only thing they and their supporters can do is cry ‘racism!’ (piously pretending that they are usually paragons of equality, justice and human rights themselves) and then watch as the left fall all over ourselves to back off, apologise and crawl back into our hole, which is exactly where they want us.

    China is currently in a unique position, with many people desperately trying to get large sums of money out and invested into property overseas. This is a widely acknowledged phenomenon across Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA. It’s only NZ who can’t seem to have a grown-up conversation about it.

    Meanwhile, National sit back, relax and rub their hands together as they and their voters profit from ever-increasing prices, the left dissolve into a muddle of headless chooks scratching at each other and the Kiwi dream of home ownership dies a little more every day.

    • Reddelusion 49.1

      Still racial stereotyping blue, no matter how you want to sugar coat it.

      • Paul 49.1.1

        “The only thing they and their supporters can do is cry ‘racism!’ (piously pretending that they are usually paragons of equality, justice and human rights themselves) “

    • Clemgeopin 49.2


      Well said!

    • whateva next? 49.3

      “Meanwhile, National sit back, relax and rub their hands together as they and their voters profit from ever-increasing prices, …”
      Exactly Blue, it’s a gravy train, and we are expected to smile and wave as it chugs past, which is what “the vast majority of nu zillanders” are doing right now by shooting the messenger.

  50. Reddelusion 50

    For a guy that no one knows or cares about phil Quinn certainly generated a lot of traffic and got you lot exercised

    • Not really. For a starter, he really is a norman no mates. So influential, nobody is sure how his surname is spelt. (cf your own comment). Most of the comments here aren’t about him, but his pointless resignation does give us a chance to talk about the wider issue.

  51. Clemgeopin 51

    Phil Quin and all the rest that have stupidly and unfairly framed this issue as a racist one instead of looking at it as an honest take on the serious contemporary housing crises where house prices are massively sky rocketing making it pretty hard for ordinary residents, including the local Chinese residents, to own a home, should read this email from Mr Phil Twyford that I just received:

    ” Dear Clem,

    Since Saturday, I’ve received many messages about the release of data that suggests foreign speculators are dramatically driving up the cost of housing in Auckland.

    As you will be aware, there’s been a lot of commentary and debate on this issue. The majority of feedback has been in support – but there have also been accusations of racism because the data indicated that lots of offshore investment was coming from one particular country.

    This is not about that. It’s about facing up to the effect foreign property speculation is having on the residential property market and having an open and honest debate about the housing crisis and how we fix it. Overseas buyers are making it harder for all New Zealanders to get on the property ladder, and that includes Chinese New Zealanders.

    It’s been Labour policy since 2013 to ban overseas, non-resident speculators from buying housing in New Zealand. If people want to immigrate to New Zealand, from whatever country, we’ll welcome them with open arms as new New Zealanders. If offshore investors want to build new houses, we’ll welcome that too, as that adds to New Zealand’s housing stock. But if they are speculating on New Zealand homes, at the expense of resident New Zealanders – whatever their ethnicity – we think that’s wrong.

    The ban on overseas speculators is just one example of our toolbox of policies to cool the Auckland housing market. We’ll also:

    Build 100,000 new homes over 10 years
    Refresh our state housing stock
    Ensure that all houses are warm and dry with a Healthy Homes Guarantee that assists with heating, as well as insulation
    Encourage investment in productive industries rather than speculation in the housing market

    Recently introduced government measures do little to fix either the supply or demand problem that is driving up prices.

    Unlike National, Labour takes the housing crisis seriously. We understand how important it is to our families, our communities, and to our economy, that all Kiwis have a decent chance of owning their own home.

    If you’d like to share your thoughts with me, feel free to reply to this email.


    Phil Twyford
    Labour’s Housing Spokesperson

    P.S. Click here if you’d like to read the original story in the NZ Herald
    click here for more information on the data.

    • Chooky 51.1

      +100 Clemgeopin…my estimation of the Labour Party has gone up….at last they are confronting the facts head on….maybe I will renew my Labour Party membership afterall

      ….and after Metiria Turei’s outburst not join up with the Greens afterall, despite the encouragement of some Green friends…seems like Turei bought into Nacts racist framing

      • Colonial Viper 51.1.1

        Well the facts are that the Auckland housing bubble has been inflating since 2001/2002 and to point the finger at the Chinese at this late stage is pretty damn disingenuous. Should foreigners be permitted to buy NZ land, of course not. But Labour should be presenting the real problem, not just one selective part of it.

        • Chooky

          “Labour should be presenting the real problem, not just one selective part of it”

          …more anecdotal evidence from a horses mouth Real Estate agent… this time in Christchurch:

          …two Hong Kong families each bought up 40 houses…this equals 80 houses…this same Real Estate agent says virtually all of Riccarton is now owned by Chinese

          ….”disingenuous”?…”racist”? …

          (well if that is how you use the Nact framing terms ….maybe huge amounts of precious Maori taonga swamp kauri going off to China is also “disingenuous ” and “racist”? …of course it is New Zealand’s fault for not having the safeguards and regulations in place to not be ripped off! …NZ should have better rules in place…and while we are at it …maybe the words “China” and “Chinese” should not be used at all in a pejorative sense?…I expect this would be the line of the Chinese government and Chinese Party )

          Despite the Greens naive , inept accusation of “crude racial profiling” leveled at the Labour Party ( hence torpedoing their main coalition partner and future hope of being in government) Labour is presenting a real problem!…and not in a racist way…a factual way

  52. Sable 52

    Labour and National are slowly destroying this country. Every day they sell us out to foreign governments, corporations and businesses. Rather than having the guts to tell the US govt and its parasite corporations to fuck off, rather than outright banning foreign ownership of property, rather than making foreign companies doing business here pay their share of taxes they bend over backwards to betray us all at every turn.

    Worse still morons still doggedly vote for and support the very people who are oppressing them. Simply amazing…..

  53. Weepus beard 53

    Hey CV. Stick to the topic please. This is Auckland housing we are talking about, not Wanaka and Queenstown.

    You might get banned for diversion…

  54. millsy 54

    I wonder if Austrians, Czechs, Russians, in the late 30’s and early 40’s got accused of racism for expressing concerns about Germany?

    • cogito 54.1

      What is pretty evident is that China is engaging in its own particular version of “lebensraum”, and that little ol’ Niu Zilan is being gradually swallowed up.

  55. Melanie Scott 55

    I have just read the whole list of posts here. By far the sanest, and best and most lucid, is the last one, by Blue. Sadly I agree with every word.
    Tomorrow is another day and perhaps we can all start again.

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    Māui Hudson says the characteristics of his namesake, the Māori diety Māui Tikitiki a Tāranga, enables and inspires him to confidently walk into new spaces of research. He hails from Te Whakatōhea, Ngāruahine and Ngāpuhi. Māui is a trained physiotherapist but is well-known for his leadership in creating guidelines and ...
    SciBlogsBy Rosemary Rangitauira
    9 hours ago
  • Driven to help the planet and humanity thrive
    Mihi mai ki a Dr Te Kīpa Kēpa Morgan, a professional engineer, who’s inspiring a different value system that he says can help humanity thrive and safeguard the sustainability of our planet. Kēpa affiliates to Ngāti Pikiao (Te Arawa), Ngāti Kahungunu and Ngāi Tahu. For more than a decade, Kēpa’s main ...
    SciBlogsBy Rosemary Rangitauira
    9 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why an attack on Iran is back on the agenda
    Reportedly, Christopher Luxon has the edge on Simon Bridges in National’s leadership contest although there is no firm evidence for that hunch. So, one hesitates about joining a media echo chamber that amplifies Luxon’s chances ahead of the 3pm caucus meeting today. You know how it goes: Luxon doesn’t quite ...
    11 hours ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 30 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr David Bromell, Senior Associate, Institute for Governance and Policy Studies: “While working as a public policy advisor, NZ Politics Daily was a daily “must read” as it alerted me to wider public policy issues than workplace-based media scanning, which generally covered only subject areas that related directly to ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    11 hours ago
  • The Simple Thing That’s Hard To Do.
    What's Not To Like? There’s a reason why the self-evident benefits of a “one world government” arouse such visceral opposition from those with a vested interest in both the local and the global status quo. A world run for the benefit of all human-beings strikes at the very heart of the ...
    15 hours ago
  • A Stay of Execution: The National Library of New Zealand Caves to Authors
    Well, well. Looks like Christmas has arrived early, with a victory over vandalism. You may recall this little furore about the future of the National Library of New Zealand’s Overseas Published Collection: https://phuulishfellow.wordpress.com/2021/11/22/lack-of-public-service-announcement-the-national-library-of-new-zealand-internet-archive-and-alleged-digital-piracy/ Well, those outrageous plans to digitise and pirate copyrighted works have got enough negative attention ...
    24 hours ago
  • Climate Change: We can do it!
    RNZ reports on the other story to come out of the government's emissions budget Cabinet paper: the scale of the changes we need to make: The massive scale of the nationwide changes needed quickly to cut climate gas emissions is laid bare in newly-released government documents. [...] The number ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Climate Change: Cold feet?
    Ministry for the Environment has dumped more cabinet papers related to its recent initial consultation on the emissions reduction plan. The key document is an August cabinet paper on Emissions Budgets for 2022-2025, 2026-2030 and 2031-2035, which made the dubious in-principle decision to increase the first period's emissions budget (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 day ago
  • Rating The Contenders.
    There Can Be Only One: Some might ask why National MPs would install yet another “successful business person” at the helm of their party? Isn’t one Todd Muller enough? Especially when Simon Bridges could become the first National politician of Māori descent to become Prime Minister.LET’S GET SOMETHING out of ...
    1 day ago
  • Gordon Campbell on Omicron, and the Bridges/Luxon dilemma
    At this early stage, the Omicron variant seems to be more infectious, and more able to bypass the protection offered by vaccines and by the antibodies generated by previous infection. The fact that it is being spread around the globe by travellers who were all presumably fully immunised and had ...
    1 day ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 29 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Kevin Moore, Associate Professor in Psychology & Tourism, Lincoln University: “For me, the big advantage of NZ Politics Daily is the breadth of opinion and sources it gathers. Together. There is always a mix of news reporting, news analysis, opinion pieces and blog posts. That breadth ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    2 days ago
  • National is still very much the same Party even without Collins leading it… that’s the real issu...
    Judith Collins regarded Thatcher as “a personal hero” of hers. But like her hero though, it took the UK Conservative Party and their ideological counterparts here to get rid of both of them, from the inside. There’s a sort of bizarre symmetry to that really. Both were rather messy ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 days ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #48
    Listing of articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, November 21, 2021 through Sat, November 27, 2021 The following articles sparked above average interest during the week: To Breed or Not to Breed?, The Vaccine for Fake News, Ten ways to confront the climate ...
    2 days ago
  • A professor without honour in his own country
    Michael Corballis just three months before his death appeared in an interview on the Hui with Mihirangi Forbes. She made no effort to conceal her disdain for his defence of science and proceeded to lecture him on not knowing enough about mātauranga Maori to comment on it and accused him ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 days ago
  • Businessman – and Political Novice
    The drums are beating – see Heather Du Plessis-Allan in today’s Herald – for Christopher Luxon’s bid to become National’s new (and latest) leader. It is conceded that he is a political tyro but – such is National’s current plight – it is suggested that he is a risk worth ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 days ago
  • No, Elizabeth Stuart Would Not Have Stopped the English Civil War (Probably)
    As you might have noticed, A Phuulish Fellow is a fairly eclectic blog. Even an organic one. I have my interests, and write about them as the fit takes me. And sometimes I stumble across an article I feel the need to comment on. Today, I ran across a ...
    3 days ago
  • Rumour Has It: A Númenórean Character List?
    Today we have another Amazon rumour on our hands. And for a change, it is not coming out of Fellowship of Fans. No, instead we have the following tweet doing the rounds, ostensibly listing (mostly) Númenórean characters and their code names. It’s an interesting leak, if true. And that’s ...
    4 days ago
  • Covid as Warriors
    The book I am currently working on – tentative title ‘In Open Seas’ – looks at the current and future New Zealand. One chapter describes the policy towards Covid using the trope of warfare. It covers an important period in our history but show how policy evolves and why, as ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • COVID-19: the B.1.1.529 variant – what do we know?
    There’s a lot of news about a new variant originally reported in southern Africa. Early signs have prompted calls for immediate precautionary blocks on travel from the region to restrict its spread. The WHO has called an emergency conference on this variant. Here’s a round-up of what we know so ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    4 days ago
  • National Party board denies it unanimously agreed to Collins’ Faustian bargain with Satan
    Sources close to party president Peter Goodfellow say he was totally blindsided by Collins’ claims he was party to this particular satanic ritual. National Party president Peter Goodfellow is today issuing a strong denial on behalf of the party’s board, saying they did not, at any point, agree to the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    4 days ago
  • The cost of optimism
    Yesterday the National Party imploded in a messy knife-fight that cost it its leader and probably one of the contenders. So naturally, the government has taken the opportunity to do a dump of its pandemic advice, including the Cabinet papers on its controversial decisions to repeatedly lower the Auckland alert ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on National’s less than stellar choices
    Amid all the jostling in the National caucus ranks, spare a thought for Andrew Bayly. Who? Well might you ask. Plucked from obscurity by Judith Collin, elevated from number 18 to number 3 in the caucus rankings and given the Finance portfolio – a role in which he has been ...
    4 days ago
  • Are New Zealand’s universities doing enough to define the limits of academic freedom?
    Matheson Russell, University of Auckland   The news last week that University of Auckland public health researcher Simon Thornley was retracting a co-authored paper about supposed vaccination risks during pregnancy raised deeper questions about the limits of academic freedom. Thornley’s own head of department had called for the paper to ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    4 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 26 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Jean Drage, Political scientist specialist in local government: “With 78 local authorities and central government currently intent on reform, local government is a challenging area of research to keep on top of. Thank goodness for Bryce’s NZ’s Politics Daily. It is a gem, especially as it also ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    4 days ago
  • Josh Van Veen: Bridges is not the one
    Simon Bridges failed to bluff Judith Collins out of the leadership. A campaign to rehabilitate his image began shortly after the election and culminated in the publication of a memoir in August. There were persistent rumours of a deal with rival Christopher Luxon and MPs from the ‘liberal’ wing of ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • Smokefree cars – an important step towards protecting children from the hazards of smoking
    Richard Edwards, Jude Ball, Janet Hoek, George Thomson, Nick Wilson*  On November 28 new legislation to protect children from smoking and vaping in cars will come into force. This blog sets out the background and rationale for the new law, and discusses implementation, evaluation and the next steps to protect ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • Judith's Last Stand.
    Going Out With All Guns Blazing: Why didn’t Judith Collins stick with the strategy that had kept her, National’s most improbable of leaders, in power for more than a year? One might just as well ask why Rob Muldoon (that other unforgiving right-wing populist National Party leader) got drunk and ...
    5 days ago
  • Act’s Precarious Ascendancy.
    On The Lookout: It is easy to imagine how closely Seymour has been watching the National Opposition for the slightest sign of a Clark figure emerging. A respected politician, who enjoys broad support across the party and, much more importantly, who impresses the ordinary centre-right voter as having what it ...
    5 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #47, 2021
    104 articles by 574 contributing authors Physical science of climate change, effects Delayed impacts of Arctic sea-ice loss on Eurasian severe cold winters Jang et al. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres 10.1029/2021jd035286 Observations of climate change, effects Divergent responses of terrestrial carbon use efficiency to climate variation from 2000 ...
    5 days ago
  • Labour’s Eyes Wide Shut To “Unruly Tenants”.
    Not Seeing The Problem: They say there are none so blind as those who will not see. And, right now, Kāinga Ora is studiously not looking. It is clear to everyone that the Minister responsible, Poto Williams, has (like so many of her colleagues) been entirely captured by her officials. ...
    5 days ago
  • Is the mob coming for Charles Darwin?
    Richard Dawkins recently noted the giants of the past are being sanctimoniously judged by nonentities of the present whose only qualification is still being alive to do so. How will the future judge our own time when we are not around? Peter Franklin from Unherd examines whether the woke can ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Blowing a Hole in Your Own Wall: Idiotic Tampering with MIQ
    Managed Isolation/Quarantine has been a fact of life for New Zealand for eighteen months. It’s not popular – there are only so many spaces available at any given time, and the process is famously opaque – but it is the key to saving New Zealand from rampant Coronavirus. That, ...
    5 days ago
  • Now Labour wants secret trials
    Today, the government introduced the Security Information in Proceedings Legislation Bill to the House. The Bill would allow the government to use classified information in civil or criminal proceedings and keep it secret from the other party. So people suing the government for human rights abuses could lose, and defendants ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • The end of a toxic leader
    If there's one thing that Judith Collins is usually good at, it's using scandalous information about other people to her advantage. Not above undermining her own political party, Collins has been known to even leak against her own fellow MPs, particularly those who posed a threat to her as the ...
    5 days ago
  • A transformative government in Germany
    Back in September Germans went to the polls, and handed the politicians a tough job, with no easy majorities for anyone. The Social Democrats, Free Democrats, and Greens agreed to work together in a "traffic light" coalition, but given their political differences (its basicly ACT/Greens/Labour), expectations for real change were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Political Harakiri
    The National party must always have known that they were taking a risk when they elected Judith Collins as leader. There were, after all, good reasons why they repeatedly declined to accept her candidature when she offered herself – as she frequently did. She was always an inappropriate person to ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    5 days ago
  • Thanksgiving advice, 2021: How to deal with climate change-denying Uncle Pete
    This is a re-post from the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists by Richard Somerville “Birds of a feather flock together,” so I am sure that nearly all of those reading this article accept the main findings of climate science. Yet many people don’t. Instead, they believe a variety of climate ...
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the demotion of Simon Bridges
    So Simon Bridges has been bounced from the front bench and stripped of his shadow portfolio responsibilities for the crudely “inappropriate” comments that he allegedly made to a female colleague, Jacqui Dean – and personally apologised for – about five years ago. After years of mocking Labour for its supposed ...
    5 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 25 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Dr Rosemary Wette, Associate Professor, Applied Linguistics, University of Auckland: “I’ve been browsing regularly through NZ Politics Daily for several months now. It gives me access to a range of views on current issues (helpfully organised by topic) that I wouldn’t otherwise have time to look up, or ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    5 days ago
  • The bizarre case of the Royal Society investigating academics defending science
    The Royal Society has begun a disciplinary investigation against a group of academics. The academics were defending science and in the past would have expected support from the Royal Society. The Free Speech Union has launched a campaign to defend the academics and academic freedom. Māori professor under investigation for ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Ian Powell: Unionism and nursing in New Zealand
    In the around 35 years I worked for unions (over 30 with the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists and earlier with the New Zealand Educational Institute) I often cogitated over the distinction between unions and unionism. They are intertwined but not inseparable. I associate unionism with collective consciousness able to ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • Bryce Edwards: Today’s constitutional disgrace in Parliament
    This Government has a problem with urgency. Critics from both left and right have long complained about their lack of urgency on issues such as climate change, housing, and inequality. Likewise, in terms of the Covid response, there’s been a chorus of criticism that Labour has been complacent and sluggish ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    6 days ago
  • Vaping needs much tighter regulation as we approach Smokefree Aotearoa 2025: Two new studies
    Nick Wilson, Janet Hoek, Jennifer Summers, Driss Ait Ouakrim, Andrew Waa, Richard Edwards, Tony Blakely* Two recent studies provide new insights into the impact vaping may have on public health. The first estimates that use of modern vaping devices could be around a third as harmful to health as smoking. ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • Strange Defeat: A Guest Post By Dr. Chris Harris.
    They Did Things Differently Then: And we might still be doing things differently, if the world these "Country Lads" were fighting for, and which endured for nearly 30 years after World War II, had not been supplanted by the world we inhabit now. In spite of its reality, New Zealand's ...
    6 days ago
  • More than 147km – the transformative potential of the Wellington bike network plan
    Feature image by Luke Pilkinton-Ching, University of Otago Wellington   Caroline Shaw, Anja Mizdrak, Ryan Gage* Wellington City Council is currently consulting on a cycle network for Wellington. This is a big deal. WCC are proposing a 147km cycle network around the city, the vast majority of which is new. ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    6 days ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 24 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Liz Brown, Senior communications advisor, Association of Salaried Medical Specialists: “The NZ Politics Daily is a fabulous resource providing a comprehensive one stop shop on what’s making news and how stories are being covered. I look forward to seeing it pop into my inbox every morning.” Anyone can sign ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: Taking us for a ride
    Agricultural emissions has been an oozing sore in our climate change policy for over a decade. Exempted from the ETS in 2008, farmers were meant to be brought in and start paying for their emissions in 2012. Of course, National put a stop to that, and exempted them forever. When ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: An industry in denial
    Over the past few years it has become clear that coal has no future in Aotearoa. Rising carbon prices, a ban on new boilers and a legislated phase-out for existing infrastructure are going to drive it out of the market. To reinforce this, the government signed up for an anti-coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The “most open and transparent government ever” again
    The government is about to pass new vaccination mandate legislation under urgency. So obviously, they'd want to ensure it gets the best possible scrutiny in the limited time available by releasing the supporting policy documents, right? Of course not: On the eve of legislation to enable vaccination passes being ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on farmers playing the victim, plus Chile’s right turn
    Among the farming lobby groups, the good cop/bad cop routine has been working a treat. It suits Federated Farmers to keep daylight between itself and the Groundswell movement. Month in, year out the Federation continues to engage with the government over the very same water degradation/climate change regulations that Groundswell ...
    1 week ago
  • Important People
    The Herald has returned to form with a vengeance. In today’s issue, Barry Soper snipes at Jacinda’s handling of her regular press conferences. It seems that she did not give him an early chance to ask his very important question and took no account of his need to depart immediately ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Parliament, the Courts and the end of three strikes (for now)
    Last week, Parliament embarked on the process of repealing the so-called “three strikes” provisions in the Sentencing Act 2002. Given that Labour, the Greens and Te Paati Māori all supported this repeal Bill at first reading (and that NZ First no longer is in government to block the move), three strikes’ eventual legislative demise seems ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 23 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Martyn Bradbury, Editor, The Daily Blog “’NZ Politics Daily’ is one of the most important news and political resources run in New Zealand. The expert collation of opinion and news makes it an invaluable day to day resource as well as an incredible treasure for researchers in the future. ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand’s Emission Reduction Plan
    By Paul Callister and Robert McLachlan Fifty years ago, on 26 November 1971, the film “Notes on a New Zealand City: Wellington”, directed by Paul Maunder, premiered on Wellington TV. The narrator asks if Wellington’s future will involve suburban sprawl, traffic, motorways, suburban shopping malls, and the decentralization of employment; ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • Dissing The Farmers.
    Neale vs The Revolting Farmers: One has to admire the way Capital Government Relations CEO, Neale Jones, covers-off all the bases of the current political zeitgeist. In a masterfully composed tweet, he lambasts the Groundswell protesters as sexists, racists and reactionaries, clinging for dear life to “a purely extractive economic ...
    1 week ago
  • How will carbon pricing impact inflation?
    This is a re-post from the Citizens' Climate Lobby blog Inflation — the decline of purchasing power as prices rise — is currently at its highest level in 30 years. This has led to concern among the public and policymakers about the rising costs of many important products like food, shelter, gasoline, ...
    1 week ago
  • (Lack of) Public Service Announcement: The National Library of New Zealand, Internet Archive, and Al...
    The National Library of New Zealand has not covered itself in glory in recent times. The decision to axe most of the Overseas Collection (some 600,000 books) in order to make way for more New Zealand items (which it collects already, and which amounts to some 3,000 items ...
    1 week ago
  • Game over for the HRPP
    Since its election loss earlier this year, Samoa's Human Rights Protection Party has been pinning its hopes on the upcoming by-elections to regain power. That was a pretty forlorn hope - with 18 seats, they would have had to win all seven by-elections and have two additional women appointed to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Chinese influence and American hate diffusion.
    Over the last decade concerns have been raised about Chinese “influence operations” in NZ and elsewhere. Run by CCP-controlled “United Front” organisations, influence operations are designed to promote PRC interests and pro-PRC views within the economic and political elites of the targeted country as well as Chinese diaspora communities. The ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • The Real Interests Of The Country.
    Off Message: Into the extremely fraught relationship between Town and Country, the Groundswell organisers have blundered like an Aberdeen-Angus steer in an organic vege-shop. Unreasonably proud of their rural economic virtues, and dangerously forthright in their enumeration of the cities’ political vices, these Kiwi equivalents of America’s “good ole boys” ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ Politics Daily: 22 November 2021
    Today’s NZPD testimonial from Minna Reid, Law student, Victoria University of Wellington “As a Uni student, staying up to date with current affairs is always important. The Daily Politics & Democracy Project by Bryce Edwards is of great service for this. It offers varying news sources I would not have found myself ...
    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    1 week ago
  • Free speech is a people’s frank confession to itself
    by Daphna Whitmore The government is devising new “Hate Speech” laws to save New Zealand from something that has not been defined. When asked what is hate speech the Prime Minister replied “You know it when you see it”. The Human Rights Commission is supporting the law change and sees ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • 2021 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #47
    Listing of articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week: Sun, November 14, 2021 through Sat, November 20, 2021 The following articles sparked above average interest during the week: Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheeple? A.I. Maps 20 Years of Climate Conspiracies, COP Negotiators Demand Nations ...
    1 week ago
  • The F Words, by Barbara Gregorich
    Book review Barbara Gregorich is a writer and long time anti-capitalist in the US. She and her husband were interviewed for Redline about the social movements of the 1960s. Her latest book The F Words, has been reviewed by Guy Miller for Redline. The F Words by Barbara Gregorich bears ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • The Scourge of the Aimless Kick
    The below-par All Black performance against France was – sadly – afflicted, again, by what has become a feature of New Zealand rugby – the scourge of the aimless kick. It is surely a truism that, to win a rugby match, you must have the ball. But time and time ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Delta Rocks Gibraltar: Lessons to be learned from Covid-19’s global resurgence.
    Hard To Beat: Perhaps the most important lesson to be drawn from what is happening in Gibraltar is that vaccination is not a magic bullet. Yes, it makes it harder to contract the virus, and significantly ameliorates its worst effects, but it does not confer absolute immunity to Covid-19 – ...
    1 week ago
  • I’ll take the masks and vaccines, thank you
    From Stuff:I don't want to be pedantic, but I'm pretty sure neither masks nor vaccines figure much in the Gospel of Saint John; nor has Jesus shown much efficacy in protecting people from anything. ...
    1 week ago
  • Hell To Pay: The alarming similarities between the Anti-Vaccination Movement and the creators of the...
    Never Let Go: If the violent prejudices of the Jim Crow South, echoing through contemporary struggles, teach us anything, it is that the defence of rationality, science and progressivism must never be allowed to falter. Those pre-modern night-riders, filled with unrelenting hate, are still out there. If the troops of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A Peak Out of Auckland? + Other Covid Musings
    At last, we have some cause for optimism out of Auckland’s interminable Covid outbreak. Knowing our luck, it might be a false dawn… but there are some signs that we have seen the peak:
    2 weeks ago
  • Sing Song about Hard Times
    Celebrating Poet Anne KennedyThe 2021 Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement for Poetry went to Anne Kennedy. I have enjoyed her work since her first collection Sing Song. The poems’ setting is in the domestic life of a family of four, told from the mother’s perspective: moving house, the gruelling ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • A good problem to have
    Norway is the global success story on electric car uptake, with early policy and a well-signalled 2025 cutoff point for fossil vehicles resulting in 77% of new cars being EV's. But now they have a problem: not enough dirty cars to tax: Norway’s electric dream has been credited to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Gordon Campbell on the politics of anger, plus a music playlist
    Angry? Are you talkin’ to ME? Of late, the Code Red levels of resentment inspired by the government’s Covid policy almost make one hanker for the days when people could write best-selling books about New Zealanders being The Passionless People. Not anymore. A hissy fit arms race seems to be ...
    2 weeks ago

  • More Vietnam Veterans to receive compensation for Agent Orange Exposure
    Minister for Veterans, the Hon Meka Whaitiri announced today that two new conditions associated with Agent Orange exposure have been added to the Prescribed Conditions List. Under the 2006 Memorandum of Understanding signed between the Crown and representatives of Vietnam veterans and the Royal New Zealand RSA. Vietnam veterans in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    8 hours ago
  • Government commits to international effort to ban and regulate killer robots
    Minister of Disarmament and Arms Control Phil Twyford announced today that New Zealand will push for new international law to ban and regulate autonomous weapons systems (AWS), which once activated can select and engage targets without further human intervention. “While the evidence suggests fully autonomous weapons systems are not yet ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • New freedom camping rules – right vehicle, right place
    Tougher freedom camping laws will be introduced to prevent abuse which has placed an unfair burden on small communities and damaged our reputation as a high quality visitor destination. Tourism Minister Stuart Nash has confirmed that new legislation will be introduced to Parliament following an extensive round of public consultation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Government invests to support a classic Kiwi summer
    Vaccinated New Zealanders can look forward to Kiwi summer events with confidence, while artists and crew will have more certainty, following the launch of details of the Arts and Culture Event Support Scheme, Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “The Government recognises that the arts and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Grace period for expired driver licences cruises into 2022
    Due to the ongoing Delta outbreak and extended lockdowns, all New Zealand driver licences and licence endorsements that expired on or after 21 July 2021 will now be valid until 31 May 2022, Transport Minister Michael Wood announced today. “This further extension to the validity of driver licenses recognises that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Delivered: 1,000 extra transitional homes
    A further 1,000 transitional homes delivered  New housing development starts in Flaxmere, Hastings  The Government has delivered the next 1,000 transitional housing places it promised, as part of its work to reduce homelessness. Housing Minister Dr Megan Woods is marking the milestone in Hastings at a new development that includes ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    11 hours ago
  • Traffic light levels announced
    The levels at which different parts of New Zealand will move forward into the COVID-19 Protection Framework this Friday have been announced. Northland, Auckland, Taupō and Rotorua Lakes Districts, Kawerau, Whakatane, Ōpōtiki Districts, Gisborne District, Wairoa District, Rangitikei, Whanganui and Ruapehu Districts will move in at Red The rest of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Financial support to move to traffic light system
    A new transition payment will be made available particularly for affected businesses in Auckland, Waikato and Northland to acknowledge the restrictions they have faced under the higher Alert Levels. Transition payment of up to $24,000 as businesses move into traffic light system Leave Support Scheme and Short Term Absence Payment ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Ambassador to Russia announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Sarah Walsh as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Russia. “Aotearoa New Zealand and Russia have a long-standing relationship, engaging on a range of regional and global interests including disarmament and Antarctica issues. We also work together as members of the East ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Permanent Representative to the UN announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Carolyn Schwalger as Permanent Representative to the New Zealand Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York. “Aotearoa New Zealand is a founding member of the UN and we have worked hard to ensure our stance on human rights, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Further COVID-19 economic support for Cook Islands and Fiji announced
    Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced a further package of support for the Cook Islands and Fiji for COVID-19 economic support and recovery. “Aotearoa New Zealand remains committed to supporting our Pacific fanau and vuvale to respond to the impacts of COVID-19 on their economies, and move towards long-term ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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