Political capital

Written By: - Date published: 2:23 pm, June 14th, 2009 - 61 comments
Categories: john key, mt albert - Tags:

John Key invested a lot of political capital in Melissa Lee. She was his hand picked candidate for the showcase Mt Albert by-election (unceremoniously pushing aside local veteran Ravi Musuku). Winning Helen Clark’s old electorate would have been a hugely symbolic victory for National, and for a while they and their pundits thought it was possible.

As it became clear that the expectations of Lee were unfounded, and a series of gaffes derailed her campaign, John Key invested more of his personal capital trying to turn the by-election into a referendum on broader issues:

Look at national picture, Key urges Mt Albert voters

Prime Minister John Key wants Mt Albert voters to consider what the Government is doing, rather than focus on local issues as his candidate Melissa Lee’s campaign goes from bad to worse.

“Because you live in Mt Albert doesn’t mean that you don’t have a consideration for the big national issues,” Mr Key told Radio New Zealand.

He told Radio New Zealand this morning that Mt Albert voters would consider the national perspective. “I believe that they would look at a government that six months ago was elected on the back of wanting to make sure we had an economic future that was strong and prosperous, that lifted education standards, and made our community safer, and those things are the very things this government is implementing.”

Well, Mt Albert voters delivered their verdict, a landslide for Labour. So did the voters ignore Key’s request to treat this as a referendum on national issues, or did they follow his advice and deliver a firm verdict on the direction of this government? Probably the former, but either way it is a slap in the face for Key. His political capital didn’t count for anything to the voters of Mt Albert, and has now been seriously diminished.

For those who follow politics closely his no show on election night, his total lack of support for Melissa Lee, is also telling. In trying to avoid the tarnish of defeat, he has only raised more serious questions about his character.

61 comments on “Political capital ”

  1. burt 1

    Modesty in victory – courage in defeat.

    Both sides failed!

  2. I don’t think anyone realistically expected Lee to win. Nonetheless, her spectacular failure is something else.

    Undoubtedly, it has also been a bad couple of weeks if not months for the Nats.

    It’s a bit early to celebrate this as the start of the end for the Nats – who knows? – it will certainly tarnish Lee’s political future and also force some reconsideration of the super city plans.

    As it turned out, the result was a clear forgone conclusion.

    Losing is not the problem – failing to learn from a loss is.

    • lprent 2.1

      It wasn’t a forgone conclusion at the start of the campaign when we were selecting candidates. Then it looked level.

      However NACT started routinely tripping up and over itself. They didn’t seem to run a campaign in Mt Albert outside of a hapless candidate doing her bit with a few helpers. I got the impression that Key, Joyce etc thought that all they had to do was say that they wanted the seat and it would fall into their arms without doing any work. But I guess that is the sense of entitlement common to a lazy ex-banker. It was almost pathetic to behold.

      Meanwhile Labour was running a classic by-election campaign of concentrating volunteers in a reasonably smart campaign. It worked – hard work often does.

  3. Greg 3

    “unceremoniously pushing aside local veteran Ravi Musuku”

    The constant use of this line really annoys me. While it may be true, lets not kid ourselves here. David Shearer pushed aside Phil Twyford, Russell Norman pushed aside Jon Carapiet, David Garrett pushed aside Kathleen McCabe……… it makes sense to put a higher profile candidate in a by-election, National was certainly not the only one to do so.

    • Pascal's bookie 3.1

      Sorta kinda, but Shearer is hardly ‘higher profile’ than Twyford. Also, and too, Twyford wasn’t incumbant. He may have been ‘heir apparent’, but diddle de dee.

      That appearance of Twyford being the johnny-on-the-spot was owed just as much to Party HQ as Shearer’s getting the nod was, it’s just that HQ changed it’s mind. Surely?

      Ravi, however was a local, actually had the spot, and was booted in favour of a sitting MP Key shoulder tap.

    • MikeG 3.2

      How did David Shearer “push aside” Phil Twyford?

      I am pleased that at least one party chose a candidate that was not already in Parliament. Is seems absurd that you can stand for election to a body that you are already a member of. (I know the difference between electorate and list MPs…) All the time they were campaigning the taxpayer was paying the salaries of Lee, Norman and Boscowan.

      It also made a nonsense of lines by Melissa Lee about why she would be best at representing the people of Mt Albert – she was already meant to be doing that as “shadow” MP for the electorate.

      Congratulations to David Shearer – you have an impressive CV which shows that you have a real concern for people.

  4. Pascal's bookie 4

    “Losing is not the problem failing to learn from a loss is.”

    Quite right.

    Good thing the lesson National seems to be taking is that:

    “it’s not our fault all those National list voters either stayed home or voted for Shearer, it’s always been a safe Labour seat and we never thought we could win it anyway, neener neener, also the media. Hey look, Iran! , and isn’t Ralston insightful re Worth, who quit because Goff is obviously a pimp and we can prove it”

    🙂

  5. Jasper 5

    One thing I’ve never understood about byelections is why it’s still FPP selection.

    Would it not be a better solution to make the byelections similar to the general MMP elections?

    I would imagine if the Mt Albert byelection was run under an MMP method, National may have lost a seat and Labour gain another based on party votes.

    Is there a valid reason why byelections aren’t run under MMP?
    I imagine that if a situation were to occur where a current government has a one seat majority, and lost it in a byelection, it would effectively mean a change of government before the three yearly cycle is up.

    • Anita 5.1

      I don’t quite understand what you mean. Are you saying that the by-election itself should be carried out in a more proportional fashion? (In which case preferential voting is probably the best option) Or that after the conclusion of the by-election the list seats allocated at the previous general election should be reallocated to preserve proportionality?

      • Jasper 5.1.1

        No,

        Run a byelection in the same fashion as a General Election i.e. MMP.
        After the byelection, the results for that electorate then supercede the general election results.

        Therefore Mt Albert 2009 results would replace Mt Albert 2008 results. The new results would then be reallocated in the house.

        • Anita 5.1.1.1

          So at a by-election each voter should have an electorate vote and a party vote? And then the whole list allocation for the whole parliament would be recalculated by substituting in new party votes in for the old party votes?

          Why?

  6. Jasper 6

    Under the current FPP byelection system, it doesn’t retain any sense of proportionality, nor does it offer any real insight as to how the electorate views the governments performance. There were fewer than 20,000 votes cast yesterday, compared to 35,000 in November. I daresay that if a party vote was also included, the turnout would have been higher.

    Labour hasn’t gained a seat which some people believe they have. If party votes were also included in a byelection it might have been a different story.

    • Anita 6.1

      Are you just arguing for more frequent elections?

      • Jasper 6.1.1

        Not at all. If anything they should be extended to four yearly.

        • The Baron 6.1.1.1

          Hear hear. 4 yearly cycles are definately required, to provide at least two years of real policy in between the “pay my bribes” first year, and “my new bribes” year before the election.

    • Lew 6.2

      Jasper, you seem to be misinformed about how electorate candidates are elected under a MMP system.

      In MMP, each electorate is a pure unadulterated FPP contest, winner takes all. In this regard a by-election is no different to what happens for each field of electorate candidates on election day. The party vote, on the other hand, is taken only at each general election, and persists until the subsequent general election.

      Arguing that the by-election contests should be changed to be “run under MMP” is therefore meaningless – they already are. You’re actually arguing for MMP to be changed to suit what you think would be better, which is all nice and good, but MMP it ain’t.

      L

      • Jasper 6.2.1

        Lew,

        I understand that the MP vote is pure FPP. When I say it should run under MMP I’m possibly confusing the issue by suggesting that the byelections should be held, regardless, in the same manner that the general election is.

        Two Ticks to keep consistency, and if a government gets changed halfway through the term, then the new government is in place until the next general election.

        • felix 6.2.1.1

          Are you saying that the voters in a by-election should be given the opportunity to re-decide who their party vote is allocated to? In the middle of a parliamentary term? When no-one else in the country is given that option?

          Why?

        • Lew 6.2.1.2

          Yeah.

          I’m saying two things. 1. That ain’t MMP (as you tacitly admit) and 2. that’d be bloody stupid.

          Think of it: parties on the up-and-up, who won an electorate seat but did poorly in the party vote there in the last general election could throw by-elections all the time in order to gerrymander the party vote. A license to print political uncertainty, and uncertainty is the enemy of progress.

          L

  7. Jasper 7

    Felix – Why not?
    It sure would put paid to an end of the constant “strong party vote continues” as the likes of O’Sullivan and Armstrong keep bandying about. If an electorate got to recast its vote then it could be seen as a good indicator of the mood of the people in respect of the current governments performance.

    Lew: Im sure checks and balances could be locked in to prevent such gerrymandering.

    • Pascal's bookie 7.1

      deleted.

    • felix 7.2

      Do you suggest giving the ability to recast the party vote to the entire country or just to the electorate which is replacing it’s member of parliament?

      If to the entire country, why?

      If to just one electorate, why?

      Do you realise that the function of a by-election is to replace a member of parliament? What is the function of what you’re proposing?

    • Lew 7.3

      Jasper, I’m not a favour of opening the door to potential abuses of democratic process and then regulating them post-hoc. An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.

      Also, the onus is on you to demonstrae why your idea is valuable – not on others to answer the question “why not?”. You haven’t made that case at all – haven’t even tried, other than to talk vaguely about proportionality when it’s entirely irrelevant to the question of by-elections.

      L

      • Jasper 7.3.1

        felix – I understand that it is to replace member of parliament.
        Recasting of votes would simply be in the electorate.

        Lew –
        Recasting a party vote in the electorate would offer the public a say in how they view the incumbent governments performance. It would certainly provide a better indicator than polls.
        Rather than waiting for a three year cycle, a by-election would offer the electorate the chance to engage more. As evidenced by the low turnout, if the opportunity to recast a party vote was there, turnout may have been higher, especially as being empowered with the ability to recast their vote would give the public the chance to take seats away (or add them) to a government.

        Perhaps another way of looking at it:

        If the Greens had won Mt Albert, then recalculating proportionality they would gain additional seats in parliament by virtue of having a solid party vote at 6.72% (unlike ACT with its 3.65%).

        Perhaps this would be a better method, unless its already in place.

        • Anita 7.3.1.1

          Jasper,

          I am so confused 🙂

          Let’s imagine Russell Norman won Mt Albert.

          Current rules Greens gain a seat in parliament at the expense of Labour (Norman takes Clark’s electorate place, Clendon takes Norman’s list place).

          If we recalibrated proportionality after a by-election using the proportions from the general election same proportions, different MPs ( Norman takes Clark’s electorate seat, Kennedy Graham takes Norman’s list place, Tizard takes a list seat (Graham’s or Clark’s depending how you see it), – Labour and the Greens basically swap a list and electorate place between them.

          Are either of those what you’re suggesting?

          • Jasper 7.3.1.1.1

            Anita – I get that a lot.

            I’m confused as to how or why Tizard would end up in parliament. Why would greens/labour swap? I am under the impression that if a straight recalculation was done, using 08 results, Greens would end up with more seats?

            I’m going to concede on selecting party votes in a by-election as it would be a messy affair.

          • felix 7.3.1.1.2

            I don’t take issue with the messiness of it – I’m just curious about the objective.

            Any chance of giving us a clue as to why you’d single out one electorate and give them an extra round of democracy denied to the rest of the country?

          • Anita 7.3.1.1.3

            Jasper,

            Um 🙂

            The list seats are assigned in (roughly) this way.
            1) The party preference votes determine how many total seats you will have in Parliament.
            2) You fill that total by first using all your electorate seats*
            3) Then filling the remaining slots with your list.

            So, the Greens are assigned nine seats based on their party vote. They fill it with 0 electorate MPs and then 9 list MPs. If Norman won Mt Albert and the process was rerun they would fill it with 1+8 – still a total of 9.

            Labour similarly would retain the same number of total MPs, by replacing one electorate MP (Clark) with their next list MP (Tizard).

            So the effect of redoing the allocation based on party vote after every by-election would be to maintain proportionality as long as seats are only won by candidates of parties with list places to spare.

            * You can overfill your total party-vote allocation with electorate MPs which is how overhangs happen.

  8. Pat 8

    Lee was a disaster, no question. But I reject the view that the Nats made a mistake by bypassing Ravi. Ravi would not have survived the intense scrutiny of the by-election either. Remember his view that he could solve the crime issue if he and John Key could spread the Lord’s word to criminals.

    The lesson for National is that they need a bigger pool of potential quality candidates, particularly in Auckland. With more competition Lee might not have passed a more rigorous candidate selection process.

    Compared to Labour who could have run Twyford or Bates and still won.

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      Remember his view that he could solve the crime issue if he and John Key could spread the Lord’s word to criminals.

      Well, it’d probably be better and more effective than the present policy of locking them up forever. Of course, it would require communist policy to work and National would never do that anyway.

  9. Jasper 9

    Felix

    My original thoughts stemmed from a frustration of the commentators with their baseless assertations; “Nationals party vote in the electorate is still sky high, the pie’s in the oven and the booty call is on the way over” That came from, where did they get the “party vote still popular” line? Polls? Asking 2 people on the street who happen to be National supporters?

    Offering the chance to recast a party vote would go some way to confirming whether the mood in one electorate has changed and could be a bellweather for the performance of the government.

    But, having had time to think it through utilising the responses given, it wouldn’t work as it’s far from democratic and other electorates would likely demand they get the opportunity to recast their votes also.

  10. Jasper 10

    Thanks Anita,

    Still confuses me how oddities like ACT get their seats when they have only the one electorate.
    My thinking dictates that Greens would have more seats if they had an electorate but I guess not.

    • felix 10.1

      ACT won 3.65% of the party vote nationwide so they get 3.65% of the seats in parliament.

      Normally you need to get more than 5% for your party votes to be counted at all, but if you win an electorate seat as Rodney did the 5% threshold is waived and all your party votes count as if there were no threshold at all.

      I find it quite bizarre that a party with one electorate seat and, say, 3% of the party vote would get 4 seats while a party with no electorate seat but 4.9% of the party vote gets none.

      I have no idea what the reason for this is, it seems to deliberately introduce unproportionality into the count.

      I would suggest that the threshold itself is the problem and should be removed altogether or at least significantly lowered, or if retained it should be applied evenly to all parties, regardless of whether they win an electorate seat or not.

      • Jasper 10.1.1

        Thanks Felix.

        I wasn’t sure about that whole situation, but your comments and Anitas clarifies my thinking onto the right track. Thanks for that.

      • The Baron 10.1.2

        Oh yes, deliberate unproportionality.

        The original royal commission recommendation was that the threshold be set to 4% of the vote to make it across the threshold. This was increased to 5%, mainly on the basis that it is a nicer number from as much as I can tell.

        The idea is that this presents the truly extremist/fringe parties from being in parliament. It is another idea copied from Germany, which is where we got this entire MMP game from. And remember, numerical limits abound our system for exactly these reasons – e.g. 500 votes to register as a party.

        The out clause is the electorate seat – that party has already legitimately won one seat, so why should they not be entitled to the rest? Part of the country has said “not lunatic despite the threshold”.

        Simply put, I like it.

        But since this thread seems to now be all about MMP, I’m gonna give a bit of airtime to my pet peeve on this topic… that MMP entrenches the power of parties over directly elected personal representatives. Prior to MMP, parties were pretty much a convenient fiction – groupings of similarily minded MPs. Everyone had a constituency that they answered to, which meant that those individual MPs at least had the ability to exercise their own judgement and cross the floor as they needed to. In other words, the individual MPs mattered in the old system, which had the potential to be far more dynamic in terms of debate, influence and voting in parliament.

        But now we have this entrenched party based structure, which essentially means that all these things are meaningless. We instead have fixed blocks of votes, and no real way for a significant portion of MPs to dissent.

        Sigh. I’m done.

        • felix 10.1.2.1

          that party has already legitimately won one seat, so why should they not be entitled to the rest?

          The obvious answer is “because they only won one”.

          Why should they get more seats when another party can get more votes but no seats?

          This is the fundamental unfairness which led us to adopt a proportional system in the first place – that some votes were deemed to be worth more than others for no good reason other than accidents of geography.

          What we’re discussing now is the exact same issue on a smaller scale.

        • Pascal's bookie 10.1.2.2

          Baron, you say that parties were a convenient fiction under FPP, which I find funny. That’s not to say that you are wrong, but just that I perceived it almost totally the opposite way.

          Under FPP you are quite right that, in theory, the parties were supposed to exist merely as a convenient group of like minded souls. But in practice that’s not at all what happened. The MP’s were supposed to be local representatives, but that was the fiction. The parties owned FPP.

          Occasionally someone might cross the floor, but rarely, and rarer still if it meant that their party would lose the motion. Whipping wasn’t invented for MMP.

          If an MP was too bolshie they simply wouldn’t be re-selected and would have to take their chances running as an independent. Running as an independent was a recipe for failure because the electors rightly knew that an independent MP was useless. Instead electors had the choice of which party candidate to vote for, and even a third party vote was a very risky proposition.

          What you get with FPP is a two party system, everywhere it it used that is what results. If you want to enter parliament under FPP, you have to choose which of the two parties is closest to your views. Then you buckle under, get selected as either the red or blue candidate and take it from there. If you get selected in a safe seat, you’ve got a job for life.

          One of the things I like about MMP is that it brings the parties into the system at it’s heart. It recognises that political parties will be present and gives voters the opportunity to vote directly for those parties. It doesn’t pretend that the parties don’t exist, which is the only way one can defend FPP.

          My peeve is when people claim that list MPs are not elected. They are. You vote for a list of potential MPs. It’s not a secret list, and a party can’t just appoint anyone.

  11. jarbury 11

    There doesn’t seem any OBVIOUS reason why winning an electorate seat should result in waiving the 5% threshold. Can anyone think of one?

    • Pascal's bookie 11.1

      I guess it’s so that if a party is in parliament, they are there in proportion to their list vote.

      I’d rather not have coat-tails. the fact that we have the 5% threashold means that parliament isn’t exactly proportional anyway, so the iddy biddy bit better it gets through these coat tail mps isn’t, IMHO, worth the bottle.

      Personally I’d rather lower the threshold though. I don’t really care if the odd nutter gets in. It’s representative innit?

      • exbrethren 11.1.1

        “I don’t really care if the odd nutter gets in.”

        Boscawen, Garrett, Clarkson (last time) and Delahunty have got in under current system anyway. I’d go for around a 3% threshold, hopefully that’d stop a BNP/NF type situation.

      • felix 11.1.2

        I don’t really care if the odd nutter gets in.

        The threshold doesn’t seem to stop them anyway.

        edit: snap!

      • Jasper 11.1.3

        There was a discussion paper out some time ago that mentioned the coat tails.
        It suggested that the threshold be lowered to 4% as per recommendations prior to ’96, and that a party has to reach the 4% threshold before it is allocated any seats in parliament, irrespective of whether a party member wins an electorate or not.

        That would be an interesting situation. A party member at #7 on the list wins an electorate, and that party gets 3.6% of the party vote. Would #1 (ostensibly the party leader) be happy to let #7 represent the whole party in the house?

        Could see a few difficulties with that method.

  12. jarbury 12

    Imagine the Bill & Ben Party holding the balance of power.

    Could result in some interesting policy concessions.

    • Pascal's bookie 12.1

      Worse than ACT?

      • jarbury 12.1.1

        I said “interesting” not bad. Maybe they’d push for All Blacks tests to be live on free-to-air television or something like that?

        • The Baron 12.1.1.1

          Oh in otherwords push for mindless populist policies, whilst being ignorant of the real impact of those – in this case, denying the All Blacks one of their primary revenue streams, that they then use to develop the team so it can win things.

          I think you’ve just proven the point as to why parties like this are better out of parliament.

          • jarbury 12.1.1.1.1

            My personal opinion is that some threshold is necessary. I wouldn’t want some National Front party holding the balance of power.

            I think that the threshold is fine. If anything, what I would change is getting rid of the threshold if you win an electorate seat. I thought that MMP was designed to get away from our obsession with electorate seats and to more focus on the opinions of the country as a whole. So, Act should have 1 seat in parliament in my opinion.

          • felix 12.1.1.1.2

            “Oh in otherwords push for mindless populist policies, whilst being ignorant of the real impact of those”

            Baron, your comment could apply to just about any party ever elected to parliament.

            Do you really believe the threshold is a barrier to mindless populism, or only against mindless populism by unpopular parties?

  13. Maynard J 13

    Here is a thought (inspired by Anita: “Why not just remove the threshold altogether?”) for you all to ponder: The 5% threshold is in part to keep the very small fringes out, surely? Prevent them from holding teh balance of power.

    It disenfranchises those in our society who hold those ‘fringe’ views – the marxists, maoists, anarchists, left and right libertarians, bill and bendians, the religious zealots, the racist nationalists and xenophobes. Lately, NZ First too.

    How do you deal with that? They are certainly uncomfortably lumped in (out) together.

    • felix 13.1

      Are you saying we should deliberately disenfranchise those people?

      If so, why?

      • Maynard J 13.1.1

        No!! Not at all. I was merely pointing out that that is what the system does, in effect. Thought it was an interesting point to make.

        If a racist nationalist party got into power (or just got a few seats) I would accept their right to represent those people who voted them in, while doing every damn thing I could to get rid of them. But you can not take someone’s vote unless they have broken the laws of the land. Yet the system does that in effect.

        Protecting us from ourselves?

        • felix 13.1.1.1

          I totally agree.

          Let the fricking national front win a seat if they can find enough people stupid enough to vote for them. It would do more damage to their cause than they could possibly imagine to have them out in the light.

          • Lew 13.1.1.1.1

            Case in point: BNP over the coming EuroParl term.

            I’ll be watching with morbid fascination.

            L

    • Anita 13.2

      The fringe parties would only hold the balance of power if the other parties gave it to them. If National, Labour, the Greens and the Māori Party (plus Act, UF, JP etc) can’t sort out a deal which doesn’t give all the power to the single National Front MP, for example, then I know who I think would be the problem, and it wouldn’t be the lack of threshold.

      • felix 13.2.1

        What’s JP? Jim Pandaton?

        Also you’re right of course.

        • Anita 13.2.1.1

          Oh, they’re actually JAP perhaps – didn’t the Progressives change thier formal name to Jim Anderton’s Progressives? Or something equally embarassing?

          • felix 13.2.1.1.1

            If they’re changing it again I suggest “The Jimi Anderton Experience”.

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  • Fact Brief – Was the Medieval Warm Period a global event?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Was the Medieval Warm Period a global ...
    3 days ago
  • Aotearoa Runs Aground
    Your face has fallen sad nowFor you know the time is nighWhen I must remove your wingsAnd you, you must try to flyCome sail your ships around meAnd burn your bridges downWe make a little history, babyEvery time you come aroundWhen I went to bed last night I thought the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Wagon keeps movin'
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • Mainstreaming Māori
    Mainstreaming need not be inherently anti-Māori. It will be if it is done badly because it will be anti-those-in need, and proportionally more of them are Māori.That the Coalition Government says it will deliver public services on the basis of need rather than, say, race deserves consideration, even though many ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    3 days ago
  • National says “fuck you”
    The Justice Committee has reported back on the government's racist bill to eliminate Māori representation in local government. The report duly notes the Waitangi Tribunal's finding that the bill breaches te Tiriti, and the bill's inconsistency with our international human rights obligations - and then proceeds to ignore both. Instead, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Christopher Luxon is – Big in Japan
    This week our Prime Minister Christopher Luxon… mmm, let’s take a moment to consider just how good that sounds. Hope you weren’t eating.Anyway that guy. Better? That bloke from the telly, he said - what I would say to you is… I’m big in Japan. My kind of people, hard ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 21-June-2024
    Tis the winter solstice! The shortest day and longest night of the year. The good news: we’re on our way back to summertime. Here’s another roundup of stories to brighten up your Friday. Our header image is from CRL and shows Waihorotiu Station lit up for Matariki 2024 The ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Friday, June 21
    Our economic momentum remains anaemic, and it’s possible the tiny increase in GDP was a ‘dead cat bounce’. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Per-capita GDP has fallen 4.3% from its peak over the last 21 months, which is more than it it fell in the Global Financial Crisis recession ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Futility of Punishment
    Hi,I was in Texas recently and couldn’t stop thinking about how in some parts of America they really like to kill their prisoners. As a society we tend to agree murder is wrong, but somewhere along the way Texas figured it’s fine if it’s after 6pm and the killing is ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 days ago
  • The new Beehive approach to the environment
    A persistent theme has been weaving between the Committee rooms at Parliament all this so-called “Scrutiny” week as MPs have probed Ministers and agencies about their work and plans. The question has been simply what the environmental price might be if the country begins to accelerate its infrastructure building to ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #25 2024
    Open access notables Climate Change Is Leading to a Convergence of Global Climate Distribution, Li et al., Geophysical Research Letters: The impact of changes in global temperatures and precipitation on climate distribution remains unclear. Taking the annual global average temperatures and precipitation as the origin, this study determined the climate distribution with the ...
    4 days ago
  • You take nicer pictures when you’re not drunk
    Readers keeping count will know it's more than five years since I gave up booze. Some of you get worried on my behalf when I recount a possibly testing moment. Anxious readers: today I got well tested.All the way across France I've been enquiring in my very polite and well-meaning but ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Cancer
    Turn awayIf you could, get me a drinkOf water 'cause my lips are chapped and fadedCall my Aunt MarieHelp her gather all my thingsAnd bury me in all my favourite coloursMy sisters and my brothers, stillI will not kiss you'Cause the hardest part of this is leaving youI remember the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why we shouldn’t buy new planes for the PM
    Its not often that one has to agree with Judith Collins, but yes, it would indeed cost “hundreds of millions of dollars” (at least) to buy replacement aircraft to fly the Prime Minister on his overseas missions of diplomacy and trade. And yes, the public might well regard that spending ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    5 days ago
  • The Stadium Debate – What About the Transport Options?
    A few weeks ago, Auckland Council took another step in the long-running stadium saga, narrowing its shortlist down to two options for which they will now seek feasibility studies. The recommendation to move forward with a feasibility study was carried twenty to one by the council’s Governing Body for the ...
    5 days ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 20
    Social Development Minister Louise Upston has defended the Government’s decision to save money by dumping a programme which tops up the pay of disabled workers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: It has emerged the National-ACT-NZ First Government decided to cut wages for disabled workers from the minimum wage to $2 an hour ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Where the power really resides in Wellington
    The new Chief Executive of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC) yesterday gave a Select Committee a brutally frank outline of the department’s role as the agency right at the centre of power in Wellington. Ben King, formerly a deputy Chief Executive at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Climate Adam: Why we're still losing the fight against Methane
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Carbon dioxide is the main culprit behind climate change. But in second place is methane: a greenhouse gas stronger than CO2, ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: More ETS failure
    A few weeks ago, I blogged about the (then) upcoming ETS auction, raising the prospect of it failing, leaving the government with a messy budget hole. The auction was today, and indeed, it failed. In fact, it was such a failure that no-one even bothered to bid. Its easy to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Return of Jacinda.
    Oh, take me, take me, take meTo the dreamer's ballI'll be right on time and I'll dress so fineYou're gonna love me when you see meI won't have to worryTake me, take mePromise not to wake me'Til it's morningIt's all been trueEarly morning yesterday, well before dawn, doom-scrolling.Not intentionally, that’s ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • How good is the interim NW busway?
    This is a guest post by Pshem Kowalczyk, a long-time follower of the blog. With great fanfare, just over six months ago (on 12 November 2023), AT launched its interim busway for the NorthWest region, with the new WX express service at the heart of the changes. I live ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    6 days ago
  • Consumer confidence collapses after Budget, in contrast with rest of world
    The first widespread survey of consumers and voters since the Budget on May 30 shows a collapse in confidence. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The belt-tightening and tax-cutting Budget delivered on May 30 has not delivered the boost to confidence in the economy the National-ACT-NZ First Government might have ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The end for the Air Force 757s
    The Air Force 757 that broke down with the Prime Minister on board in Port Moresby on Sunday is considered so unreliable that it carries a substantial stock of spare parts when it travels overseas. And the plane also carries an Air Force maintenance team on board ready to make ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • At a glance – Was 1934 the hottest year on record?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    7 days ago
  • It's not New Zealand they've never heard of, it's him
    Sometimes you’ll just be so dog-tired, you can only keep yourself awake with a short stab of self-inflicted pain.A quick bite of the lip, for instance.Maybe a slight bite on the tongue or a dig of the nails.But what if you’re needing something a bit more painful?The solution is as ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” II
    Last month I blogged about the Ministry of Justice's Open Government Partnership commitment to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation", and how their existing efforts did not give much reason for confidence. As part of that, I mentioned that I had asked the Ministry for its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why the Biden “peace plan” for Gaza is doomed
    After months and months of blocking every attempt by the UN and everyone else to achieve a Gaza ceasefire, US President Joe Biden is now marketing his own three-stage “peace plan” to end the conflict. Like every other contribution by the US since October 7, the Biden initiative is hobbled ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    7 days ago
  • Raised crossings: hearing the voice of vulnerable pedestrians
    This is a guest post by Vivian Naylor, who is the Barrier Free Advisor and Educator at CCS Disability Action, Northern Region, the largest disability support and advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also advises on AT’s Public Transport and Capital Projects Accessibility Groups. Vivian has been advocating and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    7 days ago
  • Leaving on a Jet Plane
    So kiss me and smile for meTell me that you'll wait for meHold me like you'll never let me go'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet planeDon't know when I'll be back againOh babe, I hate to go“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    7 days ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Barbara Grady Illustration by Samantha Harrington. Photo credits: Justin Lane-Pool/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, European Space Agency. In an empty wind-swept field in Richmond, California, next to the county landfill, a company called RavenSr has plotted out land and won ...
    1 week ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
    Although NZ readers may not be that interested in the subject and in lieu of US Fathers Day missives (not celebrated in NZ), I thought I would lay out some brief thoughts on a political subject being debated in the … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
    TL;DR: Chris Bishop talks up the use of value capture, congestion charging, PPPs, water meters, tolling and rebating GST on building materials to councils to ramp up infrastructure investment in the absence of the Government simply borrowing more to provide the capital.Meanwhile, Christopher Luxon wants to double the number of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
    When I was invited to come aboard and help with Greater Auckland a few months ago (thanks to Patrick!), it was suggested it might be a good idea to write some sort of autobiographical post by way of an introduction. This post isn’t quite that – although I’m sure I’lll ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
    Hi,Tickled was one of the craziest things that ever happened to me (and I feel like a lot of crazy things have happened to me).So ahead of the Webworm popup and Tickled screening in New Zealand on July 13, I thought I’d write about how we made that film and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
    One occasionally runs into the question of what J.R.R. Tolkien would have thought of George R.R. Martin. For years, I had a go-to online answer: we could use a stand-in. Tolkien’s thoughts on E.R. Eddison – that he appreciated the invented world, but thought the invented names were silly, and ...
    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
    A listing of 35 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 9, 2024 thru Sat, June 15, 2024. Story of the week A glance at this week's inventory of what experts tell us is extreme weather mayhem juiced by ...
    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
    After a busy week it’s a good day to relax. Clear blues skies here in Tamaki Makaurau, very peaceful but for my dogs sleeping heavily. In the absence of a full newsletter I thought I’d send out a brief update and share a couple of posts that popped up in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
    Now in the land of Angus beef and the mighty ABsWhere the steaks were juicy and the rivers did run foulIt would often be said,This meal is terrible,andNo, for real this is legit the worst thing I've ever eatenBut this was an thing said only to others at the table,not ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    2 weeks ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 weeks ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 weeks ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Join us for the weekly Hoon on YouTube Live
    Photo by Mathias Elle on UnsplashIt’s that new day of the week (Thursday rather than Friday) when we have our ‘hoon’ webinar with paying subscribers to The Kākā for an hour at 5 pm.Jump on this link on YouTube Livestream for our chat about the week’s news with special guests:5.00 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    2 weeks ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago

  • Transformative investment in cancer treatments and more new medicines
    The coalition Government is delivering up to 26 cancer treatments as part of an overall package of up to 54 more new medicines, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti and Associate Health Minister David Seymour announced today. “Pharmac estimates that around 175,000 people will benefit from the additional treatments in just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • More support for drought-affected communities
    The coalition Government is providing more financial support to drought-stricken farmers and growers in many parts of the country to help with essential living costs. “Rural Assistance Payments have been made available in 38 districts affected by dry conditions to help eligible farmers and growers whose income has taken a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • New cops means more Police on the beat
    The decision to deploy more Police on the beat in Auckland CBD has been welcomed by Police Minister Mark Mitchell and Associate Police Minister Casey Costello. Starting from 1 July, an additional 21 police officers will be redeployed in Auckland City, bringing the total number of beat police in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes action to address youth crime
    The Government is introducing a new declaration for young offenders to ensure they face tougher consequences and are better supported to turn their lives around, Children’s Minister Karen Chhour announced today. The establishment of a Young Serious Offender declaration delivers on a coalition Government commitment and supports the Government’s target ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
    GDP figures for the March quarter reinforce the importance of restoring fiscal discipline to public spending and driving more economic growth, Finance Minister Nicola Willis says.  Data released today by Stats NZ shows GDP has risen 0.2 per cent for the quarter to March.   “While today’s data is technically in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Women continue to make up over 50 per cent on public sector boards
    Women’s representation on public sector boards and committees has reached 50 per cent or above for the fourth consecutive year, with women holding 53.9 per cent of public sector board roles, Acting Minister for Women Louise Upston says. “This is a fantastic achievement, but the work is not done. To ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government supporting Māori business success
    The Coalition Government is supporting Māori to boost development and the Māori economy through investment in projects that benefit the regions, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Māori Development Minister Tama Potaka say. “As the Regional Development Minister, I am focused on supporting Māori to succeed. The Provincial Growth Fund ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Better solutions for earthquake-prone buildings
    Building and Construction Minister Chris Penk has announced that the review into better managing the risks of earthquake-prone buildings has commenced. “The terms of reference published today demonstrate the Government’s commitment to ensuring we get the balance right between public safety and costs to building owners,” Mr Penk says.  “The Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Prime Minister wraps up visit to Japan
    Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has just finished a successful three-day visit to Japan, where he strengthened political relationships and boosted business links. Mr Luxon’s visit culminated in a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio followed by a state dinner. “It was important for me to meet Prime Minister Kishida in person ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Major business deals signed on PM’s Japan trip
    Significant business deals have been closed during the visit of Prime Minister Christopher Luxon to Japan this week, including in the areas of space, renewable energy and investment.  “Commercial deals like this demonstrate that we don’t just export high-quality agricultural products to Japan, but also our world-class technology, expertise, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Strategic Security speech, Tokyo
    Minasan, konnichiwa, kia ora and good afternoon everyone. Thank you for the invitation to speak to you today and thank you to our friends at the Institute for International Socio-Economic Studies and NEC for making this event possible today.  It gives me great pleasure to be here today, speaking with ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • National Infrastructure Pipeline worth over $120 billion
    The National Infrastructure Pipeline, which provides a national view of current or planned infrastructure projects, from roads, to water infrastructure, to schools, and more, has climbed above $120 billion, Infrastructure Minister Chris Bishop says. “Our Government is investing a record amount in modern infrastructure that Kiwis can rely on as ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Making it easier to build infrastructure
    The Government is modernising the Public Works Act to make it easier to build infrastructure, Minister for Land Information Chris Penk announced today. An independent panel will undertake an eight-week review of the Act and advise on common sense changes to enable large scale public works to be built faster and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • NZ enhances North Korea sanctions monitoring
    New Zealand will enhance its defence contributions to monitoring violations of sanctions against North Korea, Prime Minister Christopher Luxon announced today.  The enhancement will see the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) increase its contributions to North Korea sanctions monitoring, operating out of Japan. “This increase reflects the importance New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Speech to Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference
    Good afternoon everyone. It’s great to be with you all today before we wrap up Day One of the annual Safeguard National Health and Safety Conference. Thank you to the organisers and sponsors of this conference, for the chance to talk to you about the upcoming health and safety consultation. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Ōtaki to north of Levin alliance agreements signed
    Transport Minister Simeon Brown has welcomed an important milestone for the Ōtaki to north of Levin Road of National Significance (RoNS), following the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) signing interim alliance agreements with two design and construction teams who will develop and ultimately build the new expressway.“The Government’s priority for transport ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Improvements to stopping Digital Child Exploitation
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