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Stimulating

Written By: - Date published: 2:25 pm, November 14th, 2008 - 50 comments
Categories: economy - Tags:

One of the things I like about being left wing is how often the best moral decision is also the best economic decision.

Take economic stimulus for example. In a recession it’s the most vulnerable such as beneficiaries, low paid workers and youth that are hit worst because they are the ones least likely to have any financial backstop. The good thing is the best way to ameliorate the effects of a recession on society as a whole is to help these people out.

If the recession is likely to be short-term then it’s possible to moderate it by increasing consumer spending and the best way to do that is to make sure that those at the bottom have more money to spend because it is those at the bottom that are more likely to spend in their local economy. It’s also those at the bottom that are more likely to need that money because they won’t have budgetary capacity they can cut.

But you can’t shop your way out of a long term recession. When things are looking like they are going to be bad for a while you need to make sure that the money you are using to stimulate the economy is more tightly targeted. The money still needs to go to the lower income brackets but it needs to do so in a more controlled way. One of the best ways is by bringing infrastructure forward and increase investment in it. Anther way is to tie receipt of this money to education and training. This ensures that the money that you are using to flatten the recession can be fed through the economy in a more controlled way using jobs and training allowances. That also means you’re building productive capacity so full advantage can be taken of the next boom.

Of course the other option is to provide say 80% of your tax package to say the top 30% of earners and hope for some trickle down. But faced with a long recession these earners tend to use the money to pay down their debt or just put it in the bank in case they need it later on. That’s about as stimulating as a Peter Dunne speech and, when it comes at the opportunity cost of jobs and income for the most vulnerable New Zealanders, it’s about as moral as the way he operates.

50 comments on “Stimulating ”

  1. Ianmac 1

    Isn’t the evidence that the Trickle Down Theory just makes the income gap between Rich and Poor greater?

  2. Chris G 2

    Interesting post IB, A good read.

    Back to work Chris.

  3. Rex Widerstrom 3

    Depends on the infrastructure in which you choose to invest. And while I’m all for education and training, that’s a very long term solution.

    And one fraught with risks, as the ground can shift much faster than training can adapt and people can unlearn and re-learn the skills the economy needs. Just a few months ago the miners were desperate for staff and paying lunatic wages, distorting the rest of the Australian economy. People couldn’t get through mining courses and off to Queensland and WA fast enough. Dishwashers on mine sites were earning more than professionals in the cities.

    Now suddenly market darling Fortescue Mining has plunged from $13.15 (July 2008) to $1.88, the other miners are suffering big hits, and all are slowing production, postponing opening new projects, and generally digging in (pardon the pun) for a rough time.

    And the TV ads are already running which urge young people to forget all that mining nonsense and train for a job in IT.

    Surely the part of the formula you’ve omitted is measures aimed at encouraging business to behave in various ways that will have long-term economic benefit: investing in R&D so we eventually have more things to sell, say. Marketing those things offshore. And so on.

    While direct assistance to low income earners is vital to ensure they survive the downturn (and you’re right, handing money to those on higher incomes won’t work), it’s only productive activity that will turn it round in the long run. And that means business.

  4. Chris G 4

    Rex,

    Perhaps he ommitted investment in R&D because the post suggests possible paths the Nats will take… Now we know their bone headed disregard of the R&D credit seems that part of the formula is now not possible!

  5. Pascal's bookie 5

    I got leaked the Treas advice to the incoming govt. It’s a shocker. 1984 through the looking glass peeps. TINA’s back and she’s pissed. Nothing for it, they reckon, but to nationalise the means of production and exchange. The bankers have been making out like bandits with more traditional, though extraordinary, responses in the States, so our treas says don’t trust ’em.

    Hold on to your hats. See ya’s on the barricade.

  6. IrishBill 6

    I missed out R&D because this was a quick post off the top of my head but I agree about business needing to be pushed to do it (and NZ businesses have a dreadful R&D record).

  7. gingercrush 7

    http://election08.scoop.co.nz/gordon-campbell-on-the-new-breed-of-conservatives/

    Once again excellent article written by Gordon Campbell. Good read and I think does add to Irishbill’s topic.

  8. keith 8

    I work for an export company that spent ~$50K preparing for the R&D tax credit; quite a chunk of change for a small-medium sized business. This was, of course, completely wasted when National announced they were scrapping the program. What was amusing was the attitude of our National party supporting manager who didn’t seem too bothered; I doubt his reaction would have been the same if Labour had made the same announcement…

  9. Pascal’s Bookie: Any chance an OIA request will winkle that out into the public domain?

  10. randal 10

    trickle down just means you can slyly piddle on people without exhibiting all the equipment and hosing them down

  11. Pascal's bookie 11

    Any chance an OIA request will winkle that out into the public domain?

    Nah mate, bit too sensitive. A careful reading of that scoop article ginger points to makes me think I’m not the only one in the know.

    “Yes, that would be the Prime Minister-elect, John Key. Big Government is here to stay, so get used to it.

    ENDS”

    Indeed Gordon, indeed.

  12. Ianmac 12

    Elsewhere there was talk of teaching/learning “how to think” rather than just accumulating knowledge.
    One of the major Educational Goals is to learn that knowledge and skills are transient. Specific skills learnt at school now will be out of date tomorrow.
    So learning how to think, lateral thinking, connectivity of previous experience, adjusting to change etc will be vital for this challenging time. How can that be done when the accent seems to be testing that which is really mostly just recall?
    Does the business need an obedient workforce or a flatter level problem solving, inclusive workforce?

  13. Quoth the Raven 13

    The thing about R&D and the Fast forward fund is that a really large proportion of our economy is baed in agriculture. Investment into agriculture, biotechnology etc is where our money should be going because that is where it will be most effective. Not bloody broadband internet and tunnels….

  14. I’m looking at all this thinking it’s a bit odd that the only way to avoid recession is to keep our unsustainable and ultimately destructive global economy at top speed wrecking the climate, water and soil, by maintaining consumption via wealth transfers to everyone caught short so they can consume ever more of what we can’t produce sustainably.

    No way could we EVER think of doing anything differently or better. If we come close, the reactionaries step in and undo what little has been attempted.

    There is madness there…….a civilisation in denial. Very human and ultimately futile.

    Reality will win again. Always does.

  15. the sprout 15

    “often the best moral decision is also the best economic decision”

    IB, this happy coincidence is partly attributable to the fact that morally just decisions do not incur enforcement costs in the same way that morally unjust decision do. Unjust decisions need to be backed by costly policing and coersion for people to comply, while just ones are complied with voluntarily.

  16. Chess Player 16

    Ianmac,

    “Does the business need an obedient workforce or a flatter level problem solving, inclusive workforce?”

    It depends whether you have a large, monopolistic business, and you want to fend off competitors, or a smaller business that you want to grow rapidly through innovation.

    Interesting correlation between business and politicall parties on this too. There are definitely two quite different types of political party out there under MMP, and I’d say the supporters of each type a quite similair to the two types of employees you mention.

    The larger businesses/political parties tend to prefer dogma, while the smaller tend to be more flexible and open to options.

  17. Daveski 17

    But you can’t shop your way out of a long term recession

    Perhaps I’ve missed something but isn’t the fact that people stop shopping a classic cause of a recession?? More accurately, if demand decreases, manufacturing will decrease and hence you have a downturn if not a recession.

    I understand well enough that shopping isn’t going to save the economy (although my wife does her bit!). I agree that infrastructure spending is a priority but education and training is a long term and more risky approach.

  18. gomango 18

    Look, it’s very easy to bag the decision by the Nats – which they signposted well BEFORE the election to get rid of the R&D fund. Truth is, it was poorly designed and inefficient. For instance, at my organisation (local branch of a foreign bank) we had quickly devised a way to capture tax benefits without doing anything vastly different to what we do now – just recharacterising expenditure already made by the bank and creating a new business unit in NZ. No new staff, no new expenditure, lower taxes.

    The fact National cancelled something which at first blush looks like corporate welfare ought to tell you something about how well the scheme would have worked. the jury is obviously still out, but it seems clear to me that Key wants to run Govt as a technocrat rather than an idealogue.

  19. Billy 19

    What happened to the Standard week?

    [lprent: An interesting question. I’ll ask. But it has been a hard week]

  20. randal 20

    what happened to the 25 jobs at agresearch?

    and what happened to crime
    all of a sudden its gone
    POOF
    that was handy

  21. keith 21

    The fact National cancelled something which at first blush looks like corporate welfare ought to tell you something about how well the scheme would have worked.

    gomango–it was corporate welfare but they couldn’t afford that plus the tax cuts, their decision had nothing to do with suspected efficacy of the the R&D tax cut.

  22. Ag 22

    Given the mass slow-motion financial trainwreck currently in progress, tax cuts or stimulus payments just seem like painting over the rust on your car. It just sets us up for a bigger crash down the road. Both are faith based policies.

    Frankly, I don’t think that any of them, including most professional economists, have much of a clue about what to do. The Emperor appears to have no clothes.

  23. Ianmac 23

    gomango: Are you telling us that your bank cheated in order to get a tax-credit? Surely not! Banks wouldn’t cheat would they?
    I guess that means that not one business would not cheat. I mean is there a business or two out there who would genuinely attempt to develop R&D. I guess not. Too greedy. I am naive.

  24. gomango,

    it seems clear to me that Key wants to run Govt as a technocrat rather than an idealogue.

    Let’s hope this wishlist item at very least supercedes the S.Korean endeavor. The likes of Park and Choi are originals even you would have to admit.

  25. vto 25

    IrishBill, it’s just plain ludicrous to suggest that those at the ‘bottom’ are the most affected by downturns. The most affected are those with a lot as they go from lots to nothing. To suggest that those with nothing that go down to more nothing are more greatly affected is just plain dumb.

    But I do agree that it is the great swathe of humanity and its daily activities that is the ‘economy’ and that anything to keep that mass’s momentum massive will assist with that general economy.

  26. tsmithfield 26

    If tax cuts are saved rather than spent, there is more liquidity for banks. This means there is more funds available to be lent out, increasing liquidity in the community as a whole.

    So, saving tax cuts can also be beneficial.

  27. Pascal's bookie 27

    smithie, the liquidity thing isn’t working out too well in the US, the banks aren’t lending.

    vto, you’re right, poor people don’t lose millions, but rich people tend not to lose their jobs, houses, marriages and health. Should we call it a wash, or think about it like humans? good to see you back BTW.

  28. tsmithfield: Tax cuts saved? LOL!

    NZ can’t has saving.

    Has never don’t. LOL Taxes!!!!

  29. gomango 29

    No. No question of cheating. Every business that would get the tax credit would meet the (loosely written) criteria. No lies or cheating necessary – it was just a badly designed subsidy. And most of the corporate sector would have happily jumped on board and was preparing to do so. $700 million gets spent and very little true R&D to show for it. Companies that rely on R&D do it anyway – yes, make life easier for them but don’t allow everyone else to jump on board as well. And Keith – you may be right on the cost of tax cuts but I distinctly recall Nats saying they were canning it precisely because it was a bad policy. Irrespective, National won the sales job. Keith – you also accidentally cut to the core question. Those on the right AND pro-business like tax cuts for corporates because it reduces the need for complicated tax subsidy schemes and reduces the incentive to game the system. I don’t want to debate whether thats right or wrong because essentially there are different irreconcilable viewpoints that will never meet on that question.

    And I don’t think the Korean examples are that relevant. Key is neither corrupt nor taking payoffs from his chaebol masters to retain domestic monopolies.. Better examples are some of the newly emergent ex soviet satellites – the baltic states etc. Though I’m no expert and haven’t really looked closely at them – happy to defer to someone more knowledgeable.

    I think the real point I am making is that critics of “Key – the secret agenda, the far right sleeper etc” are falling into the same trap as Labours strategists who went with a fundamentally negative campaign ” You can’t trust Key”. Well turns out people do – at least so far. It didn’t resonate with the wider population then and new attacks on his character wont either – on the evidence so far he seems intent on playing the inclusive pragmatist. Policy arguments maybe more fertile ground – but essentially National have a free ride on the economy for some considerable time as Labour have clearly said the problems are all imported – somewhat true – but we also had plenty of domestic causes. We were blowing up in the finance company sector and had close to the most overpriced residential property in the OECD market long before the US hit the wall.

  30. Lew 30

    tsmithfield: But not as beneficial as spending them back into the economy, and that’s the point – marginal gains make a big difference when things are really tight.

    L

  31. vto 31

    cheers P’s B, been boondox festering. Missed all the recent election action. Re the post, I have to mildly disagree. It is all relative isn’t it? Just like poverty and wealth themselves. By way of example.. it is easy to dismiss, but stockbrokers who throw themselves out of tall buildings when things go kaput I think illustrate the very dramatic effect downturns have on those who have built something up over perhaps many decades only to see it frizzle in the sun.

    Easy to side with the ‘poor’ versus the ‘rich’ on this but putting aside their relative positions the richer can suffer far more than the poor at times like this.

    Also, I see other threads above.. the difference between labour and the nats was keenly illustrated by English when he said that people are free to spend their money (he was talking tax cuts) as they see fit – either spend it he said, or save it or use it to pay down debt. Cullen clearly does not do this – he would force it to be spent in ways he deems fit, because people cannot be trusted with themselves.

    The stark difference between the two outlooks was lit up right there. Brilliant, but missed by many.

  32. Bill 32

    Forget any common sense by whatever theory. Creeping corporatism is sneaking on up.

    Party coverage was much of a muchness, but how much blunted a more pro societal message and how much elevated an abstract pro business message….. as good.

    Em. That the media is itself is essentially a corporation? Impact? How impartial? Opinions shaped how much by individual reporters and how much by ‘the line’ which promotes and encourages orthodoxy and sidelines dissidence?

    How much info by which to form an intelligent opinion?

    Corporatism was synonymous with Mussolini and it quickly devolved to fascism under Hitler. Both folkies heroes by the leading publications of the day.

    Can you wait for these days?

  33. randal 33

    no vto
    that is not true
    you are putting it as an either or argument
    all or nothing
    the labour plan was and still is and will not be deviated from by national is to have a national fund
    or funds
    and to have them owned here by and for new zealanders
    any mad national voodoo economics plan plan will founder on reality
    there is no room to farm the funds
    and they know it
    andtoo many experts now
    all going to work on the problem
    expect some results
    nats might chuck around a few bucks here and there but they got to keep a firm hand on proceedings
    no wight wing wonk
    or pounce
    tighten your seat belts
    the crunch is coming andnothing National does will avert it
    a year
    and the experts are raring to go next year
    so expect big economic news
    back to the crunch
    short and sharp but deep enough to bite
    time to get smart
    do other things
    perhaps
    size up the new world

  34. Chris G 34

    vto,

    Your mad. What are you basing this on?

    “IrishBill, it’s just plain ludicrous to suggest that those at the ‘bottom’ are the most affected by downturns. The most affected are those with a lot as they go from lots to nothing. To suggest that those with nothing that go down to more nothing are more greatly affected is just plain dumb.”

    Have you looked at any articles that might suggest contrary to your speculation?
    If you cant be bothered looking (surely not!) heres some

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/09/us/09young.html?hp

    http://ann.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/456/1/88

  35. keith 35

    vto said – IrishBill, it’s just plain ludicrous to suggest that those at the ‘bottom’ are the most affected by downturns. The most affected are those with a lot as they go from lots to nothing. To suggest that those with nothing that go down to more nothing are more greatly affected is just plain dumb.

    vto: so you’d rather be on the edge of destitution at the beginning of a recession than very wealthy?

  36. Pascal's bookie 36

    A good time to be in the boondocks. wise man.

    It’s not that I’m without sympathy for the losses of the rich, and if we are are going to talk about jumping bankers we can also talk about the dustbowl dirt farmers where suicide was also a growth area. Reading about this time around, the Wall st bankers don’t seem to be suffering, making out like bandits more like.

    The way I look at is that given there is only so much support the state can give, they should give it where it is most needed. The rich are better positioned to not starve at the extreme end, and should have been better prepared in any case. There is an absolute non relative amount of things people need to get by that is the same for both the rich and the poor. The poor are in danger of that in a way the rich are not. The wealthy tend not to be faced with the decision or reality of having to cut back on meals for their children.

    Re the English quote, while there is a wisdom of crowds, there is also a madness, and they only come to their senses one by one. Sometimes the collective decisions that make perfect sense for each individual, collectively add up to a stalled economy. At that point the government needs to act, which means it needs to have the money. There really is no free lunch.

    I disagree with you about what goes on inside Cullen’s head, and I’m sure you agree that guessing motivations is a muggs game. I suspect it’s not about a lack of trust in what individuals do, but about a recognition of what markets do when things go crazy. He’s an economic historian after all, not a market dealer 😉

  37. Matt 37

    Left-wing moral superiority over support to the poor is a myth. The fact is that right wing religious conservatives have been supporting the poor for centuries.

  38. Chris G 38

    Piss, I put out a quick response to vto’s absurd speculation that the rich suffer worse than the poor in a downturn.

    Ill try and re link to a small selection of the many articles that suggest contrary to your speculation… the poor suffer worse from downturn/recession:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/09/us/09young.html?hp

    http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/nov/08/homeless-working-poor-felt-recession-first/

    http://www.boston.com/news/world/asia/articles/2008/10/30/japans_working_poor_at_risk_as_recession_hits/

    I might add vto, that that is probably one of the worst calls I have ever read here.

  39. Pascal's bookie 39

    Thanks for the links Chris, here is Joseph Stiglitz writing in the WaPo about what he thinks Obama should do.

  40. vto 40

    Chris G, it is simple logic.

    If man A goes from $100mullion down to say $100 then the effect is greater than man B who goes from say $110 down to $100.

    It really is very simple.

    And often always forgotten – but who cares about the rich pricks ay. Stuff them. Off with their heads!

  41. Quoth the Raven 41

    vto – But how many of them acutally go down from $100 million to $100. I’ll give you hint two words fuck and all. If a poor person loses a significant portion of his income then he may well be on the breadline if a rich man does then he may well be unable to afford the 2009 model car he wanted…

  42. Pascal's bookie 42

    A is not rich. He is a poor prick and would benefit from a stimulus package aimed at the poor. Are you suggesting that A should get more help than B? Why? He sounds like a bad risk compared to the frugal Mr B who has lost relatively little!

  43. Carol 43

    Thanks for that link Pascal’s Bookie. Unfortunately there are signs that those with most power internationally are working to maintain the same old system that caused the financial crisis, even thought they are giving the impression that they are working towards a new approach that would be fairier to all.

    See this article:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/nov/13/economy-taxandspending

    Sleight of mouth

    In public, the [UK] government is calling for greater regulation of the financial markets. In private, it’s pushing for the exact opposite

    John Hilary

    And it looks like Obama is already taking a line that will make it hard to change to a better system internationally:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/nov/14/obama-white-house-wall-street

    Ditch the smooth transition. The people voted for change

    Instead of accepting the corrupted bail-out and reassuring Wall Street, Obama’s team must start doing the hard stuff now

    Naomi Klein

    The more details emerge, the clearer it becomes that Washington’s handling of the Wall Street bail-out is not merely incompetent: it is borderline criminal.

    At home Citizen Key is keen to be take a centrist position and play the role of a consensus-maker, consulting with groups in various positions on the political spectrum. OTOH, he seems very keen to get overseas to meet with Bush and Brown, who are working to ensure the international rules remain the same old neoliberal ones. This would make it easier for Key to follow that neoliberal line at home in the future.

  44. Ianmac 44

    Spare a thought for Mr Key! Assuming that he does not have $50mil in cash then his stake, if in shares/bonds might be at risk. Why he might crash and burn to say $40 mil.
    By the way. The hardworking businessman has put his all into building up his little business. Risk/debt/courage. How much does he respect a bloke who made his dough by wheeling and dealing in other people’s money? “My Hero?”
    VTO: You seem to measure loss as a material thing. Mortals like me see loss as loss of health, friends, basic food needs, marriage.
    If the Rich in a downturn measure loss as a loss of material things only, then I guess they lost more much earlier without even knowing. (Think of Owen Glenn. The doco on him a few weeks ago painted him to me, as a sad lonely figure surrounded by bought people and wallowing in wealth.)

  45. rave 45

    .Look at that man Hawkins of Equiticorp who John Key said he didnt illegally help buy NZ Steel in 1987 the day before the crash, putting him in jail (Hawkins that is) and now where is he?
    Not on the dole.

  46. Lew 46

    vto: I like examples, they can be constructed to make any point you like.

    What about Jill, who goes from $1,000,000 down to $100,000 as compared to Jack, who goes from 100,000 down to $10,000? Both have had their income reduce by 90%, and the erstwhile millionaire Jill has lost ten times more than Jack in absolute dollar terms. But Jill’s still able to pay rent, feed her family, drive a car, etc – perhaps she has to move out of Beachhaven, sell the Lexus, and so on, but she’ll get by. Jack, on the other hand, having lost far less, is now financially incapable of anything – dependent on others for food, shelter, and the welfare of his family. So tell me: who has actually lost more?

    The ultimate point is that these matters aren’t simple, and applying simplistic `common sense’ measures to them makes this more clear, not less clear as you seem to think.

    L

  47. Pascal's bookie 47

    Carol, Yeah. Reform won’t be easy, or enivitable. I’ve no doubt that there will be pushback against any attempts at reform, though I think it’s a little too early to writing off Obama just yet 😉

    I’m reminded of a quote from President Johnson speaking to activists about the civil rights act; “You convinced me, now go out and make me do it.”

    Obama and other leaders will certainly face resistance to reform from those who have benefited from the current structural framework, that’s to be expected. I don’t think there is anything malicious about that. Part of that resistance will come in the form of people trying to limit his options by talking about steady hands, or no need for panicked action, or any number of other things that entrenched power bases talk about. There will be rumours of who he will appoint, and who it would not be acceptable to appoint, (with whom it’s not acceptable to left unspoken). I’ll wait to hear from the guy himself before getting my disappointment on.

    There are some things that lead me to think he will not be co-opted quite so easily as say Hillary Clinton may have.

    Firstly, Obama actually did run a campaign based on a huge grassroots money-raising and organising platform. He doesn’t have the option of turning that progressive machine off. If that machine feels betrayed it may turn on him something fierce.

    Secondly, by virtue of that machine, he is not captured by the entrenched power base to the same extent as other candidates. He can use that grassroots machine to agitate in the way the Johnson quote implies. Clinton ran with the support of the Washington democratic moneyed elite and he beat her. He owes them nothing, they need him for whatever influence he chooses to give them.

    Thirdly, he at least appears to be serious about reforming the lobbying clusterfeck, or at least marginalising it. That grassroots powerbase helps here again.

    He has got a lot on his plate and some things will get prioritised over others. I’d like to see investigations around the torture, the partisan corruption of the Justice dept and all sorts of things like that. These more political fights will suck up oxygen, but that actually makes room for reform. Obama needn’t be involved in these fights, they should be handled by State, Justice and Congress, leaving the white house for economic reform. If the GOP is fighting on many fronts it means you can get more wins.

    It’s easy to think that the bastards can’t be beat, but while it’s been a while, America does have a tradition of ball busting liberal reformers.

    I’m not expecting jeebus, but I’m not writing the skinny, black, funny named guy off yet. I’m yet to see him even take a hit, and I’ve seen no concrete evidence, yet, that he’s been bullshitting about wanting change.

  48. Carol 48

    Well, I hope you’re right, PB. But Obama also took a lot of big money too, directly and indirectly eg from people associated with Washington Lobbyists:

    http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Barack_Obama/Campaign_Financing#Contributions_from_PACs

    I remember watching Bill Clinton’s 1st presidential campaign (on CNN when I was living in London). He had the same message of hope and change as Obama. So, I’m a little jaded by such messages right now. The Clinton’s were every bit as idealistic, and liberal as Obama, in their younger days. They all have moved towards the center as they got closer to US center of power.

    But it is different times, the financial crisis will hopefully make people more wary and critical and willing to agitate for change.

    I still feel that Hillary has a lot of idealism too, but the Clinton’s learned how to negotiate with the centres of power. Either they compromised, or they couldn’t do anything. Sad really.

    There’s also a lot of people from Bill Clinton’s old presidential team on Obama’s team

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    Democracy ProjectBy bryce.edwards
    9 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 ...
    12 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 ...
    21 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
    1 day 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
    4 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
    4 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 ...
    4 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 ...
    4 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
    6 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
    5 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
    6 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
    8 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
    8 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
    8 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
    9 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
    2 days ago
  • New law will clear the air for tamariki in vehicles
    From today, it’s illegal to smoke or vape in most vehicles carrying children aged under 18 years old - whether the vehicle is moving or not. “Second-hand smoke poses an unacceptable risk to our tamariki and rangatahi,” Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall said. “We know children in vehicles ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Nine countries designated very high risk
    Nine southern African countries are being added to the very high risk countries list following public health advice around the newly discovered COVID-19 variant Omicron, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said. This afternoon, a public health risk assessment was carried out to assess the emerging evidence and any risk to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Foreign Affairs Minister concludes final stage of world trip
    Foreign Affairs Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta today departed North America to return home to Aotearoa, concluding the last stage of her 17-day world trip. The final leg of her trip saw her visit the United States of America and Canada for a number of high-level discussions. While in Washington D.C., ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Milestone launch of Pacific Languages Unit
    Today’s official launch of the Pacific Languages Unit is a milestone for our Pacific communities, the Minister for Pacific Peoples, Aupito William Sio said. The Pacific Languages Unit brings together a new set of language supports within the Ministry for Pacific Peoples to provide advice, commission research, maintain standards, promote ...
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    3 days ago
  • Public Health Lecture – University of Otago
    Public Health - Lessons from New Zealand’s COVID-19 response and opportunities for the future E nga mana, E nga reo,                                          E nga iwi. Tēna koutou katoa. Ka huri ki nga mana whenua o te rohe nei. Tēna koutou. He mihi hoki ki a tatou kua tau mai nei I raro I ...
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    4 days ago
  • New Zealand statement on situation in Honiara, Solomon Islands
    Aotearoa New Zealand is deeply concerned by the events which have been unfolding in Honiara, Solomon Islands, since Wednesday. “New Zealand is a long-standing partner of Solomon Islands, and there are deep and enduring connections between our two countries,” Acting Foreign Affairs Minister David Parker said. “Our engagement in Solomon ...
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    4 days ago
  • Nailed it! Over 500 apprentices get jobs boost
    Over 500 apprentices and cadets have been placed into work across New Zealand thanks to the Government’s booming build programme, that’s both constructing public houses, and maintaining older homes. Housing Minister Megan Woods announced the milestone today at a public housing construction site in Riccarton, Christchurch. “This Government’s investment in ...
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    4 days ago
  • Investment to support maternal mental health
    Associate Minister of Health Dr Ayesha Verrall has announced an investment to help expand maternal mental health services in five District Health Boards. “Supporting parent’s mental wellbeing during their child’s first 1000 days, from conception to two years of age, is critical to the long-term emotional, mental and physical wellbeing ...
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    4 days ago
  • Workplace vaccination requirements extended to cover Police and NZ Defence Force
    With the support of the organisations, additional vaccination requirements will cover sworn members, recruits and authorised officers of the New Zealand Police, and all New Zealand Defence Force staff. First doses of the vaccine for workers in these organisations are required by 17 January 2022, and second doses by 1 ...
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    4 days ago
  • Aotearoa New Zealand and Canada to pursue greater Indigenous collaboration
    During her visit to Ottawa, the Honourable Nanaia Mahuta, New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs and Associate Minister for Māori Development, met with the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Canadian Minister of Indigenous Services, and the Honourable Marc Miller, Canadian Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, to further expand and develop the positive relationship ...
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    4 days ago
  • Māori vaccination rates reach 80% first dose
    Associate Minister of Health (Māori) Hon Peeni Henare today confirmed that Māori across the motu have now reached 80 percent for first doses of the COVID-19 vaccination nationally. “We have seen a huge increase in vaccinations for Māori throughout November, since the beginning of the month the increase for first ...
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    5 days ago
  • Subsequent Children legislation to change
    The Government has today introduced legislation that will reverse provisions in the Oranga Tamariki Act as part of a path to rebuild trust and confidence in the organisation. “The Oranga Tamariki Amendment Bill makes a number of changes but by far the most important is the partial repeal of the ...
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    5 days ago
  • Security Information in Proceedings Legislation Bill introduced to Parliament
    The Minister of Justice has confirmed the introduction of the Security Information in Proceedings Legislation Bill to Parliament. National security information is information which, if disclosed, would be likely to prejudice New Zealand’s security, defence, or international relations. “This Bill adds to the Government’s work to strengthen New Zealand’s protections ...
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    5 days ago
  • Shortcomings revealed in power cut investigation
    No household should have had their power disconnected 18 recommendations, mostly EA and Transpower related The EA must strengthen its oversight of the system operator An investigation into power cuts that left more than 34,000 households without electricity on one of the coldest nights of the year has found that ...
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    5 days ago
  • COVID-19 Protection Framework supported by new testing and contact tracing strategy
    Wider use of rapid antigen testing from 1 December Increasing daily laboratory capacity to 60,000 PCR tests Q1 2022 A new national telehealth case investigation service with 475 investigators A nearly $1 billion investment in testing, contact tracing and case investigation A new national testing strategy will provide better protection ...
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    5 days ago
  • Supporting New Zealanders to recover from COVID-19 in the community
    $300 million boost to Pharmac to buy new medicines to treat COVID-19 Care in the Community approach will see most cases receive initial contact from a healthcare provider wiithin 24 hours Support pack provided within 48 hours Regular health checks throughout recovery The Government is increasing the support for New ...
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    5 days ago
  • Additional support for people isolating at home
    New regional MSD COVID-19 welfare teams to coordinate social service support for those isolating at home Regional teams working alongside other government agencies, iwi/Māori and community providers for housing, food and income support Government investment of $204.1m into welfare system support for Care in the Community Minister for Social Development ...
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    5 days ago
  • Tax bill provides vital support for families
    A boost to Working for Families tax credits, as part of a package of financial support that will see 346,000 families better off, has been passed into law late last night.  Revenue Minister David Parker said the measures would lift the incomes of those receiving the Family Tax Credit, the ...
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    5 days ago
  • New text service to support disabled peoples’ vaccinations
    Efforts to support disabled peoples’ vaccinations go from strength-to-strength with the launch of a new text service, Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The service, run by Whakarongorau Aotearoa on behalf of the Ministry of Health, is in response to feedback from the disability community and is an ...
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    5 days ago
  • Proactive Calendar Release – October 2021
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    5 days ago
  • Pacific community reach vaccination milestone
    Pacific communities across the nation have rolled up their sleeves and played their part to reach a major vaccination milestone, 90 percent  have now had their first vaccination, Aupito William Sio, Minister for Pacific Peoples and Associate Minister of Health said. “Reaching this milestone reflects the work Pacific Health Providers ...
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    6 days ago
  • Reconnecting New Zealand – the next steps
    Fully vaccinated Kiwis and other eligible travellers can travel to NZ from Australia without staying in MIQ from 11.59pm Sunday, 16 January 2022 Fully vaccinated Kiwis and other eligible travellers can travel to NZ from all other countries from 11.59pm Sunday, 13 February 2022 All fully vaccinated individuals will be ...
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    6 days ago
  • Shot in the arm for Canterbury tourism
    A brand new tourism attraction launched in the Canterbury high country is designed to transform the regional economy from seasonal peaks and troughs of past visitor trends. Regional Economic Development and Tourism Minister Stuart Nash has officially opened the Ōpuke Pools at Methven, which received government backing from the Provincial ...
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    6 days ago
  • Combined efforts connecting locals to nature
    A Government investment in six community and iwi-led projects across the Hawke’s Bay district will provide nature-based jobs for more than 60 locals, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “Combined, these projects are contributing to a really ambitious conservation effort across the region, while at the same time up-skilling and offering ...
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    6 days ago
  • Empowering Diverse Communities
    Minister for the Prevention of Family Violence and Sexual Violence Marama Davidson has approved five funding grants to support national-level family violence and sexual violence prevention initiatives for LGBTQIA+ people, disabled people, older people and new migrant communities. “Local community initiatives are a key lever in reducing violence. The Government ...
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    6 days ago
  • Moriori Claims Settlement Bill passes Third Reading
    The Moriori Claims Settlement Bill has passed its third reading at Parliament, marking the completion of the historical Treaty of Waitangi settlement process for Moriori. “This is the final milestone for Moriori and the Crown and is a new beginning in our relationship,” Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew ...
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    1 week ago
  • Permanent drug-checking law passed and new providers appointed
    Drug-checking services will continue to operate legally at festivals, pop-up clinics, university orientation weeks and other places this summer and beyond, thanks to a law passed today, Health Minister Andrew Little says. The services have been legal since last summer under temporary legislation that expires next month. The Government’s Drug ...
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    1 week ago
  • Pacific communities supported to transition to the COVID-19 Protection Framework
    The Government has agreed to support Pacific health providers and communities’ transition to the new COVID-19 Protection Framework, Minister for Pacific Peoples and Associate Minister of Health, Aupito William Sio said. The Government recognises that there is a clear need to prepare new systems and healthcare approaches, to protect and ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government helps Pasifika Festivals to ride the COVID wave
    As we transition into a new way of managing COVID and take steps towards giving vaccinated New Zealanders more freedoms to enjoy Aotearoa’s arts and culture, 19 Pasifika festivals across the motu are receiving funding through the Pasifika Festivals Initiative, Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Carmel Sepuloni said. These ...
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    1 week ago