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Support for raising retirement age

Written By: - Date published: 11:36 am, May 30th, 2011 - 37 comments
Categories: superannuation - Tags:

A Herald poll asked people their views on raising the retirement age. Surprisingly, support was strong – 52.3% think the issue needs addressing

National whines the country is broke so they have to cut public services and sell assets (while keeping on borrowing for tax cuts for the rich), but super for 65 year olds alone costs $625 million a year. That means just raising the retirement age by one year would save over ten years about as much as National is hoping to get from asset sales. And we wouldn’t lose the dividends from and control over our strategic assets.

12% of the money the government is spending this year will go on super, by 2015 that will be 15%, and  by 2025 it will be 21%. Simply put, the system was never designed to support the majority of people for 15+ years of their lives. It’s not realistic to expect that the retirement age won’t rise while life expectancy does.

The UK and Australia are raising the retirement age to 67 in 2020 and 2023 respectively. A 67 retirement age in New Zealand would save $1.2 billion a year today, and more as the population ages. Should we follow other countries’ lead?

John Key has said he will never act on superannuation. He said this morning he can’t worry about something ten years off because he has too much worry about in the next ten weeks. That wonderful short-termism again. (he also said that selling assets reduces the country’s indebtedness to the rest of the world – its impossible to believe anything out of his mouth).

Will any party have the courage to take on super?

37 comments on “Support for raising retirement age”

  1. We urgently need to have this debate. Essentially either we start saving now or the weight of numbers of baby boomers will cause severe financial stress on the state in 20 years time.

    We can start saving by:

    1.  Accelerating private savings. (Kiwisaver)
    2.  Establishing and contributing to a designated fund (Cullen fund)

    Or we can reduce the cost either by

    3.  increasing the eligible age or
    4.  means testing the benefit.

    So far Key has gutted 1 and 2 and refused to do 3 or 4 “while he is prime minister”.  This is highly irresponsible and will make it inevitable that something will give eventually.

    I guess when you have $55m you do not need to worry about such things …

  2. marsman 2

    All very well to raise the retirement age but what about people who have been in demanding physical jobs all their working lives, I’m sure their bodies would be grateful of a rest at age 65.

    • Blighty 2.1

      Agree that that’s a problem with a retirement age of 67, just as it is with the age at 65 but it’s not an argument against raising the age in itself, it’s an argument for special arrangements for those people.

      If people can’t work any more due to age and work-related degradation, they should be able to get either the invalid’s benefit, ACC, or the pension earlier. I believe this already happens to an extent.

      • onsos 2.1.1

        ACC specifically excludes age-related degradation. The invalids benefit is significantly less than superannuation. The people concerned are unlikely to have insurance, or have had the capacity to have saved for their retirement.

        This is not an issue that can be blagged away. Raising the age of entitlement to super will make life worse for people who work physically for a living. Much worse.

  3. Carol 3

    Maybe John Key is not keen on having to deal with the issue of providing more jobs for both young and old if the retirement age is raised?

    I also can see a problem for those who have worked hard and manual jobs all their lives. It would work against lower paid workers.

    Why have a fixed reitrement age for all occupations? What about having a more flexible system eg lower retirement age for those who have worked a significant amount of time in low paid jobs requiring physical labour, part time work & partial pensions for others? I know people who have told me they have less energy for fulltime work as they get into their mid-60s.

    And is the cost of superannuation the real problem, or the vast inequalities in income across all ages?

    • handle 3.1

      “I also can see a problem for those who have worked hard and manual jobs all their lives.”

       
      That’s true. Raising the age also disadvantages groups who tend to die younger – such as Maori and Pacific peoples, and men.

      • Vicky32 3.1.1

        Raising the age also disadvantages groups who tend to die younger – such as Maori and Pacific peoples, and men

        Not just those groups! As I have said in my post below, of my whole family, only one grandfather ever lived long enough to make it to National Super age, and then he died 5 years later… If I am lucky enough to live long enough, I will be the first since 1945… Oops, I forgot – my Mum made it to 62, and back in those days the pension went to women at 60, so she was lucky, she had 19 months of it… (We’re Scottish/English with a huge history of cardiac problems and an average age at death of 35!)

  4. Janice 4

    The pension should be means tested on other income, why should someone still working get paid the pension? This includes people like Don Brash, Roger Douglas and Bob Jones. If it was means tested these people wouldn’t even be able to apply for it. The pension is a state benefit and should be treated like other benefits, but where is the politician who will say so? There could be a reasonable abatement level to cover interest, etc. I am pretty sure that Australia has a system to not pay people who don’t need it.

    • Carol 4.1

      I paid into a compulsory system when I worked for a small number of years in Aussie. So on retirement, I will get something back based on what I paid into it.

      • John D 4.1.1

        I pay into a compulsory system called “tax”. I don’t expect to see anything back.
        Agreed on means-testing pensions. I know relatives who are still working at aged 65 and getting the pension.

        We’d be much better giving the dosh to students to give them a kick start in life

        • Lanthanide 4.1.1.1

          “We’d be much better giving the dosh to students to give them a kick start in life”
           
          Alternatively, one would hope that these people who are 65, getting the pension and working, would be saving the pension for their later years when they won’t be working and their health might pack up.

    • KJT 4.2

      What was wrong with the surcharge?

      This is a mantra. “We cannot afford superannuation” which has been repeated so long and so often that even those who should know better repeat it.

      And what did Government’s do with the more than a million, in today’s dollars, I paid in tax that they cannot afford to pay me a small proportion on retirement.

      Do we really want to return to the days when most elderly people were totally impoverished when their working lives ended.

      In fact super has been so effective in removing poverty amongst the elderly it should be extended to everyone in the form of a guaranteed minimum income. There is now excuse for having people with inadequate food and housing in a country which is capable of supplying an excess of both internally.

      Super and other benefits are easily affordable if those who get the most benefit from our society paid their fair share.

      We are fast becoming a country which does not look after its children, the sick or the old.

      What does that say about us?

      • RedLogix 4.2.1

        The single most cogent comment on this topic ever!

        • onsos 4.2.1.1

          Agreed; the welfare of the elderly in this country should be an example to the world, not a dirty secret. They’re doing all right, and I’m okay with that.

          • terryg 4.2.1.1.1

            hear hear! KJT wins this weeks internet. Clear, concise, cogent & completely correct.

  5. ZeeBop 5

    Commodities are high globally. NZ dollar is a buy. We export more than we import. Why so we have poor economics, poor savings habits both private and government, because we have a poor policy debate that allow the few to wreck havoc and claim they can solve the crisis. We don’t have a age social security crisis. Its all a bureaucrat gimmick. If its harder for pensioners then they will find ways to adapt like any age group. They will share accommodation. They will employee each other part-time. They will use the amassed wealth to vote in governments that keep their old age liveable. Its will never become a crisis. We can afford to look after everyone, its just as divide and conquer strategy to separate national wealth from kiwis and hand it over to the global international trading markets. We don’t have a problem with money in NZ, we have a government who won’t raise taxes on exporters, or get exporters to pay their fair share of tax.
    Citizens should be able to afford to buy milk if milk is our national export, that’s just wrong.
    Sure if the people who got into debt are the one who can’t afford milk, but no its not them,
    its hard working lower and middle class people just trying to live the dream.

  6. JaJ 6

    A very lucid post and absolutely spot on. People can save a bit more of their income to make up for the loss of 2 years superannuation easily enough.

    • Colonial Viper 6.1

      People can save a bit more of their income to make up for the loss of 2 years superannuation easily enough.

      You must mean all those people who aren’t already living on the bones of their ass, eating catfood, or maybe those who got handed $100-$200 p.w. tax cuts by National? I’m sure they would add to their savings quite OK.

      • JaJ 6.1.1

        Most people aren’t living on the bones of their ass for the entire duration of their life.

  7. Tammy Gordon 7

    I’ll vote for any party that doesn’t make me wear matching grey jumpers with the old fat, bald guy when I’m retired.

  8. Bunji 8

    What about setting retirement age as a set proportion of adult life. So when you’re 18, and your life expectancy is another ~64 years, and you might be expected to work 75% of them, or 48 years (to age 66). As life expectancy goes up or down it would remain fair. After all, originally retirement age was set at 100% of life expectancy…

    If you wanted to get extra fair you could in theory give people personal retirement ages at 18 based on their personal life expectancy by taking ethnicity, gender & parental wealth into account, but that would no doubt be all too bureaucratic in practice.

  9. The Voice of Reason 9

    Much as I hate to be pedantic, it’s worth pointing that the post, the Herald headline (but not the Herald article) and a few of the comments seem to be under the impression that there is such a thing as ‘the retirement age’ in NZ. There isn’t. Nobody can be forced to retire, though Brash should be encouraged in that direction for the good of the nation.
     
    What is actually meant is the ‘pension age’, a totally different concept. The arrival of the pension allows the consideration of retirement, depending on personal circumstances. Nobody still paying off a mortgage is likely to think the pittance the pension provides is sufficient to give up working.
     
    I’d suggest that rather than lifting it to 67, we have a good hard look at why it isn’t already lower. If capitalism is so shit hot, how come it isn’t 60? Or 55?
     
    Eddie, why do you think it neccesary to screw more work from older folk and remove a earned benefit and a promisedvfinancial option from these people who have already spent half a century building this country through their labour and their taxes? Shouldn’t we socialists be advocating the very opposite position?
     

    • Herodotus 9.1

      The Kiwisaver will stop any party from increasing the age. How could Labour campaign to increase the age when they have attacked Nat for charges in the scheme this. Whilst I do go with a review with an increase in age. Yet them many who have joined this scheme will see that this age will increase as the cost to the govt increases and that then KS becomes a dog, in that we all pay into it and as the age increase fewer receive the benefit.
      There is also the issue of savings result in a decrease in value as tax and inflation mean the principle amount goes down in value. Lok at retirees currently with a few dollars in the bank- the value of their savings diminishes,so why would someone leave $ in the bank, this then just increases the idea of property as an investment and the cycle continues

    • lefty 9.2

      Well said Voice of Reason.

      We should be concentrating on running an economy that can provide for people to retire at 60, or earlier, rather than giving up and continuing to raise the age.

      Its not about building fancy retirement investment funds that profit from stealing workers labour and pillaging third world economies, or increasing savings, or raising the age of retirement, or some sort of degrading testing to work out whether you are physically fucked enough to give a pension to.

      Its about running a fair and sustainable economy to serve the needs of the people, including the need to sit back and put your feet up for a few years before you die.

      And its not that hard to do – we managed to pay my father, and his father before him, a pension when they turned 60. Then the bloody labour party introduced neo liberal economics and since then we supposedly can’t afford any of things that make up a civilised society.

      Nor should we be fooled by the baby boomer bulge rhetoric. Productivity gains in the last few decades more than compensate for the changing ratio of retirees. Its just that we are to busy giving all the benefits to a few rich bastards rather than sharing them.

      If capitalism can’t cut it then its time to discard it.

      • Colonial Viper 9.2.1

        If capitalism can’t cut it then its time to discard it.

        +1

        This is not a financial crisis.

        This is a crisis of that now broken system known as capitalism.

        Broken by whom? Broken by those who are so greedy that they can’t allow themselves to settle for a few million dollars in wealth, they want more, more, more with no end, even if it means crushing the life out of entire peoples, cities and countries.

  10. Tiger Mountain 10

    Well re-framed Voice. What did happen to those paperless offices, 35 hour weeks on full pay, flying cars and delicious work life balance?

    Bugger, the futurists forgot to tell us that utopia only applied to the ‘few’, the Filthy Few as I call Shonkey and his mates, no disrespect to the motorcycle club of the same name.

    The tendency of the rate of profit to fall over time is true in reality as much as most economists try to say otherwise or ignore it. That is why the captialist keep tightening the screws down and the many work harder or not at all.

    • The Voice of Reason 10.1

      “What did happen to those paperless offices, 35 hour weeks on full pay, flying cars and delicious work life balance?”
       
      I’m told you can get number’s one and four across the ditch, TM. Plus a 12% pension contribution. NactM do have a paperless office strategy, however. It appears to consist of removing the need for filing cabinets by moving the workforce onto the dole queue.
       
      And in the future, I guarantee the flying cars are actually going to be usurped by steam punk style personal dirigibles or my name’s not George Jetson.

    • Colonial Viper 10.2

      35 hours per week? Nay my friend, I think the next goal has to be 4 day work weeks, 32 hours per week, 3 day weekends as standard, and able to make a decent living wage with that.

      Would require an hourly rate of $18-$20.

  11. What about rejecting this whole beat up of ‘no money’? As Standardistas have proven, labour productivity has shot up in the last decades while labour’s share of that has not gone up, in fact its gone down, so that the share of wages is falling way behind the share of profits. So let those who have taken the lion’s share of the surplus as profits be taxed to provide for the retirement of workers whose value they accumulated as profits during their working lives. Making workers work longer under these conditions is just prolonging the exploitation and shortening the years that workers should live to enjoy their retirement. From the bosses’ perspective of course it screws more surplus from workers over their lifetimes, and reduces their liability to contribute more of their profits to the well being of workers and their families.

  12. Vicky32 12

    This is something I never thought I would ever say… I’ve been unemployed for 3 years now, managing on casual work until I was told by Housing NZ that I am not permitted to do it. Neither of my parents lived to be 65, and I am still 8 years off… but I hope I do make it! (I gather my chances of getting a proper job drop every year, so National Super is my only hope of getting off UB). Another year to wait, and I may end up doing as my parents, all but one grandparent and both my brothers (younger than me!) did and saving the taxpayer the cost of the pension, by dying first. I laughed at my ex when he said 25 years ago, that he just couldn’t wait! (He’s an official OAP now, being much older than me). I still don’t know what he was thinking (he was only 40 and earning phone numbers) but personally, it’s my only way out! 🙁

  13. vto 13

    There is another course of action….

    Means / asset test it. I resent supporting oldies who are wealthy enough to not need the pension. And I have never understood their argument that they paid their taxes all their life etc etc…. because they bloody didn’t. They bloody voted in Muldoon for example, and many others, who have canned super schemes to use the money elsewhere. i.e. they have voted in govts who have pissed it up against the wall.

    Or, how about this course of action – combo raising the age AND means / asset test it.

    Bloody chicken shit debate. It is all about greed and votes. Reflects poorly on those involved. Brings them down in line with the rest of humanity..

  14. SHG 14

    “Will any party have the courage to take on super?”

    No.

  15. I find that the majority of those who want to raise the pension are the one’s who have had nice sit down jobs.I’m yet to find anybody who labours on the roads or is a farm workers or other hard graft manial workers, who want to stay till they are 67/70 .No its fat paper shufflers who are demanding this change of supporting the raising of the pension.A few more years at work will not affect them .
    I believe that it would be better to lower the age of eligibility to 60, however allowing a person to stay at work but with no pension if they wish.
    This would open the job market to younger workers thus reducing the unemployment figures ,Which is a far more burden on the taxpayer with far more serious consequences than the Super payout. Compulsory Super saving would enable this to be possible.

    • weka 15.1

      Maori are also disproportionately penalised by raising the age for the pension because they die younger and earn less over their lifetimes than non-Maori (or pakeha at least).

      I agree it would be better to offer incentives to people who can stay in employment rather than force the whole population to.

  16. Justaminute 16

    No, it’s not fair to raise the age of eligibility for Government superannuation, and nor is it fair to means test the superannuation benefit. Higher tax rates for employed persons also collecting super. is definitely, however, an option to consider.

    What about those who have worked for fifty years in physically demanding positions, whose bodies can no longer handle the stresses and strains of their work? What about those whose brains just can’t keep up? It’s not their fault, for goodness’ sake! Many of them hate to give up an occupation they love.

    And what about those who are lucky enough to be valued by their employer and have relatively stress-free occupations, just a job that needs to be done? In my experience, the employer finds it difficult to replace these people, as younger and more dynamic men and women want more of a challenge, offering more opportunities and greater financial rewards.

    The Govt.Super should be available to all who attain the age of 65. Superannuitants pay tax on their benefits, those who are still working pay tax on their salaries as well; those with particularly high incomes are probably paying tax enough to support several others. Give everyone the choice!

    Disclaimer: I’ll be seventy this year, still working (part time) in IT, and also collecting my Govt. Super – which is taxed, I might add, at a higher rate, as it should be. My partner, who is almost 75, welcomed retirement at 65, as he was a manual worker, and the physical contortions and stresses that accompanied his work made it impossible to continue doing a job he loved. Yes, I am one of the fortunate few. My employer is ‘grey-friendly’, accommodates my needs in the workplace, and when I tried to retire some time ago, made it clear that my presence was still wanted around the place. Everyone should have such a choice – retire and live if they wish on a limited budget and Govt. Super, or keep working and be taxed fairly (heavily?) while collecting both salary and super.

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    Brian Williamson1, Prof Nick Wilson2 (1Economic consultant, UK; 2University of Otago Wellington) In this blog, we outline how a win-win social contract could be forged to address the major dimensions of response to the COVID-19 pandemic when using a mitigation strategy: the particular need to protect older people from high ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    5 days ago
  • Returning To “Normalcy”.
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    5 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Government Must Save New Zealand’s Media.
    No Free Society Without A Free And Functioning News Media: If we are to surrender our civil rights to the broader cause of defeating Covid-19, then foreign corporations must, likewise, surrender their right to inflict immense economic and cultural harm on New Zealanders simply because it improves their bottom line.I’M ...
    5 days ago
  • Corona fevers and the madness of models
    by Daphna Whitmore A third of the world is under lockdown and a clear assessment of this measure to curb the spread of COVID-19 is urgently needed.  With any high-stakes decisions it has to be asked what are we dealing with here? Are the measures warranted? Will they achieve their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Lockdown day 8
    I haven’t done a huge amount in the last few days. I’m reading The Poppy War and I’ve sort of poked at a couple of games – I started SOMA but I’m a wimp and I quit while in the first room after the brain scan. I might try it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    5 days ago
  • Backstage and Theatre
    The swan politicians may be gliding on the water, occasionally snapping at one another. Meanwhile, as the Covid19 crisis illustrates, the officials are desperately paddling below providing the real locomotion. One of the most fatuous recent grandstanding comments (of about a week ago), adding to the public’s anxieties, was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    6 days ago
  • Legal Beagle: Waiver, the singular Crown and the conduct of Crown legal business
    Much has been written about the importance of discretion in an emergency situation, and the concerns raised by the potential for it to be exercised arbitrarily. Given the quality of the discussion, there seemed little point in adding to it at any length. In particular, I point to the evidence ...
    6 days ago
  • Highlights from Bauer Media’s science-related reporting
    Today has felt surreal. I was all set to touch base online with my science communication students when a colleague shared the news that Bauer Media would be shutting down its publications immediately. The first link I saw implied it was Woman’s Weekly affected, and even that shocked me. But ...
    SciBlogsBy Sarah-Jane O'Connor
    6 days ago
  • Outsiders.
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    6 days ago
  • We have a right to know the rules we are expected to obey
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7 (sanitised version)
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 7
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    6 days ago
  • RIP The Listener, New Zealand’s pioneering voice
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    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    6 days ago
  • OK, Britney: stop sniping at National for doing its job
    With normal democratic procedures in abeyance, there were two ways to go. First, it was open for the government to dissolve itself and invite the National Party to join a ministry of national salvation. That would have lessened the democratic deficit of the times by having a team of rivals without ...
    PunditBy Liam Hehir
    6 days ago
  • Helpful tips for parents during lockdown
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    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #13, 2020
    7 days ago
  • Hungary is now a dictatorship
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • A new Ministry of Works
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Capture: Well spaced out
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    7 days ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 6
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
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    7 days ago
  • Hard News: Poll Pot and the partisans
    Yesterday's Horizon poll showing support for a "Yes" vote in this year's cannabis referendum sliding into the majority for the first time in a year looked like good news for reformers – and it probably is. But the result warrants some scrutiny.The poll is the fifth in a series commissioned ...
    7 days ago
  • Why those bubbles are so important
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    SciBlogsBy Siouxsie Wiles
    7 days ago
  • A Government System That Works
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    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • Smashing down the barriers: Where are we at with COVID vaccines?
    In the absence of a vaccine or a cure for a deadly disease, staying home in your bubble is what you do, the concept is not new.  To the best of my knowledge last time we did this in NZ was for polio, in the years before a vaccine came ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    1 week ago
  • National Network on Cuba (USA): “Cuban medical solidarity is a pillar of its society and is founde...
    The following statement was released on March 28 by the National Network on Cuba, a coalition of 40 groups, based in the United States. In recent weeks, Cuba has deployed hundreds of medical providers to over a dozen countries in Europe, Asia, as well as to their neighbors in Latin ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Alarming decrease in calves increases fears for endangered Hector’s dolphin
    This has been a terrible summer for Hector’s dolphins. The first indication was very low numbers of dolphin sightings during late spring and early summer. The Otago University Marine Mammal Research Team has carried out routine dolphin surveys at Banks Peninsula for more than 30 years. In all that time, ...
    SciBlogsBy Otago Marine Science
    1 week ago
  • Time for Grant Robertson to reveal package #2?
    On March 17, Finance Minister Grant Robertson was quick out of the blocks with an economic rescue package to help businesses through the inevitable recession resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. Robertson had pulled together a scheme in short order that so far seems to have saved many jobs. In his ...
    PunditBy Tim Watkin
    1 week ago
  • Saving lives
    The purpose of the lockdown is to save lives, by reducing the spread of covid-19. We won't know if its really working for another week, but given the devastation that will result if it doesn't - 14,000 dead is the optimistic scenario - its definitely worth trying. But pausing the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 5
    . . March 30: Day five of living in lock-down… Woke up still in darkness. Alarm hadn’t gone off. Turn to radio clock; it’s a few minutes after 6am… I lie there in the dark, waiting to drift off to sleep… but it ain’t happening. Clock ticks over to 6.55 ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Speaker: Les Gray: the man who told the truth
    The story of Les Gray, the public sector psychologist who told the truth about his use of cannabis and set off a storm, has a special place in the lore of cannabis reform in New Zealand.When Paul Shannon interviewed Gray for the 'Dope and Hope' issue of Planet magazine in ...
    1 week ago
  • Why now? Historical specificity and the perfect storm that has created trans identity politics
    by Phil Duncan For Marxists, a key concern about social trends is their context – not just their causes, but why they happen when they do.  Events and phenomena have causes, but they also are time or period-specific. While much of the left have capitulated recently to postmodernism, most notably ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Time for a living wage for supermarket workers
    Since the lockdown began, we've all suddenly been reminded who the actually essential workers in our society are: not the people at the top who pay themselves the big bucks and rort the perks, but the people at the bottom they screw over and squeeze: cleaners, warehouse staff, truck drivers ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: MUSIC: Lockdown Grooves
    Kia ora! As I've watched nearly all my remaining work vanish over the past couple of days, it has occured to me that one good way to keep me away from arguing with fools on Twitter all the time (in the knowledge that all we're really doing is processing our ...
    1 week ago
  • A place of greater safety?
    Aotearoa New Zealand has committed to trying to extirpate the virus that causes COVID-19 from its shores. To do that, as a society we’ve moved to “Level 4”. That means adapting to unprecedented restrictions on our personal freedoms, particularly to our rights to move freely and associate with friends and ...
    PunditBy Andrew Geddis
    1 week ago
  • The police and public trust
    When the Prime Minister declared a state of emergency last week, she handed the police powers to enforce it. And almost immediately, we started hearing about heavy-handed, arbitrary "enforcement" by police who (at best) cared more about order than law, or (more likely) had no idea what the rules were ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 4
    . . Lock Down: Day 4 – A photo essay with observations . March 29: Usual wake up routine as RNZ snaps on my radio-clock. Jim Mora’s voice slowly enters my conciousness; there’s talk of a second wave of covid19 taking hold in South Korea; the week in Parliament – ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • COVID-19 vs New Zealand
    Yesterday, New Zealand recorded its first Covid-19 related death on the West Coast. Unfortunately this is unlikely to be the only fatality, with the virus now being found in every region of the country.However despite the significant danger, people are still unfortunately breaching lockdown rules.There’s really only one main very ...
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #13
    Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Claim Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week... Story of the Week... ‘Misinformation kills’: The link between coronavirus conspiracies and climate denial   Grist / Rob Kim / Stringer / CSA Images  Scientific ...
    1 week ago
  • Rāhui day 4
    The kids did surprisingly well today – meltdown count was about 3, and mostly fairly short ones. (And a fourth while I was writing.) Game-wise I had a go at Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark. It’s a fairly standard RPG with turn-based combat and what they call a “mature storyline” (it ...
    The little pakehaBy chrismiller
    1 week ago
  • Letter to a friend
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    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Life in Lock Down: Day 3
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    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #13
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 22, 2020 through Sat, Mar 28, 2020 Articles Linked to on Facebook Sun, Mar 22, 2020 In Just 10 Years, Warming Has Increased the Odds of Disasters by Chelsea Harvey, ...
    1 week ago

  • NZ horticulture sector feeding Kiwis and the world during COVID-19
    More New Zealanders are taking up the chance to work in horticulture as the sector keeps New Zealanders fed and in jobs during the COVID-19 Alert Level 4 lockdown. “Our horticulture sector has long been one of New Zealand’s export star performers, contributing around $6 billion a year to our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Work to repurpose PGF funds begins
    The Provincial Development Unit is working through applications and projects to see where Provincial Growth Fund money can be repurposed for initiatives deemed more critical to fighting the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones says. “We need to be throwing everything we have at ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • A million workers supported by Govt wage subsidy
    The Government’s wage subsidy to protect jobs and keep workers and businesses connected during the lockdown has now supported over a million New Zealanders, with $6.6 billion already paid out. “We’re supporting businesses to pay wages, and stay connected with their workers so that we are all in a better ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Government helps Pacific communities fight COVID
    The Government is stepping up efforts to help protect New Zealand’s Pacific communities in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet has agreed that $17 million will be allocated to support a COVID-19 Pacific Response Package, which will: Support Pacific health and disability services facing increased demand; Ramp up public health messaging ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Dr David Clark
    “Yesterday evening the Health Minister advised me of his trip to a beach during the lockdown and offered his resignation,” Jacinda Ardern said.  “Under normal conditions I would sack the Minister of Health. What he did was wrong, and there are no excuses.  “But right now, my priority is our ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Statement from David Clark
    Last night as part of my preparation for the Epidemic Response Committee, I provided the Prime Minister with a complete picture of my activity outside my home during Alert Level 4.  That included the fact that on the first weekend of the Alert Level 4 lockdown I drove my family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • COVID-19 mental health support begins
    A range of support is being rolled out across New Zealand to help people look after their mental health during COVID-19 Health Minister David Clark said this morning. “COVID-19 has brought a lot of uncertainty into our lives and many of us will be feeling some level of distress or ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealanders in Peru to be assisted by Government charter flight
    The New Zealand Government has made arrangements to charter a flight for New Zealanders stranded in Peru to depart the country, following agreement with the Chilean government to allow the necessary transit through Chile, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. “Like many travellers around the world at the moment, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 Hospital Preparation Well Advanced
    Hospital preparations for COVID-19 are well advanced says Health Minister David Clark. “Hospitals across New Zealand are repurposing buildings and training staff to get ready for COVID-19 patients. This gives me confidence that we are well prepared for any potential increase in COVID-19 patients needing hospital level care,” said David ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Further measures to support businesses
    The Government will be introducing legislation to make changes to the Companies Act to help companies facing insolvency due to COVID-19 to remain viable and keep New Zealanders in jobs. The temporary changes include: Giving directors of companies facing significant liquidity problems because of COVID-19 a ‘safe harbour’ from insolvency ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt’s COVID plan, economic strength recognised
    The Government’s plan to cushion the blow of COVID-19 by supporting incomes, jobs and businesses, and position the economy to recover has been backed by another international report. International credit rating agency Moody’s today reaffirmed its highest Aaa credit rating on New Zealand, saying the economy is expected to remain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Funding certainty for sports through COVID-19
    National sports organisations have been given certainty of funding to ensure they can remain viable through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson announced today. “The global spread of COVID-19 has had a significant impact on sport and recreation in New Zealand, including the cancellation or postponement of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Butchers now allowed to process pork
    Changes have been made to allow butchers to process pork, only for supply to supermarkets or other processors or retailers that are open, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has announced. “We carefully weighed the risk of allowing butchers to open their shops for retail customers, but the risk of spreading COVID-19 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Essential workers leave scheme established
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Govt WhatsApp helps share COVID-19 information
    A Government WhatsApp channel has been launched to help make information more easily accessible and shareable in the fight against COVID-19. Govt.NZ, which is free to use on any mobile device, will carry information and news for the public, businesses, healthcare providers, not for profits and local government. It can ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Managed departure plan for stranded foreign nationals enables safe, orderly exit
    The Government has announced a plan to enable the safe, orderly exit of tens of thousands of stranded foreign nationals from New Zealand during the current COVID-19 Alert Level 4 restrictions, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Winston Peters has said. “When we moved into lockdown a week ago, the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government delivers COVID-19 support to GPs and Pharmacies
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says the Government is delivering on its commitment to support general practice doctors and nurses, and pharmacies on the front-line of our fight against COVID-19. "For us to overcome COVID-19, we need community health services such as general practice and community pharmacy to step up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Susan Thomas the new Chief High Court Judge
    Justice Susan Thomas has been appointed Chief High Court Judge, Attorney-General David Parker announced today.  She replaces Justice Geoffrey Venning who has resigned from the position.   David Parker paid tribute to Justice Venning, who he said had stewarded the High Court very capably over the last five years.   “On behalf ...
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    6 days ago
  • Business Finance Guarantee – applications open
    Businesses can start applying to their banks for loans under the Business Finance Guarantee Scheme set up to support the New Zealand economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re moving quickly to protect New Zealand businesses, jobs and the economy during this unprecedented global economic shock,” Finance Minister Grant Robertson said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Work starts on ways to fast-track consents to boost recovery from Covid-19 downturn
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    7 days ago
  • Advance payments to support contractors
    Advance payments will be made to transport construction industry contractors to retain the workforce and ensure it is ready to quickly gear up to build projects which will be vital to New Zealand’s COVID-19 economic recovery, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. He said keeping the workforce required to build ...
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    1 week ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Health system scaled up to prepare for COVID-19
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    1 week ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supermarkets able to open on Easter Sunday
    The Government is ensuring supermarkets can open on Easter Sunday so we can buy groceries, but stay closed on Good Friday allowing workers to take a break. This provides a balanced approach and ensures we avoid large queues that two days closure may cause. “Supermarkets will be able to open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says 36 new intensive care beds at Christchurch Hospital’s new Hagley building are being fast tracked so they are available for treatment of COVID-19 patients.   The Ministry of Health is working with contractor CPB and Canterbury DHB to enable access to the hospital’s ICU, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
    The Government has fast-tracked up to $1 million to help Air New Zealand move urgent freight to and from New Zealand, with the first flight to Shanghai leaving tonight, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. Phil Twyford says it’s crucial that trade in vital goods such as medical supplies and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago