Tax cuts and the wage gap

Written By: - Date published: 10:15 am, February 5th, 2008 - 64 comments
Categories: tax, workers' rights - Tags: ,

News that 28,000 New Zealanders left for Australia last year has Business NZ, the Chamber of Commerce and the National Party predictably calling for tax cuts as the solution to New Zealand’s wage gap with Australia.

Of course, they know very well that tax cuts are not the answer. Workers in Australia currently earn 30% more than workers in New Zealand, which means unless John and his business mates are willing to reduce taxes by 30 cents in the dollar they’re not going to close the gap. And as keen as they might secretly be on such a plan, it’s clearly not a plausible option.

Because the real issue, as always, is wages, and it’s the elephant in the room that National and its allied business lobby groups would rather ignore. New Zealand’s low wage economy can be traced directly back to the Employment Contracts Act of 1991, which was deliberately designed to reduce the ability of workers to bargain for better wages through their unions.

Since then New Zealanders’ pay packets have fallen behind Australia, our productivity has failed to keep up and even Labour’s Employment Relations Act has done little to repair the damage. As few as one in five New Zealanders now belong to a union, pass-on is rife, and enterprise bargaining is heavily favoured by legislation.

If we want to raise New Zealanders’ living standards to Australian levels then we need to seriously lift wages and restore industry-wide collective bargaining, and that’s something National knows it has a shameful record on.

It’s no wonder they’d rather talk about tax cuts.

nominal-small-revised.jpg

64 comments on “Tax cuts and the wage gap ”

  1. Wayne 1

    Is there any social ill that National doesn’t think can be solved by tax cuts?

  2. Ausy Mosy Kiwi 2

    Forget tax cuts this country is a case study in madness.

    [lprent – junk warning – this is probably dad4justice under yet another alias. It is in his usual IP range and with the usual comment type.]

  3. Daveo 3

    I’ve had a lot of my family go to Australia but I’ve never once heard any of them talk about tax cuts as a reason for leaving. Every single one has said something along the lines of “Working here I get $12 an hour but in over in Aussie I’ll get $18.50”. It’s wages every time. How National continues to get away with limiting the argument to tax cuts I don’t know.

  4. Matthew Pilott 4

    Yeah probably Wayne, the ones that are cured by privatisation 😉

    Now what’s the y-axis indicating on the graph? My guess would be hundreds of dollars (i.e. so it starts at $20,000, and finishes at $50,000), but it’s not all that apparent.

  5. Tane 5

    Sorry Matt, should have made it clearer. It’s hundreds of dollars per week – was explained better in its original context:

    http://www.thestandard.org.nz/?p=527

  6. Camryn 6

    Sorry to be pedantic, but the title of the graph is still a little misleading. It’s labeled a graph of “Median Wage Growth”. It’s actually a graph of the Median Wage (in $/week) that, when you look at it, shows growth. A map of growth itself would have the rate of change on the y-axis, not the median wage itself.

  7. East Wellington Superhero 7

    Australians not only get paid more – they are taxed less. Then, to add insult to injury on NZ Labour’s performance, the Australian Family Tax Benefit (FTB) is more generous than Working for Families (WFF). That must certainly be embarrasing for Dr. Cullen.

    Of course, unlike WFF, the Aussie FTB isn’t given to a huge portion of the population. After all, it makes no sense to tax families and then give them their money back because a) it’s inefficient and b) it opens up that money to politican manipulation (by any politician, Left or Right).

    Seriously, how could anyone who believes in freedom and fairness vote for NZ Labour?

    The Aussie’s have good wages, low taxes, and look after low-income families.

    NZ Labour just seeks control.

  8. Brownie 8

    Well said, EWS.

  9. Phil 9

    In summary;
    Nationals answer is the ‘carrot’ of tax cuts, and Labours is the ‘stick’ of legislation…

    Conclusion;
    I think it’s time we all got a new mule.

  10. Tane 10

    Australians not only get paid more – they are taxed less.

    Well, that depends which tax bracket you’re looking at, and it also excludes state taxes etc as well as WFF tax credits. It’d be interesting to see a proper comparison of the average NZ and Australian family, taking into account all extra taxes and tax credits. I imagine it would be quite difficult, which is probably why people tend to resort to slogans instead.

    unlike WFF, the Aussie FTB isn’t given to a huge portion of the population

    So that kind of undermines your argument. WFF is a broad but targeted tax credit that goes to a large number of working families. It’s not my preferred mechanism but it seems to work.

    The Aussie’s have good wages

    They do. But you still haven’t addressed how National will raise wages to Australian levels. The point of this post was simple – tax cuts aren’t the answer, wage increases are. So when is National going to address wages? Or are they going to continue to avoid the issue in the hope that no one notices?

  11. BeShakey 11

    “Australians not only get paid more – they are taxed less. ”

    Given the problems that various people have identified with making these comparisons (federal taxes, taxes on buying property etc) it might be an idea to offer some evidence in support of this. Or is it simply another case of ‘if I say it often enough maybe someone will think its true’?

  12. Rocket Boy 12

    I totally agree. The real difference between us and Australia is the wage and salary levels. I would like to think I am doing my bit to push up wages in NZ, I am an employer and we have increased our salaries this year by between 6% and 10%. In New Zealand we should be aiming for a high value and high wage economy and I don’t see that happening with National in charge.

  13. Seamonkey Madness 13

    Rocket Boy,

    As I’m sure you’ll agree, wage increases aren’t anything without the matched productivity increase. Out of curiosity, have you – as an employer – seen that from your workers?

    And Tane, I agree with your argument: Key is talking up tax cuts at every available opportunity, but isn’t tackling the real issue of wage growth.

    Well said EWS.

  14. Phil 14

    It’s all well and good to talk about collective bargaining increasing salary and wages, but this extra cash for the plebs like you and I isn’t just conjoured up out of thin air – it has to come from somewhere else.

    If we’re going to suck it up from business profits, that means there is less to be rolled back into capital-investment and, hence, improved productivity down the track.
    By the way; contrary to the popular belief of thestandard, not all buiness profit gets used by greedy slave-masters to buy another BMW – another case of “if you say it enough it becomes true”?

    Another aspect of this is the argument that “increased wages improve productivity”
    I accept that there is a correlation, but yet again we cannot assume causality in the direction that you’re all implying. I contend that the causality is the other way around – that is; “more productive workers are rewarded today for being more productive yesterday”, not; “the reward you get today encourages you to be more productive tomorrow”.

    Shameless plug; StatsNZ’s “IBULDD” database is provisionally showing some really fascinating stuff in this space – watch out for more from people like the RBNZ, MOTU, and other researchers over the next couple of years)

  15. chris 15

    I have a friend, a mining engineer working in the Northern Territory, and every year he raids NZ and the UK looking for geology and earth science graduates, electricians, diesel mechanics, fitters, welders, mobile drill rig operators, heavy machine operators, truck drivers and pretty much anyone with good references prepared to start at the bottom of the ladder as rig hands and labourers.Last year in NZ he recruited 16 graduates and 60 or so assorted trades people and well over 100 graduates and tradesmen from the UK. All well and good during boom times but if or when the bubble bursts I think you’ll see things going the other way. The Australian housing industry is the other big attraction but when it slows things are going to get very
    uncomfortable for an awful lot of Kiwis who bet the house on the move across the Tasman.
    As for EWSs assertion that Australians are better paid and have lower taxation levels, I accept that wages are higher but so are the costs of living and because he’s not telling the whole story, state taxes, capital gains, death duties, medicare, stamp duties, vehicle registration and compulsory super I’m calling bullshit on the lower taxes mantra

  16. Phil 16

    “All well and good during boom times but if or when the bubble bursts I think you’ll see things going the other way. The Australian housing industry is the other big attraction but when it slows things are going to get very uncomfortable for an awful lot of Kiwis who bet the house on the move across the Tasman.”

    What, you mean kind of like how we had a mini-exodus of tradespeople prior to the Sydney Olympics, when the Aussies were building like mad?
    How many of them came ‘home’? Sweet… F… A…

  17. TomS 17

    Our business leaders are generally very poor comparative to overseas countries. They are basically an unimaginative managerial elite dedicated to a tribal new right ideology that allows them to masquerade as capitalists in lieu of any actual risk taking or real entrepreneurial spirit. The primary focus of our managerial class is the efficient running of a branch office economy dedicated to the generation of maximum profits for their (usually offshore) shareholders. This class demands tax cuts not for reasons of entrepreneurial advantage but rather as a simple wage subsidy from the government. In short, they expect the government (that is, you and me via reduced public services) to make up for their unwillingness to lift wages, they’re under investment in training and technology (hence the low productivity) and a blinkered short-termism in planning.

    Of course, given the neo-colonial role and the globalised loyalties of most of our business class they always bitterly oppose any measures that would raise wages and productivity. The irony of their blathering about tax cuts and the need to be competitive would be comical if it wasn’t so tragic.

    There is an old saying – “there is not such thing as good or bad soldiers, just good or bad generals”. I would paraphrase that for our business leaders – “There is no such thing as a good or bad workforce, just good or bad managers”.

  18. Rocket Boy 18

    Seamonkey: Yes we have been working hard to increase productivity and are about 20% ahead of where we were last year. I agree that productivity and reward go hand in hand and that is where business should be putting its efforts.

  19. Draco TB 19

    It’s all well and good to talk about collective bargaining increasing salary and wages, but this extra cash for the plebs like you and I isn’t just conjoured up out of thin air – it has to come from somewhere else.

    And most righties go round telling us that it’s not a zero sum game…

    If we’re going to suck it up from business profits, that means there is less to be rolled back into capital-investment and, hence, improved productivity down the track.

    Not that there’s a lot of investment in NZ into the productive sectors anyway – most of it seems to go into housing which is why we need foreign investment to keep the economy going. Foreign investment just sucks the profits out of the economy and keeps it stagnant because there’s very little left to reinvest.

    Another aspect of this is the argument that “increased wages improve productivity’
    I accept that there is a correlation, but yet again we cannot assume causality in the direction that you’re all implying. I contend that the causality is the other way around – that is; “more productive workers are rewarded today for being more productive yesterday’, not; “the reward you get today encourages you to be more productive tomorrow’.

    Productivity has increased as shown by the increase in business profits but wages have not risen at the same rate. This would, according to you, prove that being more productive isn’t actually being rewarded in NZ. This may be why people are leaving.

    Correlations a wonderful thing isn’t it.

  20. East Wellington Superhero 20

    Tane,

    “WFF is a broad but targeted tax credit that goes to a large number of working families.”

    Whilst not really wanting to go off on a tangent on WFF, I think it’s important to highlight something. I once heard WFF described and “spending money to make our economy less productive”. I’ve heard dozens of stories in my personal circles (so I can only assume this is repeated all over NZ) of people chosing to refuse offers of pay increases and job promotions because they’ll lose their WFF benefit.

    This has a terrible impact in an individual’s career and the fortunes of their dependents, and a terrible impact on the economy as a whole. One example was of an analyst who refused to be promoted to a manager (a significant opportunity to develope an important skill set) and another of a person who was asked if they wanted to be promoted to a position where he would be teaching apprentice welders. So, in the later case multiple working Kiwis are disadvantaged.
    (I mean it’s nuts – on one hand you have the govt talking about a knowledge economy and the govt funding on the job education to make us more skilled – and then on the other hand the govt throws a billion into WFF which discourages on the job skills improvement – this is the Party of the workers – if it wasn’t so worrying it’d be funny.)

    There is also the fact that people don’t work longer hours. Now, you can complain that in a modern economy people should be able to enjoy a 40 hour week. However, some NZers want to get ahead (in fact you’ll find that most wealthy people are those in business who do at least 60 hour weeks) but WFF prevents them from doing so.

    Money is being spent to make NZ less productive. In a terrible irony, WFF hurts Kiwi workers – the very people Labour claims to be the campions of.

    Then of course there’s the fact that WFF was largely and election bribe anyway. But I think the points I raised above are more concerning.

  21. East Wellington Superhero 21

    Oh, and regarding the so-called “extra” taxes Australia pays – not once have I seen any analysis of how big they are and what they add to the Aussie tax burden.

    Do you have the numbers? If so please share them with the class.

    It’s a silly one-liner that Dr. Cullen uses (and I suspect that you’re just repeating) because he’s knows that no one will actually go and do the analysis. And even if you did it wouldn’t be applicable and it’s probably not that much anyway. For example, stamp taxes are a red-herring as they’re generally on property sales which most Aussies would only do a handful of times in their lives.

    Taxes are lower in Australia. Everyone from the OECD to the RBA, to the RBNZ, to Boy’s Brigade knows they are lower – the numbers are there – you can’t just ignore them.

  22. Gooner 22

    Why should National or any government for that matter be tasked with the job of lifting wages? It’s got nothing to do with a government. It’s a private matter between the employer and employee. I just signed a new employment contract and at 3.5% unemployment could virtually name my price. I didn’t ask Helen Clark or John Key what to do!

    What governments can do is set an economic framework that allows for productivity increases that will allow wage growth. It is dangerous to talk about wage growth in isolation, it goes hand in hand with productivity increases.

  23. It’s all well and good to talk about collective bargaining increasing salary and wages, but this extra cash for the plebs like you and I isn’t just conjoured up out of thin air – it has to come from somewhere else.

    If we’re going to suck it up from business profits, that means there is less to be rolled back into capital-investment and, hence, improved productivity down the track.

    Increasing wages can have the reverse effect. Often an increase in wages results in an increase in productivity as firms recognise the need for capital investment in order to make the most of their labour. Cheap labour is often an incentive to avoid capital investment (and investment in training/upskilling etc).

    And there’s plenty of profit available to do this. Last year alone the NZX increased it’s value by 22% and there’s are more than one Australian shipping billion dollar plus profits out of NZ.

  24. there’s are

    Should read “there’s”

  25. Tane 25

    it’s value doesn’t need an apostrophe either. You’re slipping ‘sod…

  26. schrodigerscat 26

    Nice to know the lawyer market is so buoyant Gooner.

  27. Tane,

    1. Apart from its lack of units on the vertical axis, your graph doesn’t indicate whether it’s measuring income before tax or after tax. Given that you’re saying taxes have had no effect over the years shown, don’t you think that’s somewhat important? Don’t you think you should also show on the same graph the rise in tax levels over the years shown? Or would that confound the point you’re trying to make?

    2. Given that you’re using the graph to indicate the difference between NZ and Australian wages, perhaps you’d care to track Australian take-home pay against NZ on the same graph, and then perhaps you’ll see why NZers have been heading to the ticket office in their droves.

    3. Quite incredibly, you seem to imagine that there is no connection between tax levels and wage levels. Quite apart from the obvious connection between take-home pay and gross pay (a relationship your graph carefully skates over) you appear entirely unaware of the all too obvious connection between productivity — which is what grows wages — and taxes.

    Excessive taxes and regulations tend to strangle productivity and wage rises that come from greater productivity. Minimal taxes and regulations tend to the opposite effect.

    It would be ignorant to ignore that all too obvious point, don’t you think, and also to ignore the other all too obvious fact: that Australia has been the fortunate beneficiary of lower taxes on productivity than NZ, and as a consequence they enjoy higher wages than we do in this small authoritarian backwater.A s Paul Walker points out, the ratio of NZ tax to GDP has been increasing over the last 30 year: “In 1975 New Zealand’s ratio was 28.5%, in 2005 it was 37.8%. … What is more worrying is that the gap between New Zealand and Australia in terms of this ratio is increasing. In 1975 New Zealanders paid a bit less than 3% more of GDP in tax than Australians, while by 2005 the gap had risen to about 7%. Not a good look.”

    Not a good look either to ignore all this in the hope you can distract attention by some graphic sleight of hand.

  28. burt 28

    Tane

    That graph again…. Is this the third time it’s been trotted out on this blog to make an attempt to prove Labour good – National bad”. The other thing your “logic” misses is that salaries and wages have been higher in Aussie for about 30 years, not just since National were required to rescue the economy from the train wreck Labour got it into during the late 80’s.

    Peter Cresswell makes some very valid points, will you address them?

    Another interesting thing about this graph is it shows how much Labour have shafted students in NZ. In 1992 the student allowance was set under the failed policies of the past at $150/Week. According to your graph that was probably about $50/week below the median wage. Now in 2008 it must be close to $350/week below the median wage.

  29. Draco TB 29

    Taxes are lower in Australia. Everyone from the OECD to the RBA, to the RBNZ, to Boy’s Brigade knows they are lower – the numbers are there – you can’t just ignore them.

    The OECD disagrees with your statement that Australia pays less tax.
    http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal/cit_731/52/32/36366632TaxingWages_Chart_1_1.jpg
    http://www.oecd.org/vgn/images/portal/cit_731/51/55/36366659TaxingWages_Chart_1_2.jpg

    Excessive taxes and regulations tend to strangle productivity and wage rises that come from greater productivity. Minimal taxes and regulations tend to the opposite effect.

    This is supposedly correct but NZ, which pays less tax and is easier to do business in, seems to be the exception to the rule.

  30. Pascal's bookie 30

    burt, what actual policies do you think have caused the divergence between us and Aus?

    Remembering back to the eighties and early nineties I recall articles in the economist saying that NZ had gone about the reforms a little rashly but had done so very purely. That is to say that we applied the economic theories better than places like say, Australia. We privatised more, we deregulated more, we leveled playing fields with atom bombs as it were. We floated and desubsidised, detariffed and let a thousand foodbanks bloom. They predicted this would serve us very well.

    Unfortunatly we had a share market crash like everyone else, but it hit us a lot harder for some reason. Our market was sometimes described as a wildwest, though looking back it was more of a turkey shoot. Kiwis lost faith in the stock market and it has taken untill very recently for that faith to start creeping back. Somehow Australia who took a more measured and pragmatic approach has fared much better.

    Talk to me burt. Particularly, talk to me abnout labour law and how Australia has differed in their approach over the last 20 yrs.

  31. lprent 31

    I’ve been collating dad4justice’s various accounts and IP addresses.

    His persistent trolling with little content is starting to annoy me (and by the looks of it – everyone else).

    So I’ve put a temporary moderation block on factors that identify him. This will remain in effect while I find or code a better solution, or he starts writing in a better style and with more sense.

    Unfortunately this will lead to some other comments going into moderation. I will clear them as fast as they get notified.

    I thank you for your patience over the next few days.

    Lynn

  32. burt 32

    Pascal’s bookie

    One of the most noticeable differences between Aussie and NZ is attitude. In Aussie not everybody is equal. They are not all the same, participated is what is expected and achieved is a bonus, like we are in NZ.

    Aussies still test their primary school children, something that is now optional in NZ. Aussie kids sports teams are still coached to win. Wealthy people are not denigrated as rich pricks and success is not sinful. Aussie rich pricks are taxed higher than rich pricks here and Aussie battlers are taxed less than Kiwi battlers. Go figure that Labour call themselves left wing!

    Aussies still reward success and don’t praise failure.

    I can talk at length about the differences between NZ and Aussie in the late 80’s. I was working there when Hawk was crying on TV about his fling and when Howard came to power. It was an interesting comparison between NZ then and Aussie and it still is interesting today. It’s not all about tax, it’s about opportunity and attitude as well.

  33. r0b 33

    Burt – why did you move to Australia? Why did you come back? Genuine enquiry (I’m not trolling here). I’m just interested if the decision was a purely economic one?

  34. Pascal's bookie 34

    burt, thanks. What about policy?

    Funny thing is I’ve spent a bit of time in Aus myself, and I study their media a lot in my work environment over here (I work for a transnational so I am in daily contact with many ockers as well) and the same complaints about political correctness are raised over there. Usually they compare themselves to the States in ways that we compare ourselves to them.

    Do you think that what you consider to be Australia’s more left wing policies have contributed to their sucess? (I guess that was what my questions really were getting at). If not, why not? And if so, then why do you often criticise Labour for being more left wing than National?

    The stuff about attitude seems like handwaving to me, unless you believe that economic policy does not matter. And if it does not matter, why oppose or support differrent policies?

    Thanks again for the non troll response.

  35. burt 35

    rOb

    The decision to move was certainly a financial/economic one. The pay for the same role was substantially better and in the late 80’s the cost of living was very similar. Rents were comparable (10% more in Aussie at that time), public transport was much cheaper and oh so modern!. The decision to come back was inevitable family reasons in NZ.

    Tax rebates for private education and private health care (both of which are available in Aussie – neither in NZ) are a significant policy difference between NZ & Aussie tax wise. The 0% income tax threshold in Aussie ($10K?) must also be a big draw card to minimum wage workers. It’s not just high earning National voter scum leaving the country for ‘take home pay’ reasons.

  36. burt 36

    Pascal’s bookie

    It’s flipping obvious that Aussies more progressive taxation system is what allows them to have such low taxation at the bottom end of the income scale and provide more livable welfare.

    However it’s not just taxation rates, it’s thresholds and it’s also fairness of the taxation that is important. Few people would argue that earning circa $200K makes you a high earner in Aussie. Many many people would argue that earning $60K in NZ makes you a rich prick. Australia (a little bit like Norway) have actively managed their taxation rates. In NZ rates and thresholds have been static and targeted benefits have been the order of the day while the govt gets richer and people get poorer.

  37. r0b 37

    Interesting Burt. Pay is at the top of your list, and taxes way down the bottom. Your individual case certainly supports the point of the original post, that if we are concerned about the numbers leaving for Australia, it is higher NZ wages that we need.

    And family reasons always bring us home. Thank goodness there is room in life for motivations that are not economic. ‘Night.

  38. Pascal's bookie 38

    Thanks again burt.

    I’m a bit confused about a few points, given other things you’ve written. But I’m tired. So there you go 🙂

    I agree with you completely that thresholds should be indexed and taxation more progressive. I think National are worse on this issue.

    I agree that people on 60k are not rich pricks. Some of them are poor pricks, some are comfortable pricks and most are not pricks at all.

    I don’t agree that ‘Many many people would argue that earning $60K in NZ makes you a rich prick.’ I think that’s a straw man. Cullen was talking about Key, and Cullen is but one man in any case.

    I think that when the govt runs a surplus ‘the people’ don’t necessarily get poorer. In fact, (leaving election year bribes from all sides to the side for a moment*), I fear that we may end up very glad that Cullen has been such a scrooge, given global economic trends.

    *Aussie pollies are worse than ours at this as well IMHO. (do they have a Fiscal Responsibility Act?)

    g’night

  39. AncientGeek 39

    The pingbacks on here are getting interesting. For instance this debate over at The visible hand in economics – Migrant outflows to Australia, etc.

    I had to engage my brain at a rather higher level than I usually do around here. Apart from anything else I had to leave a bookmark so I can find it again when I’m not quite so tired

    captcha: scored repro
    ??

  40. outofbed 40

    Ancient Greek i followed you link and now my brain is fucked
    I blame you

    captcha data antithesis

  41. AG – bro that link’s just bullshit. Let’s talk about something serious. Like whether Insolent Prick fucks pigs or like how our democracy’s under threat. Burt? Are you out there Burty-boy?

  42. outofbed 42

    Robinsod Some bastard is using your handle

  43. What the fuck??? Where? I’ll rip ’em a new one…

  44. AncientGeek 44

    Careful Robinsod, I think that the education is showing.

    I must say it is more fun cutting loose occassionally.

    Has anyone seen Michele recently…..

  45. Billy 45

    Care to comment on this allegation?:

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2008/02/labour_promises_years_and_years_of_tax_cuts.html#comment-405209

    [lprent – sure.

    It means that some pathetic person didn’t read the post and probably doesn’t understand how wordpress and google operate.

    The post argued that the higher wage level in aussie were more important than the differences in tax rates in aussie.
    Either title would have expressed that. Tane obviously changed his mind after he pressed Publish, and changed the working title. Google scanned in the intervening period.

    Since google is scanning this site almost continuously (measured in minutes between sweeps), it is hardly surprising that it might have a copy pre-update.

    So would you like me to comment on my opinion of someone who finds this important?

    Lynn]

  46. Billy 46

    Iprent/Lynn,

    Do you enjoy drinking? Can I advocate that you do more of it? Your every comment bristles with an angry energy that cannot make you pleasant to live with.

    I am uncertain of the chronolgy, but the following events occurred:

    1. Post made under heading “Tax cuts not the answer”
    2. Labour announces tax cuts
    3. Heading changed

    Surely you can see why that is of interest.

    [lprent – I was answering the question that was implied in the link. How is it possible to change the title]

  47. Tane 47

    Hi Billy, as Lynn rightly suspected I changed the title immediately after pressing publish as I realised the second title – “Tax cuts and the wage gap” – was a better reflection of what I was saying in the post. If you read the post again you’ll see I said explicity said that “tax cuts are not the answer”.

    It’s amazing what absurd and desperate lengths some people will go to to try and attack this blog.

  48. Billy 48

    What about my other point? Lynn/Iprent has turned into the angry little man of the Standard. Every thread you read lately, there he is, shouting at us in his angry black text, all defensive about the slightest thing. He sounds like a humourless bore.

    [lprent – yes. I run the backend of the site – why would I need a sense of humour to do that? Just at present I’m looking at trolling.]

  49. Tane 49

    Billy that’s a question for Lynn, not me, but if you’d had to put up with the kind of personal attacks he has over the last few weeks I suspect you’d be a little annoyed too.

  50. Oh Billy quick! I noticed at the visible hand they changed a title after I pointed out a spelling mistake. Goddamn lackeys. Go geddim tiger!

  51. Billy 51

    Yeah, ‘sod. Let’s pretend it’s about changing the title, rather thatn how and why the title was changed. Fuck me, I only asked the question. I am unprepared to die in a ditchover it. As it happened, Tane’s answer is a damn good one: the article says tax cuts are bad. I’m fine with that, so there’s no need for all the advanced ‘soddiness.

    And as for Lynn/Iprent. I fear he’s taking himself too seriously. That last little ominous “just at present I’m looking at trolling” thing was creepily officious. He doesn’t get an invite to my fantasy bloggers’ dinner party. Despite his last hurtful comment, ‘sod does. He’s seated next to IP: I think there’d be a whole opposites attract thing happening.

    [lprent – thats ok, I’ll pass. I’m known as being anti-social. For instance, as far as I’m aware I’ve only ever met one editor on this site, and that was over 6 months ago]

  52. Billy 52

    “For instance, as far as I’m aware I’ve only ever met one editor on this site, and that was over 6 months ago”

    Fascinating.

  53. He’s seated next to IP.

    Oh yes please! Will there be steak?

  54. Billy 54

    I thought pork.

  55. It’s ok to think it Billy.

  56. r0b 56

    Billy, Every sysadmin I’ve ever known has been somewhat grumpy (in their professional context). It’s something to do with dealing with lusers all day…

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    Walking through the rooms in my headI came across your image,You looked at me with that sweet smile and saidSomething they won't let me repeatWe hurt the ones we love the mostIts a subtle form of complimentAfter you’ve watched Christopher Luxon for a while you think to yourself - that ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 hours ago
  • Gordon Campbell on cancer drugs, and the Great Ferries Cancellation Disaster of ’23
    The decision taken last December to cancel the contract for the two purpose-built Cook Strait ferries – without having a Plan B in mind, let alone in place – has been a calamity that’s going to haunt New Zealand for decades to come, long after the Luxon government has been ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    3 hours ago
  • June-24 AT Board Meeting
    Today the Auckland Transport board meets again,so I’ve taken a look through the items on their public agenda to see what’s interesting. Musical Chairs The first item of note is another change to the make-up of the AT Board. The legislation that established Auckland Transport allows for Waka Kotahi to ...
    5 hours ago
  • Colonial oppression in Kanaky
    How does France deal with opponents of its colonisation of the Pacific? Arrest them and deport them to France to face prosecution in a foreign court: A group of pro-independence leaders charged with allegedly organising protests that turned into violent unrest in New Caledonia last month was indicted on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    21 hours ago
  • Media Link: Post-pandemic economics and the rise of national populism” on “A View from Afar.”
    On this edition of AVFA Selwyn Manning and I discuss post-pandemic economics and the rise of national populism. It seems that a post-pandemic turn to more nationalist economic policies may have encouraged the rise of populists who use xenophobia and … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    21 hours ago
  • Climate Change: National’s vice-signalling
    Two weeks ago the climate denier government announced they would be giving farmers what they want and removing agriculture from the ETS. On Friday they introduced the bill for it to the House. Due to past efforts and backdowns, the Climate Change Response Act has a lot of inactive clauses ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    22 hours ago
  • The Left’s Joyous Cherub: Keith Locke, 1944 – 2024.
    The Struggle Continues: Keith Locke belonged to a generation that still believed in a world that could be, through struggle, relieved of its chains. That struggle constituted the core of a life lived with purpose, courage and determination. MANY NEW ZEALANDERS would, no doubt, have been surprised to discover that Keith Locke was ...
    22 hours ago
  • The Night Before Yule: A Reprint
    A couple of my stories – A Breath Through Silver, and The Last Libation – have previously earned themselves reprints. Well, I am pleased to report that the nice people at Heroic Fantasy Quarterly (https://www.heroicfantasyquarterly.com/) have included my narrative horror-poem, The Night Before Yule, in their newly-compiled Best Of anthology. ...
    23 hours ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Monday, June 24
    TL;DR: Responding to the grounding of the Aratere over the weekend, the Government has signalled it will buy new replacement ferries, but only enough to replace existing freight capacity.That would effectively limit Aotearoa-NZ’s ability to handle any growth in population or the need to reduce emissions by shifting freight from ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 day ago
  • Greater Auckland 2.0 – we need your help!
    Hi, we’re Greater Auckland. We’ve been a part of the landscape for over 15 years now. Over that time, we’ve provided informed commentary, evidence-based analysis, and inspiring visions for the future of Tāmaki Makaurau. You might know us from such hits as: The Congestion-Free Network 2013 (and its 2017 ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 day ago
  • Distractions and Inaction.
    Fancy, a fast carA bag full of lootI can nearly guaranteeYou'll end up with the bootThe Prime Minister arrived home, perhaps a bit surprised, maybe even secretly a little pleased at the diversion, to find the country falling apart. Things going more badly that even his c-list, self back-slapping, trip ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 day ago
  • KiwiRail aground while Government obfuscates
    The problems at KiwiRail go further and deeper than the maintenance issue, which caused the inter-island ferry Aratere to run aground on Saturday. The company is also the subject of a damning report published last week about the way it runs its rail operations from the Transport Accident Investigation Commission. ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 day ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #25
    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 16, 2024 thru Sat, June 22, 2024. Stories we promoted this week, by publication date: Before June 16 ‘Unprecedented mass coral bleaching’ expected in 2024, says expert, ...
    2 days ago
  • The Realm Of The Possible.
    The People’s House: What would it be like to live in a country where a single sermon could prick the conscience of the comfortable? Where a journalist could rouse a whole city to action? Where the government could be made to respond to the people’s concerns? Where real change was possible? And ...
    2 days ago
  • Public Service Day
    Good morn or evening friendsHere's your friendly announcerI have serious news to pass on to everybodyWhat I'm about to sayCould mean the world's disasterCould change your joy and laughter to tears and painIt's thatLove's in need of love todayDon't delaySend yours in right awayHate's goin' 'roundBreaking many heartsStop it pleaseBefore ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • When is a road of National significance not a road of National significance?
    I loved everything about my first Cook Strait ferry crossing: a day parked in the car in howling Wellington wind and driving Wellington rain, waiting to hear if they were going to sail or not; watching the huge black ministerial limousines come and go; listening to the adventures of Chicken ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • Fact Brief – Was the Medieval Warm Period a global event?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Was the Medieval Warm Period a global ...
    3 days ago
  • Aotearoa Runs Aground
    Your face has fallen sad nowFor you know the time is nighWhen I must remove your wingsAnd you, you must try to flyCome sail your ships around meAnd burn your bridges downWe make a little history, babyEvery time you come aroundWhen I went to bed last night I thought the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Wagon keeps movin'
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    3 days ago
  • Mainstreaming Māori
    Mainstreaming need not be inherently anti-Māori. It will be if it is done badly because it will be anti-those-in need, and proportionally more of them are Māori.That the Coalition Government says it will deliver public services on the basis of need rather than, say, race deserves consideration, even though many ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    4 days ago
  • National says “fuck you”
    The Justice Committee has reported back on the government's racist bill to eliminate Māori representation in local government. The report duly notes the Waitangi Tribunal's finding that the bill breaches te Tiriti, and the bill's inconsistency with our international human rights obligations - and then proceeds to ignore both. Instead, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Christopher Luxon is – Big in Japan
    This week our Prime Minister Christopher Luxon… mmm, let’s take a moment to consider just how good that sounds. Hope you weren’t eating.Anyway that guy. Better? That bloke from the telly, he said - what I would say to you is… I’m big in Japan. My kind of people, hard ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Weekly Roundup 21-June-2024
    Tis the winter solstice! The shortest day and longest night of the year. The good news: we’re on our way back to summertime. Here’s another roundup of stories to brighten up your Friday. Our header image is from CRL and shows Waihorotiu Station lit up for Matariki 2024 The ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    4 days ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Friday, June 21
    Our economic momentum remains anaemic, and it’s possible the tiny increase in GDP was a ‘dead cat bounce’. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: Per-capita GDP has fallen 4.3% from its peak over the last 21 months, which is more than it it fell in the Global Financial Crisis recession ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    4 days ago
  • The Futility of Punishment
    Hi,I was in Texas recently and couldn’t stop thinking about how in some parts of America they really like to kill their prisoners. As a society we tend to agree murder is wrong, but somewhere along the way Texas figured it’s fine if it’s after 6pm and the killing is ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    4 days ago
  • The new Beehive approach to the environment
    A persistent theme has been weaving between the Committee rooms at Parliament all this so-called “Scrutiny” week as MPs have probed Ministers and agencies about their work and plans. The question has been simply what the environmental price might be if the country begins to accelerate its infrastructure building to ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    4 days ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #25 2024
    Open access notables Climate Change Is Leading to a Convergence of Global Climate Distribution, Li et al., Geophysical Research Letters: The impact of changes in global temperatures and precipitation on climate distribution remains unclear. Taking the annual global average temperatures and precipitation as the origin, this study determined the climate distribution with the ...
    5 days ago
  • You take nicer pictures when you’re not drunk
    Readers keeping count will know it's more than five years since I gave up booze. Some of you get worried on my behalf when I recount a possibly testing moment. Anxious readers: today I got well tested.All the way across France I've been enquiring in my very polite and well-meaning but ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    5 days ago
  • Cancer
    Turn awayIf you could, get me a drinkOf water 'cause my lips are chapped and fadedCall my Aunt MarieHelp her gather all my thingsAnd bury me in all my favourite coloursMy sisters and my brothers, stillI will not kiss you'Cause the hardest part of this is leaving youI remember the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why we shouldn’t buy new planes for the PM
    Its not often that one has to agree with Judith Collins, but yes, it would indeed cost “hundreds of millions of dollars” (at least) to buy replacement aircraft to fly the Prime Minister on his overseas missions of diplomacy and trade. And yes, the public might well regard that spending ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    5 days ago
  • The Stadium Debate – What About the Transport Options?
    A few weeks ago, Auckland Council took another step in the long-running stadium saga, narrowing its shortlist down to two options for which they will now seek feasibility studies. The recommendation to move forward with a feasibility study was carried twenty to one by the council’s Governing Body for the ...
    5 days ago
  • Bernard’s mid-winter pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 20
    Social Development Minister Louise Upston has defended the Government’s decision to save money by dumping a programme which tops up the pay of disabled workers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: It has emerged the National-ACT-NZ First Government decided to cut wages for disabled workers from the minimum wage to $2 an hour ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • Where the power really resides in Wellington
    The new Chief Executive of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC) yesterday gave a Select Committee a brutally frank outline of the department’s role as the agency right at the centre of power in Wellington. Ben King, formerly a deputy Chief Executive at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • Climate Adam: Why we're still losing the fight against Methane
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Carbon dioxide is the main culprit behind climate change. But in second place is methane: a greenhouse gas stronger than CO2, ...
    6 days ago
  • Climate Change: More ETS failure
    A few weeks ago, I blogged about the (then) upcoming ETS auction, raising the prospect of it failing, leaving the government with a messy budget hole. The auction was today, and indeed, it failed. In fact, it was such a failure that no-one even bothered to bid. Its easy to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • The Return of Jacinda.
    Oh, take me, take me, take meTo the dreamer's ballI'll be right on time and I'll dress so fineYou're gonna love me when you see meI won't have to worryTake me, take mePromise not to wake me'Til it's morningIt's all been trueEarly morning yesterday, well before dawn, doom-scrolling.Not intentionally, that’s ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • How good is the interim NW busway?
    This is a guest post by Pshem Kowalczyk, a long-time follower of the blog. With great fanfare, just over six months ago (on 12 November 2023), AT launched its interim busway for the NorthWest region, with the new WX express service at the heart of the changes. I live ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    6 days ago
  • Consumer confidence collapses after Budget, in contrast with rest of world
    The first widespread survey of consumers and voters since the Budget on May 30 shows a collapse in confidence. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The belt-tightening and tax-cutting Budget delivered on May 30 has not delivered the boost to confidence in the economy the National-ACT-NZ First Government might have ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    6 days ago
  • The end for the Air Force 757s
    The Air Force 757 that broke down with the Prime Minister on board in Port Moresby on Sunday is considered so unreliable that it carries a substantial stock of spare parts when it travels overseas. And the plane also carries an Air Force maintenance team on board ready to make ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    6 days ago
  • At a glance – Was 1934 the hottest year on record?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    7 days ago
  • It's not New Zealand they've never heard of, it's him
    Sometimes you’ll just be so dog-tired, you can only keep yourself awake with a short stab of self-inflicted pain.A quick bite of the lip, for instance.Maybe a slight bite on the tongue or a dig of the nails.But what if you’re needing something a bit more painful?The solution is as ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • Some “scrutiny” II
    Last month I blogged about the Ministry of Justice's Open Government Partnership commitment to strengthen scrutiny of Official Information Act exemption clauses in legislation", and how their existing efforts did not give much reason for confidence. As part of that, I mentioned that I had asked the Ministry for its ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on why the Biden “peace plan” for Gaza is doomed
    After months and months of blocking every attempt by the UN and everyone else to achieve a Gaza ceasefire, US President Joe Biden is now marketing his own three-stage “peace plan” to end the conflict. Like every other contribution by the US since October 7, the Biden initiative is hobbled ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Raised crossings: hearing the voice of vulnerable pedestrians
    This is a guest post by Vivian Naylor, who is the Barrier Free Advisor and Educator at CCS Disability Action, Northern Region, the largest disability support and advocacy organisation in Aotearoa New Zealand. She also advises on AT’s Public Transport and Capital Projects Accessibility Groups. Vivian has been advocating and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • Leaving on a Jet Plane
    So kiss me and smile for meTell me that you'll wait for meHold me like you'll never let me go'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet planeDon't know when I'll be back againOh babe, I hate to go“The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Tuesday, June 18
    The election promises of ‘better economic management’ are now ringing hollow, as NZ appears to be falling into a deeper recession, while other economies are turning the corner. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The economy and the housing market are slumping back into a deep recession this winter, contrasting ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Scrutiny week off to rocky start
    Parliament’s new “Scrutiny” process, which is supposed to allow Select Committees to interrogate Ministers and officials in much more depth, has got off to a rocky start. Yesterday was the first day of “Scrutiny Week” which is supposed to see the Government grilled on how it spends taxpayers’ money and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • The choice could not be more stark’: How Trump and Biden compare on climate change
    This is a re-post from Yale Climate Connections by Barbara Grady Illustration by Samantha Harrington. Photo credits: Justin Lane-Pool/Getty Images, Win McNamee/Getty Images, European Space Agency. In an empty wind-swept field in Richmond, California, next to the county landfill, a company called RavenSr has plotted out land and won ...
    1 week ago
  • Differentiating between democracy and republic
    Although NZ readers may not be that interested in the subject and in lieu of US Fathers Day missives (not celebrated in NZ), I thought I would lay out some brief thoughts on a political subject being debated in the … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's mid-winter pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 17
    TL;DR: Chris Bishop talks up the use of value capture, congestion charging, PPPs, water meters, tolling and rebating GST on building materials to councils to ramp up infrastructure investment in the absence of the Government simply borrowing more to provide the capital.Meanwhile, Christopher Luxon wants to double the number of ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • You do have the power to change things
    When I was invited to come aboard and help with Greater Auckland a few months ago (thanks to Patrick!), it was suggested it might be a good idea to write some sort of autobiographical post by way of an introduction. This post isn’t quite that – although I’m sure I’lll ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    1 week ago
  • Turning Away – Who Cares If We Don't?
    On the turning awayFrom the pale and downtroddenAnd the words they say which we won't understandDon't accept that, what's happeningIs just a case of other's sufferingOr you'll find that you're joining inThe turning awayToday’s guest kōrero is from Author Catherine Lea. So without further ado, over to Catherine…I’m so honoured ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Dissecting Tickled
    Hi,Tickled was one of the craziest things that ever happened to me (and I feel like a lot of crazy things have happened to me).So ahead of the Webworm popup and Tickled screening in New Zealand on July 13, I thought I’d write about how we made that film and ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand Webworm Popup + Tickled!
    Hi,I’m doing a Webworm merch popup followed by a Tickled screening in Auckland, New Zealand on July 13th — and I’d love you to come. I got the urge to do this while writing this Webworm piece breaking down how we made Tickled, and talking to all the people who ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    1 week ago
  • What China wants from NZ business
    One simple statistic said it all: China Premier Li Qiang asked Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell what percentage of the company’s overall sales were made in China. “Thirty per cent,” said Hurrell. In other words, New Zealand’s largest company is more or less dependent on the Chinese market. But Hurrell is ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Review: The Worm Ouroboros, by E.R. Eddison (1922)
    One occasionally runs into the question of what J.R.R. Tolkien would have thought of George R.R. Martin. For years, I had a go-to online answer: we could use a stand-in. Tolkien’s thoughts on E.R. Eddison – that he appreciated the invented world, but thought the invented names were silly, and ...
    1 week ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #24
    A listing of 35 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 9, 2024 thru Sat, June 15, 2024. Story of the week A glance at this week's inventory of what experts tell us is extreme weather mayhem juiced by ...
    1 week ago
  • Sunday Morning Chat
    After a busy week it’s a good day to relax. Clear blues skies here in Tamaki Makaurau, very peaceful but for my dogs sleeping heavily. In the absence of a full newsletter I thought I’d send out a brief update and share a couple of posts that popped up in ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • The Book of Henry
    Now in the land of Angus beef and the mighty ABsWhere the steaks were juicy and the rivers did run foulIt would often be said,This meal is terrible,andNo, for real this is legit the worst thing I've ever eatenBut this was an thing said only to others at the table,not ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Fact Brief – Is ocean acidification from human activities enough to impact marine ecosystems?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by Sue Bin Park in collaboration with members from the Skeptical Science team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is ocean acidification from human ...
    1 week ago
  • Happiness is a Warm Gun
    She's not a girl who misses muchDo do do do do do, oh yeahShe's well-acquainted with the touch of the velvet handLike a lizard on a window paneI wouldn’t associate ACT with warmth, other than a certain fabled, notoriously hot, destination where surely they’re heading and many would like them ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Still doing a good 20
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • Coalition of the Unwilling?
    What does Budget 2024 tell us about the current government? Muddle on?Coalition governments are not new. About 50 percent of the time since the first MMP election, there has been a minority government, usually with allied parties holding ministerial portfolios outside cabinets. For 10 percent of the time there was ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    2 weeks ago
  • Of red flags and warning signs in comments on social media
    Somewhat surprisingly for what is regarded as a network of professionals, climate science misinformation is getting shared on LinkedIn, joining other channels where this is happening. Several of our recent posts published on LinkedIn have attracted the ire of various commenters who apparently are in denial about human-caused climate change. Based ...
    2 weeks ago
  • All good, still
    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 weeks ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 weeks ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    2 weeks ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 weeks ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 weeks ago

  • New support for agricultural emissions reduction
    The Government and the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) are together committing an additional $8 million towards AgriZeroNZ to boost New Zealand’s efforts to reduce agricultural emissions. Agriculture Minister Todd McClay says the strength of the New Zealand economy relies on effective and affordable emission reduction solutions for New Zealand’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Transformative investment in cancer treatments and more new medicines
    The coalition Government is delivering up to 26 cancer treatments as part of an overall package of up to 54 more new medicines, Health Minister Dr Shane Reti and Associate Health Minister David Seymour announced today. “Pharmac estimates that around 175,000 people will benefit from the additional treatments in just ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • More support for drought-affected communities
    The coalition Government is providing more financial support to drought-stricken farmers and growers in many parts of the country to help with essential living costs. “Rural Assistance Payments have been made available in 38 districts affected by dry conditions to help eligible farmers and growers whose income has taken a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Job seekers to report on progress after six months from today
    A new requirement for people on Jobseeker Support benefits to meet with MSD after six months to assess how their job search is going gets underway today. About 20,000 Jobseeker beneficiaries with full-time work obligations are expected to attend MSD’s new ‘Work check-in’ seminars over the next 12 months, Social ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New cops means more Police on the beat
    The decision to deploy more Police on the beat in Auckland CBD has been welcomed by Police Minister Mark Mitchell and Associate Police Minister Casey Costello. Starting from 1 July, an additional 21 police officers will be redeployed in Auckland City, bringing the total number of beat police in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government takes action to address youth crime
    The Government is introducing a new declaration for young offenders to ensure they face tougher consequences and are better supported to turn their lives around, Children’s Minister Karen Chhour announced today. The establishment of a Young Serious Offender declaration delivers on a coalition Government commitment and supports the Government’s target ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Reserve Bank chair reappointed
    Professor Neil Quigley has been reappointed as Chair of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand Board for a further term of two years, until 30 June 2026.  “Professor Quigley has played a key role in establishing the new Board after the commencement of the new RBNZ Act on 1 July ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • School attendance increases
    School attendance data released today shows an increase in the number of students regularly attending school to 61.7 per cent in term one. This compares to 59.5 per cent in term one last year and 53.6 per cent in term four. “It is encouraging to see more children getting to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Record investment in public transport services
    The Government has announced a record 41 per cent increase in indicative funding for public transport services and operations, and confirmed the rollout of the National Ticketing Solution (NTS) that will enable contactless debit and credit card payments starting this year in Auckland, Transport Minister Simeon Brown says.“This Government is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • GDP data shows need to strengthen and grow the economy
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