Tax cuts no help for those worse off

Written By: - Date published: 7:59 pm, February 24th, 2009 - 73 comments
Categories: families, tax - Tags:

According to RNZ:

Official papers confirm low income families will be worse off under the National Government’s tax cut package, compared with Labour’s.

Radio New Zealand‘s political editor says papers obtained under the Official Information Act, also show higher earners will be better off. From April 2011 a person with children earning $40,000 per year will pay $250 more per year in tax than if Labour had stayed in power. The less money earned, the bigger the loss.

However, someone earning $100,000 will be $750 per year better off than under Labour.  Low income single workers, who don’t get the Working for Families tax credits, will also be much better off. A single person earning $40,000 will get an extra $530 per year by 2011 under the Government’s package.

You can listen here to the item regarding it (which was on Morning Report).

73 comments on “Tax cuts no help for those worse off”

  1. northpaw 1


    excellent! Morning Report — the programme where Geoff Robinson does a promo including the statement “We ask the questions so you can hear the answers.”

    Value being how those answers are from the horse’s mouth as it were. Which, IMO, puts radio right up there in the permanent firmament. cf msm print media and reliance on correct reporting, questioning, answering and all..

    On taxcuts I get the msge to go for $100K p/a and gain another $14 + a week. Assuming I’m still up to it post 2011.

    BTW: was this taxplan dreamt up pre-Recession or post..?

  2. Pk 2


    I could have started the Labour instant increase of the top tax rate as soon as they got in power with the headline – Cullen hit’s those on $100K with a $3,700 tax bill.

    It’s all in the presentation

  3. northpaw 3

    dunno why but I ask a simple question like in the prior comment and get a claimed related tipoff to Bloomberg news service, which has the Ben Bernanke report to Congress.. Here’s the clip:—

    The Federal Reserve chairman, delivering semiannual testimony required in legislation written by the late lawmakers, will describe a U.S. economy returning to growth next year without generating many new jobs. Even with credit markets thawing, Fed officials see unemployment persisting at 8 percent or higher through the final three months of 2010.

    Can’t say whether powers-that-be here will attempt emulate this kind of thing. Can say there’s some track record to suggest they might try for it.. then the matter of public confidence.. and pitching a plan on presupposed conditions.. and being seen to savvy future jobs prospects etc

  4. mike 4

    Shock horror – are you suggesting that people earning up to 40K are going to actually pay some tax under National – those filthy rich pricks…

  5. BLiP 5

    Just like every thing the National goverment has done in its first 100 days, this is yet another example of the myriad ways the rich will get richer and the poor poorer.

    John Key – he so loves the underclass he wants more !

  6. Monty 6

    well the poor might then want to make an effort to become rich then eh!

    This is about giving ambition to the low socio-economic classes – work hard – save, set your goals and go and acheive tem – and then one day you will be richer (and a national voter / supporter like 60% of the voting population (as opposed to the 27% left still supporting Labour

    • mybuddyonly 6.1

      You idiot some people need to do low wage jobs to keep this country running. You wouldn’t be able to get alot of things if everyone took high paying jobs. Think about it

  7. jimbo 7

    So you’re still comparing what’s actually being implemented by this Government against tax cuts that the previous Labour government, in its final death throes, waved in front of the electorate’s nose like chocolate cake to try and win their votes back…?

    We’re making this comparison EVEN THOUGH, on the previous occasion that same Labour government promised a tax-cut pre-election, it cancelled it once returned to power.

    We’re making this comparison even though the previous Labour government, and the current labour opposition, are basically idealogically opposed tax cuts in any shape or form.

    In an election about trust, no one who voted National actually trusted Labour to deliver any tax cuts at all. If Labour were in power right now, Cullen would be cancelling the tax cuts on the grounds of “fiscal prudence” and simultaneously p1ssing government money left, right and centre under the guise of “stimulus”.

    Comparing what National promised and delivered with the fictional “Labour’s tax cuts” is like asking whether Carl Lewis can run faster than the Easter Bunny. Worth remembering this sort of nonsense reporting next time you want to allege National is getting an “easy ride” from the mainstream media.

  8. Pat 8

    Of course Jimbo is right. I can’t help but think that when Helen said “jobs, jobs, jobs” were the main priority, the flip side was going to be “taxes, more taxes, tax cuts cancelled and tax increases”.

    One of the spin-offs of Key delivering on election promises, is that it helps to maintain that magical intangible thing called “confidence”.

    If Key can maintain some level of consumer and business confidence by his actions, and also confidence in his leadership, then that may be the one thing that keeps the economy from slipping into freefall.

  9. Bevanj 9

    Thank you jimbo.

    I do also wish that occassionally the msm would remind the masses just how many actual dollars someone earning $100k and $40k will contribute to running our country.

  10. Janet 10

    What about those on lower incomes who are working part time and giving the rest of their time to voluntary work? Their earnings are likely to be in the bracket that will have the biggest percentage tax increase – those earning about $14,000 to $20,000. They are going to be penalised for their low earnings by paying more tax under National, and they are also going to be attacked by those ignorant people like Monty who think that human worth is equal to monetary worth.
    I just hope he never expects help from those lowly voluntary workers.

  11. Redbaiter 11

    Sounds like a good argument for flat rate taxes, or alternatively, a poll tax.

  12. Tigger 12

    Hehehehe. I’m in the top tax tier and will be donating my tax cut to the Labour Party – thanks National!

  13. Find a way to measure taxes to make those who earn more = evil so that National = bad.

    That way hopefully no one will notice that those in the higher tiers’ tax bills total more than those on the lower and the state claims a bigger stake out of their pay packets than those on lower incomes.

    What is so wrong with being successful and earning money?

    Flat tax is the only fair tax.

  14. lprent 14

    Pat: The issue with taxcuts in a recession is that giving taxcuts to the higher incomes (like mine) doesn’t help the economy much. The usual theory advanced about why it would help is that the money gets used in productive ventures. However all of the evidence says (including anecdotale) that it immediately goes into the reducing debt and savings.

    The problem is that delivering on some of his election promises is extremely expensive. The FTTH one for instance. The more I look at the economics, the more I realized that this was announced with zero analysis. For instance I’ve been looking at the NZIER report on potential benefits. It is wishful thinking (what I have come to expect from and shows a complete lack of knowledge about the takeup of broadband services and what they are used for. The Castalia report has a much more realistic assessment

  15. vto 15

    Look, the sooner everyone realises that a persons working life belongs to the state and not them the easier it will be. Eh Cullen. After all, give people tax cuts and they just spend it on plasma tvs and overseas holidays and ciggies and piss. Eh Cullen. Better you just take the lot and give us a weekly allowance at a level you deem appropriate. Eh Cullen. What you doing now you can no longer rip off those Hawkes Bay farmers for your schooling eh Cullen. Not to mention those f’..ken rich pricks.

    The old labour lot eh? No wonder they got steamrolled. Blood temperature just returned to pre-08 election boiling levels. Cullen was flawed in so many ways.

  16. @ work 16

    “Eh Cullen. What you doing now you can no longer rip off those Hawkes Bay farmers for your schooling eh Cullen. Not to mention those f..ken rich pricks.”

    Source for that quote please, put up or shut up.

    • vto 16.1

      cullen’s inaugural parliamentary speech. cullen’s infamous rage in parliament last year. did you not know?

  17. George Darroch 17

    Low income single workers, who don’t get the Working for Families tax credits, will also be much better off. A single person earning $40,000…

    $40,000 is not low income. There are a hell of a lot of people in NZ earning much less than this. Including all those who cannot work, but still pay tax on their meagre income flows. Just shows how sheltered from the real world even RNZ journalists are.

    • Draco T Bastard 17.1

      I’d say it is. It certainly doesn’t give you a lot of freedom to actually do anything.

      • George Darroch 17.1.1

        It might feel low to you, but the median salaried income last year was $37,900. Meaning half of all people earning wages have less than this. If you’re doing it tough at $40k spare a thought for those in part time or minimum wage jobs whose incomes are closer to $20k (and for part timers, often below this).

        Choosing a figure that is above average, and then calling this “low income” is either perverse or ignorant.

        The median of all incomes last year was $26,500. Which is exactly where middle NZ is. Not some fantasy land created by those who have quite comfortably been insulated from NZ’s everyday lives for years.

  18. Draco T Bastard 18

    Flat tax is the only fair tax.

    Simplistic reasoning is false. People with a decent income can afford things like tax accountants who point out all the tax dodges available to them. This allows them to bring down the amount of tax they pay. Don’t forget GST – people on the lowest brackets pay more GST as a percentage of their income. The result of all this is that people on the highest personal tax bracket actually pay less tax as a percentage of income than people on the lowest tax bracket.

    I’ll agree to a flat tax when you agree that all tax dodges are an imprisonable offense. To effectively bring in a flat tax you have to remove all tax deductions.

    If you don’t like and are unwilling to support the society you live in then leave. Nobody is forcing you to stay.

    • killinginthenameof 18.1

      Your last paragraph is exactly right. For all the carry on at kiwiblog about how taxation is forced upon them \ stolen from them, at pain of death blah blah, they still choose to stay here, their continued residence in New Zealand is their consent to be taxed.

      • vto 18.1.1

        “their continued residence in New Zealand is their consent to be taxed”. are you serious? that is one of the most think-headed things I have ever read

    • vto 18.2

      wtf you on about draco? you make no sense

      • Draco T Bastard 18.2.1

        What are you having so much difficulty with? If you say I may be able to help you with your misunderstanding.

  19. Bevanj 19

    Flat tax, whatever the rate to pay the bills is the only fair way, and it treats all NZers as equals.

    It removes the ability to trot out this negative line of the rich paying for poor.

    If we could also get equal access to the services these taxes pay for the social divide would reduce further.

    February 25, 2009 at 9:28 am…
    FTTH could well revolutionise the way a small but reasonable proportion of the workforce operates and where they operate from, anyone who gets dressed up to drive to work to sit in front of a computer all day then drive home again. There’ll need to be a shift in management thinking to support this.

    FTTH can provide the level of performance for seamless internet phone and video allowing some services/small businesses to operate in the provinces with much lower overheads for example. This could mean access to more affordable existing housing a revitalising of provincial NZ, easing on city infrastructure/expenditure

    … The current industry “heavyweights” might be able to give me half of what I need in 5 yrs time, whoopee!

  20. Quoth the Raven 20

    For a flat tax to be fair you’d have to find the lowest amount of tax someone pays in this country and tax at that rate. You couldn’t just set a rate that would raise the amount of tax the bulk of people pay and drastically lowers the amount the rich pay a la Thatcher’s poll tax. That’s why it was so unpopular most people ended up paying more tax. To have a fair flat tax in New Zealand, one that doesn’t raise the amount of tax anyone pays, would entail such a reduction in government revenue that they wouldn’t be able to carry out the bulk of the functions that are currently carried out. That could be good or bad depending on your stance.

    killinginthenameof – Don’t spout social contract bullshit. You could argue people consented to anything the government does using that reasoning. Social contract is a fiction.

    • Draco T Bastard 20.1

      Taxes must cover the cost of administering the society. There’s nothing to dictate that they must equal the lowest presently paid.

      For them to be fair everyone must have equal access to tax accountants and all the tax dodges available. As this would be a nightmare to administer the only real alternative is to remove said tax dodges and deductions. There would be one other change – there would be no concept of business as everyone would, technically, be a business unto themselves and once a term becomes universal it no longer has any meaning.

      • George Darroch 20.1.1

        We already have a partial flat tax system, due to the deeply regressive GST. You pay your taxes and then pay a second flat tax rate on everything you spend. GST is a flat tax, plain and simple, and no-one wants to acknowledge it.

        We also have a graduated tax system where everyone gets the benefit of the bottom brackets. And

        As a result, we have one of the flattest tax systems in the world, where according to The Economist in 2005, “In New Zealand, for example, only the richest tenth of households pay much more under the country’s progressive income tax than they would under a 25% flat tax”.

        The workers also pay the great majority of tax in NZ – corporate taxes only raise 17% of tax revenue.

        A left-wing Government would have introduced a tax free bracket, a higher top bracket of $100k +, and abolished GST. These would all be popular. But we had a bunch of neo-liberals in power for the last 25 years. Will we ever get one? Not at this rate….

      • Quoth the Raven 20.1.2

        Draco – That’s only if you believe that society needs administering. Fairness would dictate that a tax should equal that lowest paid. I don’t support a flat tax anyway as I argue below. I agree with you on the tax dodges. Those tax dodges are merely there in the first place to advantage the rich. I can’t for the life of me see how you get to everyone being a business unto themselves, though.

  21. vto 21

    Draco, what you said bore no relationship to what I said. There is no link between the two. That is why you made no sense..

    • Draco T Bastard 21.1

      Yes there is. Taxes are needed to support the society. From what you said it’s apparent that you don’t want to pay taxes, ergo, you don’t want to support the society and therefore must not actually like it.

      • Quoth the Raven 21.1.1

        Not supporting the state does not mean you don’t support society. Your argument doesn’t follow. There are many things I might not want to support through my taxes – our military, perhaps, our secret police, corporate welfare, rapists police officer’s golden handshakes, a gigantic prison system, the state kidnapping of harmless people or innocent people, large sums of money to pay for the security at John Key’s palacial fortress, Peter Dunne’s hairspray, &c, &c.

  22. The Voice of Reason 22

    C’mon, Draco, Baiter, et al. We need fresh ideas, not recycled mistakes from the past.

    Flat tax like they had in the Soviet Union? Poll tax like they had in the middle ages? Tried ’em, rejected ’em, moved on. The western world is now almost uniformly social democratic in outlook and Act’s philosophy (and indeed ACT itself) is very much the spare appendage at the wedding.

    New Zealand voted for the centre ground, not the right. A party of the right won, but on a platform of centrist policies. If they put up the kind of tainted tax proposals you advocate, they will end up like Thatcher; discredited, derided and dumped.

  23. Redbaiter 23

    “If you don’t like and are unwilling to support the society you live in then leave.”

    As much as it pisses you off, this is still a democratic society, and if we don’t agree with something the government does we have the right to vote against it. Take you Stal*nist declarations to C*ba, China or Nth Kor*a, where your intolerance of ideological and political diversity would be right at home.

    • Draco T Bastard 23.1

      If you like the society and are willing to support it then you are more than welcome to stay. The support comes in the form of taxes that are needed for the administration of this society.

  24. vto 24

    No Draco. I did not say that, you read your own interpretation into it which is shown when you say “apparent”.

    It was clear I was having a pretty heavy go at Cullen’s philosophy and approach to taxation, NOT a go at the general idea behind taxation and society. Quite a difference.

    Cullen fans may not realise it but there are many many ways to approach taxation and its status in society.

    You noodle.

    • Draco T Bastard 24.1

      Then produce an actual argument against that philosophy rather than randomly attacking someone in a sarcastic remark that can be so easily misinterpreted.

      • vto 24.1.1

        Fair point, but sometimes a caustic rant can expose the flaws in arguments just as well though. And recall caustic diatribes were Cullen’s screensaver position. What goes around comes around and all that.

  25. Tom Semmens 25

    Anyone claiming a flat tax is “fair” can only live in the la la land of remote economic isolation. In any society with pretensions to being an inclusive, progressive liberal democracy taxation provides an important re-distributive tool to the government.

    Graduated income tax ensures everyone contributes in equal measure.

    Inheritance tax prevents the building up of massive, unearned inter-generational wealth of the sort that is poisonous to democracy.

    All in all, taxation isn’t only an economic tool – it is also an important social policy tool to ensure the sort of society we want can be attained and sustained.

    And despite megaphone presence on the internet of the ACT voting RWNJ’s, there is little evidence New Zealanders wish it any other way.

    • Quoth the Raven 25.1

      I’m not arguing that a flat tax would be better at this time, far from it. Just saying that if it were to be implented that’s how it ought to be implemented without raising anyone’s tax. If we were to enact a flat tax now it would be deeply unfair. The rich are already the main beneficiaries of state privilege in the plutocratic system we have, to cut their tax now and cut the services that go to the poor would entrench that privilege. Taxes should always be cut from the bottom and welfare from the top.

  26. The Voice of Reason 26


    ‘Take you Stal*nist declarations to C*ba, China or Nth Kor*a, where your intolerance of ideological and political diversity would be right at home.’

    And you can take your libertarian declarations to, ah, um, …

    No wait, there must be somewhere in the world where there’s a flat tax. Or no tax at all? Saudi Arabia? Dubai? Inside Ayn Rand’s head? Where exactly has it ever been tried, Redbaiter? Where are the happy folk living under this joyously free and enlightened regime?

    At least with socialism, it has been tried, in many varients and with both successes and failures. There is an imperical element to the socialist debate.

    Sadly, you’re out there with UFOligists and Christians; genuine belief, but zero evidence.

  27. jimbo 27

    Tom – how to you get to “graduated income tax ensures everyone contributes in equal measure”. Surely you’re just begging the question (that it’s “equal” for one person to pay a different price than another)?

    I am pretty sure I can show you mathematically that MY tax contribution and that of Theresa Gattung (or whoever) is not “equal”, as most people would understand it.

    Now let’s be clear on something else – even with a flat tax system, my contribution would STILL NOT be equal to Theresa Gatting’s. A flat tax system would STILL redistribute wealth. You’re getting too worked up when you argue that flat taxes could never be “fair”. Why not?

    I think you’d be right if all we ever had was a poll tax (i.e – each person pays an EQUAL lump sum). That would be la la land. A flatter tax system is perfectly justifiable and had lots of benefits if the govt can still raise enough revenue to perform its functions.

    (FAOD, I have no problem with sensible graduated system, however I get annoyed when people argue AGAINST tax cuts “for the rich” on the grounds that the “rich” are “saving” more tax, when the supposed rich person pays 2, 3 4 or 10 times what the “average joe” is paying for exactly the same services.)

    Building capital up and passing it on to future generations so they can have a better life than you had is not “poisonous to democracy”. Being able to look after and provide for your kids is one of the most powerful motivators there is in life. Take that away and you will certainly take away much of the entrepreneurial drive that is essential for any healthy society. All of us wish we were lucky enough to be born wealthy – if we weren’t it’s no big deal and certainly not reason to tax the cr@p out of those who were to get some sort of revenge.

  28. jimbo 28

    Voice of reason – New Zealand should aim to be like Hong Kong. Generally low levels of tax (graduated but capped at a maximum of 16%), governnent taking tax on property transactions as well (would dampen speculation in property), and generally extremely simple tax system (why bother looking for loopholes when the system is very simple and the rates are low?).

    That’s the counterfactual to consider. It certainly is possible to have low tax and incredibly high levels of public infrastructure and services.

    • northpaw 28.1


      I have seen and noted the term “counterfactual” several times recently. Could you kindly explain what it means please

  29. northpaw 29

    flat-taxers are underminers.. taking their lead from Friedman the Great Underminer of democracy… who has since taken his leave of the rest of us.. blessed fellow.. so.. being underminers remain we conclude them to be low seam and getting lower..

  30. jimbo 30

    Northpaw – that’s the first time I’ve used it here. Intended meaning: that’s what you should be making the comparison with, not with some sort of flat-tax straw man. Typically when you have a hypothesis (e.g. we need a more progressive tax system), you also have a counterfactual to compare the hypothesis with.

    Do you not understand it that way?

    • Pascal's bookie 30.1

      I’ve always understood it to mean something along the lines of, ‘ what would be the case, if fact x was not true ‘, where it is accepted that x is indeed true.

      So for example, when someone argues that ‘if Labour had won the 08 election, then event x would have come to pass’ it’s a counterfactual, because Labour lost.

      I think John Key said the other day, that when judging his govt’s efforts re the great economic unravelling, we should use the latest treasury predictions as a counterfactual baseline. This is because those estimates don’t include his govt’s plan, hence the difference between those estimates and the actual results can be used as a metric of the effects of his policies. ie, If his govt had of done nothing, then those predictions would have become true, so the difference between what happens and what was predicted is down to his policies.

      The validity of that approach depends on your confidence in treasury predictions I guess.

    • northpaw 30.2


      thanks for that.. not what I’d have thought its use was.. saving the possibility of the ‘counter’ part being like over-the-counter.. as in trading for example when the counter is the basis for trade.. your description appears to fit this reasonably well..

      my own first training in science however, would conclude a use of counter-the-fact and logic might suggest this somewhat difficult since fact is subject to probability and counterfact(stet) aint so far as I know…added to which proving the negative(to establish parity) would be nigh impossible.. thus such a use in that context would constitute sophistry..

      If I’m to accept it at all in that way – counterfactual (all one word) – then a trading or tradeable context would need be adopted.. I think.. and one needs to be pretty careful about glazing out consciousness with a barrage of new found words.. as the lawyers for a Citigroup victim recently declared to the US court trying them for fraud.

  31. The Voice of Reason 31

    Whoops! Empirical not imperical, evidently.

  32. Draco T Bastard 32

    Not supporting the state does not mean you don’t support society.

    They are one and the same unless by state you mean some sort of dictatorship rather than a democracy.

    There are many things I might not want to support through my taxes…

    Then vote for or create a party that gets rid of those things but you will still be supporting the state if you did so.

    That’s only if you believe that society needs administering.

    There are things that can only be done at a societal level and to get them done is going to require some sort of administration.

    I can’t for the life of me see how you get to everyone being a business unto themselves, though.

    Because they are. They need food or else they won’t be able to work. Same with housing, education and even sport and recreation. You have an income and that needs to cover your expenses – same as any business and, as with every other business, what you do can’t be supplied at less than cost price. If you are doing without food, having to live in substandard housing, or not going out with your SO once a week for a romantic evening (very definitely a valid expense – helps keep you from going batty) because your income doesn’t cover it then you are running your business very badly because you are trying to run it at less than cost price.

    You can’t see how everyone is a business unto themselves while I find it hard to believe that people don’t realize that they are in business. Why do you think I keep saying that the unions should have all their members as contractors? If they did that though the tax system would collapse within six months – not enough accountants to administer it and government revenue would drop significantly due to all the deductions.

    We have a tax system that was designed by a very small minority to benefit that minority. The tax system needs an overhaul – but there wouldn’t be a capitalist anywhere that would like it done because they wouldn’t have any more deductions to boost their income.

    • vto 32.1

      Draco, society and the state are not the same thing, as you contend.

      This is precisely the point at which those of ‘left’ persuasion and those of ‘right’ persuasion most commonly part ways.

      The fundamental underpinning, shown by this statement of yours, is v a s t l y different from that which I, for example, believe. This is the reason for most all the conflict between left and right imo. The role of state in society.

    • Quoth the Raven 32.2

      They are one and the same unless by state you mean some sort of dictatorship rather than a democracy.

      Franz Oppenheimer said a state “I mean by it that summation of privileges and dominating positions which are brought into being by extra-economic power….I mean by Society, the totality of concepts of all purely natural relations and institutions between man and man…” Now you may disagree with the first, but if you agree with the second you still can’t come to the bizarre conclusion that the state is society.
      I’m guessing you believe fervently in the fiction that is representative democracy and the other lie that is the social contract. This time I’ll quote Proudhon:

      “The illusion of democracy springs from that of constitutional Monarchy’s example–claiming to organize Government by representative means. Neither the Revolution of July (1830), nor that of February (1848) has sufficed to illuminate this. What they always want is inequality of fortunes, delegation of sovereignty, and government by influential people. Instead of saying, as did M. Thiers, the King reigns and does not govern, democracy says, the People reigns and does not govern, which is to deny the Revolution…”

      “Since, according to the ideology of the democrats, the People cannot govern itself and is forced to give itself to representatives who govern by delegation, while it retains the right of review, it is supposed that the People is quite capable of at least having itself represented, that it can be represented faithfully…This hypothesis is utterly false; there is not and never can be legitimate representation of the People. All electoral systems are mechanisms for deceit: to know one is sufficient to pronounce the condemnation of all.”

      It’s pretty sad that you think everyone’s a business unto themselves and we should all do a cost analysis on everything we do. I don’t know how on earth to argue that that’s just too absurd an idea for an individualist and far lefty like myself to argue.

      You do realise that people can cooperate without state coercion don’t you?

      I recommend you read Thoreau’s Civil Disobedience – it is the work that inspired Gandhi (he’s probably a bit of an extremist for you seeming as he didn’t believe in the state and was an anarchist, a real lefty none of this social democrat bullshit).
      A couple quotes from Gandhi:
      “If India copies England, it is my firm conviction that she will be ruined. Parliaments are merely emblems of slavery.’
      “The individual has a soul, but as the State is a soulless machine, it can never be weaned from violence to which it owes its very existence.’

      • Draco T Bastard 32.2.1

        State: Specifically definition #7

        I don’t believe in the fiction that the state is separate from ourselves.

        You do realise that people can cooperate without state coercion don’t you?

        The rules are there to protect the majority from the depredations of a minority – those who think that they can do as they wish no matter who it harms. The rules are, hopefully, come to by some cooperation amongst the people. Enforcing them would be part of that administration I was talking about earlier.

        It’s pretty sad that you think everyone’s a business unto themselves and we should all do a cost analysis on everything we do.

        It’s sad that I realise that we live in a limited world with limited resources available to us and that we need to take care not to over use those resources while ensuring that everyone has a quality life?

        Gandhi (he’s probably a bit of an extremist for you


        • Quoth the Raven

          Draco – It would be more illuminating to understand your definition of society. Even with that definition it doesn’t entail that society is the state. The state can come under the term society under a broad definition albeit unneccesary for a society. I would specifically use Oppenheimer’s definition of a society. Maybe you use some other definition. I understand that some like Ayn Rand have separate definitions of state and government – maybe you also. I would add that I don’t think we need nations to separate peoples. I’m guessing you didn’t answer the questions on the political compass on patriotism in the affirmative…

          Definitional madness – nevertheless I believe that society can exist without the state or government.

          It’s sad that I realise that we live in a limited world with limited resources available to us and that we need to take care not to over use those resources while ensuring that everyone has a quality life?

          And this entails that everyone is a business unto themselves how?

          I don’t know about that political compass. I used to think it fairly accurate, but now my definition of left and right is different it’s one firmly rooted in history and so the defintions contain within them the libertarian/authoritarian divide – left being trenchantly anti-authoritarian. Further, I wouldn’t have such a divide between economically authoritarian and socially. As Gandhi specifically described himslef as a philosophical anarchist and didn’t believe in the state or representative democracy, whereas you say people should just leave if they don’t believe in the state ( to where?) a la John Locke or form a politcal party if they don’t like the government (I don’t like government fullstop) I would say that a political compass that puts you two on a similar footing isn’t very accurate. Furthermore, someone would have had to answer those questions for Gandhi.

          • Draco T Bastard

            And this entails that everyone is a business unto themselves how?

            As an individual you need an income to cover your expenses and, if you’re doing well, have some left over. That really is all a successful business is. They have income, expenses and, if they’re doing well, profit exactly the same as any individual. It should come as no surprise, given the similarities, that businesses are legal persons. It should also come as no surprise that you can’t provide your labour at less than cost price and so you actually do need to know what the cost is, ergo, you need to account for everything you do.

            The difference in todays society is that we define business as something other, something that people aren’t and this, IMO, is a fallacy and it needs to be changed. You aren’t a worker; you are a business and what you’re supplying is labour.

            To say that you shouldn’t do this or have to cost everything you do because you’re a person and not a business is wrong because we don’t have unlimited resources. We do need to know, as a society, what resources we have available to us and how they’re being used so that we can ensure that what we’re doing is sustainable.

            I dislike the term government because it denotes an authority that I believe that no one should have (note: This is why I also dislike capitalists and capitalism because they seem to go to great pains to tell us that we need an authoritative hierarchy (usually with them at the top)).

            I prefer to call our parliament an administration. They’re hired, by us, to do a job and that job is to ensure that we have the infrastructure and laws so that our society can function. What they do should be at our behest and not at their own or the behest of others. With this in mind state and society become one and the same. I suppose that it could be argued that in this definition the the authoritative state is gone and only society remains.

            I do find that our present representative democracy doesn’t come close to this ideal though but I think we have a long way to go to get to full anarchism (yes, I do think we’ll get there against the wishes of the capitalists).

            Political Compass
            I use it not because I think it’s entirely accurate but because it’s constant. It hasn’t changed in the 5 years since I first found it. For it to be accurate it would need hundreds, if not thousands, of questions. I certainly think some of the questions are leading and that some are just wrong 🙂

  33. Redbaiter 33

    I count about 25 false assertions in Tom Semmen’s post, (2:31pm) and about a dozen false assumptions. Just worthless doctrinal rubbish. If a Christian came here and preached such irrational nonsense, you guys would laugh him out of town. Why let commun*sts off the hook? Or are you all of the same blind faith, and therefore as unable to distinguish reality from fantasy as the odious Mr. Semmens is?

  34. Redbaiter 34

    “And you can take your libertarian declarations to, ah, um, ”

    You’re missing the point. The dominant characteristic found in all tyrants is their intolerance for the political ideas of others. My remark is not about tax or libertarians or whatever rubbish you might dream up to avoid facing the reality of what you are.

    The issue is your totalitarian and anti democratic command to the effect that anyone not agreeing with current socialist ideas should be exiled. I think it demonstrates that your mind is in a seriously crippled state, and by pointing that out in blunt and direct manner, I’m hoping that I can shock you from that state into a return to normality.

    You need to learn some history, and educate yourself on what damage and destruction and death has been wrought by persons who thought like you during the times when they managed to claw their way to supreme power.

  35. RedLogix 35

    The dominant characteristic found in all tyrants is their intolerance for the political ideas of others.

    Quite the same behaviour as we have consistently observed from you for many years.

    You talk about civility, but are one of the most consistently uncivil commenters around.

    You lay claim to a certitude of belief, but never, ever produce any evidence or a line reasoning to support it.

    You talk about tolerance, but exhibit an extreme intolerance for anything other than your own ideas.

    You aggressively mock, denigrate and attack others opinions and ideas, but when called on it you whine about how you’re being persecuted and ridiculed.

    You hold forth as a lone, brave voice, a caped libertarian hero crusading against pitiless foes, but when personally confronted you either flee the debate, or deny that it has anything to do with you with Gollum-ish hand-wringing, cringing and grovelling that we are “obsessing about Redbaiter”.

    Or fall back on feeble, formulaic insults we have seen and laughed at a hundred times.

    You ask us to have faith your ideas RB, but judging by your behaviour here, you are the least trustworthy person I know. You might want to consider just how much damage you personally have inflicted on the cause you so passionately espouse.

    You talk about liberty RB, but act like a petty, psychopathic tyrant yourself. Go figure.

  36. Redbaiter 36

    “You ask us to have faith (sic) your ideas RB”

    Completely wrong Redillogix. I ask nothing from you. Least of all that you write so many words of idiotic opinion and assertion on Redbaiter in the apparent delusion that they represent some kind of objective verdict or contribution to the discussion.

    ..and why is it that you collectivists always always always insanely express yourself using the plural pronoun in apparent ignorance of the ill manners and mental weakness such pretense betrays?

    Go away you shallow unintelligent infantile bore. Only an utterly brainless idiot would put such time and effort into something so petty, petulant and worthless.

  37. The Voice of Reason 37

    “The dominant characteristic found in all tyrants is their intolerance for the political ideas of others” – Redbaiter.

    And there was I thinking it was their love of uniforms and big parades.

    The realpolitik of the world today is the rejection of all you stand for, ‘baiter. Take comfort that the NZ election was a result against the tide, but no more. That sound you hear is your own private Berlin Wall coming down around your ears, the death rattles of the free market, echoing down the empty concrete canyons of Wall St..

  38. RedLogix 38


    and why is it that you collectivists always always always insanely express yourself using the plural pronoun

    This is an open forum RB, and your comments can be read by anyone who can be bothered. In this context the use of the plural form is perfectly legitimate.

    Completely wrong Redillogix. I ask nothing from you.

    Yes you do. In just the post above you stated:

    I’m hoping that I can shock you from that state into a return to normality.

    So in one post you explicitly state an expectation from those reading this thread, and in the next you say you ask nothing of me. It does not add up buddy. (Again you address these comments in a general fashion in an open thread, on which anyone is free to read and reply…so the ‘I wasn’t talking to you’ line won’t cut mustard.)

    Only an utterly brainless idiot would put such time and effort into something so petty, petulant and worthless.

    Denial mode RB. I’m not an utterly brainless idiot and neither are you, so what exactly was the point of this sentence. It wouldn’t be petty, petulant and worthless by any chance?

  39. Redbaiter 39

    “In this context the use of the plural form is perfectly legitimate.”

    It is ill mannered, ignorant, and insane.

    “Yes you do. In just the post above you stated:”

    Piffling coward. A remark directed at The Voice of Bigotry, and not any kind of request, and certainly not a request of you.

    “It wouldn’t be petty, petulant and worthless by any chance?”

    No it wouldn’t be. Its an attempt to puncture your self importance, pomposity, arrogance and condescension. All completely misplaced. You are not at all the clever person you so obviously believe yourself to be.

    Now, if you want to talk tax, go for it, but your partisan expressions of dislike for Redbaiter are just boring infantile shit.

  40. Redbaiter 40

    “The realpolitik of the world today is the rejection of all you stand for, ‘baiter.’

    Yeah, the commun*st apparach*ks was saying just that kind of thing immediately prior to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    The same old same old collectivist drones who throughout histroy have failed to grasp the simple idea that there has to be prosperity before there can be tax.

  41. Redbaiter 41

    “The realpolitik of the world today is the rejection of all you stand for, ‘baiter.’

    Yeah, the commun*st apparach*ks were saying just that kind of thing immediately prior to the collapse of the Sov*et Un*on.

    The same old same old collectivist drones who throughout history have failed to grasp the simple idea that there has to be prosperity before there can be tax.

  42. RedLogix 42

    It is ill mannered, ignorant, and insane.

    If you are on some form of ideological crusade to expunge the use of the personal plural pronoun from the English language, why not come out an just say so, instead of being ill mannered, ignorant and insane about it?

    A remark directed at The Voice of Bigotry, and not any kind of request, and certainly not a request of you.

    If you want your remarks to remain private use a private medium like email. If you make general remarks in a public forum, others such as myself will read them and reply if we wish. In trying to stop me from doing so, you again act like a petty tyrant.

    Its an attempt to puncture your self importance, pomposity, arrogance and condescension.

    So now you DO want something from me. If your words remained unread by me and unreflected upon by me, then they could have no effect could they? You require me to not only read what you say, but for them to have ANY effect (such as puncturing my self importance), it is essential that I believe them to have some truth or import. At that point you ask something of me RB.

    And how I choose to spend my time and energy responding is entirely a matter for me to choose. Again, trying to shut me down, by telling me what I can or cannot reply to is the act of a petty tyrant.

    You are not at all the clever person you so obviously believe yourself to be.

    I am secure about where my ‘cleverness’ fits in to the general scheme of things RB. But your clearly pointless attempt to shut me down by judging me to be an utterly brainless idiot is the act of a petty tyrant. It’s the kind of scathing humiliation that incompetent, bullying school teachers indulge in when they have lost control.

    As with much of your language.

  43. Matthew Pilott 43

    I wonder if “Ill mannered, ignorant, and insane” only implies to ‘collectivists’ using the plural pronoun. Apparently when Redbaiter talks about the Mythical Right rising up (the Mythical Right of which he is clearly the collectiivst spokesperson for, as evidenced by him talking about what ‘we’ are doing, usually rising up etc etc) it’s alright. And yet Redbaiter never answers when Redbaiter is asked who or what this Mythical Right is. They’re not the Right that everyone I’ve ever seen who professes to be Right is, so I wonder who they are. Maybe they pretend to be Leftists for some odd reason.

  44. Redbaiter 44

    zzzzzz ….snore.. zzzzzzzzz

    • lprent 44.1

      Sleeping on duty? I’m not sure that is quite the look that an ardent defender of demo.. (umm of what?). It sure isn’t democracy. An ardent defender of “my right to be a arsehole” aka a Heinlenist perhaps?

      I think I’m one of those as well – but more of a redbaiter-baiter

  45. RedLogix 45

    zzzzzz .snore.. zzzzzzzzz

    The old ‘fleeing the debate with tail between legs’ gambit, while maintaining a transparent pretense of not doing so.

    I have seen all your repertoire of tricks RB, and you are rapidly using them up.

    • Matthew Pilott 45.1

      I’m yet to get a decent answer. I do wonder who Redbaiter collectively speaks for, and why he’s allowed to collectively speak for them, yet collectivists are selectively ill mannered, ignorant, and insane for doing much the same.

      I have a sneaking suspicion that Redbaiter does, in fact, speak for all three of ‘We’, whereas there is quite a collection of collectivists; thus I can’t speak for them all – he’s just gormed there are so few of Redbaiter’s ‘We’ and so many of the ‘collectivists’ ‘Us’…

  46. Murray 46

    Instead of you lot ganging up on Redbaiter, why don’t we get back to the topic. Incidentally the gang mentality is generally associated with people who are individually weak. In my opinion the lower paid would not be so low paid if they weren’t so fucking useless. I’ve been banned for life so I doubt this will get posted.

    [lprent: Well your comments are pure crap, classically moronic right wing, they are largely devoid of any significant content. However they seldom come up for moderation – mainly because you actually write your own opinions rather than spouting someone else’s lines. I think that IB probably went a bit overboard on my defense (which wasn’t required), so I will rescind the ban.

    Anyway to answer your question – why should we deprive RB of his pleasure. I get the distinct impression the main reason that he is here is because all of the left-wingers have left the sewer. How can you be a red-baiter if all of the other commentators are sycophantic John Key brown-noses mindlessly following the ideology of PR. I seem to remember a philosophy of that kind of personality cult. Jamestown? Stalin, Mao, ….. etc ]

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    With an unfair voting system, uneven electorates and an un-elected upper house, the UK's "democracy" is barely worthy of the name. But now the government wants to make it worse:The government has been accused of suppressing voters’ rights with the potential disenfranchisement of tens of thousands of people after plans ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • What is wrong with our building industry?
    Back in the 90's and early 2000's, the building industry was building leaky homes which should never have been granted consent. Now it turns out they've been building dodgy office blocks as well:New imaging technology has revealed hundreds of major buildings nationwide have defective or missing concrete or reinforcing steel. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Local bodies
    Local body election results were released over the weekend, to joy or despair depending on where you live. In Auckland, Phil Goff trounced John Tamihere, who is muttering darkly about running for Parliament again (but which party would want him?) Wellington is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Weta Workshop, except ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A future of government
      How could government evolve over the next decades? Reports of democracy’s imminent demise are greatly exaggerated.  However, satisfaction with political systems in many countries is low, so there is much to do for governments of all political stripes to improve relevance and trust. Digital technologies are seen as one ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert Hickson
    2 weeks ago
  • Speaker: Catalonia, interrupted
    Two years have now gone by since the Friday afternoon when my university-student son and I headed out of our Barcelona flat to a nearby primary school, designated as a polling station for the vote that was to be held the following Sunday: the referendum on Catalonia’s independence from Spain ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Sage Decisions Unwisely Over-Ruled.
    Overruled: The joint decision of Finance Minister, Grant Robertson (Labour) and his Associate Minister, David Parker (Labour) arguably the two most powerful ministers in Jacinda Ardern’s government, to grant OceanaGold the consents which Land Information Minister, Eugenie Sage (Greens) had earlier denied them, offers bitter proof of how hard fighting ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government may ban voting in effort to get more people to do it
    More than double the number of people who will vote in this year’s local body elections have tried marijuana or urinated somewhere they shouldn’t have. As local elections look set for the lowest turnout in decades, with many regions falling well short of 40%, the Government is exploring a number ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Woman: Deleted.
    A Statement on Abortion Law Reform by the Council of Disobedient Women   On the eve of bringing an end to antiquated, anti-women abortion laws Green MP Jan Logie intends to write women out of the Bill. With a stroke of the pen, the woke are aiming for total erasure ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • The Hollowest of Men Ride Again… SURPRISE!
    Musings continue apace about “the experienced businessman!” soon to be taking up a National Party MP position. Or to be more accurate, being parachuted into a seat to shut down their former MP Jamie-Lee Ross, who despite his own shortcomings shed at least some more light on the inner workings ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Barbaric
    The Ugandan government wants to murder gay people:Uganda has announced plans to impose the death penalty on homosexuals. The bill, colloquially known as “Kill the Gays” in Uganda, was nullified five years ago on a technicality, but the government said on Thursday it plans to resurrect it within weeks. The ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Is this study legit? 5 questions to ask when reading news stories of medical research
    Hassan Vally, La Trobe University Who doesn’t want to know if drinking that second or third cup of coffee a day will improve your memory, or if sleeping too much increases your risk of a heart attack? We’re invested in staying healthy and many of us are interested in reading ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Fighting Monsters.
    Freedom Of Speech? The Säuberung (cleansing by fire) was the work of the German Student Union which, on 10 May 1933, under the watchful eye of the Nazi Reichminister for Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels, consigned 25,000 books to the flames in a ritual exorcism of “un-German thought”. According to the logic of the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • The next wave of kaupapa Māori politics: its constitutional, it must be.
      “There can be no such thing as kaupapa Māori political parties or politics in Aotearoa” (Willie Jackson, Labour Party (2017). Māori TV, General/List Election Special) I begin with that claim because at the time, I was confounded at first that it fell out of Willie Jackson’s mouth, and then ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Night lights of NZ from orbit
    New Zealand has prided itself for decades with regard to its lack of pollution, and all will be aware that the ‘100% Pure New Zealand‘ meme is under threat through land, water and air pollution of various causes. There is another type of contamination that the country also faces: light ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    2 weeks ago
  • Reporters deliver uplifting news to fleeing Japanese residents: they won’t miss any rugby
    New Zealand’s media is doing its part in Japan, reassuring those in the path of the storm that they won’t miss any rugby while away from their flooded homes. New Zealand sports reporters stationed in Japan for the Rugby World Cup have had the rare and heartwarming opportunity to inform ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Government in contentious discussions about whether to put surplus on red or black
    Regional Development Minister Shane Jones is the only Cabinet member in favour of putting it all on green. As Finance Minister Grant Robertson finds himself with an enormous $7.5 billion surplus, the Government has begun intense, at times contentious conversations about whether to put the money on red or black at ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Jordanian teachers’ successful strike has lessons for here
    by Susanne Kemp At the start of September close to 100,000 school teachers went on strike in Jordan.  They demanded a 50% pay rise.  A pay rise actually agreed to by the regime back in 2014. In early October, however, in the face of government repression and threats, the teachers’ ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Why some people still think climate change isn’t real
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to Why do people still think climate change isn’t real? David ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The SIS unlawfully spied on Nicky Hager
    Back in 2011, journalist Nicky Hager published Other People's Wars, an expose on NZDF's activities over the previous decade of the "war on terror". NZDF didn't like this, and especially didn't like the fact that it was base don leaks from their own. So, they had the SIS investigate him ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • October 2019 – Newsletter ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    2 weeks ago
  • And they wonder why we think they’re environmental vandals…
    The Zero Carbon Bill is due back from select committee in two weeks, and will likely pass its final stages in November. So naturally, farmers are planning a hate-march against it. But they're not just demanding lower methane targets so they can keep on destroying the planet; they're also demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Paying the price in California
    Last year, California burned. This year, to stop it happening again (or rather, to stop themselves from being found liable if it happens again), Pacific Gas and Electric is cutting power to half the state for a week:Schools are closed. Traffic lights down. Tunnels dark. Businesses unopened. Hospitals running on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let’s Hear It For Up-Close-And-Personal, Hard-Copy Democracy!
    The Best Way: Missing from the on-line voting debate is any reference to the voting system that produces turn-out figures ranging from 77 to 93 percent of registered voters. The voting system used to collect and count the votes cast in our parliamentary elections. The system that involves citizens making ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 10/10: World Day Against the Death Penalty
    Today, October 10, is the world day against the death penalty. Out of 195 UN member states, 84 still permit capital punishment. Today is the day we work to change that. This year's theme is children. Having a parent sentenced to death or executed causes long-term trauma and stigmatization which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Talking Freer Lives: a Marxist gender-critical perspective from Australia
    Among the great new bunch of political friends we have been making recently is the excellent Australian-based Marxist gender-critical site, Freer Lives.  So we asked the comrade who set up that blog to write something for Redline on the blog, himself, his analysis of the rise of gender politics and ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago

  • Government invests in Te Reo, environmental data research
    The Government is investing in ambitious research that will digitise Te Reo, grow the low-carbon protein efficient aquaculture industry, help interpret environmental trends, and large data sets says Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods. The four projects range from teaching Siri to speak Te Reo to crunching large environmental ...
    2 hours ago
  • Government announces next steps as part of a comprehensive plan to fix skills gap
    A new education-to-employment brokerage service to strengthen connections between local employers and schools. Funding for more trades focused ‘speed-dating’ events to connect schools with employers. Promotional campaign to raise profile of vocational education. The Government is taking action to increase the number of young people taking up vocational education and ...
    4 hours ago
  • Corrections Amendment Bill passes third reading
    A Bill to improve prison security and ensure the fair, safe, and humane treatment of people in prison while upholding public safety has passed its third reading. Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis says the Corrections Amendment Bill makes a number of changes to ensure the Corrections Act 2004 is fit for ...
    18 hours ago
  • Ngāi Tahu CEO appointed to NZ-China Council
    Minister for Māori Development, Nanaia Mahuta, has selected Arihia Bennett MNZM, Chief Executive Officer of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, as the Te Puni Kōkiri appointed representative on the New Zealand-China Council. The New Zealand-China Council (the Council) was established in 2012 as a New Zealand led and funded organisation ...
    20 hours ago
  • Southern Response claims move to EQC
    Responsibility for processing the small number of Southern Response claims still to be settled will be transferred to EQC by the end of the year. “As claim numbers reduce, it no longer makes sense for the Crown to have two organisations processing the remaining Canterbury claims,” Grant Robertson says. “Since ...
    23 hours ago
  • Bowel screening starts in Whanganui
    Health Minister David Clark is encouraging Whanganui residents to take up the opportunity for free bowel screening, which can detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat.   Over the next two years 12,000 Whanganui locals, aged 60 to 74 will be invited to participate in the National Bowel Screening ...
    1 day ago
  • Pacific Peoples Minister to attend Our Ocean Conference in Norway
    Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio, heads to Oslo today to represent New Zealand at the sixth Our Ocean Conference, which is being hosted by the Norwegian Government from the 23-24 October. “The Our Ocean Conference mobilises real action on issues like marine plastic pollution and the impacts of ...
    2 days ago
  • Government announces 27 percent increase in Trades Academy places
    Two secondary-school initiatives are being expanded as part of the Government’s plan to see more young New Zealanders take up a trade to help close the skills gap.   This includes the largest single increase in Trades Academy places in recent years. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris ...
    2 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures Conference: Connection...
    Session 4: Pacific Connectivity – Youth, Media and New Opportunities   Kia ora tatou katoa and Warm Pacific greetings to one and all. Representatives of Tainui, the local people of the land, or manawhenua – the indigenous peoples of this area – have welcomed you this morning in accordance with ...
    5 days ago
  • Methane reducing cattle feed one step closer
    The Government today announced its support for a project that could substantially reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions from cattle. The announcement was made as part of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor’s visit to Nelson’s Cawthron Aquaculture Park. The Cawthron Institute will receive $100,000 from the Government’s ...
    5 days ago
  • Bill to refresh superannuation system passes first reading
    Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni has welcomed the first reading of the New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension Legislation Amendment Bill. “Every New Zealander has a stake in New Zealand Superannuation and Veteran’s Pension,” says Carmel Sepuloni. “They are our most common form of social assistance – nearly 800,000 New ...
    5 days ago
  • Government announces next steps in fight against measles
    Babies in Auckland aged six months and over can receive a free vaccination and children will all have access to vaccines, Associate Minister of Health Julie Anne Genter announced today at Papatoetoe High School.   The move comes as part of Government efforts to step up the fight against measles. ...
    5 days ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Pacific Futures: Connections, Identity...
    ***Check against delivery*** Good morning. It is a pleasure to be here, and to have the honour of opening this important conference on behalf of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs. Let us take the opportunity to acknowledge all the people who have helped make today possible, including our special ...
    5 days ago
  • Police trial new response to high risk events
    Police Minister Stuart Nash says the safety of frontline officers and members of the public will be the focus of a new trial of specialist Police response teams in three of our largest urban centres. Police have this morning released details of an initiative to be trialled in Counties Manukau, ...
    5 days ago
  • New awards celebrate fisheries sustainability
    The Minister of Fisheries is calling for entries for a new public award to celebrate innovation in our seafood sector. “I have established the Seafood Sustainability Awards to recognise and celebrate those throughout industry, tangata whenua and communities who demonstrate outstanding dedication and innovation towards the sustainability of New Zealand’s ...
    5 days ago
  • More progress for women and we can do more
    Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter welcomes leaders in the private sector taking action on closing their gender pay gaps to ensure a fairer workplace for all New Zealanders. Ms Genter today launched a new report, Addressing the gender pay gap and driving women’s representation in senior leadership, from the Champions for ...
    5 days ago
  • Proposals to curb environmental damage help our coasts and the oceans
    Government Ministers today welcomed the release of a marine environment report highlighting the four key issues affecting our oceans, estuaries and coastlines.  The release underlines the importance of government proposals to combat climate pollution, ensure clean freshwater, protect biodiversity, make land use more sustainable, and reduce waste and plastic.    Environment ...
    6 days ago
  • New mental health facility for Waikato
    The Government has approved funding for a new acute mental health facility for Waikato which will provide better care and support to people with mental health and addiction issues. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Dr David Clark announced the $100 million project to replace the aging Henry Rongomau ...
    6 days ago
  • 500 new te reo Māori champions in our classrooms
    The Government is making progress on its goal to integrate te reo Māori into education by 2025, with over 500 teachers and support staff already graduating from Te Ahu o te Reo Māori,  Associate Education Minister Kelvin Davis announced today. Kelvin Davis made the announcement at an awards ceremony in Waikanae today, for ...
    6 days ago
  • Minister James Shaw welcomes 2018 Census first release
    Statistics Minister James Shaw has welcomed the first release of 2018 Census data. The first release of data today, 23 September, includes key data on population, regional growth, the number of homes and the size of different ethnic groups in New Zealand. Data from the 2018 Census will support the ...
    6 days ago
  • Driving transparency, ethics and accountability in government use of algorithms
    Minister for Statistics James Shaw today announced a public consultation on a proposed algorithm charter for government agencies. The charter has been developed by the Government Chief Data Steward in response to growing calls for more transparency in government use of data. Computer algorithms – procedures or formulas for solving ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand and the Netherlands working together on climate change
    Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, Climate Change Minister James Shaw and visiting Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte co-hosted a business roundtable in Auckland this morning focused on working together to address climate change.  “The Netherlands is an important partner for New Zealand. We share a strong agricultural history. Sustainable agribusiness and ...
    6 days ago
  • Protecting fairness for workers and businesses
    The Government is taking action to build an inclusive economy where more of us receive our fair share at work and businesses can compete on great products and services, not undercutting wages and conditions, Immigration and Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. Two consultations launched today seek feedback ...
    6 days ago
  • Indigenous Freshwater Fish Bill Passes
    The future for New Zealand’s threatened indigenous freshwater fish looks brighter with the passing of the Conservation (Indigenous Freshwater Fish) Amendment Bill in Parliament today said Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “Until now, our freshwater fish legislation has been 20 years out of date. We have lacked effective tools to ...
    7 days ago
  • Kiwis to take part in world’s biggest earthquake drill
    At 1.30pm tomorrow, hundreds of thousands of Kiwis will join about 65 million people around the globe in ShakeOut, the world’s biggest earthquake drill. The annual drill is to remind people of the right action to take during an earthquake which is to Drop, Cover, Hold, and to practise their ...
    7 days ago
  • Rising wages and low inflation supporting Kiwis
    Kiwis are benefiting from higher wage growth and low inflation under the Coalition Government. Stats NZ data out today shows the rise in the cost of living remains low, as annual Consumers Price Index (CPI) inflation fell to 1.5% in September from 1.7% in June. “The low inflation comes as ...
    7 days ago
  • NZ economy strong amid global headwinds
    New Zealand’s economic strength and resilience has been recognised in a major update on the state of the global economy. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook released overnight shows a reduced global growth forecast over the next two years as issues like the US-China trade war and Brexit take hold. ...
    7 days ago
  • Keeping New Zealanders safer with better counter-terrorism laws
    Justice Minister Andrew Little has today introduced a new Bill to prevent terrorism and support the de-radicalisation of New Zealanders returning from overseas. The Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill gives the New Zealand Police the ability to apply to the High Court to impose control orders on New Zealanders who ...
    7 days ago
  • Improved succession and dispute resolution core of Ture Whenua changes
    A Bill that proposes targeted changes to simplify the processes for Māori land owners when engaging with the Māori Land Court has had its First Reading today. “The approach taken by the Government is to ensure that the protection of Māori land remains a priority as we seek to improve ...
    7 days ago
  • Speech to CTU Biennial Conference
    Let me first thank all the new unionists and members in the room. There is nothing more important to improving people’s working lives than people making the decision to care, to get on board and help, to take up the reins and get involved. Congratulations to you. You bring the ...
    7 days ago
  • Minister ensures continued Whenuapai flight operations
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark has signed a certificate exempting the activity of engine testing at Whenuapai Airbase from the Resource Management Act 1991. The Act gives the Minister of Defence the power to exempt activities for the purposes of national security.  The certificate will mean the recent Environment Court ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ joins Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced New Zealand will join the Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action while attending APEC meetings in Chile. The objective of the 39 member Coalition is to share information and promote action to tackle climate change. It was formed in April this year, in ...
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Lyttelton Parking
    Feedback sought– Lyttelton commercial zone parking  The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal to remove on-site car parking requirements for new developments in the Lyttelton commercial zone.  The proposal, by Christchurch City Council, asks that powers under section 71 of the Greater ...
    1 week ago
  • Feedback Sought – Section 71 – Hagley Oval
    Hon Minister Poto Williams Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration   MEDIA STATEMENT       Tuesday 15 October 2019 Feedback sought – Hagley Oval The Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Poto Williams, is seeking feedback on a proposal about Hagley Oval. The proposal was developed by Regenerate Christchurch ...
    1 week ago
  • CTU speech – DPM
    Ladies and gentlemen, NZCTU President Richard Wagstaff, members of respective unions – thank you for the invitation to speak to you today. This might be preaching to the choir, but the importance of trade unions in New Zealand’s historical arch is difficult to understate. And it is my belief that ...
    1 week ago
  • Police Association Annual Conference
    "Let’s start by acknowledging that it has been a huge year. " Police Association Annual Conference James Cook Grand Chancellor Hotel Wellington Nau mai, haere mai. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, ka nui te mihi, ki a koutou katoa. President of the Police Association, Chris Cahill; Members of the Association and ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand announces a further P-3 deployment in support of UN sanctions
    Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters and Minister of Defence Ron Mark have announced the New Zealand Government’s decision to again deploy a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 (P-3) maritime patrol aircraft to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions imposing sanctions against North Korea. New ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand deeply concerned at developments in north-east Syria
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says New Zealand continues to have serious concerns for peace and stability in north-east Syria. “Recent reports that hundreds of ISIS-affiliated families have fled from a camp are deeply concerning from a humanitarian and security perspective”, Mr Peters says. “While we acknowledge Turkey’s domestic security ...
    1 week ago
  • Government on high alert for stink bugs
    Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor is warning travelling Kiwis to be vigilant as the high-season for the crop-eating brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is under way. “We’re on high alert to stop BMSB arriving in NZ. The high season runs until April 30 and we’ve strengthened our measures to stop stink ...
    1 week ago
  • Better protections for students in halls of residence
    The Government is moving swiftly to change the law to improve the welfare and pastoral care of students living in university halls of residence and other tertiary hostels. Cabinet has agreed to several changes, including creating a new mandatory Code of Practice that sets out the duty of pastoral care ...
    1 week ago