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The $10b hole in National’s budget

Written By: - Date published: 9:00 am, July 20th, 2011 - 61 comments
Categories: privatisation - Tags:

Things are going from bad to worse for Steven Joyce. Labour has released its estimate of the cost of lost dividends by 2025 if National’s asset sales plan goes ahead: $9.7b. All omitted from National’s budget. Labour has challenged National to concede the numbers or provide its own. Instead, Joyce’s excuses just show he doesn’t understand accounting. This is getting seriously embarrassing for National.

We all know now that National has booked the revenue from asset sales, which it doesn’t have a mandate for, but not booked the costs. Budget 2011 includes the revenue but not the loss in dividends. Bill English confirmed it in Parliament last week to David Cunliffe when discussing the debt track in the Budget:

Hon David Cunliffe: Given that the Minister’s 2011 Budget has already booked the proceeds of those asset sales, for which he has just confirmed that he lacks a mandate, did his Government’s Budget 2011 Fiscal Strategy Report set the upper net debt ceiling at 35 percent, and what guarantee can he offer that his policies will not break this limit when his Budget does not properly account for the costs of his Government’s plan to sell public assets?

Hon BILL ENGLISH: The 35 percent ceiling is well above where we expect net debt to peak, which will be just under 30 percent. I think this will be more of an issue for the member. If he says he will use a capital gains tax to offset sales of assets, he cannot count the dividends, because they are still in the Budget now. He cannot add dividends from retaining State assets. They are still in the Budget.

Labour took the asset sales revenue out of its debt track but didn’t add in dividends. Instead, it deducted the dividends from National. That gives the solid blue line in their graph, which includes asset sales revenue as well as lost dividends:

Labour haven’t released the full calculations but they reckon it will add up to $9.7 billion by 2025, lost dividends and the interest resulting from extra borrowing as a result combined.

That seems like a lot but we’re talking 10-13 years’ dividends on $7 billion worth of assets. Add in inflation, add in compounding interest, and $10 billion could well be in the right ballpark.

At any rate, it’s up to National to provide their own numbers to counter Labour’s. Steven Joyce, who is fronting the issue [is Bill English overseas as well as Key? – Eddie], has refused. Instead, he says:

“The Treasury has advised that any reduction in dividends as a result of extending the mixed ownership model would be offset by reduced debt servicing costs due to the proceeds from sales”

Oh dear. Joyce hasn’t been listening to the boss: the proceeds from sales and their impact on debt are already booked in the Budget, the lost dividends have not been. So, he can’t say ‘oh, the lost dividends will be offset by reduced borrowing’ because that would be counting the sale proceeds twice.

I hope he didn’t do that when he used to run Mediaworks.

– Bright Red

 

61 comments on “The $10b hole in National’s budget”

  1. Lanthanide 1

    Serious Fraud Office should investigate and put out a press release, if nothing else. If this sort of dodgy accounting was done by a finance company, they’d be in the poo for it.

    Steven Joyce’s excuse doesn’t even make sense. If the dividend stream were offset by reduced debt costs, then we would see a line item in the budget called “Interest costs” that was lower, and the line item that said “Dividends from SoEs” would also be lower. You don’t record reduced Interest Costs by keeping Interest Costs the same and Dividends from SoEs the same.

    • lprent 1.1

      I thought this type of crap accounting that English put in his budget (counting the revenue, but not the downstream costs) was specifically forbidden by Fiscal Responsibility Act?

      • Pascal's bookie 1.1.1

        I thought so too.

      • bbfloyd 1.1.2

        maybe that’s one of the changes made under urgency that we are yet to discover.. there must be a mountain of them considering how profligate they have been with secrecy..

        • Lanthanide 1.1.2.1

          Eh?

          Laws passed under urgency are still public knowledge.

          • Draco T Bastard 1.1.2.1.1

            There’s a difference between them being publicly available and being advertised.

            • Lanthanide 1.1.2.1.1.1

              I’m sure if National had rushed through a change to the Fiscal Responsibility Act under urgency we would have heard about it.

      • mickysavage 1.1.3

        I believe Blinglish is avoiding the requirement to put in the lower dividend stream because the actual amounts are “unquantified”.  Beggars me how he can do it.  If there are figures there for expected income from dividends then you just have to deduct 49% from the figure.
         
        This is shonky in the extreme and everyone I have explained it to assume a dazed look when they try to understand how it can be happening.
         
        Where is the MSM when you need them?
         

        • Draco T Bastard 1.1.3.1

          Where is the MSM when you need them?

          Kissing NActs butt just like their owners want then to.

  2. Jared 2

    Im confused, is the inference that Nationals Budget has or hasnt included the dividends it would have received if they kept full ownership of the SOE’s?

    • lprent 2.1

      They have counted in receiving the full dividends from the their current shareholding in their revenue, whilst also counting in the revenue from the sales of part of the shares.

      Effectively they have double counted the revenue since you cannot receive dividends from shares that you have sold.

    • mik e 2.2

      This is typical National telling the country they are better at running the country . In reality the the only thing they are better at is telling porkies, while they flog off our high performance assets to their mates.

      • Colonial Viper 2.2.1

        the issue is that over half of all people seem blithely oblivious or uncaring to all the %^$# going down.

        Definitely need an independent Left MSM.

        • Roflcopter 2.2.1.1

          Independent left MSM? How does that work? 🙂

          • Colonial Viper 2.2.1.1.1

            yeah I know its a bit of an oxymoron lol

            I’d settle for an MSM which asked some decent probing questions around the place and didn’t put up with being fobbed off with one liners 🙂

            • Ozimandeus 2.2.1.1.1.1

              We don’t necessarily need an independent LEFT MSM. We just need and INDEPEDENT MSM. Loving the murdoch strife!

  3. Colonial Viper 3

    Can we please have a Government of nation builders and investors in the people, and not one rushing to make a quick buck, treating Aoteroa as the latest hot property to flip to the Chinese.

  4. Craig Glen Eden 4

    Cunliffe is all over these three Key, English and Joyce. If the media do their job even a half baked one the Nats are really going to struggle to get out of this.

    • bbfloyd 4.1

      you know that’s not what they have been paid to do.. it’s a nice fantasy though.

  5. Lazy Susan 5

    English pulls out the “double dip” routine again.

    This really demonstrates the contempt Key, English and Joyce have for integrity and due process. If the MSM were doing their job NAct might be a bit more cautious about playing so fast and loose.

    Cunliffe is doing a great job – he’s tenacious and has a gravitas that walks all over these three muppets,

  6. mik e 6

    The media are not tackling Joyce on this or any other issues because they are media trained and know how to answer a question with a question or just spin or cut short an interview not give an interview. But they do go on their networks mediaworks where they get asked passive questions by friendly hosts not independent genuine reporters.

  7. Tangled up in blue 7

    Oh dear. Joyce hasn’t been listening to the boss: the proceeds from sales and their impact on debt are already booked in the Budget

    So just to clarify; the money saved from paying less interest on Govt. debt has been factored in already?

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      No, because the budget effectively says:

      Before asset sales: $X/year in revenues.
      After asset sales: $X/year in revenues.

      If the interest payments are decreased, the correct way to account for that in the budget would be like this:
      Before asset sales: $X/year in revenues, $Z/year in interest costs

      After asset sales: $Y/year in revenues. $W/year in interest costs

      Where Y < X and W < Z.

      Either the government made a mistake that anyone with common sense, let alone accountancy 101, would spot, or they are producing a budget that they know is untrue.

      Choose: woefully incompetent or fraudulently corrupt.

      • Tangled up in blue 7.1.1

        Choose: woefully incompetent or fraudulently corrupt.

        I’ll take “woefully incompetent” for 500, Alex .

    • mik e 7.2

      TGIB is that why Joyce is not answering any Questions about these figures his beloved govt funded treasury predictions didn,t include longterm loss of income from selling of our best performing assets at fire sale prices why don,t you ask him tangled one.maybe its tangled up in the fobby figures like the other treasury prediction from treasury of a170000 new jobs in 4years, or we are going to catch up with Australia

      • Draco T Bastard 7.2.1

        …best performing assets at fire sale prices…

        That something that needs to asked. How much, in today’s terms, did these assets cost us to build?

        If sale price is less than the cost to build them then we will be directly subsidising the private owners for the difference.

        • Colonial Viper 7.2.1.1

          Ah good question. Replacement value of those assets. Need to find that out.

  8. tsmithfield 8

    1. There is the offset in reduced interest costs for the government not having to borrow so much to take into account.

    2. If the partially sold entities are able to raise funds through equity sales rather than borrowing, then the percentage yield to equity holders (including the government) will increase as the money saved in interest is passed through to equity holders (including the government) as increased dividends. Also, if the entities are able to more easily raise funds for expansion etc and thus increase profitability faster, the dividend returns to equity holders (including the government) will increase in percentage terms.

    3. It is likely that the superfund will invest purchase shares in the entities. Thus a portion of any short-term loss in dividend will be returned in the form of longer-term returns to the superfund.

    Taking these factors into account, I am not sure it is at all clear that the government will be losing revenue as a result of asset sales.

  9. johnm 9

    Let’s leave out the rational techno management accounting BS.These asset sales are DAYLIGHT ROBBERY from the Public purse which empowers us(Whom the Government is supposed to represent-all of us!) to help all NZers not just the rich!(And foreign Investors,a Neo-Liberal tenet is that foreign investment is always good in your economy-look what happened to the Celtic tiger!) However NeoLiberalism does not recognise the Public commons but seeks to have us ruled by BS bankers and accountants,ruled by the Profit motive not the common good.

    “Neoliberalism, at its heart, is class war from above waged under the guise of rational, technocratic management of an economy that must – as neoliberals claim – be shielded from the corrosive influences of democratic politics. But if inequality and social injustice is to be reversed, we need more politicization, more class conflict, not less.”

    The simple answer is to obtain more revenue: We need a CGT retrospective for the last 10 years plus a reversal of the last tax cuts for the rich.

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      The simple answer is to obtain more revenue: We need a CGT retrospective for the last 10 years plus a reversal of the last tax cuts for the rich.

      The retrospective CGT is not likely to be do-able.

      One reason being that anyone who owned a house through that period and sold now, would likely not be left with enough to buy another home at current market prices, any where in NZ.

      Another reason being that many of the people who sold out during that time and realised those gains are either long gone, or their money is.

      Thirdly, the effect of the mortgage debt overhang on the system needs to be considered. Asset prices may fall but the debt remains. Enforcing a broadly retrospective CGT would cause many home owners to go ‘under water’ as housing prices fell precipitously.

  10. mik e 10

    You would think Queenstreet farmer would have all the answers for Joyce aye !I think they will just keep Quiet an hope the mainstream media doesn,t ask the hard questions

  11. TightyRighty 11

    so labour, who can’t be trusted to cost anything, say that the costs of of nationals plan are wrong? they can’t even figure out how to cost an election campaign, so must borrow from the public purse skirting dangerously close to the law. this is classic blue star digital misdirection by labour to deflect attention away from the poorly thought out grab bag “game changer” that is there announced fiscal policy. yawning, so tired from being bored by the parrots and sock puppets on this site slavering away at the altar of opposition.

    • lprent 11.1

      I realize that after casting your brain patterns in concrete that you might have a problem. But you can satisfy yourself that having a calcified intelligence and a unwillingness to face inevitable change is the mark of a true bonehead conservative.

      Or you could look at the content of the post – something you are obviously too afraid to do.

      • TightyRighty 11.1.1

        oh, I looked. I did the math and cunliffe and BR have it wrong. As usual. I don’t know why i bothered to do the math seeing as it was silent t opening his mouth and making sounds roughly equivalent to a make cow defecating, but i did, and Silent T and BR are wrong. quell horreur.

        • TightyRighty 11.1.1.1

          and by the way, i’m not a conservative who clings desperately to the old ways. I’m a classical liberal. I actually support the idea of a CGT, but as part of a wider measure to reduce paye-tax levels for all earners, that doesn’t include a no income tax bracket. backed up by a two tier income tax system with low rates and no exemptions anywhere, a benefit regime that is closer to sweden than stalinist russia and little difference between business, personal and trust tax rates. Labours policies are shit because they formulated by politicians who have passed through the parliamentary digestive tract and are about to be shat out of parliament. Like cheap meat, they have hung around in the digestive track for far to long.

          • lprent 11.1.1.1.1

            i’m not a conservative who clings desperately to the old ways.

            You could have fooled me.

            ..but as part of a wider measure..

            And your statement of which that was a part had this uncanny sound of Sir Humphrey to me. I finally tracked it down to the phrase above. Wasn’t that his signature phrase for when he was dissembling into a very long way of saying “I don’t want to do it?”.

            The point is that you can study this kind of thing as much as you like, it makes no difference. At some point it just has to be done. Since damn near every other OECD country has a CGT it is easy enough to put one in that works roughly the way we need it to and then change it over the long term as the need arises.

            As for other tax adjustments – after significant revenue starts arriving from a CGT (because it’ll take a decade with grandfathering) then you will have had a lot of time to consider how you’d adjust the overall tax package. But the primary effect; a slow change in investment behavior will happen from pretty much the time that the tax bill is introduced.

            Face it, you’re just blithering like Sir Humphrey..

            • Secret Squirrel 11.1.1.1.1.1

              But the primary effect; a slow change in investment behavior will happen from pretty much the time that the tax bill is introduced.

              If different investment types are all treated the same with CGT why would behaviour change? Unless you mean structuring to avoid CGT?

              • Colonial Viper

                It changes because you don’t seem to (want to) understand the impact of a CGT around leverage and gearing around property vis a vis SMEs and start ups.

                A CGT changes the balance of business cases in several subtle ways.

                Do a bit of reading up on it is my suggestion.

                • We can only guess at what it would change, leading up to, and then short and longer term afterwards. We can guess a bit better looking at what has happened elsewhere but we would be changing from different conditions to anywhere else in quite different economic times.

                  Expecting to change behaviour is a major punt.

                  About the only thing that’s certain is there will be predicted consequences and unpredicted consequences.

                  • Lanthanide

                    It’s really not “guessing”, it’s an informed estimate, or forecast of what is expected.

                    “Expecting to change behaviour is a major punt.”

                    If behaviour isn’t changed, then the government will get a greater revenue stream than what they’re predicting, won’t they?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Expecting to change behaviour is a major punt.

                    What, don’t you believe that people are economically rational agents? That’s one of the foundation stones of Chicago school neoliberal economics.

                    🙄

                  • Even Labour aren’t sure of a lot of details, they’re leaving plenty to the Expert Group.

                    What the Expert Group recommends and Labour ends up doing will be critical to how it works – you can be sure that loopholes will be searched for, and some will be found, and that will determine behaviour as much as anything does.

                    So until the Expert Group does it’s bit, and until Labour implements the final structure, there has to be a lot of guessing. And even then it will take years to see what works as intended, what loopholes are used, what loopholes prove popular, and what holes are plugged etc etc.

                    Revenue streams are also major guesswork (from both parties). Even with existing tax structures with known foibles and effects the forecasts are often awry.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      wah wah wah

                      If you don’t like uncertainty please don’t be a politician

                      Getting to the same point in repaid debt but without selling off our key strategic assets seems like a bloody good deal mate.

                      As your broker, I recommend you take it.

                    • One thing you can say with certainty Squirrel if you had an appreciation of history is that Cullen consistently adopted a cautious prudent set of figures and they were always better than forecast whereas Blinglish has this habit of pulling figures out of his arse and the actual figures are worse.
                       
                      Revenue streams are not major guesswork.  Leaving in an income stream that will half is dishonesty verging on fraud.

                    • I agree that Cullen was generally prudent, although that could be argued on policies that cost big time like student loans and WFF. And if he predicted his revenue streams carefully he knowingly screwed wage workers with bracket creep.

                      But like every country Cullen would have had difficulty predicitng revenue streams from 2008 through to now.

                      And he would have even more trouble predicting revenue 15 years ahead on a complex, unfinished and untested new tax regime.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      If you can’t deal with uncertainty in working with the long term future of the country (not that planning forwards 15 years is particularly long term), don’t be a politician.

                    • lprent

                      That is the point of legislation (and any other type of software). You know that it won’t be perfect when released – what you’re after is that it works, is functional and doesn’t have any known blue screen flaws. You’ll have to tweak it several times as the real world (and the accounts, lawyers, and courts have a go at it). You do that by releasing updates (and amendments) as required. Hopefully if you get it right, after the first couple of years, you’ll only have to update every decade unlesss you put out a marketing (political) release.

                      I’m afraid that I have zero time for people that want anything to be perfect when released. They obviously don’t spend a lot of time engineering systems. I do it for a living and you build with the best development systems in the world and the damn things will still spring bugs in the real world…..

                      Of course I’m not a randite or any other type of branch of the politically religious

                    • Colonial Viper

                      S.S. has at least 15 years of work experience in an R&D focussed company. So he has said previously.

          • mik e 11.1.1.1.2

            you can tell when the right are wrong they have no other option than to be abusive bullies

          • Draco T Bastard 11.1.1.1.3

            I’m a classical liberal.

            Yeah, a conservative. An idiot looking back to the failed ideas of the 18th century as a solution to today’s problems caused by those failed ideas.

          • Craig Glen Eden 11.1.1.1.4

            Show us your figures Tighty,its show and tell time genius!

        • Lanthanide 11.1.1.2

          If you “did the math”, surely you wouldn’t mind sharing it with us to show us how Cunliffe and BR are wrong?

          In other words: put up, or shut up.

        • lprent 11.1.1.3

          If you “did the math”, surely you wouldn’t mind sharing it with us to show us how Cunliffe and BR are wrong?

          Pretty much my thought as well.

          All I did was to check that the relevant bits were in and out of the budget as Cunliffe had specified (and yes he was correct). Then a bit of the back of a piece of paper to see what kind of compounding I got something in the right order. It had bugger all to do with any kind of calcs – it was simply a matter of book-keeping. They put both types of revenue into the budget despite ‘selling’ the source of the revenue. In my views that is simply criminal accounting.

          I was thinking about doing a NPV on the revenue streams but realized that our governmental accountants weren’t treating this like a project, so there wasn’t any discount rate.

          • Ozimandeus 11.1.1.3.1

            And that is the point surely? To claim the value of the sale of assets without accounting for the loss of revenue from the sold assets into the future ( I am unable to write “going forward”) is conscious fraud. I am no accountant but I can see a cheat at work

  12. tc 12

    Attention all you believers in the Nats budget and economic plan…..I gotta few bridges I’d like to sell you, great return, good patronage, one careful owner….just like our power compaines.

  13. Jum 13

    (Hope this is okay to transfer) – found this on Public Address: priceless…

    ‘Monopoly 101, never sell the utilities…

    The utilities were lame assets in Monopoly. The average payout from landing on them if someone owned both was $70. Compare that with $700 for landing on one of just the weak blue properties with a hotel on it. Or $2000 for landing on Mayfair with a hotel – game over, most times.

    The railways were pretty good earners too, the best thing being the constant drip feed of cash since they’re evenly distributed…

    You can’t force anyone to stay at a Mayfair hotel, but if you own the electricity and water, you can pretty much force them to pay you every month.

    You could quite easily make Mayfair an undesirable suburb by cutting the power and water.’

    Let’s cut off the power and water to Key in Parnell and Joyce on his holiday highway…

    (Given that I haven’t forgiven Russell Brown for getting it so wrong on the Warner Bros sellout by Key)

  14. mik e 14

    Tighty Ireland Portugal Greece the piigs are being forced to sell their assets no one wants them except Greeces lotto business which has been sold for 400million euros yet it is returning 900million euros in profit each year its true value should be around the $15-$20 bilion dollars. Same with our assets they are returning 700million+ a year they should be worth $10-$13 billion not the 1/2 that price National are trying to sell them for . Steven Murdoch Joyces figures only covered a 5 year period after the sale not the consequences of the lost income after that period when the govt would lose the $700 million a year lost income however they won,t be around then so all they care about is winning this election .If he was able to get their true value i wouldn,t have to call them and you economically ignorant.

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    by Deirdre O’Neill Under Thatcher and then Blair and continuing up until our contemporary moment, the working class has seen its culture slowly and progressively destroyed. The change from an industrial society to a service society produced a marked shift in focus from the working class as the backbone of ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Irony
    Since 2013, the Australian government has detained refugees without trial in Pacific gulags, where they are abused, tortured, and driven to suicide. The policy is not just an abuse of human rights and possible crime against humanity; it has also had a corrosive effect on the states Australia uses as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • An age of protest.
    It seems fair to say that we currently live in a problematic political moment in world history. Democracies are in decline and dictatorships are on the rise. Primordial, sectarian and post-modern divisions have re-emerged, are on the rise or have been accentuated by political evolutions of the moment such as ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    6 days ago
  • Another captured agency
    Last month, Greenpeace head Russel Norman surrendered his speaking slot at an EPA conference to student climate activist Sorcha Carr, who told the EPA exactly what she thought of them. It was a bold move, which confronted both regulators and polluters (or, as the EPA calls them, "stakeholders") with the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • NZ First’s dodgy loans
    The core principle supposedly underlying New Zealand's electoral finance regime is transparency: parties can accept large donations from rich people wanting to buy policy, but only if they tell the public they've been bought. Most parties abide by this, so we know that TOP was wholly-owned by Gareth Morgan, and ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Member’s Day: The choice on End of Life Choice
    Today is a Member's Day, probably the second-to-last one of the year, and its a big one, with the Third Reading of David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill. last Member's Day it was reported back from committee, after MPs voted narrowly to make it subject to a (rules TBA) ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • How growth in population and consumption drives planetary change
    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 climate.change@stuff.co.nz The growth of the human population over the last 70 ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    6 days ago
  • The disappearing Women …
    by The Council of Disobedient Women In her excellent oral submission to the Abortion reform select committee on 31st October on behalf of Otago University’s Department of Public Health, historian and public health researcher Hera Cook stated: “We would ask that the committee not use the term ‘pregnant persons’ and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • “A Passage to India”: enduring art in changing times
    by Don Franks In 1957, E M Forster wrote, of his greatest work: “The India described in ‘A Passage to India’ no longer exists either politically or socially. Change had begun even at the time the book was published ( 1924) and during the following quarter of a century it ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Contemptuous
    The Referendums Framework Bill was due back from select committee today. But there's no report on it. Instead, the bill has been bounced back to the House under Standing order 29593) because the Committee didn't bother to produce one. They probably tried. But given the membership of the committee (which ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Zero Carbon: It’s not just a good idea, it’s the law
    Two years into New Zealand’s Labour-led government, the long-delayed Zero Carbon Bill became law on 7 November. Passed essentially unanimously, the lengthy public debates and political manoeuvring faded away until the final passage was even anticlimactic: Flipping through the @nzstuff @DomPost I was starting to wonder if I’d dreamt ...
    SciBlogsBy Robert McLachlan
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: What happens next?
    Now the Zero Carbon Bill is law, what's next? Obviously, the ETS changes currently before select committee are going to be the next battleground. But we're also going to get a good idea of where we're going, and if the progress the Zero Carbon Act promises is good enough, during ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Climate change will fuel bush fires
    Grant Pearce The effects of the current Australian bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland (and also again in California) are devastating and far-reaching. To date, the fires have resulted in several lives being lost and many homes and properties destroyed. Here in New Zealand, the impacts have been only ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • Participation rates
    A passing comment in a post the other day about the labour force participation rates of older people prompted me to pull down the fuller data and see what we could see about various participation rates over the decades since the HLFS began in 1986.   As it happens, the ...
    SciBlogsBy Michael Reddell
    7 days ago
  • Not So Much “OK Boomer” As “OK Ruling Class”.
    Distract And Divert: The rise of what we have come to call “Identity Politics” represents the ideological manifestation of the ruling class’s objective need to destroy class politics, and of the middle-class’s subjective need to justify their participation in the process.THE RELIEF of the ruling class can only be imagined. ...
    7 days ago
  • Asking for it …
    "I saw a newspaper picture,From the political campaignA woman was kissing a child,Who was obviously in pain.She spills with compassion,As that young child'sFace in her hands she gripsCan you imagine all that greed and avariceComing down on that child's lips?" ...
    7 days ago
  • New Zealand’s Poor Pandemic Preparedness According to the Global Health Security Index
    Dr Matt Boyd, Prof Michael Baker, Prof Nick Wilson The Global Health Security Index which considers pandemic threats has just been published. Unfortunately, NZ scores approximately half marks (54/100), coming in 35th in the world rankings – far behind Australia. This poor result suggests that the NZ Government needs to ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Thank Winston
    The Zero Carbon Act is inadequate, with a weak methane target designed to give farmers a free ride. But it turns out it could have been worse: Climate Change Minister James Shaw was so desperate to get National on board, he wanted to gut that target, and leave it in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Illicit markets and Bali Booze
    The Herald reprints an Australian story on a couple of tragic deaths in Bali from drinking cocktails that had methanol in them.  The story argues that methanol is likely the result of home distillation. But what the young tourists were experiencing was far from a hangover. They’d consumed a toxic cocktail ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    1 week ago
  • This is not what armed police are for
    Last month, the police announced a trial of specialist roaming armed units, which would drive round (poor, brown) areas in armoured SUVs, armed to the teeth. When they announced the trial, they told us it was about having armed police "ready to attend major incidents at any time if needed". ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Spain’s failed electoral gamble
    Spain went to the polls today in the second elections this year, after the Socialists (who had come to power in a confidence vote, then gone to the polls in April) rejected the offer of a coalition with the left-wing PoDemos, and instead decided to gamble n a better outcome ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The astroturf party
    National has finally rolled out its "BlueGreen" astroturf party, fronted by an array of former nats and people who were dumped by the Greens for not being Green enough. Its initial pitch is described by Stuff as "very business-friendly", and its priorities are what you'd expect: conservation, predator-free funding, a ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How to cheat at university
    A couple of days ago I attended (and spoke at) the University of Waikato’s “LearnFest” event. There were lots of talks and sessions on very diverse aspects of teaching, mostly at tertiary level. One was by Myra Williamson from Te Piringa Faculty of Law here at Waikato, on Contract Cheating ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    1 week ago
  • How NZ was put on world maps using a transit of Mercury
    There will be a transit of Mercury – the planet Mercury will pass across the face of the Sun – taking place at sunrise in New Zealand on Tuesday, 12th November. It was by observing such an event 250 years ago that James Cook and his scientist colleagues were able ...
    SciBlogsBy Duncan Steel
    1 week ago
  • Georgina Beyer: We need to be able to talk without being offended
    Since becoming the world’s first openly transexual mayor and member of parliament, Georgina Beyer has been recognised as a trailblazer for trans rights. Daphna Whitmore talks with her about where she sees the current trans movement We start out talking about legislation the government put on hold that would have ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
    If FFNZ really put their faith in “Top Medical Journals” they would now be amending their billboards to recognise new research results. Image from FFNZ but updated to agree with the latest research. ...
    1 week ago
  • Chosen To Rule? What Sort Of Christian Is Chris Luxon?
    National Messiah? Chris Luxon identifies himself as an evangelical Christian. If he is genuine in this self-characterisation, then he will take every opportunity his public office provides to proselytise on behalf of his faith. He will also feel obliged to bear witness against beliefs and practices he believes to be ...
    1 week ago
  • War of the worms
    I'm going to make a Reckless Prediction™ that the Tories have 'topped out' in the 'poll of polls' / Britain Elects multipoll tracker at about 38%, and in the next week we will start to see Labour creep up on them.In fact, we might just be seeing the start of ...
    1 week ago
  • Marvelly shows us how to be a feminist without feminism
    by The Council of Disobedient Women Lizzie Marvelly: “I may have missed this… has @afterellen gone all terf-y? Or am I reading something incorrectly? “ https://twitter.com/LizzieMarvelly/status/1191840059105742849 After Ellen is a lesbian website that is unashamedly pro-lesbian, as you’d expect. So why is Ms Marvelly so bothered about lesbians having their ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Out of the past – Tories to revive racist laws from the 16th century
    Did you know there once was a time when it was illegal to be a gypsy (aka Romani) in Britain?That was between 1530, when the Egyptians Act was passed, and 1856, when it was repealed.Amongst other things, the act forbade the entry of 'Egyptians' into England, ordered those already there ...
    1 week ago
  • 1000 of these now
    Some days I sit and think, “what will I write…?” What do you say when you get to 1000 posts? Maybe you just start where you are, diverge to where this all began, then offer a collection of reader’s favourite posts, and a few of your own? (And throw in ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    1 week ago
  • Has Shane Jones Just Saved NZ First?
    Counter-Puncher: The “activists” and “radicals” (his own words) from the Indian community who took such strong exception to Shane Jones’ remarks about Immigration NZ’s treatment of arranged marriages, may end up bitterly regretting their intervention. Jones is not the sort of person who turns the other cheek to his critics.SHANE ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: As predicted
    Yesterday, when National voted for the Zero Carbon Bill, I predicted they'd gut it the moment they regained power, just as they had done to the ETS. And indeed, they have explicitly promised to do exactly that within their first hundred days in office. What would their amendments do? Abandon ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Let this never be forgot
    In the spirit of Remember, remember the fifth of November, let's keep this in mind FOREVER.
    Oh dear. Extraordinary interview on PM with Andrew Bridgen and @EvanHD just now. Bridgen was defending Jacob Rees Mogg’s Grenfell comments. Evan asked him if JRM had meant to say he would have left ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Too Late To Change Capitalism’s Flightpath?
    Collision Course? In conditions of ideological white-out, the international bankers’ “Woop-Woop! Pull Up!” warning may have come too late to save global capitalism.WHAT DOES IT MEAN when international bankers are more willing to embrace radical solutions than our politicians and their electors? At both the International Monetary Fund and the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whooping cough vaccine works well despite its imperfections
    Pertussis (whooping cough) is a conundrum. It is a disease that was described hundreds of years ago and the bacteria that causes it (Bordetella pertussis) isolated in 1906. We have had vaccines for about 80 years but this disease is defiant in the face of human immunity. I wanted to ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Passed
    The Zero Carbon Bill has just passed its third reading, uanimously. In the end, National supported it - but we all know they'll turn around and gut it the moment they regain power. Meanwhile, I guess ACT's David Seymour didn't even bother to show up. I am on record as ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Retailing of vaping products – New NZ Research
    Dr Lindsay Robertson, Dr Jerram Bateman, Professor Janet Hoek Members of the public health community hold divergent views on how access to vaping products or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) products should be arranged. Some believe ENDS should be as widely available as smoked tobacco and argue for liberal ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    2 weeks ago
  • Justice for Bomber
    When the Police were trying to cover up for the National Party over Dirty Politics, they went all-in with their abuses of power. They illegally search Nicky Hager's house, violating his journalistic privilege and invading his privacy. They unlawfully acquired Hager's bank records. They did the same to left-wing blogger ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Britain’s climate tyranny was unlawful
    Last month, in response to a wave of protests by Extinction Rebellion, the British government purported to ban their protests from the whole of London. It was a significant interference with the freedoms of expression and assembly, and another sign of the country's decline into tyranny. But now, a court ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • More crime from the spies
    Last year, the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security reported on significant problems with the intelligence warrant system. While they were unwilling to declare any warrant "irregular" (meaning unlawful) due to the recent law change, they were also not willing to give the system a clean bill of health. Now, they've ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Vaccination, compulsion, and paternalism for the lower orders
    The National Party has come out in support of encouraging greater vaccination uptake. But it sure isn’t the way I’d do it. National’s suggested docking the benefits of those on benefit whose kids aren’t keeping up with their vaccinations. Some in National have suggested extending that to payments under Working ...
    SciBlogsBy Eric Crampton
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Protests Rage On: But Slogans Are Not Plans.
    Feeding The Flames: It is simply not enough to demand an end to “corruption”, or “inequality”, or the overbearing influence of the authorities in Beijing. These are just “lowest common denominator” demands: the sort of slogans that pull people onto the streets. They are not a plan.WHERE’S THE PLAN? Across ...
    2 weeks ago
  • 11,000 employed under Labour
    The labour market statistics have been released, and unemployment has risen to 4.2%. There are 115,000 unemployed - 11,000 fewer than when Labour took office. In that time the minimum wage has gone up by $2 an hour, which shows that the right's fears about increases causing unemployment are simply ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Boycott this democratic fraud
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has called for submissions on Andrew Little's tyrannical Terrorism Suppression (Control Orders) Bill. Normally I encourage participation in the democratic process. I am not doing so in this case. Instead, I encourage all of you to boycott this submissions process, and to post ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Why Mars is cold despite an atmosphere of mostly carbon dioxide
    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 climate.change@stuff.co.nz If tiny concentrations of carbon dioxide can hold enough heat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Ban private jets
    Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and within it, one of the fastest sources is elite travel: billionaires flitting around the world in their private jets, spewing excessive pollution into the atmosphere just so they can avoid mixing with us dirty peasants. But in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Untold Suffering
    That's what we face if we don't stop climate change, according to a warning from 11,000 scientists:The world’s people face “untold suffering due to the climate crisis” unless there are major transformations to global society, according to a stark warning from more than 11,000 scientists. “We declare clearly and unequivocally ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • The left and violent misogyny
    by Phil Duncan Here’s just a few of the kind of threats issued day in and day out against gender-critical women – feminists, marxists, etc – overwhelmingly by MEN (albeit men identifying as women). “Kill all Terfs”. “Shoot a Terf today”. “All terfs deserve to be shot in the head”. ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Imperialism and the iPhone
    This is the third of the synopses of parts of the opening chapter of John Smith’s Imperialism in the 21st Century (New York, Monthly Review Press, 2016). The synopsis and commentary below is written by Phil Duncan. Unlike the humble cup of coffee and t-shirt that we looked at in ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The freshwater mussel housing crisis: eviction by invasive weeds?
    Tom Moore Traditionally a food source and cutting tool, freshwater mussels/kākahi are now widely valued as water filters that help clean our waterbodies and maintain ecosystem health throughout Aotearoa. The improvement they provide in water quality can make it easier for other animals to live in streams and rivers, as ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • Back it up Luxon: endorsing the destructive past is not actually the way forward
    And to think he gave all the potential goodwill away with that moronic, cult-like statement (repeated ad nauseam by many National hardliners) that Key is quite simply “the greatest PM we ever had”… Installation complete: this was nothing ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • Good riddance
    National MP and former Conservation Minister Maggie Barry will not seek re-election next year. Good riddance. Because in case anyone has forgotten, barry is a bullying thug who terrorised both public servants and fellow MPs. She is one of the people who makes Parliament a toxic workplace, and our country ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: D-Day
    The Zero Carbon Bill is back in the House today for its second reading. While this isn't the final stage, its still effectively D-Day for the bill. Because today, at around 5pm, is when we're going to find out if it has a majority, whether National will support it or ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Wayne Brown hits back at critics: Ports of Auckland has to move
    The chairman of the Upper North Island Supply Chain Strategy (UNISCS) working group, Wayne Brown, has hit back at critics of his group’s recommendations to relocate the Ports of Auckland cargo operations to Whangarei’s deepwater port of Northport. The working group's recommendation to close Auckland waterfront to all but cruise ...
    14 hours ago
  • Week That Was: Supporting our schools
    We're setting our young people up for success, investing in education around the country.  ...
    21 hours ago
  • Kiwis to have their say on End of Life Choice
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First backs the public to decide on the End of Life Choice Bill via a referendum at the 2020 General Election. The Bill, with New Zealand First’s referendum provision incorporated, passed its final reading in Parliament this evening. New Zealand First Spokesperson for ...
    5 days ago
  • Addressing miscarriages of justice
    Darroch Ball, Spokesperson for Justice New Zealand First is proud that a key Coalition Agreement commitment which will provide for a more transparent and effective criminal justice system has been realised. Legislation to establish the Criminal Cases Review Commission, an independent body focused on identifying and responding to possible miscarriages of ...
    6 days ago
  • Week That Was: Historic action on climate change
    "Today we have made a choice that will leave a legacy... I hope that means that future generations will see that we, in New Zealand, were on the right side of history." - Jacinda Ardern, Third Reading of the Zero Carbon Bill ...
    1 week ago
  • Tax-free deployments for Kiwi troops
    Darroch Ball, New Zealand First List MP A Member’s bill has been proposed that would provide income tax exemptions for all New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel while on operational deployment overseas. The Income Tax (Exemption for Salary or Wages of NZDF Members on Active Deployment) Amendment Bill proposed by New Zealand First ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A balanced Zero Carbon Bill passed
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, New Zealand First Leader New Zealand First is proud to have brought common sense to the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which passed its final reading in Parliament today. Party Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters says months of hard work went into negotiating a balanced ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Paramedics’ status to be recognised
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First has listened to calls to recognise paramedics as registered health professionals under the Health Practitioners’ Competence Assurance Act (the Act). Today, the Coalition Government announced plans for paramedics to be registered as health practitioners under the Act, and the establishment of a ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: 2,000 teachers in two years
    We began the week by commemorating the New Zealand Wars and celebrating a major increase in the number of teachers. Then, we were busy supporting offenders into work and getting our rail back on track after years of underinvestment. And that's just the start! ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Winning an election one conversation at a time
    In October I was sworn in as the Mayor of Lower Hutt. It’s the privilege of my life to serve Hutt people as their Mayor. There is something really special to be able to serve the community where I was raised, and where I live.   ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Closer cooperation with Korean horse racing industry
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters met with Korea Racing Authority Chairperson Nak Soon Kim in Seoul today to discuss closer cooperation between the New Zealand and Korean horse racing industries. As part of the visit to the Seoul Racecourse, Mr Peters witnessed ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Otago to lead digital creativity
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10 million to establish Otago as the centre of New Zealand’s creative digital industry over the next ten years, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “The initiative will bring us closer to the vision of ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Young Otago students encouraged to take on forestry careers
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF)’s skills and employment programme will help young Otago people into long-term forestry careers, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. Te Ara Mahi will invest $63,000 in the 2020 school year to support eight 17 and 18 ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF backing Dunedin’s waterfront ambitions
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) will support local plans to revitalise and stimulate economic development opportunities in Otago, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The four Regional Economic Development Ministers have approved an in-principle investment of $19.9 million towards the region’s ...
    3 weeks ago
  • M. Bovis eradication progress welcomed
    Mark Patterson, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is pleased to have received the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) report on the Coalition Government’s Mycoplasma bovis eradication efforts, which shows significant progress in the fight against the disease. New Zealand First Spokesperson for Primary Industries, Mark Patterson, says the report’s findings ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF boosts Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development Hon David Parker, Minister for Trade and Export Growth The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing to support economic growth opportunities for Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sectors, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones and Trade and Export Minister David Parker announced today. Almost $20 million ...
    3 weeks ago
  • Minister Peters discusses Pacific challenges and denuclearisation in Seoul
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Foreign Minister Winston Peters and his South Korean counterpart, Kang Kyung-wha, discussed in Seoul today opportunities to work more closely in the Pacific and the situation on the Korean Peninsula. Mr Peters and Minister Kang confirmed New Zealand and the ...
    3 weeks ago
  • PGF supports high speed broadband for marae at Parihaka Pa
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Regional Economic Development  Hon Nanaia Mahuta, Minister for Māori Development The three marae in the historic Parihaka Pa complex in Taranaki have been upgraded to high speed broadband with the support of the Provincial Growth Fund (PGF), Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Connecting the ...
    3 weeks ago

  • Reform of public service a step closer
    Minister of State Services Chris Hipkins today introduced into Parliament a Bill that will make it easier for the public service to tackle the biggest challenges facing Governments. The Bill represents the most significant change in the public service in 30 years. The State Sector Act 1988 will be repealed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    12 hours ago
  • Donations scheme to relieve pressure on families
    The families of more than 416,000 students will be better off next year as their schools have signed up to the Government’s donations scheme, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. The scheme will see almost $62.5 million in additional Government funding go to schools nationwide next year. “I’m really pleased ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Further support for Samoan measles outbreak
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has announced further support as the Government of Samoa responds to a serious measles outbreak. “New Zealand will deploy a further 18 vaccination nurses, bringing the total to 30 working in Samoa over the next four weeks,” Mr Peters said. “A New Zealand Medical Assistance ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Speech to the Child Poverty Action Group 2019 Summit
      Fa’atalofa atu, malo e lelei, Kia ora koutou katoa Thank you to the Child Poverty Action Group for asking me to be here today to provide an update on some of the things that have been happening across my the social development portfolio.  Can I firstly acknowledge the vast ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Speech to the New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Annual Conference
    ***Please check against delivery*** Good morning everyone. It is a pleasure to be with you this morning to open this year’s New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Conference and AGM. Firstly, thank you Dr Alan Jackson, NZTR Chair for your introduction. And let us acknowledge also: The NZTR Board; Dean McKenzie, Chair ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • Fairer rules for tenants and landlords
    The Government has delivered on its promise to the over one million New Zealanders who now rent to make it fairer and more secure, Associate Minister of Housing (Public Housing) Kris Faafoi has announced today. Both renters and landlords will benefit from the suite of practical changes to the Residential ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Two decades of marine protection celebrated at Te Tapuwae o Rongokako in Tairawhiti
    A marine conservation milestone - the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve - is being celebrated today at a community event in Tairāwhiti/East Coast attended by the Minister of Conservation, Eugenie Sage. “The creation of this marine reserve in November 1999 was a game ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Food industry asked to step up fight against obesity
         The Government is asking the food industry to step up work to tackle obesity including reducing sugar, fat and salt in their products, better information for consumers, and tighter restrictions on advertising to children. Health Minister David Clark and Food Safety Minister Damien O’Connor have responded to a ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Modern emergency care for Queenstown area
    ew, modern emergency department and outpatient facilities at Queenstown’s Lakes District Hospital mean better emergency care for the growing tourist mecca’s visitors and locals, says Health Minister David Clark. Today Dr Clark officially opened the hospital’s redeveloped Emergency Department and Outpatient facilities. The new facilities include: •    An extended Emergency Department ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Contraception important for New Zealanders
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter says today’s release of sexual and reproductive health data reinforces the significance of the Government’s commitment to providing free or very low-cost contraception. The Ministry of Health today published statistics from the Ministry of Health’s 2014/15 Health Survey. “It is important people can make ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • NZ medical staff and measles vaccines going to Samoa
    Foreign Minister Winston Peters has announced that at the request of the Samoan Government, New Zealand will be providing further support to Samoa as it faces a worsening measles outbreak. “In response to a request from the people of Samoa, New Zealand is providing 3000 measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Disability Action Plan 2019 – 2023
    “The new Disability Action Plan 2019–2023 moves us towards the inclusive and accessible New Zealand that this government has committed to,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today.  “The Action Plan was designed by disabled people, their family and supporters, the disability sector and government agencies. It will ensure ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Joint Statement – Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting
    Third Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting 14 November 2019 Joint Statement 1. Defence Ministers Ron Mark and Dr Ng Eng Hen today conducted their third annual Singapore-New Zealand Defence Ministers’ Meeting in Singapore. 2. Building on the Enhanced Partnership signed between both countries in May this year, this annual meeting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Sexual Violence Legislation Bill has its first reading
    A Bill to improve the court system’s response to sexual violence has passed its first reading in Parliament today. Justice Minister Andrew Little says the Sexual Violence Legislation Bill will reduce the trauma sexual violence complainants experience in court, while maintaining defendants’ fundamental rights and making sure the trial process ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • Streamlined business invoicing a step closer
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