“The government will never do that”

Written By: - Date published: 11:28 am, April 23rd, 2020 - 56 comments
Categories: covid-19, economy, greens - Tags: , , , ,

Except they did. The New Zealand government raised benefits, they put in a rent freeze, they kicked all the tourists out of the country.

Multiple governments have taken action in the past four months that have dramatically dropped GHG emissions, when most climate activists were despairing that we would ever get to any meaningful action on climate change. If we can do that incidentally, why not deliberately?

The government will never do that seems to be in lieu of a political argument for why such things can’t or shouldn’t happen, especially in the context of economic recovery. It’s starting to sound like the dying gasps of TINA. Or perhaps an attempt by the neoliberals to hang on to something, anything, of a life that is suddenly so uncertain.

But the TINA spell has been broken, and everyone can see that if we need to, if we actually want to, we can change. The big question now is whether we will embrace the opportunity fully, or squander it out of fear and paucity of imagination.

The stories we tell right now, and what we put our focus on, are an important part of what happens next. We can already see conflicting world views jostling for a stake in the new game. The big question for New Zealand right now is are we brave and creative enough to front foot sustainability, resiliency and regenerative responses?

Economic anthropologist Jason Hickel wrote this twitter thread last week. Referring to this article (in Dutch), he tweeted,
 
 
(English version of the manifesto linked here)
 
This makes my greenie heart sing. I might quibble over a few things, but I’m cheering on the boldness and the fact that we are, finally, at a place where such a conversation can happen. Say it out loud: Degrowth.
 
Meanwhile, back in New Zealand, Grant Robertson’s speech to the business community last week made some comforting noises,

We must answer the big questions about our economy in these unprecedented times. What should we make and do here in New Zealand to ensure our sustainability; what institutions do we need to support our economy; what is the role of the State; how do we trade with the rest of the world in this new environment; and how will the financial system, both here and globally, cope?

Robertson mentions climate change, and references the Prime Minister’s statement about not allowing inequality to take hold in our recovery.

In fact we need to take this opportunity to improve the prospects of all New Zealanders and tackle those long standing divisions.

That would be nice. I can’t believe I’m doing this again, but I’m now waiting in hope that Labour will finally do the right things. That they will pull themselves out of the neoliberal holding pattern they’ve been in for decades and commit to some kind of progressive agenda.

The problem here is that the people in positions of power in Robertson’s plan are not sustainability or regenerative visionaries or experts. They are old school politicians who are most comfortable in BAU thinking. Peters, Parker, Twyford, Jones. So while Robertson might be filled with a passion for change, and I can even believe that many in Labour are relieved to have been handed the opportunity, I remain unconvinced he is looking to or listening to the people that can deliver the goods.

Obviously Labour aren’t going to embrace degrowth between now and the  budget next month, but they have moved in the past few months. The world has too, and the push for degrowth and steady state economies is growing. This is how change happens, the creative radical edge pulling the mainstream to evolve. It would help enormously right now to keep the public conversation going.

Which brings me to what we can do. Two things immediately spring to mind. One is to support the Greens, and party vote Green at the general election. This is where our parliamentary expertise in sustainability and regenerative process resides, and a decent increase in the number of Green MPs would change the whole ballgame. It’s almost certain that we will have a Labour-led government again, so the issue for progressives and lefties is what kind of Labour-led government do we want?
 
The other is that we bring our best stories to the table of what we want for New Zealand. The left has spent a few days mocking Simon Bridges, and I have to admit a large degree of schadenfreude in watching that go down. But that is about what we don’t want, and in the absence of new, affirming stories, we will have the old boys in Labour and NZ First steering us to a grey not green future. This we need to change.

If degrowth is too big a leap right now, we have plenty of ‘moving in the right direction’ initiatives. It’s not like New Zealand as a whole doesn’t have the expertise to make chances even within mainstream economics, the issue is why we aren’t empowering them. As a starter for a different future here again is Greenpeace NZ’s Green Covid Response.

56 comments on ““The government will never do that” ”

  1. Ad 1

    While it's more an invitation to dialogue than a plan, Minister Shaw was clear in his interview on RNZ this morning that climate change mitigation will be a criteria by which the thousands of projects proposed for restart will be evaluated.

    Shaw also announced a review of the entire Nationally Determined Contribution to the Paris Agreement on climate change.

    “Now the Climate Change Commission can advise on whether what we have committed to internationally is sufficient. If they conclude that there is more we need to do, the Commission will provide recommendations on how best to align our international targets with the Paris temperature goal. This will ensure we are playing our part globally,” James Shaw said.

    Minister Shaw added that he is expecting the Climate Change Commission to talk with a wide range of people, including iwi/hapū/Māori, industry, technical experts, special interest groups, and sector leaders, to inform its review.

    https://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PA2004/S00127/climate-target-to-come-under-expert-scrutiny.htm

    Surely there's a reasonable expectation that there's strong and idealistic advice coming out of the Climate Commission at this time?

    If anyone wants to submit to it, now's the time to inject a little idealism into the government's approach to climate change.

    • weka 1.1

      thanks, that's very helpful.

      • OnceWasTim 1.1.1

        I fear institutions such as "New Zealand Growth Capital Partners" (formerly New Zealand Venture Investment Fund) may need another 'rebrand' – let alone a cleanout or 'refocus' or 'reimage' or 'repivot, or perhaps some strings attached if it is to get any more NZ Super Fund money.

        No problem with assisting startups with the public's money as long as their business aligns with a sustainable green (not grey) future. And that they return the money and favour if and when they're successful

  2. Gosman 2

    The major flaw in this thinking is that an effective social welfare state requires sufficient economic surplus to be able to support unproductive economic members of society. The NZ population demographic is such that this unproductive section of society (e.g. the elderly) are growing. Unless we get growth we will end up in a position where more and more of the productive sector will need to be taxed to pay for the unproductive. You cannot get around this equation. If you start printing money or borrow money to pay for it you will just cause your economy a World of pain sometime in the future.

    • weka 2.1

      The major flaw in that thinking is that it ignores the limits of nature. Perpetual growth can't happen in physical system, and all our lives and economics are based in the physical world.

      See this model for understanding the limits of growth,

      https://twitter.com/kateraworth/status/849562726414397442

      • RedLogix 2.1.1

        Perpetual growth can't happen in physical system, and all our lives and economics are based in the physical world.

        First of all 'perpetual growth' is a myth. The human population is unlikely to ever exceed 9b and in all the developed nations of the world is declining.

        Secondly as nations age their per capita consumption tends to plateau or decline. Younger people setting up families are the ones who need things; once over the age of 45 or so most people have most of the things they need and the focus shifts to either savings, investment or some splurges on discretionary spending.

        Thirdly as the world continues to urbanise our per capital footprint on the world declines. This trend is especially intense in the tropical regions like SE Asia, the reason is simple. Because virtually all tropical agriculture demands hands-on labour that is not very amenable to mechanisation, it's very hard for rural farmers to increase their productivity and income … so they migrate to the cities where the prospects are much better, and in doing so actually reduce their net impact on the natural world.

        For all of human history up until we learned to burn coal in high pressure steam engines, the human population never exceeded 1b people. Because all of our economies relied on photosynthesis to produce food, wood and transport we were so energy constrained that per capita incomes never exceeded $300 pa, famine, war, disease and violence stalked our daily lives, life expectancies rarely exceeded 40yrs, slavery and empire were the norm.

        This was the world of Dr Malthus, who looked at this grim historic picture and concluded that 'perpetual growth was impossible in any physical system' as it was understood then. If a person from the our time was to go back in time and speak to Malthus, explaining that in 200 years time there would be 8 fold more humans, living twice as long, many with living standards most kings of his era could barely dream of … it would be met with scoffing incredulity. Such a thing had to be impossible.

        Yet here we are. All made possible because coal, the oil and gas, meant that each one of us in the developed world (and many others) has the equivalent of 20 -30 'energy slaves' invisibly working for us. We completely stepped over the limits of photosynthesis and the world changed.

        Now of course we have run into the long predicted limits of fossil fuels (and many other related ones as well.) The crisis we are facing is every bit as real as the one Dr Malthus was writing to, but of a quite different nature. Fossil fuels dramatically took us out of poverty, but I suggest are best regarded as a stepping stone on the path of technological progress.

        The big discovery the coal era enabled was of course electricity and then quantum mechanics, which enables both solar PV cells and nuclear energy …. both of which 'step over' the constraints of fossil fuels. We are poised to make that leap if we want to.

        None of this negates many of the ideas in the OP, the big five bullet points are all valid concepts regardless; but to trap them into the framework of 'de-growth' seems to me to sell them terribly short. We can do so much better than simply decaying and unwinding slowly back to the pre-industrial era.

      • Drowsy M. Kram 2.1.2

        Do like the Doughnut Economics ideas.

        Continuous global human population growth is the past, present and (foreseeable) future reality. Increasingly frequent crises, including shortages of life's essentials, will put regional dents in population growth, and at some point a 'natural' collapse of biblical proportions may shake humanity out of the comfortable (for some) BAU trap, but Covid-19 ain't it, IMHO.

        Our 'value & purpose' is to serve the growth ECONOMY – all hail the ECONOMY.

        "All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people, and harder – and ultimately impossible – to solve with ever more people."
        – Sir David Attenborough, Population Matters patron

        We have only one Earth. Today, the 7.7bn people on it are using more of its resources than it can provide. Every new person is a new consumer, adding to that demand. Some of us take far more than others and there are many steps we must take to make our consumption sustainable – adding fewer new consumers everywhere is one of them.

        “Anyone who believes in indefinite growth of anything physical on a physically finite planet is either a madman or an economist.”
        – Kenneth Boulding, economist
        https://populationmatters.org

        • RedLogix 2.1.2.1

          Continuous global human population growth is the past, present and (foreseeable) future reality.

          The data says different.

          It's the poverty stricken nations like India and Nigeria where birth rates are still very high. Everywhere else human development = stable or reducing population

          • Drowsy M. Kram 2.1.2.1.1

            RL, not disputing human population growth predictions/projections, but that's all they are – they’re not "data", just best guesses (11.2 billion) to century’s end.

            If you think the end of this century is the foreseeable future, you're dreaming laugh

            “All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people, and harder – and ultimately impossible – to solve with ever more people.”
            – Sir David Attenborough, Population Matters patron

            • RedLogix 2.1.2.1.1.1

              What is absolutely certain is that as people develop into a middle class standard of life, their birth rate inevitably declines. Often to below replacement.

              No modelling or guesswork required.

              The global average fertility rate is just below 2.5 children per woman today. Over the last 50 years the global fertility rate has halved. And over the course of the modernization of societies the number of children per woman decreases very substantially. In the pre-modern era fertility rates of 4.5 to 7 children per woman were common. At that time the very high mortality at a young age kept population growth low. As health improves and the mortality in the population decreases we typically saw accelerated population growth. This rapid population growth then comes to an end as the fertility rate declines and approaches 2 children per woman.

              Arguing to undo modernisation, to reduce living standards, is to argue for an increasing birth rate.

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                A global average birth rate slightly below replacement would be fantastic for humanity, and our ‘home‘ – a dream come true.

                "Arguing to undo modernisation, to reduce living standards, is to argue for an increasing birth rate."

                Who is arguing that? I certainly don’t want a reduction in my living standards, although a moderate reduction (think ‘Lent‘) would not cause undue hardship. Perhaps you should run a diagnostic on your mind reading functions.

                • RedLogix

                  The old trick of not explicitly stating your pre-suppositions and then denying them when challenged.

                  • Drowsy M. Kram

                    Although I didn’t trick you, did I? It's a challenge to have a rational debate with someone who embraces so many assumptions, but I'll keep trying.

                    If you could bring yourself to state what you believe my presuppositions are (because I have no idea what you might be referring to), we could proceed from there. Oh, wait (just guessing) – is it something to do with accusations of being 'anti-human' and 'pro-genocide', like Sir David Attenborough? laugh

                    What exactly do you find so objectionable about that quote?

                    “All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people, and harder – and ultimately impossible – to solve with ever more people.”
                    – Sir David Attenborough, Population Matters patron

                    • RedLogix

                      Because putting population at the head of the queue is arse about face; it's a symptom not a cause.

                      I keep coming back to this. With the tech available to us in the year 1800 95% of humans lived in absolute rural poverty, barely living above subsistence. The generation living in that year endured a brute standard of living barely different from any of the generations for millennia before. Less than 1b humans were at the carrying capacity of the planet without industrialisation.

                      Yet 200 years later and now there are 8 times more people, most of whom are living far different and much better lives. What had been hard limits for thousands of years melted away before us.

                      My argument is simple; we've done this before, we can do it again.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      "My argument is simple; we've done this before, we can do it again."

                      Your argument is simple. My response is also simple; yes, we can do 'it' again, but would it be wise? Would it be exercising good stewardship? What is the aim/end goal (some might call it 'an own goal') of increasing the global human population beyond, say, 8 billion? Might 8 billion, and 415 parts per million, be enough already?

                      We could 'ask' the great ape species, but we'd better hurry!

                      “All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people, and harder – and ultimately impossible – to solve with ever more people.”
                      – Sir David Attenborough, Population Matters patron

                    • RedLogix

                      Let me reduce this (at the risk of gross oversimplification) to three choices:

                      1. We power-down, de-growth and die-off to our pre-industrial, photosynthesis only population of under 1b. Essentially a Great Leap Backward.

                      2. We presume no technology progress and continue to consume resources and add to CO2 at our current levels. Assume all resources are fixed, we exploit them in no new ways, and we run them slowly down to zero. Essentially the same as Option 1, but takes longer.

                      3. Or assuming continued tech progress we leap our industrial systems beyond their current restraints. Human development achieves a whole new impetus, bringing the whole of humanity into the developed world, and ensures population growth remains permanently under our control. Unlimited clean energy means full de-coupling from the natural world becomes a realistic goal.

                      Wise or unwise, I’m willing to bet on Option 3.

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Choice 1 is extreme. Choice 3 is attractive and fanciful, IMHO.

                      Humanity is on course for choice 2 with technological progress. I'd like to tweak that by aiming for replacement (and then slightly below replacement) fertility sooner rather than later. Such a tweak might make a future transition to choice 3 more achievable, but I recognise that such a tweak, however attractive, is itself unrealistic.

                      Consider what's happening globally now, then ask yourself (honestly) if humanity can realistically transition to your choice '3' while growing billions more humans. Hasn't the earth had 'enough already'?

                      It's (just) a matter of time (and population.)

                      “All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people, and harder – and ultimately impossible – to solve with ever more people.”
                      – Sir David Attenborough, Population Matters patron
                      https://populationmatters.org

                    • RedLogix

                      Consider what's happening globally now, then ask yourself (honestly) if humanity can realistically transition to your choice '3' while growing billions more humans.

                      What is happening now … globally … is that everywhere humans develop beyond poverty, our birth rate declines dramatically. I've repeated linked to this fact.

                      https://ourworldindata.org/fertility-rate

                      https://ourworldindata.org/fertility-can-decline-extremely-fast

                    • Drowsy M. Kram

                      Yes, human fertility/birth rates are declining (hooray) – have never suggested otherwise, so we're on the same page there (phew).

                      My point, and indeed Sir David Attenbourough's, is that decline isn't sufficient to significantly decrease the already unsustainable 'load' that the current 7.8 billion humans, not to mention the projected (according to your links up-thread) billions more to come, are imposing on 'our' planet.

                      The evidence is all around, if you would only care enough to look.

                      It must be nice, living in your paradise.

                      “All our environmental problems become easier to solve with fewer people, and harder – and ultimately impossible – to solve with ever more people.”
                      – Sir David Attenborough, Population Matters patron

            • weka 2.1.2.1.1.2

              "not disputing human population growth predictions/projections, but that's all they are – they’re not "data", just best guesses (11.2 billion) to century’s end."

              NZ's population is still increasing. From a regenerative perspective that's a problem where we aren't assessing our land base and carrying capacity (which we're not), especially in a post-carbon world that is operating to limit pollution and resource depletion. Until we start doing that, the numbers are kind of meaningless.

              • weka

                oh, and a decrease in the rate of growth isn't the same as steady state and that's the critical bit in sustainability design.

        • weka 2.1.2.2

          tbh, I think covid is the practice run. We should be acting as if it is, but I think we are most likely to going to act as if capitalism can survive a big pandemic and prepare around that (which is better than nothing). But then we have the other issues of climate change, GFC, peak oil, peak soil and so on.

          The population one is a no brainer to me, and it never ceases to amaze me how lefties will let their ideology trump basic physical reality. But then most don't look at sustainability in terms of what it actually means I guess.

      • Phil 2.1.3

        What an utterly banal cartoon that is. It attempts to simplify the obviously complex and interlinked nature of our world into mindless 'good and bad' as if they are relevant choices. For starters it doesn't even recognise, let alone attempt to resolve, that a large driver of developing world pollution is driven by a need to raise living standards, housing and health outcomes, for their national populace.

        • pat 2.1.3.1

          the overwhelming bulk of developing world pollution is to provide for the excesses of the affluent developed world….but you can attribute higher moral purpose if you like

        • RedLogix 2.1.3.2

          For starters it doesn't even recognise, let alone attempt to resolve, that a large driver of developing world pollution is driven by a need to raise living standards, housing and health outcomes, for their national populace.

          I'm afraid that's so simplified and cartoonish I'm not sure where to start in response.

          Ideally I could propose a world in which the developing world might have gone directly to full renewables or nuclear energy, EV's and low carbon tech everywhere. That would have been wonderful.

          But the alternative was to tell the poor of the world that they had to stay poor in case they 'polluted too much'. Do you care to say that to their faces?

        • weka 2.1.3.3

          "For starters it doesn't even recognise, let alone attempt to resolve, that a large driver of developing world pollution is driven by a need to raise living standards, housing and health outcomes, for their national populace."

          I think it totally recognises that, hence the inner and outer rings. The obvious solution to the issue of fair standards of living globally (or even within NZ) is for wealthy countries to stop using more resources and producing more pollution that is fair. Better yet, use their privilege to fast transition to regenerative rather than extractive economies and then offer those models to other countries (although I suspect that over developed countries could learn a lot from some so called third world countries).

      • KJT 2.1.4

        Gosman, like Climaction and Paddington, won't come right out and say "useless mouths that can be culled" for the benefit of their bank account.

        But, that underlies their comments.

        Hasn't he ever been babysit by his Grandparents?

    • RedBaronCV 2.2

      At the moment a large part of the economic surplus winds up in the hands of the few. Redistributing that will diminish the government spend. Think of cutting corporate huge salaries and distributing that among the workforce – then redistribute the hours of work so 40 hours becomes say 35 to keep the numbers employed- everyone has some money and the drain on the government is diminished.

    • RosieLee 2.3

      Offensive. The elderly are not an unproductive section of society. They have had a social contract with government all their lives that their work and taxes will pay for their education, health and old age. Next, many of the "elderly" are still in employment or business and paying taxes. Next, Many "elderly" are still contributing to their communities and families with unpaid volunteer work and family care. So I respectfully suggest that you need to rejig your thinking.

      • weka 2.3.1

        Yep. Gosman has a very limited idea of what feeds into the economy. Until we account for all the work being done, conventional economic models are lacking and can't seriously work in terms of sustainable design. They also ignore key aspects of resiliency.

      • mac1 2.3.2

        Elderly is also a perjorative word.

        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1796692/

        Another briefer statement says, "Elderly is better used as a description of physiological age rather than chronological age. Elderly is used to describe people who have difficulty rising from low chairs, age spots and thin skin on the back of their hands, and other signs of significant physical decline associated with aging. These changes occur at varying chronological ages. Elderly applies when a combination of these signals that the individual has substantially diminished and diminishing physical capacity."

        Perhaps Gosman does mean this definition of 'elderly'.

        But damned if I'll be called elderly at 70!

        • Andre 2.3.2.1

          Ok, then how would you like people to allude to those that have been on this planet for significantly longer than most of the inhabitants?

          Perhaps "temporally advantaged" ?

          • mac1 2.3.2.1.1

            Hopefully, respectfully. I'm in Grey Power. We can refer to our members and that age group as seniors, senior citizens, older + noun, pensioners, superannuitants, 50+, retirees, depending on actual age. A superannuitant has to be 65, a pensioner can be younger, and so on.

            Elderly has connotations of infirmity, frailty, not coping, needful of assistance. Many of us 'olds' are not that yet.

        • RosieLee 2.3.2.2

          Chronological age, physiological age, whatever. I have many of those "symptoms" but I am still working, taking part in my family and community. I do not feel diminished in any way . That's just insulting and Gosman needs to take a running jump – if he's still able.

      • mpledger 2.3.3

        NZ has the second highest effective age of retirement.

        https://www.oecd.org/els/emp/average-effective-age-of-retirement.htm

    • Tricledrown9o 2.4

      Where's your proof Godman.All the major Trading blocks printed their way out of recession after the GFC.the major trading banks in NZ are allowed to print 33 % of their loans.as per usual gosman you think you know it all.But in reality your a Thatchrite who thinks you run an economy like a household budget.

      • weka 2.4.1

        Can you please explain why you are not fixing the typo in your username? Multiple mods have pointed this out to you You are now in the blacklist until this gets sorted (i.e your comments won’t show on the front end).

    • Nic181 2.5

      Who do you think paid tax to fund the very same, 40 years and more recently. I paid 66 percent tax at the top of the scale, to a National government led by a piggy. What goes round comes around!

    • Grafton Gully 2.6

      Hey Gosman, a less productive productive sector grows employment – three slow barbers in town versus one fast one.

    • Nic the NZer 2.7

      This is your usual nonsense drivel Gosman. The economic surplus your talking is the available food, clothing and shelter to take care of people who are not producing some of those goods. New Zealand like all developed nations has more than sufficient of that obviously and can clearly therefore solve the mere distributional issue of ensuring people not earning an income receive sufficient income to buy their share in any circumstance. The only question is the political will to do so. But congratulations you have found a non issue to concern yourself with.

    • patricia 2.8

      "Unproductive elderly" Gosman, that is divisive tosh. Many elderly are working writing inventing and studying.
      They are looking for ways to improve our lives and impacts on the planet. Generalisations are silly. Many have saved and invested in NZ companies and start -ups. They are hardly sitting with begging bowls.

  3. Janet 3

    Right with you there Weka but look what is being spouted today.

    Ian Proudfoot

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12326905

    “New Zealand was in one of the best positions to raise animals in a sustainable way, said Proudfoot.”

    Yes.

    "People want safe food, people want healthy food – we can do that."

    Yes.

    “Our response to Covid-19 further cemented New Zealand on the global stage as a safe place and safe producer of food, he said.”

    Yes.

    Now the compromises…..

    “Covid-19 would accelerate a move towards lab-based meats and plant-based proteins and they would likely get cheaper while premium meat would get more expensive.”

    “There was a "broad church" of genetic technology to look at and gene-editing should be considered as it was an effective way to feed a lot of people.

    It was different to genetically modified, he said.”

    New Zealand,s next moves should be more organic and sustainable without compromises.

    Note: Even the big players in pest control are trying to get us to engage with genetically interfering with possums… its like academics who would like to be able to play with genetic interference generally are trying to set up a back door entrance to such science in NZ by edging it in through “pest control”

    • weka 3.1

      People who think that lab meat and plant-protein meat replacements can be used on a widespread scale don't understand what sustainability and resiliency are. Nor the limits of nature. It's not that they can't happen at all, it's that the whole 'growing meat is bad therefore we should make lab meat instead' thing is exactly the kind of thinking that leads to resource depletion and pollution. It's not a matter of swapping one food growing tech for another, it's about using a different world view and understanding of systems and how they work.

  4. Ad 4

    Freaking Business As Usual again.

    $50 million just announced to prop up the media.

    OMG. I thought we were going to re-organise state broadcasting?

    • tc 4.1

      Watch the mouth that just got feed savage the hand feeding it come election time.

      • patricia 4.1.1

        The "Hand" has asked them to come up with a workable business plan that is viable to gain a share of that money. That might be difficult for some of them in this environment.

    • millsy 4.2

      Yeah, that pisses me off too.

      First golden oppurtunity missed.

    • As expected @ Ad. Temporary fix and can kicked down the road. Haven't seen the details yet although a mate has just told me that Kordia is involved – so to my mind there's a hint that fa-fa-fa-Faafoi is aware of various options.

      Apparently, like cheese – good things take time

      Edit: Oh, and NuZullonEar.

    • Incognito 4.4

      It’s a timing issue and no need to freak out.

      The media are literally sinking and drowning in front of our eyes. Re-organisation takes (too) much time, especially when done properly.

      • Ad 4.4.1

        Yes fair enough.

        It's more an annoyance on the same line as Weka's post: why can't we expect to see imagination?

        It's like they're doing everything possible they can to shorten the Overton Window.

        • Incognito 4.4.1.1

          I confess, I have not yet had a chance to read Weka’s post 🙁

          I think they’re stuck between a rock and a hard place; transitioning is always difficult and painful, even more so when they have to appeal to and appease and herd the sheeple. After all, it is only 5 months away …

          Before I dish out any more clichés, I will read the OP 😉

      • OnceWasTim 4.4.2

        Not sure if you're being cynical or not (I need a nana nap). One thing I have noticed though – Peter Thompsons, Jutels, Dunleaveys , fa-fa-fa-FaFoi's, CBB Miles et al aside, (All of whom I have a great deal of respect for – their knowledge and experience), is that when you discuss/question any of it with them using the buzz terminology – questions like who are the various "stakeholders"? – guess what (what Tim?) – the audience is never mentioned except in terms of things like demographic targeting and branding.

        So yea – maybe there'll be some excellent cheese coming out of it all in years to come – cheese that journalism and journalists, art and artisans, kulcha and kulcharilists can live on

      • The Al1en 4.4.3

        True. You can't reorganise or change something that doesn't exist anymore.

        If there's a will to change the media in NZ, put it on life support, and keep the major surgery for when the surgeon has a clear plan of action.

    • UncookedSelachimorpha 4.6

      Ad @ 4

      I agree. Public money? Then purchase the assets, hire the staff and expand public broadcasting / media / journalism. Don't donate to private business.

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    1. On what subject is Paul Henry even remotely worth giving the time of day?a. The state of our nationb. The state of the ACT partyc. How to freak out potential buyers of your gin palace by baking the remains of your deceased parent into its fittings2. Now that New ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    10 hours ago
  • The looting is the point
    Last time National was in power, they looted the state, privatising public assets and signing hugely wasteful public-private partnership (PPP) contracts which saw foreign consortiums provide substandard infrastructure while gouging us for profits. You only have to look at the ongoing fiasco of Transmission Gully to see how it was ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    10 hours ago
  • The Illusion of Power: How Local Government Bureaucrats Overawe Democratically-Elected Councillors..
    The Democratic Façade Of Local Government: Our district and city councillors are democratically elected to govern their communities on one very strict condition – that they never, ever, under any circumstances, attempt to do so.A DISINTEGRATION OF LOYALTIES on the Wellington City Council has left Mayor Tory Whanau without a ...
    14 hours ago
  • Lowlights & Bright Spots
    I can feel the lowlights coming over meI can feel the lowlights, from the state I’m inI can see the light now even thought it’s dimA little glow on the horizonAnother week of lowlights from our government, with the odd bright spot and a glow on the horizon. The light ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    16 hours ago
  • Weekly Roundup 14-June-2024
    Another week, another roundup of things that caught our eye on our favourite topics of transport, housing and how to make cities a little bit greater. This Week in Greater Auckland On Monday, Connor wrote about Kāinga Ora’s role as an urban development agency Tuesday’s guest post by ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    18 hours ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 14
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features co-hosts and talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent about the National-ACT-NZ First Government’s moves this week to take farming out of the ETS and encourage more mining and oil and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    18 hours ago
  • Climate policy axed in broad daylight, while taxpayer liabilities grow in the dark
    In 2019, Shane Jones addressed the “50 Shades of Green” protest at Parliament: Now he is part of a government giving those farmers a pass on becoming part of the ETS, as well as threatening to lock in offshore oil exploration and mining for decades. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Here’s the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    18 hours ago
  • Rage Bait!
    Hi,Today’s newsletter is all about how easy it is to get sucked into “rage bait” online, and how easy it is to get played.But first I wanted to share something that elicited the exact opposite of rage in me — something that made me feel incredibly proud, whilst also making ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    19 hours ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Friday, June 14
    Seymour said lower speed limits “drained the joy from life as people were forced to follow rules they knew made no sense.” File Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Friday, June 14 were:The National/ACT/NZ First ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    20 hours ago
  • Friendly but frank talks with China Premier
    It sounded like the best word to describe yesterday’s talks between Chinese Premier Li Qiang and his heavyweight delegation of Ministers and officials and Prime Minister Christopher Luxon and New Zealand Ministers and officials was “frank.” But it was the kind of frankness that friends can indulge in. It ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    21 hours ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #24 2024
    Open access notables Wildfire smoke impacts lake ecosystems, Farruggia et al., Global Change Biology: We introduce the concept of the lake smoke-day, or the number of days any given lake is exposed to smoke in any given fire season, and quantify the total lake smoke-day exposure in North America from 2019 ...
    1 day ago
  • Geoffrey Miller: China’s message to New Zealand – don’t put it all at risk
    Don’t put it all at risk. That’s likely to be the take-home message for New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon in his meetings with Li Qiang, the Chinese Premier. Li’s visit to Wellington this week is the highest-ranking visit by a Chinese official since 2017. The trip down under – ...
    Democracy ProjectBy Geoffrey Miller
    1 day ago
  • The Real Thing
    I know the feelingIt is the real thingThe essence of the soulThe perfect momentThat golden momentI know you feel it tooI know the feelingIt is the real thingYou can't refuse the embraceNo?Sometimes we face the things we most dislike. A phobia or fear that must be confronted so it doesn’t ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    2 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on how moderates empower the political right
    Struth, what a week. Having made sure the rural sector won’t have to pay any time soon for its pollution, PM Christopher Luxon yesterday chose Fieldays 2024 to launch a parliamentary inquiry into rural banking services, to see how the banks have been treating farmers faced with high interest rates. ...
    2 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Thursday, June 13
    In April, 17,656 people left Aotearoa-NZ to live overseas, averaging 588 a day, with just over half of those likely to have gone to Australia. Photo: Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Thursday, June 13 ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    2 days ago
  • Our guide to having your say on the draft RLTP 2024
    Auckland’s draft Regional Land Transport Plan (RLTP) 2024 is open for feedback – and you only have until Monday 17 June to submit. Do it! Join the thousands of Aucklanders who are speaking up for wise strategic investment that will dig us out of traffic and give us easy and ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    2 days ago
  • The China puzzle
    Chinese Premier Li Qiang arrives in Wellington today for a three-day visit to the country. The visit will take place amid uncertainty about the future of the New Zealand-China relationship. Li hosted a formal welcome and then lunch for then-Prime Minister Chris Hipkins in Beijing a year ago. The pair ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    2 days ago
  • Fossil fuels are shredding our democracy
    This is a re-post of an article from the Climate Brink by Andrew Dessler published on June 3, 2024. I have an oped in the New York Times (gift link) about this. For a long time, a common refrain about the energy transition was that renewable energy needed to become ...
    2 days ago
  • Life at 20 kilometres an hour
    We are still in France, getting from A to B.Possibly for only another week, though; Switzerland and Germany are looming now. On we pedal, towards Budapest, at about 20 km per hour.What are are mostly doing is inhaling a country, loving its ways and its food. Rolling, talking, quietly thinking. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    2 days ago
  • Hipkins is still useless
    The big problem with the last Labour government was that they were chickenshits who did nothing with the absolute majority we had given them. They governed as if they were scared of their own shadows, afraid of making decisions lest it upset someone - usually someone who would never have ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Exercising with the IDF.
    This morning I did something I seldom do, I looked at the Twitter newsfeed. Normally I take the approach of something that I’m not sure is an American urban legend, or genuinely something kids do over there. The infamous bag of dog poo on the front porch, set it on ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    3 days ago
  • Helm Hammerhand Anime: First Pictures and an Old English ‘Hera’
    We have some news on the upcoming War of the Rohirrim anime. It will apparently be two and a half hours in length, with Peter Jackson as Executive Producer, and Helm’s daughter Hera will be the main character. Also, pictures: The bloke in the middle picture is Freca’s ...
    3 days ago
  • Farmers get free pass on climate AND get subsidies
    The cows will keep burping and farting and climate change will keep accelerating - but farmers can stop worrying about being included in the ETS. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: My six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty on Wednesday, June 12 were:The ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    3 days ago
  • Six ideas to secure Te Huia’s Future
    This is a guest post by our friend Darren Davis. It originally appeared on his excellent blog, Adventures in Transitland, which features “musings about public transport and other cool stuff in Aotearoa/ New Zealand and around the globe.” With Te Huia now having funding secure through to 2026, now is ...
    Greater AucklandBy Darren Davis
    3 days ago
  • The methane waka sinks
    In some ways, there may be less than meets the eye to the Government announcement yesterday that the He Waka Eke Noa proposal for farmers to pay for greenhouse gas emissions has been scrapped. The spectre of farmers still having to pay at some point in the future remains. That, ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    3 days ago
  • At a glance – Does positive feedback necessarily mean runaway warming?
    On February 14, 2023 we announced our Rebuttal Update Project. This included an ask for feedback about the added "At a glance" section in the updated basic rebuttal versions. This weekly blog post series highlights this new section of one of the updated basic rebuttal versions and serves as a ...
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: Farmers get what they wanted – for now
    Since entering office, National has unravelled practically every climate policy, leaving us with no effective way of reducing emissions or meeting our emissions budgets beyond magical thinking around the ETS. And today they've announced another step: removing agriculture entirely. At present, following the complete failure of he waka eka noa, ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Presumed Innocent?
    The blue billionaireDistraction no interactionOr movement outside these glazed over eyesThe new great divideFew fight the tide to be glorifiedBut will he be satisfied?Can we accept this without zoom?The elephant in the roomNot much happens in politics on a Monday. Bugger all in fact. Although yesterday Christopher Luxon found he ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    4 days ago
  • Gordon Campbell on our doomed love affair with oil and gas
    What if New Zealand threw a fossil fuel party, and nobody came? On the weekend, Resources Minister Shane Jones sent out the invitations and strung up the balloons, but will anyone really want to invest big time in resuming oil and gas exploration in our corner of the planet? Yes, ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    4 days ago
  • Building better housing insights
    This is a guest post by Meredith Dale, senior urban designer and strategist at The Urban Advisory. There’s a saying that goes something like: ‘what you measure is what you value’. An RNZ article last week claimed that Auckland was ‘hurting’ because of a more affordable supply of homes, particularly townhouses ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    4 days ago
  • Putin would be proud of them
    A Prime Minister directs his public service to inquire into the actions of the opposition political party which is his harshest critic. Something from Orban's Hungary, or Putin's Russia? No, its happening right here in Aotearoa: Prime Minister Christopher Luxon has announced the Public Service Commission will launch an ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths
    This is a repost from a Yale Climate Connections article by SueEllen Campbell published on June 3, 2024. The articles listed can help you tell fact from fiction when it comes to solar and wind energy. Some statements you hear about solar and wind energy are just plain false. ...
    4 days ago
  • Juggernaut
    Politics were going on all around us yesterday, and we barely noticed, rolling along canal paths, eating baguettes. It wasn’t until my mate got to the headlines last night that we learned there had been a dismayingly strong far right result in the EU elections and Macron had called a ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    4 days ago
  • Numbers Game.
    Respect Existence, Or Expect Resistance? There may well have been 50,000 pairs of feet “Marching For Nature” down Auckland’s Queen Street on Saturday afternoon, but the figure that impresses the Coalition Government is the 1,450,000 pairs of Auckland feet that were somewhere else.IN THE ERA OF DRONES and Artificial Intelligence, ...
    4 days ago
  • Media Link: AVFA on post-colonial blowback.
    Selwyn Manning and I discuss varieties of post colonial blowback and the implications its has for the rise of the Global South. Counties discussed include Palestine/Israel, France/New Caledonia, England/India, apartheid/post-apartheid South Africa and post-colonial New Zealand. It is a bit … Continue reading ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    4 days ago
  • Policy by panic
    Back in March, Ombudsman Peter Boshier resigned when he hit the statutory retirement age of 72, leaving the country in the awkward (and legally questionable) position of having him continue as a temporay appointee. It apparently took the entire political system by surprise - as evinced by Labour's dick move ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • PSA: NZ's Richest Company, Zuru, Sucks
    Hi,Today the New Zealand press is breathlessly reporting that the owners of toy company Zuru are officially New Zealand’s wealthiest people: Mat and Nick Mowbray worth an estimated $20 billion between them.While the New Zealand press loses its shit celebrating this Kiwi success story, this is a Webworm reminder that ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    5 days ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Monday, June 10
    TL;DR: The six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty in the past day to 8:36 pm on Monday, June 10 were:20,000 protested against the Fast-track approval bill on Saturday in Auckland, but PM Christopher Luxon says ‘sorry, but not sorry’ about the need for ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    5 days ago
  • In Defence of Kāinga Ora
    Given the headlines around the recent findings of the ‘independent’ review of Kāinga Ora by Bill English, you might assume this post will be about social housing, Kāinga Ora’s most prominent role. While that is indeed something that requires defending, I want to talk about the other core purpose of ...
    Greater AucklandBy Connor Sharp
    5 days ago
  • Baby You're A Rich Man
    “How does it feel to beOne of the beautiful peopleNow that you know who you areWhat do you want to beAnd have you traveled very far?Far as the eye can see”Yesterday the ACT party faithful were regaled with craven boasts, sneers, and demands for even more at their annual rally.That ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    5 days ago
  • Stopping a future Labour government from shutting down gas exploration
    A defiant Resources Minister Shane Jones has responded to Saturday’s environmental protests by ending Labour’s offshore oil exploration ban and calling for long-term contracts with any successful explorers. The purpose would be to prevent a future Labour Government from reversing any licence the explorers might hold. Jones sees a precedent ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    5 days ago
  • 2024 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #23
    A listing of 32 news and opinion articles we found interesting and shared on social media during the past week: Sun, June 2, 2024 thru Sat, June 8, 2024. Story of the week Our Story of the Week is Yale Climate Connection's Resources for debunking common solar and wind myths, by ...
    5 days ago
  • Fission by the river
    This is where we ate our lunch last Wednesday. Never mind your châteaux and castles and whatnot, we like to enjoy a baguette in the shadow of a nuclear power plant; a station that puts out more than twice as much as Manapouri using nothing more than tiny atoms to bring ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    6 days ago
  • Fact Brief – Is the ocean acidifying?
    Skeptical Science is partnering with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. This fact brief was written by John Mason in collaboration with members from the Gigafact team. You can submit claims you think need checking via the tipline. Is the ocean acidifying? Acidification of oceans ...
    6 days ago
  • 20,000+ on Queen St.
    The largest protest I ever went on was in the mid 90s. There were 10,000 people there that day, and I’ve never forgotten it. An enormous mass of people, chanting together. Stretching block after block, bringing traffic to a halt.But I can’t say that’s the biggest protest I’ve ever been ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    6 days ago
  • Josh Drummond's Columns
    Hi there,I wanted to put all of Josh Drummond’s Webworm pieces all in one place. I love that he writes for Webworm — and all of these are a good read!David.Why Are So Many “Christians” Hellbent on Being Horrible?Why do so many objectively hideous people declare themselves “Christian”?Meeting the Master ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    6 days ago
  • Bernard’s Saturday soliloquy and weekend Pick ‘n’ Mix for June 8/9
    Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: On reflection, the six things to note in Aotearoa-NZ’s political economy around housing, climate and poverty this week were:The Government-driven freeze in building new classrooms, local roads and water networks in order to save cash for tax cuts is frustrating communities facing massive population ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    7 days ago
  • The no-vision thing
    Hello! Here comes the Saturday edition of More Than A Feilding, catching you up on the past somewhat interrupted week. Still on the move!Share Read more ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    7 days ago
  • When Journalists are Disingenuous
    Hi,One of the things I like the most about Webworm is to be able to break down the media and journalism a little, and go behind the scenes.This is one of those times.Yesterday an email arrived in my inbox from journalist Jonathan Milne, who is managing editor at Newsroom.I don’t ...
    David FarrierBy David Farrier
    7 days ago
  • Me, elsewhere: Just say you’ll do the thing
    Wrote something over at 1/200 on a familiar theme of mine: The way we frame the economy as a separate, sacred force which must be sacrificed to, the way we talk about criminals as invaders who must be repelled, the constant othering of people on the benefit, people not in ...
    Boots TheoryBy Stephanie Rodgers
    1 week ago
  • A Voyage Among the Vandals: Accepted
    A nice bit of news today: my 4600-word historical fantasy-horror piece, A Voyage Among the Vandals, has been accepted by Phobica Books (https://www.phobicabooks.co.uk/books) for their upcoming Pirate Horror anthology, Shivering Timbers. This one is set in the Mediterranean, during the mid-fifth century AD. Notable for having one of history’s designated ...
    1 week ago
  • Ministerial conflicts of interest
    Since the National government came to power, it has been surrounded by allegations of conflicts of interest. Firstly, there's the fast-track law, which concentrates power in the hands of three Ministers, some of whom have received donations from companies whose projects they will be deciding on. Secondly, there's the close ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The 2024 Budget Forecasts Are Gloomy Prognosis About The Next Three Years.
    There was no less razzamatazz about the 2024 Budget than about earlier ones. Once again the underlying economic analysis got lost. It deserves more attention.Just to remind you, the Budget Economic and Fiscal Update (BEFU), is the Treasury’s independent assessment and so can be analysed by other competent economists (although ...
    PunditBy Brian Easton
    1 week ago
  • A government that can't see twenty feet ahead
    There are two failings that consistently characterise a National government. One is a lack of imagination, the other is their willingness to look after their mates, no matter what harm it might do to everyone else.This is how we come to have thousands of enormous trucks carving up our roads. ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • A post I hope is incorrect
    In May, we learned that National MP David MacLeod had "forgotten" to declare $178,000 in electoral donations. Filing a donation return which is false in any material particular is a crime, and the Electoral Commission has now referred MacLeod to police, since they're the only people who are allowed to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Māori Cannot Re-Write New Zealand’s Constitution By Stealth.
    The Kotahitanga Parliament 1897: A Māori Parliament – at least in the guise of a large and representative body dedicated to describing the shape of New Zealand’s future from a Māori perspective – would be a very good idea.THE DEMAND for a “Māori Parliament” needs to be carefully unpicked. Some Pakeha, ...
    1 week ago
  • Cowpats and Colonials.
    Dumbtown, is how my friend Gerard refers to people like ZB listeners - he’s not wrong.Normally on a Friday I start by looking at Mike Hosking’s moronic reckons of the week which he vomits down the throats of his audience like helpless baby birds in a nest, grateful for the ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Gordon Campbell on cutting the sick leave of vulnerable workers
    Should sick leave be part and parcel of the working conditions from Day One on the job, just like every other health and safety provision? Or should access to sick leave be something that only gradually accumulates, depending on how long a worker has been on the payroll? If enacted ...
    WerewolfBy lyndon
    1 week ago
  • Nobody Move: Ageing Boomers, Laurie & Les, Talk Politics.
    So long as we live in a democracy, economic policy can never be anything other than social-democratic.“HEH!”, snorted Laurie, as he waved his debit card over the EFTPOS machine. “Same price as last week. I guess budgets aren’t what they used to be.”“I wouldn’t know,” replied the young barman, wearily, ...
    1 week ago
  • In Search Of Unity.
    Kotahitanga: New Zealand’s future belongs to those who do not fear a nation carved out of unity and solidarity, and are willing to trust the carvers. Some New Zealanders will be required to step up, and others, perhaps for the first time in their lives, will be expected to step ...
    1 week ago
  • Weekly Roundup 7-June-2024
    Welcome to another Friday roundup! Here are some recent links and stories that caught our eye, perfectly timed for your watercooler discussions and weekend reading. As always feel free to share more in the comments. Our header image this week is by Patrick Reynolds, and shows Te Komititanga from above. ...
    Greater AucklandBy Greater Auckland
    1 week ago
  • The Hoon around the week to June 7
    As Workplace Relations and Safety Minister, ACT’s Brooke van Velden is fronting proposed changes to sick pay regulations and The Holiday Act. Photo: Lynn Grieveson / The KākāTL;DR: The podcast above of the weekly ‘hoon’ webinar for paying subscribers features talking with:The Kākā’s climate correspondent talking about the ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Did we boil the oceans by cutting pollution?
    Lowering aerosol emissions from shipping has altered clouds, with potentially drastic effects. Photo: Getty ImagesTL;DR: Here’s the top six news items of note in climate news for Aotearoa-NZ this week, and a discussion above between Bernard Hickey and The Kākā’s climate correspondent Cathrine Dyer:New evidence is increasingly pointing at efforts ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #23 2024
    Open access notables Abrupt reduction in shipping emission as an inadvertent geoengineering termination shock produces substantial radiative warming, Yuan et al., Communications Earth & Environment: Human activities affect the Earth’s climate through modifying the composition of the atmosphere, which then creates radiative forcing that drives climate change. The warming effect ...
    1 week ago
  • Fragments
    The best observation I’ve read this week about the deep, profound harm Trump is doingTrump has hurled threats and smears at witnesses, jurors and the judge (including his family)... [he] has tried to intimidate witnesses and delegitimize the New York courts as corrupt. In continuing to incite his mob (that ...
    More Than A FeildingBy David Slack
    1 week ago
  • March for Nature
    Do do do do do do do doDo do do do do doDi di di di di di di di di di diNature enter me…In 2018 the Labour lead government banned new oil and gas exploration in Aotearoa. A change welcomed by those who care deeply for our environment and ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard’s Dawn Chorus and pick ‘n’ mix for Thursday, June 6
    The Transport Minister is trying to push through urgent legislation that would allow him to change emissions standards for car imports without approval from Parliament, after only consulting car importers. Photo: Lynn GrievesonTL;DR: Just as two major reports showed fossil fuel burning was warming the planet to dangerous levels and ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago
  • A Better Broadway: Act 2
    This is a guest post by reader Grant A, the second of a pair about how to fix Broadway. If you missed the beginning of the show, here’s the link to Act 1 from yesterday. Yesterday, I discussed changing traffic circulation around Broadway in Newmarket. This included implementing a car-free ...
    Greater AucklandBy Guest Post
    1 week ago
  • National breaks another health promise
    National has broken another manifesto health promise, apparently to save only $550,000. It will now train an additional 25 med students next year rather than the 50 it promised. This comes on top of the delays caused by National’s coalition partners in pushing ahead with the Waikato Medical School and ...
    PolitikBy Richard Harman
    1 week ago
  • Climate Adam: Coping as the world’s best known climate scientist
    This video includes conclusions of the creator climate scientist Dr. Adam Levy. It is presented to our readers as an informed perspective. Please see video description for references (if any). Katharine Hayhoe is quite possibly the world's most famous climate scientist. She's produced wide ranging research, and communicated climate change with ...
    1 week ago
  • SIS “evidence” isn’t, again
    Back in 2016, then-Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne cancelled a New Zealand woman's passport, claiming she was a terrorist. The basis for his decision was a secret briefing by the SIS, which claimed that if she was allowed to travel, the woman would "engage with individuals who encourage acts of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • As Low As You Go
    Taking you as low as you goAs low as you goA sense of Déjà vu this morning. How many times have I begun a newsletter, “just when you thought they couldn’t go any lower…” Only for the groundhog to reappear, more pissed off than the day before.Another day with headlines ...
    Nick’s KōreroBy Nick Rockel
    1 week ago
  • Bernard's Dawn Chorus and pick 'n' mix for Wednesday June 5
    TL;DR: The public health costs of human-caused air pollution in Aotearoa-NZ is estimated at $38.8 billion a year because it kills 3,300 people each year, which is almost ten times more than the death toll on roads from accidents. Yet the Ministry for the Environment has just one staff member ...
    The KakaBy Bernard Hickey
    1 week ago

  • High Court Judge appointed
    Attorney-General Judith Collins today announced the appointment of Auckland King’s Counsel Gregory Peter Blanchard as a High Court Judge. Justice Blanchard attended the University of Auckland from 1991 to 1995, graduating with an LLB (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts (English). He was a solicitor with the firm that is now Dentons ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Health workforce numbers rise
    Health Minister Dr Shane Reti says new data released today shows encouraging growth in the health workforce, with a continued increase in the numbers of doctors, nurses and midwives joining Health New Zealand. “Frontline healthcare workers are the beating heart of the healthcare system. Increasing and retaining our health workforce ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    10 hours ago
  • Government to overhaul firearms laws
    Associate Justice Minister Nicole McKee has today announced a comprehensive programme to reform New Zealand's outdated and complicated firearms laws. “The Arms Act has been in place for over 40 years. It has been amended several times – in a piecemeal, and sometimes rushed way. This has resulted in outdated ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government delivers landmark specialist schools investment
    The coalition Government is delivering record levels of targeted investment in specialist schools so children with additional needs can thrive. As part of Budget 24, $89 million has been ringfenced to redevelop specialist facilities and increase satellite classrooms for students with high needs. This includes: $63 million in depreciation funding ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    15 hours ago
  • Major health and safety consultation begins
    A substantial consultation on work health and safety will begin today with a roadshow across the regions over the coming months, says Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Brooke van Velden.  This the first step to deliver on the commitment to reforming health and safety law and regulations, set out in ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Growing the potential of New Zealand’s forestry sector in partnership
    Forestry Minister Todd McClay, today announced the start of the Government’s plan to restore certainty and confidence in the forestry and wood processing sector. “This government will drive investment to unlock the industry’s economic potential for growth,” Mr McClay says. “Forestry’s success is critical to rebuilding New Zealand’s economy, boosting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Government cancels forestry ETS annual service charges for 2023-24
    Annual service charges in the forestry Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) will be cancelled for 2023/24, Forestry Minister Todd McClay says. “The sector has told me the costs imposed on forestry owners by the previous government were excessive and unreasonable and I agree,” Mr McClay says. “They have said that there ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Speech to the LGNZ Infrastructure Symposium
    Introduction Thank you for having me here today and welcome to Wellington, the home of the Hurricanes, the next Super Rugby champions. Infrastructure – the challenge This government has inherited a series of big challenges in infrastructure. I don’t need to tell an audience as smart as this one that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Government boosts Agriculture and food trade with China
    Trade and Agriculture Minister Todd McClay and Food Safety Minister Andrew Hoggard welcomed outcomes to boost agricultural and food trade between New Zealand and China. A number of documents were signed today at Government House that will improve the business environment between New Zealand and China, and help reduce barriers, including on infant formula ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
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  • NZ and China launch Services Trade Negotiations
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