The Nation on housing

Written By: - Date published: 7:03 am, June 18th, 2017 - 57 comments
Categories: bill english, housing, human rights, national, useless - Tags: , , , ,

The Nation did good work on the housing crisis yesterday:
Is the Government doing enough on housing? (video)
Boarding house horrors (video)
There’s a companion writeup on Newshub:

Rogue landlords on the taxpayers’ payroll

There are growing calls for a tighter controls around boarding houses.

The housing shortage means they’re being relied on for accommodation more heavily by more people, but landlords are not required to register their boarding houses – despite taxpayer money going into them.

Experts say it’s allowing rogue landlords to exploit vulnerable people, with some living in brutal deprivation.

Te Puea Marae opened its doors last year to people needing temporary accomodation. That offer ended in September, but chair Hurimoana Dennis says people keep coming.

“The sad thing is our leaders have known about this problem since 2010. Quite explicit papers have gone up to Cabinet. It was very clear – be careful, this is what’s coming.” [my emphasis]

Major Campbell Roberts of the Salvation Army says it’s more common than many people think.

“There are many situations that people are in that really, you’re horrified by what the situation is – but the inability to do something about it is what’s really hurting at the moment.”

Enforcement isn’t often carried out because of the consequences.

“If you’ve got 30, 40, 50 people in a boarding house and you close it, where do you put them?” he asks. “We’ve let this thing develop into a crisis situation.”

In the Sunday Star Times last week:
18-month-old Julia, the innocent face of modern NZ’s brutal, archaic boarding houses
Greed, desperation, and squalor – life in illegal boarding houses

And last year:
‘Tents and warehouses’ suggested for homeless
Would-be tenants seek to live in cars on driveways to beat Auckland rents

This is the Brighter Future that Bill English warned of in 2010:

PM spoke of housing crisis in 2010 – Sallies

Prime Minister Bill English said privately seven years ago a housing crisis was looming in Auckland, a senior Salvation Army official says.

Major Campbell Roberts said in 2010, Mr English – then finance minister – told him he feared a crisis on the horizon.

But as Prime Minister, Mr English has consistently said in public there is no housing crisis. …

Great chap Bill English. Compassionate conservative I hear.

57 comments on “The Nation on housing”

  1. millsy 1

    This was happening long before now, in 2008 the Listener did an expose on Kotuku Lodge, a boarding house in Mangere.

  2. Ed 2

    And from last year.

  3. greg 3

    well until people decide to vote there not much can be done nacts have had a decade to make a mess nact needs to fix the problem now that they created

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      National can’t fix the mess they’ve made because it’s a direct result of their ideology and the policies that they ram through.

      The real problem is that Labour probably can’t either as they’re still following the same failed ideology.

      That failed ideology is capitalism.

      • Red 3.1.1

        Don’t be rediculous Draco, the so called capitalist system houses 99pc plus of nz adequately with choice and diversity, you don’t break the system, you simply tweak it at the boundaries that’s all national and labour are competing on? The only one stuck in an idealogicsl bubble is yourself

  4. AsleepWhileWalking 4

    Can someone mathematically prove that the welfare policies of having “cash assets” + the way the Social Securities Act is set up actually create a situation where in order to get out of the system you need significant assets or a very high income to begin with?

    I don’t mean the piss poor definition of “success” that MSD currently have where the target is to get you off a core benefit (despite still needing extensive state help in other regards).

    I believe this to be the case but not that good with figures. We need hard brutal data to turn this situation around regardless of who is governing.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.1

      Can someone mathematically prove that the welfare policies of having “cash assets” + the way the Social Securities Act is set up actually create a situation where in order to get out of the system you need significant assets or a very high income to begin with?

      It probably could be done but would require a dedicated team for a few years with access to all of the data. In other words, a few million dollars of research.

      Still, there is Piketty’s and others research that shows declining social mobility and the entrenchment of the rich.

    • weka 4.3

      To get Accommodation Supplement you can’t have cash assets of more than $8,100 for a single person.

      Cash assets are all financial assets (not Kiwisaver), plus non-financial ones. You can have a caravan or boat so long as its worth less than $2,000, or you use it for day to day accommodation.

      Gifts of cash, payouts from ACC, money from sale of a house etc will all eventually be considered a cash asset (usually after a year).

      So, consider how many people end up on a benefit for 3 – 5 years and have to sell assets to live on, or use up savings, or live off the money from the sale of a house. Once you’ve used up that money the state will help with accommodation costs again. Meanwhile, things change, you get a minimum wage job, but have zero savings and now live hand to mouth with every big bill that comes along.

      It gets even worse if you are on TAS (which is many long term beneficiaries), because the cash asset limit for that is something like $1100. So if you have more than that you are ineligible for TAS until you spend it.

      “Can someone mathematically prove that the welfare policies of having “cash assets” + the way the Social Securities Act is set up actually create a situation where in order to get out of the system you need significant assets or a very high income to begin with?”

      Not sure about getting out of the system because as I’ve just described, you have to use up assets to be eligible in the first place.

  5. Adrian Thornton 5

    Until we have a leading politician and political party that has the courage to just come out and say what every thinking citizen knows already, that the era of the ‘housing market’ and the commodification of domestic housing is over, and today exists only as pure fantasy, solely propped up by government intervention and welfare, that the ideology of the ‘property ladder’ as being the sole means to social mobility and personal security is past just being unsustainable, it is now an active threat to a stable society and safe and coherent communities.

    We need a political party that has radically different answers to this crisis, one with a vision for the future that we can all embrace and want to campaign for, get out on the streets for, poster the walls for, write song for, shout for, protest for, fuck shit up for……..and it is not Labour NZ today, they have made that much is sadly clear to us.

    Turn Labour Left.

    • patricia bremner 5.1

      Labour are promising to tackle this by forming Kiwibuild. You assert Labour will not improve things. Adrian your tone is negative, and troll like at times.
      We can join together and VOTE for change.
      For the finance minister to fail to plan for this over 9 years of public denial is shameful. His private admissions verge on criminal, considering he had the power.
      Many moderate Nats in our family and friends are disgusted as they put the jigsaw together.

      • Bill 5.1.1

        Can’t say I find Adrian’s comments to be particularly negative, and they certainly aren’t trolling comments. Sometimes we don’t like what we hear, but that doesn’t mean that what is being expressed is wrong. In this instance, I’d be saying that Adrian is ‘on the money’.

        You mention kiwibuild. I’ve been critical of that policy in the past, and so I’ll merely ask the following. What proportion of the Kiwibuild houses are for rent? What does that stack up to in raw numbers? How long will it take to build ‘x’ number of rental houses? And how many people are currently homeless or in dire situations?

        I’m asking the above in light of the stated intention to build affordable homes. And picking that more or less all of the people who are homeless or in dire straits with regards accommodation, won’t be in any position to afford any of these ‘affordable’ homes; that any people who are likely to be n such a position are not living at the sharp end of the housing situation.

        • weka 5.1.1.1

          Labour policy isn’t my forte, but afaik Kiwibuild isn’t designed to directly assist homeless or those in dire straights re housing. It’s designed to build upper middle class housing because there is a shortage there as well. The intention is that once people who can afford those houses have access to them, it will free up cheaper houses for buying and for renting. Labour also has other policies that are aimed at directly assisting people who are homeless e.g. their policy on HNZ.

          I agree it’s not brilliant, but it’s not nothing either.

          As for negativity, I think critiquing policy is one thing, writing off a party is another when they are the *only option for changing the government in an election year. I also think that there are numerous thinking citizens who don’t see the era of the housing market as being over, and who in fact are still doing very well out of the housing market. Which is one of the problems for Labour in its attempt to move left.

          • Bill 5.1.1.1.1

            If NZ Labour are the only option for any change, then they are the only option for any change. That doesn’t mean it can’t or oughtn’t to be intelligently pointed out by way of reasoned opinion that they or their policies are possibly not much more than a pile of steaming crap. And that wouldn’t be so much ‘writing them off’ as opining on the “shite state of affairs” that’s the totality of parliamentary options or possibilities in NZ at the moment. As for this supposed attempt to move left that’s coming from Labour – that isn’t something that’s come up on my radar. Maybe I missed it.

            Meanwhile, Adrian commented on what they believe NZ needs, on where they think many people are at, and on the gulf that exists between what we arguably need and what we’re likely to get via NZ Labour.

            He didn’t say (in spite of patricia’s comment to the contrary) that some thing wouldn’t improve under NZ Labour. (I don’t think anyone claims that.) Neither did he troll and neither…well, this whole ‘tone police’ shite that patricia threw out in response is just crap designed to silence voices.

            • Red 5.1.1.1.1.1

              NZers have no desire To bust the system that the Likes of Bill and Draco pursue, any party that purports to do so is also knackered at the election box as more articulately put forward by Rob Hoskins in this weeks NBR He further argued why conservative parties tend to be more successful, they start from a position system is ok, barring recalibration at the boundaries, incremental change and basic level of optimism not the doom and gloom of far left or those in some other weird wacky world of their own proposing to bust the system as their starting point

              • Muttonbird

                Interesting you put up against what you call ‘successful conservatism’ the ‘bust-the-system, weird, whacky world of the far left.

                Typical shark-jumping from a RWNJ troll.

                There is a legitimate alternative to the current ‘recalibration at the boundaries’ and ‘incremental change’ of the National Party led government.

                The National Party government’s approach described above is effectively zero government, and has led to severe housing shortages, severe infrastructure under-investment, increasing social and economic inequality, high youth suicide rate, under-investment in mental health and child protections, a sharp drop in NZ water quality, and an increasingly low wage/high cost of living New Zealand.

                It has led to some very real stresses at the worker and vulnerable end of society, but that doesn’t mean you can paint a far left anarchist solution as the only alternative, you little shit.

                The more moderate and socially responsible path for New Zealand to take is a Labour/Green coalition.

          • Incognito 5.1.1.1.2

            I also think that there are numerous thinking citizens who don’t see the era of the housing market as being over, and who in fact are still doing very well out of the housing market.

            Indeed, I think this is one of the biggest problems. Many economists, for example, have warned that a market correction is necessary, which neither National, the RBNZ, nor Labour will (need to) take responsibility for. However, when political opponents starts to use scare tactics and politics of fear by blaming their (political) opponent for imminent and inevitable doom such a market crash then we find ourselves well and truly in the realm of the irrational & emotional. This kills off any reasonable debate and any non-partisan solutions and the status quo prevails by and large.

            • weka 5.1.1.1.2.1

              Yep. It’s a really difficult one to solve politically. Needs a big change in culture.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.2

          What proportion of the Kiwibuild houses are for rent?

          A moot point, considering the commitment to increase state housing stock.

          • Bill 5.1.1.2.1

            Then I’m asking the question with the state housing numbers included. And adding a question about “right to buy”. Does that remain or is it due to be scrapped?

            • One Anonymous Bloke 5.1.1.2.1.1

              Again, a moot point. The commitment is to increase state housing stock. If the “right to buy” remains how does that affect the commitment?

              Whether ‘right to buy’ is a good thing or not is another question.

              • Bill

                “Right to Buy” diminishes the availability of affordable rentals over time.

                The commitment is to increase the housing stock, yes. But by how much and by what terms that would increase accessibility for the poorest?

                That’s the measure of the policy’s effectiveness, given that the stated problem is poor people with no home or in bad housing.

                If the policy opens up access to the housing market for a broader sweep of the ‘middle class’, then ‘bully’ for them. But they aren’t the ones who are suffering and they aren’t the people desperately needing things to be shaken up.

                • One Anonymous Bloke

                  The right to buy only diminishes stock if you don’t replace it.

                  I agree with your measure of the policy’s effectiveness; in my book, the government should deal with this using emergency powers and requisition accommodation if need be.

                  While increasing state housing stock will have the same effect in the long term, that will be too long for some.

                • weka

                  “The commitment is to increase the housing stock, yes. But by how much and by what terms that would increase accessibility for the poorest?”

                  As I said above, increasing home ownership for the middle classes will increase rentals across the board. Plus changes to HNZ including increasing HNZ housing.

                  Where I disagree with OAB is that we need better and more affordable non-HNZ rentals too, because not everyone is suited to social housing especially around location. But again, more HNZ housing should free up other rentals, eventually.

                  The better rental thing will hopefully be addressed by the rental WOF (I think both L and Greens have this but let’s assume that the GP one is more progressive so again, there’s a voting choice).

                  Once that is in place, or as it’s being put in place, then let’s push for improvements to that. I still think the big flaw in the whole plan is that housing is still tied to investment, which is about retirement and greed. Until we start looking at that, and how to solve that realistically, I think what L/G are offering is actually not too bad. But to go back to the original, IMO inaccurate comment from Adrian, plenty of NZers might have concerns about housing in NZ but they don’t see the market as the problem per se. That’s as big a problem as anything Labour is doing.

                  • Bill

                    How does increasing home ownership for the middle classes necessarily increase the number and availability of rentals for the poorer among us?

                    The assumption would have to be that no young middle class people are living in their parent’s home; that they’ll only be buying houses that wouldn’t otherwise be available for rent; that none of them are currently in multiple occupier rental accommodation. And probably a few other scenarios that aren’t readily popping to mind.

                    But however those numbers stack up, and whatever your thoughts on how it might all fall out, the basic question of how many houses will be specifically for rent (whether through kiwibuild or HNZ) remains.

                    I can’t say I’m at all impressed with this idea that those not really in need should be catered to first, while the rest just wait around for some ‘trickle down’ effect to kick in.

                    Adrian said “what every thinking citizen knows already”. And sure, that along with the rest of that para is debatable. But throw in the legions of poor who don’t even begin to think about home ownership, and for different reasons to those put forward by Adrian, it’s perfectly reasonable to say that it is about time some politician or political party ‘called it’.

                    • weka

                      “How does increasing home ownership for the middle classes necessarily increase the number and availability of rentals for the poorer among us?”

                      It doesn’t *necessarily and it’s why I think Labour’s policy is open to critique. I just think that attacking Kiwibuild for something it’s not designed to do isn’t that useful.

                      “The assumption would have to be that no young middle class people are living in their parent’s home; that they’ll only be buying houses that wouldn’t otherwise be available for rent; that none of them are currently in multiple occupier rental accommodation. And probably a few other scenarios that aren’t readily popping to mind.”

                      No, the assumption would be that enough first home buyers aren’t in those situations.

                      “I can’t say I’m at all impressed with this idea that those not really in need should be catered to first, while the rest just wait around for some ‘trickle down’ effect to kick in.”

                      Yes and no. If Labour weren’t fixing HNZ or doing a WoF, I’d agree. But as far as I can tell the policies are better seen as interrelated (and I’m sure there are other ones too). But sure, I don’t see Labour’s policy as brilliant by any means, I just think that the gap between what Adrian was talking about and where most voting NZers are at is just too wide.

                      “Adrian said “what every thinking citizen knows already”.”

                      Yes, I included the word thinking in my response deliberately. Unless you are suggesting that most of NZ are incapable of intelligent thought (as opposed to having different opinions), then my point stands. Lots of NZers don’t see a problem with the property market. I disagree with them, but I’m not trying to form a govt in Sept.

                      “And sure, that along with the rest of that para is debatable. But throw in the legions of poor who don’t even begin to think about home ownership, and for different reasons to those put forward by Adrian, it’s perfectly reasonable to say that it is about time some politician or political party ‘called it’.”

                      I responded originally because I do find Adrian’s comments often pretty negative. I think they have good insight into what needs to change but the whole Labour-bashing, go left regardless thing doesn’t work in reality when it comes negatively framed.

                      That issue of housing affordability, we’ve barely begun to scratch the surface of how to talk about that in real terms in NZ. I just don’t see the value in expecting a centre left party to suddenly start talking about the end of the housing market. Something else needs to happen first for Labour to be able to start moving in that direction.

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    Where I disagree with OAB is that we need better and more affordable non-HNZ rentals too

                    Then either you’re misinterpreting my remarks, or they’re unclear in some way.

                    • weka

                      People have a tendency to see fixing HNZ as the solution to renters or the homeless. I think we need to be careful to not assume that HNZ houses are the only response needed for those people. I don’t think you think that but I do see in these debates a promoted reliance on HNZ as the solution.

      • Wainwright 5.1.2

        Kiwibuild will deliver half-million-dollar houses in Auckland and call them affordable. It’s a joke.

        • McFlock 5.1.2.1

          50,000 houses, townhouses, and apartments in Auckland? No joke. That’s why the nats pretend they’ll try to copy it.

          • Bill 5.1.2.1.1

            50 000 is a fair number. But what proportion of those who are either homeless or in dire straits will be able to access them? That’s crucial. If they are mostly for sale and/or beyond the financial wherewithal of those living at the sharp end of this housing crisis, then what’s the point behind building them? What problem would that 50 000 actually be tackling?

            • McFlock 5.1.2.1.1.1

              the poor quality housing stock that’s killing people and the shortage of houses that’s fuelling a speculative market.

              The problems you bring up are targeted more by Labour’s HNZ policy, increasing the housing stock, stopping the asset stripping, stopping the dividend extractions, and so on. But I suspect HNZ will pick up some of the kiwibuild homes, too.

              • Karen

                My understanding is the 100,000 houses over 10 years is the Kiwibuild policy to provide houses for first home buyers. Houses will also be bought and built to provide for social housing needs.

                http://www.labour.org.nz/state_houses_people_over_profit

              • Wainwright

                You can build as many good healthy houses as you like Mcflcok, the point is if people living in cars or moldy shitholes can’t afford them you’re just fuelling inequality.

                • weka

                  Why would new HNZ houses not be affordable?

                  People have a go at Labour’s $600,000 houses or whatever they are, but as beneficiary I couldn’t afford a $100,000 house. There has to be a cut off point, where should it be exactly?

                  • Bill

                    Why would HNZ houses be for sale?

                  • Wainwright

                    Kiwibuild isn’t ‘new HNZ houses’, it’s new private dwellings. There’s a fraction of the 100,000 figure Labour throw around which is new state housing, something like 10,000 over x years. Mcflock is confusing the two either deliberately or not.

                    • weka

                      Yes, I know what Kiwibuild is. I was pointing out that it’s not designed to solve those problems directly (homelessness, substandard housing), there are other policies for that. I wish people would stop conflating those issues.

                    • McFlock

                      They’re planning on building new private dwellings, and also increasing the number of state dwellings as part of a separate plan.

                      I’d be surprised if there wasn’t some overlap in the two, but increasing the number of homes on the market also lowers the cost of increasing the number of state houses, however they’re sourced. Which actually provides a mechanism by which kiwibuild can indirectly help solve homelessness, a relationship that on the face of it looked like a complaint that a policy on farm effluent does nothing to address child labour problems overseas.

                • McFlock

                  yeah well maybe you should take a closer look at the HNZ or rental homes policy. Kiwibuild isn’t supposed to directly address every problem under the sun, just the oversteamed housing market.

        • Incognito 5.1.2.2

          By itself building more houses is not going to solve each & every problem but surely more available houses will allow mobility to occur on a larger scale and I’d like to think that it would free up housing at the lower end of the market. It is no magic bullet but it is better than doing absolutely nothing.

        • greg 5.1.2.3

          i think that was point another comment dealt with a market correction will be needed to deliver affordable houses there is no painless way out of a housing bubble. its much more preferable if national had never allowed one to form.but here we are and we just going to have to deal with it.

      • Adrian Thornton 5.1.3

        @patricia bremner
        I will say what I want, when I want about Labour, and if that happens to be a tough critique of their pathetic attempt at a housing solution to a looming critical national crisis, and you see that as negative, then that is your problem.

        As far as trolling goes, I don’t think so, I have made my views clear to Little, and Lorke face to face, and stand by anything I say, that is why I use my real name on political forums.
        I am open to debate, but I have seen nothing in your answer to me that carries any weight. Blaming a neo liberal economic disaster, that is expressing itself through this housing crisis on National, is quite frankly naive….at best.

        BTW, it speaks volumes that your Nat friends are moving toward Labour, while all the progressives I know and others I talk to in my shop daily, are moving away…

        Turn Labour Left!

        • weka 5.1.3.1

          Who will you vote for Adrian? And who would you encourage people to vote for if not Labour?

        • greg 5.1.3.2

          you need to remember we have mmp and kiwi build is a starting point in any negotiation the disenfranchised can us there vote to get the deal they want the power is theres or they can continue bickering (divide and conquer) and allow national to walk all over them .
          the speculators will be voting and national is counting on the young not to vote

  6. Policy Parrot 6

    This is bullshit – they (or someone else) just need to get on to it.

    The government could easily lease land on the outskirts of Auckland (near Drury perhaps), and contract a consortium to build several Kaikoura style temporary accommodation camps that could house these people, and have them operational at maximum within a couple of months.

    Provide subsidised transport to Takanini Railway Station, so they can travel further afield if desired, for work/family/pleasure etc.

    Obviously these places aren’t ideal, but surely they are several steps up from what they are currently living in. And it will cut the scum operators out of the market.

    • Bill 6.1

      I agree that they (or someone else) just need to get on to it.

      I’ve a memory of an old Campbell Live piece after Christchurch where he went to a ‘lot’ containing basic pre-fab units that could have been rolled out by the truckload. Except it wasn’t happening. (I can’t remember what the excuses were.)

      I’m also going to mention again that NZ Labour said it would build rentals and houses to buy in a ratio such that it would take a hundred years before the number of rentals equaled the initial numbers being touted for ‘the market’.

      Maybe they’ve rowed back on that one.

    • Whispering Kate 6.2

      This Government can roll out temporary housing when it wants to – they are building a mini town to provide for all the workers who are rebuilding the earthquake damaged highways created by the Kaikoura earthquake. From what I remember they were flat pack quick fix housing.

      One thing to build flat packs for their bloody highways but never a consideration for people who need housing. This is being primed up for wholesale privatisation of our social housing in this country. They don’t give a damn for the vulnerable – not one bit.

  7. Philj 7

    There are solutions to the housing crisis. We have a government who have benefited, in the short term, from not taking the sensible options to correct the situation. That is how we find ourselves in the dumb situation we are now in. We are being mislead and deceived.

  8. RedLogix 8

    Historically boarding houses were a regulatory black hole; not a motel, nor a flat. They’re are a very old component of our housing market and served a purpose for those with no other options. But always something that existed at the margins. Undesirable, but tolerable just.

    But with renting by the room has become a rapidly growing practice in recent years. The reasons all tie back into the usual suspects; the loss of social housing, and relentless pressure on rents.

    Since 2010 they have been brought under the mantle of the Tenancy Tribunal. Here are the DBH rules:

    https://www.tenancy.govt.nz/starting-a-tenancy/types-of-tenancies/boarding-houses/

    This section is pretty clear on the landlord’s responsibilities:

    Repairs
    A boarding house landlord must make sure the house is in a reasonable state of repair. It must comply with all requirements for buildings, including health and safety, under any enactment that applies. This includes supplying basic necessities such as cooking facilities, drinkable water and bathroom facilities (connected to an adequate means of heating water).

    Tenants must notify the landlord as soon as possible if they discover any damage or anything that needs repairing. Tenants must not intentionally or carelessly cause any damage, or allow anyone else to do so. Tenants must not interfere with, or render inoperative, any means of escape from fire.

    Security
    A boarding house landlord must provide and maintain sufficient locks to ensure the house and all rooms are reasonably secure. They must also make sure tenants have access to their room and toilet and bathroom facilities at all times.

    Before changing any lock or similar device, the landlord must tell every tenant who will be affected.

    Tenants must not alter, add to or remove any lock or similar device.

    In the case highlighted in the OP it’s crystal clear the landlord is absolutely in default on these obligations. The problem is that these tenants are people with no other options short of homelessness and are either unaware of, or afraid to exert even these minimal rights.

  9. patricia bremner 9

    Adrian I also use my name in discussions.
    “Negative and troll like” meant no positive suggestions coupled with sweeping statements that “no-one is offering anything better” (especially Labour).
    What do you suggest Adrian? Is an improvement through the election not desirable?
    Sure Little isn’t Christ. He is however genuine, and he cares.
    To turn round the 30+ year neo-liberal bus is going to need good will and a degree of personal sacrifice.
    Little and Labour have stated “houses should be homes, not bargaining chips”
    You said something radical needs to happen.
    Do you think we should nationalise home building? That would be a big move, but it would frighten the voting horses ofcourse.
    As for blaming the current government, well they saw the looming crisis and did what you said. Propped up a rotten system with welfare instead of change for the better.
    I repeat, I personally will vote for a change of government, aware as I am that deRoot and others have made “investment in houses” the problem it has become, and that an incoming government will need support and goodwill to bring about change.
    It was good to see a variety of responses, as I read this blog daily.

    • Philj 9.1

      Patricia B,
      You can’t make an omelette without breaking an egg. To remedy this unfolding housing tragedy some people will have to pay. It should be those who have captured the market but I bet it won’t be.

  10. Poission 10

    The other accommodation problem causer.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/marlborough-express/news/93622633/airbnb-headache-for-longterm-renters-as-marlborough-landlords-pull-properties

    This would be also a problem in other tourist ‘hotspots” such as queenstown wanaka etc

    Here local authorities have not met their responsibilities to manage AIRBNB with the regulatory constraints that apply to all commercial accommodation premises.

  11. Venezia 11

    I back the Jeremy Corbyn option. Requisition all houses which have been empty for 6 months or more to house people, especially in Auckland. This is likely to include houses purchased by foreign buyers (? tax dodges, ? money laundering).

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    To Protect and Serve: When the Prime Minister finds herself enmeshed in the coils of a full-blown political scandal, her colleagues and party comrades have only one priority: to release her as swiftly – and with as little lasting injury – as possible. Is this what Jacinda Ardern’s colleagues and ...
    18 hours ago
  • The rot at the top.
    When military leaders cover up and lie to elected civilian authorities, the foundation of democratic civil-military relations is undermined because it is those authorities who are entrusted to hold the military accountable to the public that they mutually serve. But this is only true if civilian political authorities take their ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    20 hours ago
  • Challenging the voting age in court
    The Make It 16 campaign to lower the voting age is launching this afternoon, and they have already announced plans to challenge the law in court:The campaign, named "Make it 16" will launch at Parliament on Friday, with plans to take their case to the High Court, testing the rights ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    20 hours ago
  • Israel’s elections herald a long siesta
    by Daphna Whitmore The long years of Netanyahu’s reign are drawing to an end. For years he has epitomized reactionary zionism as he oversaw hundreds of thousands of Jewish settlers seize land in the West Bank. There are now 700,000 settlers, putting an end to the myth that Israel was ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    21 hours ago
  • Petrol companies promise prices will come back down once peace is restored to the Middle East
    BP, Z and Mobil all insist that petrol price hikes are temporary, “in a very literal sense.” The nation’s major petrol providers are trying to allay customer fears over prices, promising that they’ll move to lower them again “immediately” when the Middle East is returned to its formerly peaceful state. ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 day ago
  • All Blacks unveil boat for Rugby World Cup 2019
    South African coach Rassie Erasmus says he has no idea what they’re going to do about the boat. In a highly anticipated press conference this afternoon, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has finally unveiled the team’s boat for its Rugby World Cup 2019 campaign. In a press conference that went ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 day ago
  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
    The Operation Burnham inquiry continued to question senior NZDF staff today, and their shoddy coverup over their knowledge of civilian casualties continue to fall apart. If you recall, first, we were asked to believe that it was all a series of "mistakes and errors": a senior officer with multiple degrees ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
    The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) had part of its committee stage yesterday. its a generally tedious bill about the nitty-gritty of local government reorganisation. But it includes a clause making the Local Government Commission subject to the Ombudsmen Act, and hence the OIA. Great! Except of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    2 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    2 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    3 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    3 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    4 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy admin@averagekiwi.com
    4 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    4 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    5 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    5 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    6 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    7 days ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    7 days ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    1 week ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Union solidarity with Ihumatao land occupation
    by Daphna Whitmore Every Sunday for the past two months unionists from First Union, with supporters from other unions, have set out to the Ihumatao land protest, put up gazebos and gas barbeques, and cooked food for a few hundred locals and supporters who have come from across the country. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago

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